Friday, January 23, 2015

The Key to Comedy: Random Specificity

Someone once told me (I think it was my husband) there are two words that sum up the key to humor: random specificity.

Yet when I was asked to create a blog about humor during my blog tour for Cherdo's blog, I couldn't find any examples. I searched and searched and searched and finally gave up. But after just a few hours of watching Friends on Netflix, I found more examples than I could ever find, mostly thanks to this guy.

Random specificity. What is almost universally funny (at least in America) is humor that pulls some random example out of the universe, yet the example is so specific, it makes the joke hilarious. Here's an example:

Chandler (hanging up the phone): I got her machine.
Joey: Her answering machine?
Chandler: No, interestingly enough, her leaf blower picked up.

Could you be any more randomly specific than a leaf blower?

Here's another one:

Chandler (pointing at Rachel): Could you want her more?
Ross: Who?
Chandler (rolls his eyes): Dee, the sarcastic sister from 'What's Happening?'

Yes, I'd say that's even more randomly specific.

Sarcasm or not, the point is if you're trying to be funny, instead of referring to a general idea, pick something very specific. Something so random that it will make people wonder where on Earth you came up with that.

By the way, 30 Days of No Gossip is in this month's Scholastic flyer, which is in classrooms all across the country! I love this sight...

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Express Yourself: Best Movie of 2014

I've been bad. I was supposed to be participating in this every week...

But I forgot.

So I'll just jump right in like I've been here all along. week, I participate in the Express Yourself meme. This week's assignment is to talk about the best movie I saw in 2014.

I have a good one for that!

(Pssst: That's kind of why I decided to jump in this week!)

I watched this movie in December and loved, loved, LOVED it.

The movie centers around a writer's group filled with quirky individuals. If you've seen any of Christopher Guest's movies, it will feel slightly familiar.

When Hannah, the young writer who doesn't even read, lands an agent and book deal, she has to deal with her fellow writers' jealousy. It's a great movie even if you have no interest in being a writer, but if you're a writer, you'll want to watch it over and over.

Best of all, it's on Netflix. Here's the trailer.

Monday, January 19, 2015

I'm a (Local) Best Seller--Plus 52 Likes by Medeia Sharif

Today, I'm welcoming Medeia Sharif, author extraordinaire. But first--a bit of super-good news. I made the local (Nashville) best-seller list this week--#3!!! Yay! I have to say it was due in large part to those of you who ordered an autographed copy for your librarians, school libraries, and the tween girls in your lives. My blogging friends are a-MAY-zing!

Now on to the featured act! Medeia Sharif is one of the most prolific authors I know. Her latest book is now out and it sounds like a winner. Check it out and add it to your to-read list pronto! Oh...and she's giving away a $50 Amazon gift card and a copy of her book, so be sure to enter!

52 LIKES, Evernight Teen, 2015
Purchase from Amazon, Evernight Teen (vendor links will be updated on the author's site)

After a brutal rape and near-murder, Valerie wants to get past feelings of victimhood from both the assault and her history of being bullied. She’s plagued by not knowing the identity of her rapist and by the nasty rumors in school about that night. Valerie follows clues from ghostly entities, past victims of the rapist-murderer, contacting her through a social media site—why do all of their eerie photos have 52 likes under them? Their messages are leading her to the mystery man, although he’ll put up a fight to remain hidden.

Find Medeia – YA and MG Author

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