Guest post by Michelle.
Featured Image is from the comedy show, Robot Chicken.
This week, we talked a lot about humour in writing and how to tell when the writer is being humorous. It is very hard to write humour and I thought a good way to practice familiarising ourselves with humour and writing and commenting on it was to find a few extracts from books so we could discuss why we think they’re funny and how we can tell that they’re funny.
Fraud (David Rakoff: 2001)
“Sheila taught me a survival technique for getting through seemingly intolerable situations-boring lunches, stern lectures on attitude or time management, those necessary breakup conversations, and the like: maintaining eye contact, keep your face inscrutable and masklike, with your faintest hint at a Gioconda smile. Keep this up as long as you possibly can, and just as you feel you are about to crack and take a letter opener and plunge it into someone’s neck, fold your hands in your lap, one nestled inside the other, like those of a supplicant in a priory. Now, with the index finger of your inner hand, write on the palm of the other, very discreetly and undetectably, “I hate you. I hate you. I hate you…” over and over again as you pretend to listen. You will find that this brings a spontaneous look of interest and pleased engagement to your countenance. Continue and repeat as necessary.”
Insane City (Dave Barry: 2013)
“You came to a club with a woman who is not your fiancée, and a gorilla on your wedding day.”
Freaks I’ve Met (Donald Jans: 2015)
“I was convinced that the proverb about money not buying happiness was written by a rich guy who didn’t want you to feel bad because you didn’t have any.”
Which one do you find the funniest and why?