Description of Class
In this single-session class, instructor Ian Belknap will provide an overview of humor writing – you’ll define some terms (satire vs. parody, for instance) and discuss some approaches to brainstorming and to shaping and polishing material.
You’ll review some brief examples of recent humor writing from sources like McSweeney’s and The Onion, and dissect the tactics and techniques (the importance of cadence, the need for concision, etc.) they use, and you’ll discuss some of the principles (the requirement of irreverence, for instance, and a pervading skepticism) writers require to create humor pieces that hit their mark.
You’ll also be doing a quick exercise that incorporates some of what you’ve learned to create your own quick humorous sketch. Students will leave with a firmer command of the humor writer’s toolbox, and a clearer sense of the mindset they’ll need to adopt to in order to start writing humor of their own.