Friday, January 18, 2019

Storyteller's Journey

Improv for Writers

Over the holidays, our son Kevin suggested that he teach a class in improv to our family. (His past experience as a member of a comedy group has given him some unique insights.)

He believes that being educated in the principles of improvisation comedy can aid anyone in not only their creativity endeavors, but in their life in general. I was curious, so I gladly agreed to the classes.

The first principle he introduced was the concept of Yes...And. This refers to the idea that when a fellow comic introduces something into the sketch, the other members accept, and add to it. There is no room for changing or challenging it - no matter how crazy it may be. That is where the comedy is born. (We certainly laughed a lot!)

What I discovered, was that I belabored my thoughts before I was willing to add to the sketch. That made me wonder: Am I overthinking elements of my writing? My dialogue? My plot? My humor?

(L-R) Eldest son, David; husband, Michael; son, Kevin.
It was amazing how my mind was opened up, just by accepting what my family members added to the sketch. I agree with Kevin: Improv has value for all creative types, even for non-comics like me. I'm looking forward to our next class!