Stories, comedy, comics, essays, and stuff

Your Mind is a Funny Thing

Read Online

I'm going to put the first three chapters online, free to read. Each chapter is divided into a few sections, so I'll be releasing a section per week or so.

Start reading from the beginning.

Read from the start of chapter two.

Read from the start of chapter three.

Table of contents

About the book

I had an idea back around 2006 or so about how a sense of humour works. Who knows where ideas come from, it just kind of hit me from somewhere in the nexus of my drive to try and figure out how to make an audience laugh and my personal fascination with neuroscience. I felt I was onto something, and research led to confidence that maybe there was some merit in it, and eventually the ideas coalesced into a book. I think I've made a good case for what is a workable hypothesis about how humour works, and if you're interested in the topic, I hope you'll take a look. And let me know what you think.

Also, I don't know where else to put this link, but, a little while ago someone on Reddit asked, "ELI5: What makes our brains go "that was funny, now let's laugh"?" I posted an answer, and it generated a bunch of discussion, with people asking about my ideas on how humour works. I was pleasantly surprised, and a little relieved, that people were willing to take me seriously and consider my point of view on the matter. Anyway, it's a bunch of discussion on the topic that the book deals with, maybe check it out if you're into it.

Image: blog_louisck

Lessons from Louis

What Louis CK does that aspiring comedians should emulate.

Image: blog_typing_monkey

But I Got Laughs

The dividing laugh between a real comedian and just someone on stage being sometimes funny is determined by going beyond mere randomness.

Image: blog_sansa_and_ramsay

Standup Game of Thrones and Rape Culture

Another reason why so many jokes about rape fail.

Image: blog_madonna_small

Like A Virgin

Madonna, and how some laughter can stop you becoming funny.

Image: blog_stop_watch

A Material Difference

How having more time on stage won't make you a better comedian.

Image: blog_more

Read more like this...

Click here for a list of similar stuff

Image: blog_galapagos_comedy

Galapagos Comedy

What exactly is 'Japanese comedy'?

Image: blog_tears_of_an_orkan

Tears of an Orkan

A great comedian, and a common comedy myth.

Image: blog_respecting_the_stage

Respecting the Stage

This should be really obvious, but for some reason it isn't. For some reason, lots of performers go on stage asking for the audience's time without respecting its value.

Image: blog_stop_watch

A Material Difference

How having more time on stage won't make you a better comedian.

Books I've written

My Instagram

I mainly use this to post pictures of random things I come across that amuse me. Maybe if I made a thing and I want you to see it. Anyway, I try to avoid "look how awesome my life is" pictures.

My Twitter

I use this mainly to post links to things like when I've updated my blog, or maybe mentions of me in other places, and that sort of thing.