I was working away on my next non-fiction manuscript this week when I suddenly realized it was boring. Filled with boring scientific terms, arranged in boring order, presented in boring prose.
So I did what any reasonable writer would do: panicked.
Then, once I’d talked myself down from the ledge, I remembered that my first drafts are always boring. They’re for gathering research and arranging it logically. For figuring out where exactly I’m going with my thoughts and ideas. Once all that’s done, I have to go back through the text and add the funny. I have to find places where I can present the facts in more interesting ways, places where I can use new voices or concepts, and places to be just plain silly.
Two drafts required.
I complained about this to Rachelle Delaney, and she agreed. Rachelle is a committed outliner, and says that even in her fiction, she has to re-write for funny.
Apparently the organizing brain and the funny brain are two separate entities.