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Chelsea Handler

Pop Culture

How to Become a Better Humor Writer

I’m not that funny.

I wish I was.

I spent a lot of time meticulously watching the Marx Brothers, Steve Martin, Gene Wilder, Woody Allen, Kids in the Hall and SNL as a kid, but I’m about as funny as a Senate hearing.

I think standout humor is something you can learn, but a lot of people are just naturally gifted (or had a terrible childhood filled with alcoholic fathers and pill-popping mothers that drove them into comedy as a way to mask the pain).

This is why I’m so excited to be taking one of Skillshare’s hybrid classes “Humor Writing: Become the Next David Sedaris” taught by writer Grace Bello (The Atlantic, The Awl, McSweeney’s). The 5-week class starts tonight, but there is still time to enroll. Only $12 to become the literary world’s next former elf-portraying and drug-using 55 year-old neurotic writer who hates Chinese food and has an adorable lisp.

I decided to list some of my own tips on how to write humorously, but it’s up to you if you want to take humor writing (more…)

Pop Culture

The Little White Lies of Humor Writing

I’m a reader of nonfiction. For some reason I have terrible trouble engaging in fiction. I’ll read two pages of a fiction book and then promptly turn it into this: (ha)

This is similar to my love for documentary film these days.

I’m not sure why I enjoy learning more about reality than fantasy. It could be the reason why I’m in a perpetual state of panic all of the time. I remember distinctly curling up into a ball on the corner of the couch after watching the documentary “Wal-Mart: The High Cost of Low Price” and crying for the future of the planet (this is actually true). If I read more fiction, I would maybe be a less anxious person. I’d believe in kid magicians and benevolent vampires instead of serial killers and tyrannical dictators.

When I read nonfiction, I do sometimes like reading light subject matters as well. Recently I finished Warren Zevon’s biography written by his ex-wife, Crystal, called, “I’ll Sleep When I’m Dead: The Dirty Life and Times of Warren Zevon“. (more…)