No Laughs to Know Laughs by Rory Vaden was published in 2007. This is a book designed to help people who feel they are currently in the “No Laughs” category to learn how to use humor effectively and “Know Laughs”.
I met Rory in Memphis this summer, and heard him speak at our Toastmaster Regional Conference. After hearing him speak and talking to him afterwards I decided to buy his book, which at 106 pages was a pretty quick read. In fact I had trouble putting it down and in fact finished reading it before flying home from the conference.
Rory’s assertion is that no one is born funny, but that humor is a skill to be learned much like any other. His book is roadmap to beginning that journey to becoming a more humorous person and incorporating that humor into public speaking. He includes his 7 laws of humor, 5 “fear fighters” and 10 reasons why people laugh. By understanding these ideas you will be a more comfortable speaker in any environment.
Although many of his examples are sales-related, he shows quite well how these principles can be used in other speaking situations.
Great things about the book:
Easy style to read – Rory has a natural style that’s easy to follow
Nice humor throughout – an obvious need for a book on humor
Great tips that serve not only as a good read, but as a reference book you can go back to
Some limiting factors:
While being short makes it an easier read, some topics are covered more quickly than I might have expected
The section on humor exercises is just 4 pages
“I bugged telemarketers when they were eating dinner”
“Capturing humor is easier than writing it”
“He had this look…like Jessica Simpson on Jeopardy”
If humor is something you struggle with, this book is worth the investment. If humor is already your strength, you may find this book has a few tips you hadn’t considered before.