“Freelance copyeditors are a lot like cows: when they’re not grazing they’re staring into space or farting.”

No, I’m not considering a career in comedy (I can already hear the sighs of relief!).

I’m trying an experiment suggested by Kasha Patel, a stand-up comedian and science communicator who was a speaker at the 2023 Council of Science Editors Annual Meeting in Toronto earlier this year. I came across a report of her plenary presentation, in which she analysed the performance of scientists and stand-ups in delivering science comedy, to see just how well they could bring out the humour in something so … well, er, serious. The result is a satisfying mix of psychology, analogy and wordplay.

Check out the report at https://www.csescienceeditor.org/article/plenary-report-a-stand-up-comedians-guide-to-science-communication/ – you never know, it may be the start of a whole new career at the mic for you!