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The Serious Guide to Joke Writing: How to Say Something Funny about Anything
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The Serious Guide to Joke Writing: How to Say Something Funny about Anything

3.89  ·  Rating details ·  161 ratings  ·  12 reviews
How To Write Jokes for Fun & Profit This comprehensive joke writing masterclass has been devised for beginners and experienced joke writers alike. The techniques you will learn can be used again and again to write funny and original material for: Stand-up comedy; Speeches; Political satire; Monologues; TV, Stage & radio; Witty articles & blogs; Comedy sketches; ...more
Paperback, 212 pages
Published November 1st 2010 by Bookshaker
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3.89  · 
Rating details
 ·  161 ratings  ·  12 reviews

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Apr 16, 2012 rated it really liked it
Anyone who thinks that they are going to get the answer to how to become a great stand up/writer in an instruction manual is a fool. This book doesn't have the golden secret about how to be a comic, no book does. What it is very good for though is providing various writing exercises and disciplines to help get your creative juices flowing when the alternative is to just stare at the blank screen/page. I have used a number of the exercises in here a number of times. Even when it doesn't lead to m ...more
Apr 07, 2013 rated it really liked it
I'm not sure anyone serious about entering the world of stand-up (or other comedy writing) would necessarily be reading this book. But then that isn't the only audience that may find it interesting. Even as an 'fascinated audience member' it can be fun to think a bit further about what kind of processes a comic *may* have used to get to the joke you've just seen on stage.

Holloway presents a series of practical methods and exercises that may assist you in the writing process. Starting with Puns a
Feb 05, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I come back to the techniques in this book again and again.

The thing about writing jokes is that you can't just sit around waiting for a great joke to jump into your mind. Writers who depend on comedy in their writing need to have a set of tools by which we can produce jokes "to order" about any topic.

This book is structured around a workshop which Sally Holloway gives to stand up comics to hone their joke writing skills.

It provides a great, usable toolkit for joke production.

The only warning
Kate Fox
Apr 18, 2013 rated it really liked it
I write topical comedy myself (as a poet- it does count-honest) and recognised many of the methods Holloway uses here. She explains them so well- and has structured and refined them- that I found her methods really helped me out of a fallow period. I also like how she uses real life examples from classes she's taught (and is obviously a natural and passionate teacher). Highly recommend as a guide to anyone interested in joke writing or in how jokes work.
John G.
Mar 04, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: humorology
I enjoyed the enthusiasm and energy of the author, joke writing and joke telling are near and dear to my heart and this is a good addition to one’s comedy toolbox. She presented several different methods of writing jokes, but there are others. I have a totally different method of writing jokes and a different tone of humor though. I gained some valuable insights into the origins of jokes and the creative process. Hmm, maybe I should do my own workshops and joke book?
miss charlotte j smith
Practical useful advice about joke writing

Enjoyable, humour and liked that it’s broken down into sections with clear examples. Easy to refer back to. Helps you to believe that if you put the work in you will see the results!
Frederic Kerr
May 13, 2016 rated it liked it
The author, a former standup, teaches classes on joke writing and makes her living as a joke writer for hire. She offers several exercises aimed at generating jokes on various topics. She doesn't spend a lot of time on generating the topics themselves, which is covered in other books. Other authors advise listing things you dread, hate or are embarrassed by and making those your starting topics. I have yet to write a real joke, as such, but these exercises give me more tools to use in the quest ...more
Jan 30, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I've always had a hard time seeing myself as funny rather than amusing. A TV writing and improve class later, I'm angry for short-changing myself. I'm absolutely novice at joke writing, though, so I bought this book to sort of figure it out. The advice and exercises she offers here are quite excellent. The examples are also extremely helpful if you don't fully understand. Some of the references she makes may not translate because they pertain to Britain, but Google will help with that.

I highly r
Mark Speed
Jan 08, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: business
Sally is a professional comedian, who made it to the top - both nationally and internationally. I know from female friends on the circuit that it's quite a bit harder for women. A friend of mine has been on one of her joke-writing courses and learnt heaps. Sally's done a great job of distilling her decades of experience into a book that's well-written, accessible for people at all levels, and is easy to use as a quick-start reference for when you're in need of help.
Apr 27, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Great practical guide to writing various forms of comedy. I really like the way the book is divided between theory and practical exercises. It's given me yet another method to come up with various ideas for a variety of scripts I've been involved in. I've had this on my "reading" list for awhile, because it's not the type of book you just read through. You read it, then you refer back to it often.
Miguel Trujillo
Oct 02, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This book was great. I am reading it a second time. I loved the techniques the author described to write jokes. So creative and fresh.
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