Thursday, June 03, 2010

Childhood Dreams or Just For Laughs?

Congratulations to Buzz Girl Tera Lynn Childs for release week of the much-anticipated Forgive My Fins! I can't wait to dive into this mermaid story!


All this week, Tera's giving away a copy a day of the book right here on Books, Boys, Buzz (so don't forget to comment each day to enter the drawing!) and there are more chances to win over at her blog where she's also making a donation to an ocean charity for each comment this week.


We're also celebrating by revealing our childhood dreams.... Hmm. I'm sure I may have told you this sometime over the last few years of blogging with the Bees, but here goes.

I wanted to be on the Tonight Show with Johnny Carson... Or maybe be Johnny Carson.
For those of you who may not remember him, he's the guy that had the Tonight Show long before Jay Leno, or Conan O'Brien, or... Jay Leno.

It's true, when I was eleven, I would try to make up jokes. Usually they were about celebs that Johnny lampooned on the late night show - like Richard Simmons, Elizabeth Taylor. I made up jokes even when I wasn't sure who these people were.
After a while, my mom got me a notebook to write down all my jokes in, and for some reason, this seemed to kill the dream. Now there was pressure to prove I was funny, pressure to perform the jokes. I turned to writing plays for my friends and I to put on together- it was so much easier to get up in front of people with a group, after all.


If I were me at eleven these days, I would want to be Tina Fey. But back then, there weren't a whole lot of women comics (unless you stayed up late to watch SNL) to choose from, and I guess that's why I latched on to Johnny.
Maybe someday I'll get to go to that comedy fantasy camp and learn how to really do stand-up - but for now, it's just one of those childhood dreams that morphed into what I do today - writing stories. My first book, Never Cry Werewolf, has some pretty funny moments, if I do say so myself. So maybe the dream is alive, if even for a few pages.

CONTEST: To enter to win a copy of Forgive My Fins, answer this question:

Are you good at telling jokes? Or do you forget the punchline, mess up the timing, get lost in the details?

There is definitely an art to comedy - so I'm interested to hear what you guys post. And remember to check out Tera's personal blog after you've commented, for more ways to win.

Hugs,
Heather
Wherever You Go - Harcourt Fall 2011
The Clearing - HMH Graphia
Never Cry Werewolf - HarperTeen

37 comments:

Nikki said...

I'm really not very good at telling jokes, I think it stems from the fact that I usually am just not invested. Now funny stories on the other hand, not only do I love them but I feel I am pretty good at telling them!

JB said...

When it comes to telling jokes, I tend to do okay, but I usually mess up funny stories by telling them out of order. By that point, they make no sense and the humor is long gone.

jpetroroy said...

I'm ok. I definitely tend to be a bit long winded though.

Cassie said...

I'm good at burns that are funny but telling jokes not so much. I usually forget half of the joke or mess it up somehow. I used to be funnier when I was younger but now that I'm older I lost the funny bone!

Cassie

MsFairyFreak said...

I don't tell jokes. I just talk and people laugh. I have funny in my veins. I'm just that good.

ylime1981 said...

I often forget the way a joke is supposed to go so will royally mess it up. I am, however, often a walking laugh. Funny stuff seems to happen to me all the time and I tend to say funny things all the time --- so if that counts as a jokes, then I guess I can tell a joke!

Faith said...

I don't "tell jokes" deliberately, but tend to rely more on physical humor to make people laugh (ie. pull faces, sound effects & actions, etc). It's great for teaching, especially... my students are never bored! (Though they MIGHT think I'm crazy...)

GirlforChrist said...

I love telling jokes! It's fun making my friends laugh!

Anonymous said...

Actually, I tend to be better at making up funny things on the spot, rather than memorizing a long joke.

~Joy

joykatie........@yahoo.com

Anonymous said...

I prefer making funny facial expressions. It's entertaining! :D

~Rosie

pat------@yahoo.com

(Good idea, Joy!)

Lea (YA Book Queen) said...

I'm pretty horrible at telling jokes. My timing is all off, and I tend to add too much to it. But every now and then I'll get something good ;)

Bookaholic (Jessica) said...

OMGosh..I'm a horrible joke teller!! I will say part of it and then say "..no wait..I got that wrong". lol. If I had to stand on stage and tell jokes I think I would completely pass out!

Jess~
totalbookaholic[at]hotmail[dot]com

Anonymous said...

I am not good at telling jokes that I try to memorize. I usually start laughing or get the whole joke mixed up. I'm better at "at the moment jokes".

-Katrina
atomicxrawr@yahoo.com

Kari said...

I'm not very good at telling jokes jokes, but I do tend to be able to make people laugh. I tend to be very sarcastic and crude at times, so my friends turn to me whenever they need me to poke fun at a situation or person. They also like to laugh at my freakouts and the funny faces I make during those freakouts.Or the weird stories I tell them about driving or my family, which typically involve one of my freakouts.

