Affiliate Program

Writing For Laughs

Lynn Ruth Miller

Course ID: LC021

Current Openings: Yes

In this class we will discuss the components of good writing:

  • Creating an outline
  • Avoiding unnecessary adjectives or adverbs and qualifiers
  • Using action words to move our story along and simplifying our prose.

We will compare different approaches to writing the same anecdote so that we may understand the necessary ingredients that create humor. We will apply these principles to write an original essay and then share the results with the instructor. We will work on keeping a consistent voice and creating scenes that involve the reader using all five senses. We will elaborate the elements of surprise and exaggeration necessary to produce a laugh.

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Course Type:

Private Mentoring


To produce lean, concise writing that uses the principles of comedy writing and fiction techniques.

Learner Prerequisites

A sense of humor and a compulsion to create word pictures.

Start Date On-going, open enrollment.
Duration 8 lessons at your pace.
Limit N/A
Class Materials

A computer that uses Microsoft Word™ and e-mail capacity.

Cost $240
Tutorial Option Additional mentoring and critiquing is available from the instructor. The fee is $45 per hour. Please contact [email protected] to register.

Course Outline

Lesson 1: List topics and discuss specific techniques to make them funny.

Lesson 2: Select one topic and flesh it out into a 1000 word story in the first person.

Lesson 3: Edit and rework that story.

Lesson 4: Select another topic and write the story in dialogue only: 1000 words.

Lesson 5: Rework and refine that story.

Lesson 6: Select another topic and write it in the third person.

Lesson 7: Rework and refine that story.

Lesson 8: Explore publication possibilities and ways to see your work in print.

Instructor Bio

Lynn Ruth Miller has two Masters Degrees, one in Education & Creative Arts and the other in Communication. She has taught several years at both the elementary and university level and has been doing freelance writing for magazines and newspapers for over thirty-five years. Her features have been published in over one hundred periodicals and she occasionally writes a humor column for the Pacifica Tribune called THOUGHTS WHILE WALKING THE DOG. Her published books are STARVING HEARTS, an autobiographical novel about growing up in the fifties and a selection of those columns, THOUGHTS WHILE WALKING THE DOG, MORE THOUGHTS WHILE WALKING THE DOG and a CD of her readings, THOUGHTS AND MORE THOUGHTS. She is a contributor to the A CUP OF COMFORT series, including the cookbook that was released October 14, 2001 and THE ROCKING CHAIR READER series published by Adams Publications, and CHICKEN SOUP FOR THE GRANDMOTHER'S SOUL.