Humor Contest: Guess What . . . .

Photo By: Elizabeth Preston
Photo By: Elizabeth Preston

I found out this week that I placed 5th in the international 1st/2nd Quarter 2015 “America’s Funniest Humor!”(TM) Writing Contest held by The contest had quite a lot of entries, so I’m very happy that I placed amongst the top writers. Hopefully, it shows that my previous humor writing award isn’t just a fluke and that maybe, just maybe, there’s some potential there. Or maybe I just got lucky again. Anyway, my entry, “HMO: Help Me Out,” is about my experience with finding new health insurance. Spoiler alert: it doesn’t go well, and I end up in an unhealthy relationship with a computer. You can read the story by clicking on the following link: “HMO: Help Me Out.”

“HMO: Help Me Out” will be featured in’s main showcase until new results are posted after completion of the current contest, which is accepting entries through December 31, 2015. I encourage anyone who likes writing humor to apply. I know that there are some of you out there, and it’s a great opportunity to get recognized and to get a little cash. Yep, I got a cash prize too. Let’s just say that the sum wasn’t enough to buy a corvette, but it was enough to buy a few cups of coffee to keep me up at night writing.

Admittedly, I was a little teary when I found out the contest’s results. The sadness comes from this being the first award that I’ve gotten since my grandmother passed away, and it’s the first one that I don’t get to tell her about. She’s been there for every award, every graduation, every achievement, and every failure. She shared in my joy, and she shared in my sadness. Whenever I needed to work something out with my writing, I could always call her and bounce ideas around with her. Now, I’m in a world without her and, to put it eloquently, it sucks.

However, I know that she would be proud of this award, especially since she was such a big fan of laughing. She always made jokes, particularly ones of the sarcastic nature, and I loved making her laugh. In my mind, I can still hear her laugh when I think about it. I hope that, in some way, she can see this award and story and is laughing.


20 thoughts on “Humor Contest: Guess What . . . .

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  1. Congratulations! Keep up the good work. It helps to get validated, to have your hard work recognized. Humor is the hardest to write–by the time your through with it, it’s not funny anymore, and you wonder if it ever was. 🙂 WHOO HOO!

  2. Congrats on the award, well done! When I have time later I’m going to read your entry, I’m sure it will me make me laugh. 🙂

  3. 😀 Did Honest Lenny throw any free landscaping your way as an incentive??? Great piece. The last humorous BOOK that I read was I Feel Bad About My Neck by Nora Ephron. Why? What possessed me to buy it? Well — I feel bad about my neck! Congratulations, and may this be the first of many, many more recognitions!

  4. Laughing through the tears is the only sane way to grieve in my opinion. Good on you for finding humor at the end of a very long phone tree and condolences on losing someone who was a huge part of your life and your reason to laugh.

  5. At least something good came out of that whole ordeal. It certainly wasn’t my new insurance premium–ouch! Thank you very much for your kind words. I appreciate them.

  6. Oh, please, like any type of health insurance would give you anything for free. Even Lenny wouldn’t throw new windshield wipers to sweeten the deal. The nerve! Haha!

    I read part of Nora Ephron’s book as well. I didn’t find the beginning essay that funny, but maybe it’s an age thing. Still, I did start moisturizing my neck each night after reading that . . . .

    Thank you, Calen. I’m glad that you liked it, and I hope that you’re right. 🙂

  7. Thank you very much, Tricia! Knowing you and what you’ve written about thus far on your blog, I think that you’ll like the topic of the essay. 🙂

  8. Thank you, Rob! So true, so true. I wrote my master’s project on irony and exaggeration in humor, and by the end of it, I didn’t find any of it funny anymore. 😦 However, I went back and read the project again a few months after I graduated, and the jokes magically became funny again. I think that with humor writing, sometimes you just have to take a step back and let your mind cleanse itself in a way. It also helps that I have honest parents who kindly read my work and will flat out tell me if something doesn’t work.

  9. Omg,I just read it and you’re right, I do so appreciate the subject matter! So funny the way you explain trying to get insurance, (HMO, PPO, HBO, POS….) and the stupid ways of a machine constantly telling you how much they care. Tragic too in that you are not far off from reality at all with your experience in our Brought to You by Obama and Friends Health Insurance. Oh well, we all know they care about us SO much, right? Again, nice job! 🙂

  10. Lol, aww I don’t think that keeping that information to yourself would have made you be that. I sure thank you for letting me know about the contest though. Here are two that I found and entered. Maybe if you enter a piece, then one of us might win something. and Also, I really encourage you to submit to That would be great to see your name up there!

    Did you submit your work to the Mark Twain House contest before July 10th? If so, then I don’t think that we’ll be competing against each other this round.

  11. Lol, I knew that you’d like that, and I’m very glad that you did, indeed, enjoy the piece. My current insurance has made me wait exactly twenty-seven minutes the last three times that I’ve called, although the machine did say that it cared about my call (apparently, all machines, not just those of the government, really care about people). I mentioned the wait time being exactly the same the last three calls when an actual human came on the phone, and I was told that it was just a “coincidence.” Uh-huh. Sure. *sigh* Thank you for your kind, words, Tricia. 🙂

  12. I tend to be mercenary with my submissions. I start with the highest paying contests and work my way down. I wound up letting the “Sheba” story go for $15.00. Which had me reaching for a bottle–and a gun.

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