Erica said...

I'm not very good at jokes... in fact I'm AWFUL at telling them.

petra said...

i can't tell jokes to save my life. i always botch the punchline.

Heather Davis said...

OMG, you guys are cracking me up! You are super funny. Maybe one of you can live out my childhood dream...?

Has anyone else ever wanted to do stand up?

Hugs,

Heather

nymfaux said...

I grew up in a family with a very dry sense of humor--We don't laugh at each other--We groan and roll our eyes...It's a very satisfying feeling :)

I love doing/saying anything to make people smile, laugh, or even roll their eyes...And once I feel any encouragement, my audience is stuck--It's not so much to do with jokes, as just things I think are random, or funny, mostly random, and I always say it in a dry, straight voice, which usually (if it works right) makes everyone pause and roll their eyes.

But if I hear a good joke, I add it to my repertoire--I like puns, but also things that sound like a story...There is a lot of storytelling in joke-telling, and the right inflection and timing are very important--Of course, it does nothing for ME to say I'm good, it all depends on your audience (is it bad that I think of my friends/family/co-workers as my audience?)

As for your dream about Carson--Granted it's totally obvious that Tina Fey is awesome--But Carson is, like, the all-time pinnacle--It's nice to relate to someone as a role-model, but when someone is the absolute best at what they do, I don't think it matters if they're male/female--I like Jay and Conan and Letterman, too, but even they were inspired by Carson...I think maybe it's just something about seeing greatness in others that makes us aspire to greatness in ourselves?

Kiran said...

I'm probably not that great because my jokes usually suck.
And if I'm telling a funny story, I tend to start laughing so hard I can't even finish it.

serendipityxkiran...@yahoo.com

brendajean said...

I am terrible at telling jokes, because I think about how funny what is coming up is, and I start laughing and can't finish the joke!!! My kids think I'm funnier than any joke out there :(

Jess Day said...

I'm a terrible joke teller. I usually get caught up and say the punch line first however I do end up making people laugh at me...

van_pham said...

i am horrible at telling jokes, i either forget it or in the process of trying to tell a joke...totally forget what i was trying to say.

Steph said...

I am not very good at telling jokes. I can be funny, but I can't seem to tell jokes. I love to hear jokes and think "Oh, I am definitely telling so-and-so this!" But then I go and try to tell them the joke, and I forget somewhat important details, or the punchline or something. At this point, I just say forget it! I am an idiot- I forgot everything. Stop listening to me. Right now, before I make me and everyone else even more confused than they already are. LOL :)

Ladytink_534 said...

I've always loved comedy and Robin Williams was one of the first actors I could recognize but I've never been one for cracking jokes. I can repeat the ones I've heard fairly well though!

throuthehaze said...

I am terrible at telling jokes and I am also bad at telling funny stories of what happened...it almost always ends with me saying "You would've had to been there." Pretty lame.

Margay said...

I think I'm pretty good at telling jokes, but I'm better at finding the humor in situations and commenting on that.
Margay

Leilani @Leilani Loves Books said...

Unfortunately,
I am not a good joke teller. I don't even try anymore.
I love hearing them though!!
Leilani

TinaFerraro said...

Great question, Heather. I am fairly good at punchlines, but usually after the fact or with repetition. In the moment, no so great! Thank goodness I can edit, huh?

blackroze37 AT yahoo.com said...

nope i really BADLY was horrible and ppl hated for me to even begin a joke that knew me lol/ even my own mom didnt want me to tell jokes

Bee said...

I don't tell jokes. But people laugh at whatever I say. Even when I'm not trying funny *shrugs*

Kay said...

Telling jokes is not my strong point. Either I'm laughing too hard or forget where I'm going with it. I have been known to make 8th graders laugh, but not when I'm trying.

Mg (LWS) said...

I am really really awful at telling jokes. If I think somethings funny no one else does. And they all thing I extremely weird because of that.

~Andrea

Christine said...

My timing is off when I tell jokes! But the biggest problem is that I usually think the joke is a lot funnier than it actually is!

I can't wait to read FORGIVE MY FINS!

~*Jessica Rabbit*~ said...

Oh man I am horrible at telling jokes. But I seem to make people laugh because I laugh at myself and everyone's like "oh this must be a good one." and then when I finish they laugh and say, wow, that was horrible. LOL.

emilimcg said...

SO BAD at telling jokes :) i get people to laugh by using sarcasm...but hey, whatever works, right?

Heather H. said...

I'm sometimes good at coming up with witty comments that people find amusing, but jokes? Not so much. Either I unintentionally offend people or get taken so seriously, people don't even realize that what I said was a joke.

Aliya said...

I'm horrible at telling jokes and most of my funny stories end with "...uhm, you had to be there..." lol ;p

I'm a bit better with being so random it turns into something funny, most of the time I luck out by having friends who all agree with my idea of "hillarious".

~Aliya