Writers Watch | 40 Hilarious Comedy Writing Prompts

A lot of people say that writing comedy is one of the hardest genres to write. Humour is so subjective, and what some readers may find hilarious, others might not get at all. It’s a fine balance to write something funny, but even harder in shorter formats like short stories, poems and flash fiction. 

We’ve come up with 40 hilarious comedy writing prompts to get you inspired to write comedy!

Writing funny stories can be great fun for several reasons:

Entertainment: Fancy yourself as a stand-up comedian? Where better to start than getting your jokes down onto paper. Hone your writing skills and get cracking! Writing comedy allows you to bring joy and laughter to someone else’s day, which is pretty special.

Creativity: With comedy writing, anything goes. A lot of genres require you to stick to certain tropes, certain lengths, or at least be a little bit serious. Not with comedy writing! The best thing about writing a comedic story is that you can really break the boundaries and get your creative juices flowing.

Connect with your readers: They say that laughter is a universal language, and creating something that makes your reader laugh can create a strong connection with your readers. Humor can help readers relate to your characters and situations, making the overall story more engaging.

Versatility: Comedy writing can also be combined with various genres, adding a layer of fun to drama, mystery, romance, or science fiction. Writers of all kinds can dabble in comedic writing without breaking away from their chosen genre. 

Therapeutic Value: Writing comedy can be therapeutic for both the writer and the reader. It provides an opportunity to find humor in life’s challenges and difficulties, offering a fresh perspective and helping people cope with stress.

Remember when you’re writing comedy: humour is subjective. What you find funny, somebody else might not, and vice-versa. This is especially important to remember when it comes to sharing your work and submitting. Just because someone didn’t find your work funny doesn’t mean someone else won’t! This applies to all writing, but it is especially important with comedy. There’s nothing worse than staring at a blank page because you’re worried someone won’t find you funny. You can’t please everyone, so just write! We promise we’ll love it 😉

40 Writing Prompts for Comedy Writers

In a world where puns are illegal, a rebellious group starts a secret underground pun club.

Your main character accidentally goes to a support group for former child stars coping with the challenges of adult life.

A family of extraterrestrials are trying to fit in on Earth without letting anyone know they’re not human. Their turning point is when….

An alien takes on the identity of a stand-up comedian to learn about human culture, but doesn’t realise they have to make up the jokes themselves.

In a world where laughter is a finite resource, your main character discovers a secret stash of “extra chuckles.” What do they do with it?

A superhero with a peculiar and useless power decides to become a stand-up comedian instead of fighting crime. How does their useless power help them tell funny stories on stage?

Write a dialogue between a pet rock and its owner, instead of the other way around.

A depressed GPS with guides a lost driver through absurd detours, because he CBA with life anymore.

A group of competitive grandmas forms a roller derby team to settle neighborhood disputes, and their outrageous tactics become the talk of the town.

A robot is trying desperately to develop a sense of humor, but just cannot understand a human’s jokes.

Your main character is a time-traveling comedian, and accidentally tells a joke that changes history… what do they reveal, and what happens next?!

The world’s worst magician tries to impress his crush with magic tricks that just keep going wrong. Does she fall for him in the end, anyway?

A talking parrot starts repeating the main character’s embarrassing secrets in public. But there’s something the main character doesn’t know.

Your main character realises they can only communicate by quoting lines from their favorite song.

A sleep-deprived inventor creates a machine that turns dreams into physical objects, leading to hilarious and unpredictable consequences when his family members dreams start materialising in the real world.

A group of vegetables organizes a talent show to prove they’re more than just a side dish.

An unconventional therapist uses laughter as the best medicine, sometimes literally. (Where does he get it from?!)

Write a comedy set in a retirement home where residents refuse to act their age. They’re going about everyday life, but each at a different “stage”.

A stand-up comedian discovers their best great ideas come from eavesdropping on strangers.

A fortune teller predicts a person’s future using only punchlines. Sometimes, the person doesn’t know what the joke was to begin with.

A job interview where the applicant has to demonstrate their ability to make the interviewer laugh. The best sense of humour gets the job.

Your protagonist and their best friend crash historical events in a time machine, unintentionally altering the past, more concerned about how they’ll get a humorous story out of their trip!

A scientist invents a machine that turns people’s thoughts into stand-up routines. How does it end up revealing someone’s big secret?

A comedian tries to perform a set while being constantly interrupted by a mischievous heckler. Try and turn it into a running joke (With your reader or the audience of the stand-up show, not with the comedian!)

A robot struggles to understand human emotions but excels at robot humor. The only problem is… nobody but him understands robot humour.

A mischievous genie decides to give people the comedic version of their wishes and grants them “too literally”.

A detective solves crimes using a magic eight ball for guidance. He ends up finding a serial killer and gets unfairly praised for his work, to the utter frustration of each of his colleagues.

A group of time-traveling tourists accidentally lands in the middle of a medieval jousting tournament.

A talking mirror reveals embarrassing truths about anyone who looks into it. It has inside joke with itself.

A stand-up comedian tries to perform at a silent meditation retreat (with or without realising where they are).

An inventor creates a device that translates baby babble into hilarious adult conversations. (This is a great way to practise sentence structure!)

Write a sitcom set in a quirky office where employees communicate solely through memes they find on social media.

A ghost haunts a comedy club, finding a little more peace every time they help a comedian to make the audience laugh.

Your main character and their best friend accidentally stumbles upon a “laughter yoga” class and decides to join in. 

Write a comedy sketch where people’s laughter has unexpected consequences. Grab the reader’s attention by only letting them find out the first time it happens.

A stand-up comedian adopts a pet dog with an uncanny ability to mimic their jokes perfectly. Who turns out to be funnier: the comedian or the dog?

Your main character discovers a parallel universe where everyone communicates through knock-knock jokes. They get increasingly frustrated and want to go home, but the only way they can do that by telling a knock-knock joke…

A group of friends starts a detective agency but ends up solving trivial and amusing mysteries rather than anything that truly matters!

A person wakes up to find they can only communicate in rhyming couplets. They try really hard not to do it, but it’s impossible…

Write a story about a family of clumsy superheroes trying to keep their powers a secret.

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