If there was ever a topic that is subjective. . . it's humor. What may be funny to one person. . . could be an insult to somebody else, etc. And, that's why being successful in the business of humor can be so difficult for many people including myself.
I've been in the humor business for over 40 years, so I have a big advantage over many people, as far as experience in humor is concerned. . . and, I have had plenty of “egg on my face, " and I've eaten a flock of “crow" to prove it. (this is your life's work, Jer?)
Because I'm not a musician, I can't “toot my horn, " but I've been told by many people over the years, that I should have been a stand-up comedian. That would never happen because I suffer from, what millions of people suffer from. . . stage fright! Humor is quite delicate, and requires a smooth delivery and I would quickly freeze-up in front of a lot of people. . . and I would be shown the door! (YAWN)
Being funny. . . is a lot easier than writing funny. All the tools of the trade are available for use. . . a pie in the face; a barrel of soft drink over the head; the blank stare; the double-take; the practical joke, etc. Writing funny is a different ballgame, especially on the Internet. Writing is easy! But, writing WELL is NOT easy! Most of us write everyday. But, I think the top priority in writing successfully is to write “interestingly. " To do that, a person has to be a good story-teller. If a person is not interesting. . . that person cannot write interestingly. And, because that person is not interesting. . . that person will never write humor either. In order to write funny. . . that person has to be funny in the first place, in my view. It can't be any other way. (YAWN, again)
As a woodcarver (25 years), I'm out of the art and craft world, and I have no background in writing whatsoever. Over the years, I have carved over 200 cartoon-like characters in wood. I had my hands full teaching myself to carve wood. . . but n-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o that wasn't enough! I had to stick my nose into the difficult field of writing! I must be crazy!
And, my interest in writing, began when I started placing captions on the wood piece, which was pretty unusual to say the least. I've always taken chances with my wood work, and now in the world of writing, is no different. I used little pieces of card stock for the captions (2" x 4") and people seemed to like them.
Over the years, I participated in over 40 arts and crafts shows all over the state. I could see for myself (up close and personal), the reaction to my work from the general public who attended the show. The smiles; the frowns and listen to the chatter around my display, etc. (mostly frowns, Jer?)
But, on the Internet, it's different. I can't see anyone on the Internet, so I don't know if something I write is funny. I have to rely on the experience I've had in humor all my life, and on instinct. If an idea I have, makes me laugh. . . I go with it. If the material is marginal or borderline. . . I don't go with it unless I can make it funny, etc.
What makes it difficult for me, is the fact that I am a novice in the business of writing. To be comfortable in calling myself a writer or a humor writer, I have to have a few credits. . . build a resume in writing, etc. I have to find out if I have the where-with-all to write something that people will read. As of the beginning of the year 2007, I have written 49 articles since August, 2006, and 38 of them have been published on other websites, which I am thankful for. (are we bragging, Jer?) About 15 of those articles are humorous and humor-related, and the others are of a serious nature.
Despite my successful beginning in writing, I'm still reluctant to call myself a writer. . . or a humor writer. I have to accomplish more. But, one thing is certain. . . I will never be a stand-up comedian. . . so I'll just have to settle for being a “sit-down comedian, " on a computer. (gee, Jer. . . I didn't know you were in the humor business!)
Website name: humordoctor - Over 150 colorful pages; over 300 graphics http://humordoctormd.homestead.com Writing site; Author's Den; http://www.authorsden.com/humordoctormd email; firstname.lastname@example.org Copyright; Jerry L. Aragon (The Humor Doctor); 2007