Hi everyone! Here is an article I recently wrote for the website Live Write Thrive. If you would like to read the full article, check out the link at the bottom. Have a great day!
Humor is one of the most diverse tools in the writer’s toolbox, making it unfortunate that so few people make proper use of it. Humor is often thought of as simply a cheap laugh, a way to add a lighthearted note to a story, and nothing more. In reality, the concept of humor is much more complex. Humor, when written correctly, redirects attention and causes an unexpected twist for the reader that not only sharpens their attention, but can also deliver the “sucker punch” when they least expect it. Here are just a few ways humor can be used effectively in fiction writing:
Relief of Tension
Perhaps the most common use of humor, in this scenario the author includes a brief moment of humor to alleviate rising tension. If a scene contains an overabundance of suspense, it can become saturated and will prove exhausting to the reader. A well-timed quip from even a minor character can go a long way in providing a much needed “break” for the reader. For example, suppose a group of high school students are being chased through an abandoned house by a killer. They stop to catch their breath and one of them comments, “You know, Mr. Grant’s calculus class isn’t looking so bad right now.” Not only does this provide a brief moment of light heartedness, it also helps underscore the peril of the current situation.