August is Humor Month!

We are talking Humor all month long. When you drill down on humor as a writer’s tool things tend toward serious things right away. 

Tim Jackson put it in a nutshell when he wrote, “So let me, first off, provide my wholly unscientific theory of being funny: Some people are funny. Some people are not. Pretty simple, really.” 

Tonight’s topic is about how to write a Humor Essay. It seems many of the How-To articles I am tracking down are written for school aged people. I’ll be adding Bonus Links after the main feature.

How to Write a Humor Essay

A good humor essay will have your reader in stitches.

When it comes to telling jokes, it’s often said that it’s all in the delivery. By writing a humor essay, you can get around that one hurdle, but there are others to avoid. A successful humor essay will entertain readers as much as a successful comedian will entertain audiences.

  • Pick a topic that is easily accessible
  • Keep it short and sweet
  • Tell a Story
  • Contrast Funny with Sad and Mundane

The Following are Bonus Links, a few are Contenders for another Topic Chat.

Laughing Through Life: Humor in Autobiographical Writing

Humor Writing: 15 Markets That Pay You to Make People Laugh

Honest Writing Is Funny Writing

Memoirist Sean Wilsey says he knows he’s finished with a story when it makes him laugh.

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Blog or Website

Blog or Website

July is Website/Blog Building Month

Let’s start off with a Topic Chat about the difference between a blog and a website.

What is the Difference Between a Blog and a Website?

The difference, it turns out, may be only in our minds.  To begin our July Theme we will look at Blog/Website Building in Geek Speak and Plain English so we have a better understanding about what we are planning and why.

Trish Jones says it well in her article about Blogs vs Websites–

For those of you who may not know what a blog is, it’s short for web log, and is a frequently updated website consisting of blog posts, or entries (more often than not, dated entries) that are arranged in reverse chronological order. So when a reader comes to your site, they see your most recent article (often called posts), first.

Trish Jones 


Future Topics

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That’s Not How I Remember It!

“Dude, like no way. That’s not the way I remember it – at all. You can’t be saying that.”

May is Memoir Month at The Writers Chat Room.

Come visit on Sunday as we talk about memory. Should you share with family and friends, especially during your first draft? When does a memory become more fiction than fact? Does family input rob you of a story which should have been yours?

How True and Factual Does Your Memoir Have to Be? 5 Principles

Much of what we remember is forever lost in the physical world, however much it may shimmer and possess us now. Can we trust our memories as “facts?” And what if others disagree? How do we explain our creative process and answer their protests? Here are a few principles to assist you.

Read the whole article and come chat with us.

May 6th at 7PM ET at The Writers Chat Room

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Celebrity Sunday Welcomes Alistair Cross and Tamara Thorne

Sunday, April 29th
Alistair Cross and Tamara Thorne joined forces in 2012 and in collaboration, they have written several novels including The Cliffhouse Haunting, The Ghosts of Ravencrest, and Mother. 
They are collaborating actively on several more novels and together, they also host the horror-themed radio show Thorne & Cross: Haunted Nights LIVE! which has featured such guests as Anne Rice, Laurell K. Hamilton, Christopher Moore, Chelsea Quinn Yarbro, VC Andrews, Preston & Child, Charlaine Harris, and Christopher Rice.
Currently, Thorne & Cross are writing the continuing Ravencrest Saga, and a sequel to Tamara’s Candle Bay, which will feature Michael, Winter, and Chynna from Alistair’s vampire novel, The Crimson Corset.

Celebrity Sunday Welcomes Alistair Cross and Tamara Thorne

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Peter Davidson comes to Celebrity Sunday

Welcome Peter Davidson to Celebrity Sunday on April 15th, 2018.

Peter Davidson is the author or co-author of twenty-nine books published by McGraw-Hill Book Company, Perigee/Putnam Publishers, Northwestern Publishing Company, Sweet Memories Publishing, Haworth Press, and others. His works include fiction, non-fiction, college textbooks, children’s picture books, and training materials for business and industry. Davidson is also a songwriter and one of his songs was used in a television series in The Netherlands.

For more than two decades, Peter Davidson was one of America’s most active writer’s seminar presenters, having presented over 625 one-day seminars in a fifteen-state area from Minnesota to Tennessee and Colorado to Illinois.

