"Make it dark, make it grim, make it tough...

Thursday, December 01, 2005

but then for the love of God tell a joke." Joss Whedon

One of the weird things about my writing, I never plan to write funny. My characters are always dark and/or troubled--ie, closet alcoholic, amoral lawyer, vigilante, dyslexic stripper, ex-cons, sharp-shooter/assassins, plus a few feature creatures, you name it. I got it.). And I have no qualms about pushing the envelope in some way.

Yet, every. single. time. A smart ass shows up. My characters like to snark, and make bad puns. They like to verbally spar and throw in the odd zinger. They could be quietly droll, or sardonic, or in possession of deadpan dry wit. I never know. I never plan. It just happens.

For awhile there, I thought it wasn't going to happen with this ms. Pretty much got to the end of chapter two, and nary a smile was cracked. Then I got to this exchange, in the middle of a kidnapping:

Callum resumed his maddening pace with Yancy almost running to keep up.

“I told you the Stroli travelers poised no threat. Did you have to brandish your sword at them?”

“Princess, if you think that’s the way I brandish my sword, I’m supremely insulted.”

“You looked as if you were ready to lop off their heads.”

“I was.”

“Including the grandmother? The poor woman didn’t look a day under ninety.”

“It’s been my experience that females in general become more dangerous as they mature. There are even those womenfolk I’d swear were born bad tempered and dangerous.” He gave her a pointed look as he slid the sword back into its sheath.

It also occurs to me that the humor shows up just in time to lull the reader into a false sense of security. Things are about to get ugly for Callum and Yancy.... I didn't plan that either. Honest.
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Anonymous said...

Hmmmm... a dyslexic stripper... is her name Felicity?

Anyway, I think you have a dark witty side to you and that's why no matter how serious the plot, you can't resist inserting a pun or wisecrack remark.

raine said...

Sometimes the unplanned stuff actually turns out to be the best!

Jaye said...

Hey, Dude, how'd you know the stripper was Felicity? Or was that one of those coincindences? Do you know a dyslexic stripper named Felicity? heh.

You could have a point there Raine. Things have been fairly tense between Callum/Yancy from the get-go, he pretty much kidnaps & threatens her. By this part he's had a chance to explain himself, but they don't trust either other. I'm building up to the next action scene where they're literally in a fight for their lives, the show of humor from him came out of nowhere.

Sela Carsen said...

I love lifting a sardonically amused eyebrow at your stuff, Jaye. You're sneaky funny.

Anonymous said...

Jaye... so her name is Felicity..hmmm Then her new beau must be Daniel...right? Have I got you wondering? NO, I have not been sorting through your garbage bags. The answer is simple, but I'm not ready to tell you yet. Stay tuned for the answer later...(smiling).

Larissa said...

That's the kind of humor I love best! :)

Jordan Summers said...

It's obviously the way that you write. (That's a good thing.) Your voice is as such to throw in humor, then stick it to the reader and the characters. Nothing wrong with that. :-D

Karen Scott said...

Hey Jaye, with the exception of a couple of dubious choices, I have just about every cd that you're currently listening to *g*

Jaye said...

I think it's my characters who are sneaky funny, Sela. I'm pretty much out there. lol.

Okay, Dude. *Now* you're freaking me out. ::Jaye racking her brains for where last she might have mentioned this manuscript.::

Jaye said...

Larissa, yup. Better than planning it. (which I've done, too). Plus you know it's the character's pure response, which means you're totally in their head. Which mean you're in the zone with the writing. :-)

Jordan my response to your post: "mwahahahaha" ::rubbing hands together::

Jaye said...

Karen, my list is woefully outdated, it's been months since I added to my sidebar list of reading, listening, watching.

Of course, now you have me curious as to what you think is 'dodgy'. I did notice from your sidebar that we share many of the same likes re our musical tates.

Sasha said...

Great Stuff Jay! I love the humor, and you know. Felicity DID have it too! LOL

Amie Stuart said...

I agree w/Sela on sneaky funny. Felecity was Funny!

Canadian has me curious too LOL

Jaye said...

You want to hear something really funny? The first version of Felicity's story was very dark. She was essentially homeless and a squatter in the old house Daniel had bought. lol. See what I mean?

That book has a special place in my heart. I still plan to send it out after I undo the last revisions to the front chapters. :-P

Anonymous said...

I'm back... and the the answer is simply this..
I Googled "dyslexic stripper"... result #7 was... www.livejournal.com/users/karin61/72034.html - 29k - 2 Dec 2005...
"What happens when a dyslexic stripper and a button-down attorney get together and mange to throw off more sparks than a firework display?"

Sorry about freaking you out.

Jaye said...

ya, didn't really freak me out, except in the sense I thought you must have some freakish powers of retention/memory. lol. Cause I sure as hell couldn't remember when I'd last mentioned that manuscript on this blog.

LMAO, that 'dyslexic stripper' came up on a google search. heh.

Amie Stuart said...

I thought maybe he'd judged the GH last year LOL

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