Luckily, I have always been able to do comedy, in fact my problem comes from finding comedy almost anywhere. This has led to my current dilemma with my manuscript. I'm starting to wonder: Is there too much comedy?
I'm dealing with a serious subject: murder. I'm dealing with characters who all have individual agendas. Serious business. A chance to delve into psyches and discover what makes each of my characters tick. Fascinating; well, it is to me! But I keep throwing in comedic moments. I can't seem to help myself, it's like a disease.
Here's an example: I have several of my characters sitting down to dinner. There has just been an incident. No one is looking at each other and there's that awkward silence filling the room. Then someone's stomach rumbles. I know this is funny, but is it appropriate in a murder mystery?
I've told myself and it can't be serious all the time; life isn't like that. There's comedy everywhere. I don't want to write a book full of brooding silences and squeaky doors and mysterious strangers slipping silently through secret doors. Although knowing me, I'd make the secret door the one that squeaks!
I've put comedy into my scripts and it's certainly present in my mystery games. But in my book? I'm writing a mystery in the classic setting of an English country house and I can't seem to stop my characters from having comedic moments. It's not occurring on every other page, and I don't have some hapless innocent slipping on a banana peel, (yet) (no, don't worry, even I wouldn't go that far) but every now and then, it's funny.
Is the occasional bit of comedy appropriate when writing a mystery? Surely making a reader smile would be considered a good thing? Or do I need to break the habit?
How much comedy do you incorporate; and if you do, is it on purpose or are you like me and it just seems to show up?