Laughs happen

John Truby is a big fan of the comic journey as a way to get universal laughs.

That's because there’s a number of advantages to the comic journey. Probably the most important is it lets you create the comedy out of the structure, not the dialogue. That creates irony that plays in any language. Irony says life is filled with failing to reach our goal or reaching a different goal than we intended. That goal is the spine of the story.

Why is this so valuable? Because dialogue is specific, structure is universal. Structure travels, dialogue stays at home.

You’re going to be tempted to go for conflict. All good and well (and necessarily dramatic) but keep in mind you have to keep the comedy in there.

Structurally, there are only two ways for that to happen. A pompous person keeps running up against a harsh reality or a sane person keeps meeting and exposing a bunch of pompous or phony people.

In every encounter, someone must be deflated or you’re wasting the scene.

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