Friday, February 19, 2016

The struggles of a humor writer

For a while there - not long ago at all - I felt like my creative aspirations were dust in the wind, at least where my humor writing was concerned. Primarily, my outlook was all wrong. I was attempting to take some real crises I was having and make them funny, but I wasn't in the mood.

I spent weeks working on and off on a few pieces, but I couldn't get the tone or flow right on any of them. They had no punch. It got to the point where I was chewing obsessively on petty words, paring paragraphs, and cutting and pasting content back and forth between posts.

Finally, I decided to write a little about my creative struggle here, and quite suddenly inspiration came back to roost. Not only was I able to finish pieces I had been working hard on with very little success, I wrote two more - one of which I thought needed very little editing.

Well, the one I thought needed little editing just got rejected. Such is life. Perhaps I should revisit my original judgment on its readiness for the online stage. And of course I will, because after asking for insight I received some constructive feedback on why the site declined to publish it. I'm grateful to know it was considered.

One of the former pieces I had been fiddling with for what seemed like far too long - perhaps a few months - I submitted this month to a prestigious humor contest. I was terrified that I would have nothing worth entering but was determined to jump in the pool. Whatever was least dreadful at deadline would simply have to be my submission. In the end - after inspiration found me again - it really only retained the bare bones of the original idea, but I was proud of and pleased with it. I believed I had finally made my crisis funny. My hopes? Very slim. But I'm not embarrassed. The past winners are hilarious and very talented.

A third piece just got published at Erma Bombeck Writers' Workshop. It was inspired by a visit from my sister Annie over my birthday weekend. With her permission - and giving her credit, of course - I ran with her idea of "anger pies", Extra inspiration was provided by a recent visit with my in-laws at Christmas.

That last post is called Family Pains. Let me know what you think of it here, if you like. Can you relate? If you enjoy it, any shares would be appreciated.


  1. Congratulations on finding your voice back and of course on the latest publications. Excellent work!

  2. Yeah, you told the whole world of us, and how we behave, huh?

    1. It was time to stop hiding! Haha

    2. You can thank Annie, too, for her part. :) We're honest gals.


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