Friday, July 5, 2013

Friday Fictional Fun: What Can Writers Learn From Lucille Ball?

In memory of Lucille Ball
Early this morning, I caught the docudrama LUCY (Lucille Ball played by actress Rachel York) on the Sony Movie Ch. Who doesn't love a little Lucy? I haven't laughed out loud this much in weeks. 

While watching the movie, it dawned on me how writers can learn from Lucille Ball and her quest to be humorous. Practice makes perfect. It's a simple concept.

She practiced her lines, hours upon hours in the mirror, folks. Her character, facial expressions, animation, reactions, and pacing. She observed herself over and over, until she reached perfection. The ultimate product. Amusement. Her goal was to make the audience laugh, and she did.

The best LOL moment this morning (and there were lots) was the scene when she practiced in the mirror for the Vitameatavegamin episode.

Practicing her facial expressions for lines such as, "Do you poop out at parties?" & "It's so tasty, too!" were priceless.

Here's the YouTube video for the scene from the show itself. Observe her facial expressions, character, pacing, reactions and animation. Pure genius.

Lucille Ball had talent, but she had to practice to be perfect, to master her craft. 

We writers can learn from her practice. We write over and over. Revise, read aloud, perfect word choice, study character, voice, pacing, and tone. We write until we achieve perfection, master our craft. The ultimate product. Story. Our goal is to craft a story someone will adore.

All it takes is practice. Determination. The ability to see our goals, latch onto them, and never let go.

Look into the mirror (sit at your keyboard), practice those lines (rewrite until you master it), and make people laugh (produce a superb story).

Happy writing & have fun doing it, y'all~



  1. Thanks, Candilynn. I enjoyed the clip and the post. I am now inspired to practice, practice, practice. :)

  2. Lucille Ball is one of the all-time greats and you don't get to where she was on talent alone. You have to keep working at it, perfecting your craft and turning strengths into weaknesses. "All it takes is practice. Determination. The ability to see our goals, latch onto them, and never let go." Great advice! We should all strive to be the best we can be, no more and no less.

    Thanks for checking in with me, it's great to hear that you've been busy writing and working toward your goals. I'm hoping that releasing my story as a blog will free up some time to comment. My personal blog is staying public, but my story blog is here.

    Hope you're enjoying this 4th of July weekend!

  3. Read out loud. That's something not all authors do. But we have to practice by every means available to us.

  4. Boy does it take practice! It's worth it.

    Talent is needed, but so is hard, stick-to-it work. Even when you think you're talking at crickets, keep at it.

  5. I love Lucille Ball, too, and her old series a bit more than her later one. She was a classy lady and so beautiful. Yay for practising craft and being serious about learning and improving. Great post! :-)

  6. Candilynn!!!! How are ya, sister? Hoping all is well :-) Anyway! As an actor first, Lucy is an inspiration. I spent a lot of time perfecting personable, as well. Still have a long way to go, compared to her, but I feel like a stronger actor because of it. The same can be said for writing--if you can't laugh at yourself, who can you laugh at? David Sedaris is a great example of this. Check out one of his books sometime. You'll be rolling on the floor! Thanks for stopping by the other day! xoxoxoxo

  7. Awesome post! I love Lucille Ball; I'll have to check out that docu-drama. I like your analogy to often we just attribute success to "talent," without realizing the hard work an individual has put in to perfect his/her craft--acting, writing, music, comedy, dance, or whatever it may be.