Davidson has been a professional recording studio owner, college professor, and retail store owner. He trained over 700 real estate agents, something that he believes he will have to answer for on Judgment Day.

He is the recipient of the prestigious Leavey Award granted by Freedoms Foundation at Valley Forge.

Davidson and his wife life in the Lake Okoboji resort area of Iowa in summer and in Arizona in the winter.

Here is a link to Lisa Haselton’s Interview with Peter Davidson and an excerpt.


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Prompt Sunday

Sunday is Prompt Day.

These are a few prompts to get you started. Please do not feel obligated to complete them all or any of them for that matter. You can just come and hang out. See what others worked on.

We are not critiquing, nor are we editing. This is a purely fun event. No judgement, no wrong answers..

Prompt 1 

Note Found at a Construction Site

You’re a construction worker and, while in the middle of a dig to build a new building, you stumble upon a box with contents in it. There are five very specific items in it along with a note: “When you find this, call me. This is only phase one.” The is a phone number so you call it. What happens next?

(You may take up to 300 words on this. You’ll be copying your own text and dropping it into the chat room. Or you may leave it over at the forum.)

Prompt 2

Gloves: Write about a pair of gloves – what kind of gloves are they? Who wears them and why?

This is a short prompt.. I suggest 100 words tops. Again you drop it into the chat room. 

Prompt 3

up to 300 words to copy into chat or post on our forum

Prompt 4

Favorite Piece of Clothing Eulogy

Your favorite article of clothing has finally out-lived its life (and then some). It’s time to say goodbye, but you love it so much you feel a need to send it off properly. Write a eulogy dedicated to that piece of clothing and all the times you shared together.

Up to 300 words to post in chat or on the forum

Prompt 5

Again, you can go up to 300 words and post it during chat or over in the Forum

This ends my list of Prompts. I may gather some one liners between now and Sunday.  Have fun.

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Writing Your Book’s Back-Cover Copy

Writing Your Book’s Back-Cover Copy


So you’ve written your book, you’ve chosen your title and cover design, and you’re breathing a sigh of relief. Now you have to decide what goes on the back cover. New authors sometimes rush this decision, writing the first thing that comes to mind. After all, it’s the back of the book. How important can it be?

A lot more important than a person might think. The hundred-and-fifty words you’ll place on your back cover are arguably the most important words in your entire book.

I will share one of my own Blurbs on my first published book along with the Revision of the same Blurb for my Author’s Revised Edition of the same title.

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Formatting a Manuscript and Creating a Marketing Plan

Planning ball

This Topic appeared in Wednesday’s Newsletter

If you use Word and need to know how to correctly format your Manuscript, this is a great place to visit.

How to Format a Manuscript Using Microsoft Word

Knowing how to format your manuscript is an important issue. Your editor needs to be able to get in there and poke around. The person who is going to format your novel or book does not want to have any extra work as she does the final formatting to change your work into various e-files and print on demand.

Many of you will get instructions on formatting at least as soon as the ink dries on your contract.

Formatting a Manuscript and Creating a Marketing Plan

For Sunday’s Topic Chat I am using multiple websites for information. This is one of four links I’ll be using. To discover all of the links on the Topic, consider signing up for our Newsletter. The form appears at the end of this post.

How To Write A Book Marketing Plan In 13 Easy Steps

Almost all publishers will ask about your marketing plan, even the big publishing houses expect an author to engage in marketing.  Articles and short stories are exceptions because the newspaper and magazines come with subscribers baked in.

Promoting your book takes careful planning so you get the most out of your time and effort. And that’s why having a book marketing plan is an essential part of the process.


See the Whole List

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Submitting Your Novel to Agents – A Topic Chat

When submitting to an agent or a publisher, there are several important items you must keep in mind—follow the agent’s submission guidelines, spell his or her name correctly, etc. But there are six basic elements you really need to focus on when crafting and submitting your query letter. Thankfully, we’ve gathered them here in one helpful checklist. Bookmark this list and reference it each and every time before you send out your queries to agents that represents fiction.

check list boxes with a red pencil

—Mollie Glick

Checklist: The 6 Essentials for Submitting Your Novel to Agents

Bonus Information about How to Find a Literary Agent for Your Book is contained in the Newsletter. If you have not subscribed to the newsletter, use the form below to find out what you’ve been missing.

The Newsletter generally posts to your email on Wednesdays and Saturdays

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