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Balancing the Humors: Using Humor in Your Prose [Jennine Crucet]

Though a disastrous practice in medieval medicine, the concept of balancing the humours can cure many writing woes. We will examine the use of humor in prose and figure out how (and when! and why!) to use humor within a more serious enterprise. We’ll dissect several famously funny pieces and then attempt to replicate the techniques we discover, such as using humor to illuminate and enrich a piece’s themes. Some exercises will borrow from sketch comedy writing techniques; all will be useful whether you already use humor or are looking for ways to expand your emotional range of a single piece or your voice as a whole.