By Edward Rosset
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People love comedy, especially when it's personalized. Years ago, Don Rickles used to display his unique comedy style in a Los Angeles nightclub: He attacked ringsiders with the same comic viciousness that he does today. Celebrities who came to catch his act were not exempt from his tirades—in fact, for them his assaults took on added fervor. Consequently, more and more celebrities showed up at ringside: they wanted to hear what the irreverent Rickles would say about them. I discovered firsthand how much people love to be kidded when I first began in comedy.
This book is like the faint outlines on needlework patterns: it's there as a guide to get you started. The real artistry appears when you provide the stitchery. Or better y e t . . the book is like a blasting cap. It will provide a spark; the explosion will come when you start generating your own comedy. The lessons and the exercises in these pages are very fundamental. I wanted the book to be a step-by-step progression so that any reader, whether acquainted with comedy writing or not, could pick it up, follow it through, and be turning out humor with professional potential by the back cover.
Box 6296, Phoenix, AZ 85005. Dottie Walters, a fine professional speaker, publishes a newsletter entitled Sharing Ideas among Professional Speakers. It keeps us all informed on the latest activities and projects of most professional speakers. For information on her publication, write to Royal CBS Publishing, 600 W. Foothill Boulevard, Glendora, CA 91740. To bring writers and speakers together, I recently began my own educational newsletter, which includes how-to articles, interviews with top humorists and writers, and a showcase of writers' material.