I’m preparing my notes in advance for when I become a rich and famous author and am asked to travel about giving lectures for big fat consulting fees. At the end of this blog you will be asked to complete a survey, ranking me on a scale of one to five. Please feel free to fill out twenty or so. You can get creative with the names you use, although I. M. Hurling has already been taken.
For those of you who would prefer to take a nap during this blog, you can move to the back of the lecture hall now. We’ll wait.
Let’s break down how to add some humor to your writing:
- We laugh at what surprises us. Lists are particularly good for this. I like to use “the rule of three.” You can do this by using two perfectly reasonable things to illustrate your point, then throw in something totally off the wall for the third.
- I think that all seniors with their original hips should take up ballroom dancing. You’ll learn the box-step, the dip, and the fastest route to the emergency room.
- Irony should be in every humor writer’s grab bag. The Hitchhicker’s guide to the Galaxy is all about the quest for “the meaning of life, the universe, and everything.” After seemingly endless searching, they come up with the rather disappointing answer: “forty-two.”
- Exaggeration and understatement are valuable tools.
- Dave Barry is a master of exaggeration. … the taxi has some kind of problem with the steering, probably dead pedestrians lodged in the mechanism, …
- In Monty Python and the Holy Grail, there is an epic battle between King Arthur and the black knight. When Arthur cuts off both of the knight’s arms, he answers, “Tis but a scratch.”
- Developing a strong sense of humor starts with examining what is funny in yourself. Our flaws make us laughable.
- I find that it’s important to keep a positive outlook whenever I’m climbing behind the wheel of a couple tons of steel. In all my years of driving a motorhome, I’ve only ripped the tailpipe off once, and those traffic cones had it coming.
- Circle the wagons.
One of my favorite techniques is to end a blog by sneaking in something from … Mr. Hurling, if you continue that, I’ll have to ask you to leave!