Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Funny Women by Barbara Quinn

I spent a few days at an Algonkian Pitch & Shop Conference in New York City. This is an intense four day workshop where participants learn to perfect a pitch for a novel, and then give it to a series of editors. One of the best parts of the experience was being in close contact with a group of very funny women. I love humor, and being around funny women is an uplifting experience. I was with a group of 16. 15 of us were women.

Women love to laugh, love to have a good time. There’s a long tradition of female comics. I always loved Lucy, Carol Burnett, Goldie Hawn, and shows like The Golden Girls, Mary Tyler Moore, and Designing Women. Now we have Tina Fey and 30 Rock, Sarah Silverman and Amy Pohler, and many, many more. I’ve been influenced by funny comediennes since I was a kid. And I strive for that type of humor in my own writing. I learned from these women who had great timing and instincts for getting people to laugh. And I learned at the conference too. The conference was a lot of work, but it was worth the struggle. I came away with a much improved (and funnier) pitch. And soon the manuscript will be on its way to the editors who requested it.

Thank you funny women! Keep on cracking those jokes. Lots of us are listening. And some of us are learning too!


Angie Ledbetter said...

Sounds like a hoot! Hoping for a similar experience at a conference this month...hopefully the editors/publishers/agents will be laughing WITH me and not AT me. ;)

Kathryn Magendie said...

I watch Golden Girls every afternoon at 4 and 4:30 -:-) heehee - yes, my afternoon break - computer is put aside, and on the TV goes, and "thank you for being a friend...!" ahhhhh....and i can watch re-runs over and over (I accidentally wrote: re-funs!)

I am sending you success vibes!

and yes, like Angie, I am hoping for success at the retreat this month,too!

Nannette Croce said...

Reminds me of a trip I took a few years ago with a tour group. A woman from California told me she loved my wise-a-- northeastern humor. I never thought of it as regional before (and I'm glad she made clear that she liked it), but witty humor was always a mainstay in my family. Even my Italian grandfather was always wise-cracking.

MissMeliss said...

Oh, it sounds wonderful. I'm attending their novel writing workshop in SFO ( beginning tonight) and am nervous and excited, but mostly excited.

I think the fact that this workshop coincides with the last week of the SFO summer improv festival is a good sign.

Barbara Quinn said...

Cool! Have fun at the conference. I bet you;re going to come out with so many ideas you're gonna be writing for days.

Listen to our Podcasts