I wrote a blog post for Just Contemporary Romance about the various authors whose senses of humor shaped mine. Enjoy!
At heart, my Lovestruck Librarians books are romantic comedies. Dirty ones. If you removed dick jokes from my repertoire, I’d shrivel and die a sad, penis-less death.
To be clear, my stories aren’t always funny. At times, I set aside jokes (junk-related or otherwise) because certain parts of the books need an emotional impact, one too much humor might undercut. And, of course, opinions will differ on how well I succeed at comedy in the first place. Depends on your tolerance for parody book titles, I imagine. If an anthology of railway-themed erotica entitled Long Train Coming doesn’t work for you…well, I apologize.
But if you do think I’m funny, you might want to check out some of the authors who helped shape my sense of humor, both in my writing and in my life.
1. Jennifer Crusie
In romance circles, Bet Me is sacrosanct. Like pretty much everyone else, I love how an expansive heart beats beneath all the jokes, and I swoon as I laugh. But for sheer hilarity, you can’t do better than Getting Rid of Bradley. As soon as I read that book, I fell for Crusie. Hard.
Here’s a line from Tina—sister of Lucy, the newly-divorced heroine: “You are going to get rid of his name, aren’t you? Lucy Savage Porter always sounded liked you’d married a rabid bellboy.”
Oh, yeah. That’s the stuff.
2. Elizabeth Peters
I inhaled her books as a teenager. Technically, they’re mysteries, but I read them for two reasons: the romantic subplots and the humor. Her most famous creation remains the Amelia Peabody series, which I adore. But my favorite Peters book is actually Summer of the Dragon, which features D.J. Abbott, an anthropology grad student with a big mouth.
Sometimes dry, sometimes farcical, Peters’s humor in that book slays me. For instance:
“Dad thinks every nice girl, and every nice boy, and all the boys and girls who aren’t nice, should be archaeologists. … He feels that there are too many people in the world anyway, so if they would just stop perpetuating themselves, then they could all live in the houses that have already been built, and grow just enough food to give themselves the strength to perform mankind’s most vital endeavor: digging things up.”
3. Douglas Adams
Read The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. Really. You’ll thank me. I had dozens of quotes from that book taped inside my high school locker, and I love them just as much now.
“You know,” said Arthur, “it’s at times like this, when I’m trapped in a Vogon airlock with a man from Betelgeuse, and about to die of asphyxiation in deep space that I really wish I’d listened to what my mother told me when I was young.”
“Why, what did she tell you?”
“I don’t know, I didn’t listen.”
4. Gary Larson. Dave Barry. Matt Groening. Writers of The Onion. Untold others.
They’re also amazing and completely to blame if you hate my sense of humor.