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Steps to Success » Humour

Finding Inspirational Sources of Humour for your Writing

I wish I could say I was a professional comedian and that I knew a vast amount about humour, but fortunately, that isn’t necessary to be able to recognise what is funny nor to know how to make people laugh. What I do know for sure is that our world would be much worse off if we didn’t have humour. So where can we find sources of humour to use in our writing?

As Clive James once told Martin Amis, ‘A sense of humour is nothing but common-sense dancing’ We can find humour in everyday moments, in the silly mistakes we all sometimes make, and in the innocuous misunderstandings we invariably have from time to time. In fact, my favourite kind of humour is exactly that: situational humour.

While funny movies, cartoons, comics and memes are all good sources of comedy, it is in fact everywhere around us, as long as we know how to spot it.  The slip-up in a friend’s speech, two people saying the same thing at once, thinking you know what your dad is pointing at but finding out he meant something completely different – humour can be found in all these situations.

Look for it when you are going about your daily life, then start to incorporate it into your writing. Start small, and once you develop an eye for seeing the humour in everyday life, it becomes much easier to add it regularly to our writing.  Have fun ‘finding the funny!’