Friday, 16 August 2013


What makes you laugh? I like slapstick. I wish I didn't but I do.

Do people laugh at different things in different countries. I was in Australia one and watched as the Aussies roared with laughter at a comedian who left me feeling as though I hadn't left school. Do people get British humour?

Have you ever sent an email that was supposed to be funny and when you read it back realised it could be taken the wrong way.

Some things are funny, some people are funny. Why is this.

Write down what makes you laugh.

Try to write a sketch of about one minute in duration (one typed page) and look at it after a couple of days to see if it works.

Who are the funny people in the world?



What is it about them that makes you laugh?

 Try to analyse this and bear it in mind in your writing

Monday, 12 August 2013

Editing your work

I've mentioned Edgar Allan Poe a few times lately. I'm reading his stuff and it's taking ages because I keep going over the long and elaborate sentences and imagining them as they might be if they were more modern and more brief.

It isn't just EAP who gets this treatment. I recently wrote a story that was rejected by a magazine editor. When I came to look at it again I decided it could be made shorter. I got it from 2000 words to 1000! Not something to be proud of. What twaddle had I written that wasn't missed after a hefty edit?

Do it now. Get one of your stories and see if you can remove 20% of the content without changing the story. It makes you resourceful. Maybe you could remove more. Always a good thing to put stuff away for a while and come back to it with a view to reducing it to make it powerful and tight.

If all your stories are edited, try looking at Poe and see what you come up with when you reduce his sentences.

Random picture of me at a storytelling event.