27 July 2007


Here's more in the continuing saga of what one editor thinks.... I, personally, love humor. At Electric Spec we've published quite a few humorous stories. I hope you've read them!

However, humor is tricky. I've made an amateur study of it and it's based on the unexpected. The tricky part is everyone has different expectations. For the last issue, for example, we had what I thought was a hilarious fantasy story. It was chock full of over-the-top cliches and stilted dialog. It was so over-the-top, I thought it was a spoof, and so very funny. My fellow editors, having read the accompanying letter (I hadn't), said it was not a spoof; the author was sincere. Oops! Needless to say, we had to pass on that one.

As a more specific example of the trickiness of humor, in yesterday's hardcopy The Onion we have "Earthquake Sets Japan Back To 2147", which I thought was hilarious.
In the same issue, however, we have, "New Theories Suggest Kennedy Wasn't Shot", which I did not think was funny and was in bad taste.

So, what's a poor writer to do? Critique group to the rescue! I think you need to make sure at least one other person thinks your humorous story is, in fact, humorous.

Send us your humorous stories, but caveat scriptor.

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