Fans out there may have noticed I’ve changed my name. Why? Strictly related to advice about comedy writing, and that the name of the writer is telling.
W. J. Howard sounds more like an accountant. In fact, if you look up W. J. Howard on Amazon, you’ll find another author who writes about math under the same name. Thinking back, the only reason I went with the initials was because I started writing many many years ago, when it was more difficult for women to become successful as a horror writer. BOY HAS THAT CHANGED! A discussion for another post.
Winnie Jean Howard is more fun. You’ll also see reference to Mean Winnie Jean, which does has a history. My dad called me Winnie when I was little. And I got a reputation for being Mean Wendy Jean, after a commercial back in the 70s. And Jean is my middle name. So, anyway, I think you get the mix.
Recently, I’ve changed my main genre to comedy/humor. Over the years, it’s something I happened into while writing horror due to my sadistic sense of humor. Over the last decade, I’ve dealt with some pretty stressful situations and a finicky immune system that seems to want to kill me. While this sounds horrible, looking back, it’s pretty laughable. Makes for great, “Remember When” stories. I really believe that laughing in general has kept me alive or out of prison for killing someone. As you can see, it’s just me! I AM a comedy writer!
I’m now entering a new phase in life that is part “I DON’T GIVE A FUCK!” and “WHAT THE FUCK!” Then again, aren’t we all in this sort of funk? This has really influence who I am as a writer, so expect some pretty freaky things to come. I’m expecting my sense of humor may offend, but oh well. Such is life.
I DO care about being a GOOD comedy writer, so I’ve spent the last year learning to be one. What I’ve learned is that I’ll need another 100 years of study and practice to be as good as the greats. While sarcasm is easy for me, who’da thunk there are so many rules to writing a good joke.
Here’s to hoping you stick around. The horror and sci fi will still be around, it’s just going to get funnier.