Hollywood’s Insider Tips to How Comedy Really Works

In March, a very special event is coming to Authors, Screenwriters and all those “planning on being either” to Colorado. Comedy Trainer Steve Kaplan is coming to AuthorU.org (open to the public) for two all-day workshops. The first day, March 4th concentrates on incorporating comedy and humor into your writing (something we all could use); and the second day, March 5th, a clarion event for all those who want to sell their work to Hollywood (or beyond) in the form of screenwriting.

Check Steve out at KaplanComedy.com. After all, if Jack Black, Nathan Lane and Oliver Platt get his coaching, why not you? If the producers of Seinfeld, Everyone Loves Raymond and Get It On work with him, why not learn from someone in the know? Steve’s an author as well, so he “gets” us. Be there.

Get registered NOW for one day or both … early bird rates will change soon: http://authoru.org/events.html


What Is Comedy?
Steve Kaplan

First off, let’s differentiate between funny and comic.

Funny is whatever makes you laugh. Period. End of story.  When my niece was five, I could shake a set of keys in her face, and dissolve her into hysterics. To her, that was funny. But is it a comedy? Would you submit a set of keys to Sundance, or shake them in a comedy club, or show a picture of them in this book?

Funny is subjective. Different things make different people laugh at different times. To try to guess what other people find funny is a mug’s game—just look at many sitcoms if you don’t believe me.

So if funny is subjective, what’s comedy?

Many people have come up with many definitions. Freud thought is was man laughing at other’s misfortunes. Bergson thought is was the “mechanical encrusted on the living.” E.B. White said “Analyzing humor is like dissecting a frog. Few people are interested and the frog dies of it.” They all may be right, but I think that comedy is the art of telling the truth about what its like to be human.  Drama might help us dream about what we could be, but comedy helps us live with who we are. And who are we? 

We’re a motley crew, hurtling through the void, in a cold, uncaring universe, not knowing where we came from, not knowing where we’re going, trying out best in our fumbling, bumbling human way, to make each and every moment in that universe as good as we possibly can, or just a little bit better than the moment before. We’re a species who continue to get up after being knocked down, either because we’re too stupid or stubborn or hopeful to continue to stay down where it’s safe, and where we’ll all end up anyway.

It’s stupid, futile, hopeless.  But no matter how hopeless we are, how pitiful, how pathetic, how wrong-headed, how selfish, how petty our solutions, it’s also wonderfully, gloriously human.  And the comedian is simply the courageous man who gets up in front of a large group of strangers and admits to being human—telling the truth about himself, and others. People may be sitting the dark, thinking “I’m a failure, I’m defeated, I’m all alone.” The comic artist goes out there and says, “Me too.”  The essential gesture of the comedian is the shrug. “Hey, you’ll live. I’ve been there, that’s life, You’ll live!”

The art of comedy is the art of hope. This is the truth, the comic metaphor for our lives.

So how does it work? The comedy tells a story about an ordinary guy or gal (Jackie Gleason used to call him a ‘moke’), struggling against insurmountable odds, without many of the required tools with which to win, and yet never giving up hope. Tell a story like that, and even though some people may not laugh, that’s comedy.






Ashography Event Photography

Judith Briles is a book publishing expert and coach. She empowers authors and is the Founder of Author U, a membership organization created for the serious author who wants to be seriously successful. She’s been writing signature-full TRNabout and conducting workshops on publishing since the 80s. Judith is the author of 35 books including Author YOU: Creating and Building Your Author and Book Platforms (ForeWord IndieFab Book of the Year), Snappy Sassy Salty: Wise Words for Authors and Writers and a speaker at publishing conferences. Book #35 was published this summer: The How to Avoid 101 Book Publishing Blunders, Bloopers & Boo-Boos. Get your copy now.

Each summer, she holds Judith Briles Book Publishing Unplugged, a three day intensive limited to a small group of authors who want to be seriously successful. In 2017, the dates are June 22-24th.  Her audio and workbook series, Creating Your Book and Author Platform is now available. Join Judith live on Thursdays at 6 p.m. EST for “AuthorU – Your Guide to Book Publishing” on the Toginet Network at bit.ly/PublishingShow .

Follow @AuthorU and @MyBookShepherd on Twitter and do a “Like” at AuthorU and Judith Briles – TheBookShepherd on Facebook. If you want to create a book that has no regrets, contact Judith at Judith@Briles.com.

header-logo1.pngAuthor U is a non-profit membership organization dedicated to the author who wants to be seriously successful. Monthly education programs delivered face-to-face and online, The Author Resource ezine, BookCamps and the annual Author U Extravaganza are tools designed for authors pre, during and post publishing of their books. Join AuthorU.org today.

 If you are looking for FREE author and book coaching … call in to Judith’s Author Monday Mornings at NOON Eastern each Monday. The number is 218-632-9854; Access Code 1239874444 … have your questions ready–there’s a full hour to ask and listen

Follow Me

Was this helpful? Get more FREE tips and insight:

Follow Me

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Please prove you're human: * Time limit is exhausted. Please reload CAPTCHA.