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Neopia's Fill in the Blank News Source | 15th day of Swimming, Yr 26
The Neopian Times Week 118 > Articles > Caption Contest Blues

Caption Contest Blues

by kkaf1675

CAPTION CONTEST - While everybody is hysterically laughing at captions, I'm sitting in a dark corner bawling my eyes out because of the funny captions. I bet you're greatly mystified at my behavior. You are probably thinking, "Why would I cry while reading captions? And aren't the captions supposed to be funny and witty? If so, why not laugh at them? You wouldn't hurt the author's feelings if you snorted at their caption, or anything. They were meant to be funny!"

Yes, I know my absurd behavior is very peculiar. When you think about captions the way I think of them, you would have hot tears running down your cheeks, just as I do. Now I bet you are thinking, "I am always going to laugh at captions, no matter what you say! So there!"

Okay, maybe I am exaggerating a little bit. Wouldn't you rather burst into tears when you read the funny captions on the Past Winners page? I know I personally do! The thing is, I am definitely never any good at writing witty captions for the caption contest. Whenever I think of a great idea to enter, it always turns out dull and pointless when I actually get it thought out and typed. Sometimes I surprisingly make the idea for the caption turn out funny, and sure to be a winner. The problem with those ones is that they never actually get accepted and put into the contest. Sheesh! By now I have completely given up on trying to write captions!

So, whenever I read a hilarious, amusing caption in the caption contest, I bawl uncontrollably, *cough* not *cough*, because I will never be able to write captions like that (or at least get them accepted…)! That is why I try desperately not to laugh at the winning captions. I am sure there isn't anything more annoying in the whole wide world than someone else being a lot better than you at writing captions, is there?

Before I go on, I better say this one thing. If you foolishly decide not to read this, you may suffer from severe depression. So I think it's very wise to read the bold, hopefully bright red words written in the rest of this paragraph: I am not, in any way, shape, or form, responsible for any lack of interest you may have while reading once-funny caption contest captions. If you feel angry at me for making you think about captions in a completely stupid way, all you have to do is pretend you never read the introduction to this article. Please, please, don't Neomail me several times in the same minute saying that you now cry instead of laugh as you read other users' captions, because now you know the jealous fact that you can't write captions as good as theirs. Thank you for your time….

Well, anyway, if you feel the same way as poor me, keep on reading. I have put together a guide on how to write comical captions! Muhahahahaha….

I don't know how to make the caption funny and interesting! Help, help, help!

Don't worry, help is on the way! I am not that good at making captions funny, but I can surely try and help a fellow Neopian out. This is something you do NOT want to say:

Chia: I'm stuck in the mud! Help.

Lupe: Cool!

Chia: No. Not cool!

That is waaaaay to boring. I almost fell asleep just writing that! The characters need a little more personality to make it more appealing. Also, don't Lupes love Chias…. to eat? So wouldn't the Lupe be very excited if he found a poor, desperate Chia struggling to get out of a large pit of mud? Instead of the Lupe just saying, "Cool," he should say something like, "Perfect… I have my dinner for tonight!"

Here is the edited, more amusing version of that caption:

Chia *Coughing and struggling in the sticky mud*: Help, help! I'm stuck! Heeeeelllp! Someone please help! *Flails her stubby arms in the air*

Lupe *Starring slyly at the helpless Chia*: Wow! A free meal! *Licks his sharp teeth* Chia: Nooooooo! *Starts to cry*

Doesn't that one make you smile a little bit? Doesn't it make you picture the Chia's fear and the Lupe, thinking about his dinner? That is the kind of caption you want to be writing! Remember: If you think it's dull, so will everyone else.

Random ideas seem to win people's laughter over, too. Observe the interesting caption picture for the most recent week that you are going to write about. Does it have any unusual background objects, like a shy little petpet or a filthy, rotten apple core? You can easily write something amusing about something in the background, that no one else pays attention to or thinks is in the least bit important. Randomness is often more humorous than the more obvious things.

Thinking of the caption in a strange, different way can also lead to funny, random captions. What I mean is, coming up with creative ideas that no one else would ever, in a million, quadrillion years think of, is more entertaining than the usual captions. If you still don't understand what I mean, carefully study what I have written below.

In caption contest number #305, there is a picture of a Chia, Meerca, and Candychan in the foreground. In the distance you can see a straw bathtub and toilet, side-by-side. I noticed most people, who wrote captions for it concentrated on the things in the foreground. I also saw that the winning caption was about the background, the straw bath furniture. The caption was completely random and funny. If you are too lazy to click a few buttons to get the page yourself, I have it typed below:

By servonni Orange Balloon [like a racetrack announcer]: They're coming around for the final lap, and it's neck-'n'-neck... but wait! The Toilet's pulling ahead of the Tub... no! The Tub is making a magnificent comeback... yes! I don't believe it! The Wicker Bathtub has won this year's Bathroom Appliance Derby!

This caption is funny, creative, and random, just how most (normal) people like captions! Instead of focusing on the usual, servonni, and many other accomplished caption writers, instead looked at the unusual.

Help! I dunno how tuh speel rite, I also dunno how tu use punkuashin or gramer!

If you really couldn't understand what that title said, here it is translated into English: Help! I don't know how to spell right, and I also don't know how to use punctuation or grammar!

People need to be able to understand what you are saying to be able to enjoy it! That's why you need to be able to use the correct spelling and grammar. However, spelling, grammar, and punctuation don't have to be absolutely perfect, because the humor in the caption is way more important that those three things. If you spell a word wrong, people will forgive you… I hope….!

Personally, I hate reading things like this: Hey peepz! Wuzzup! I rilly luv reading bout da caption contest. Its kewl. Do U?

Chat speak can be okay in some circumstances. For instance, if you are making one of the characters in the caption talk like that, it's quite alright. But you don't need to abbreviate every single word! Take two more seconds to write correctly so people can understand it!

Spelling: Don't know how to spell certain words? There are a few ways to find out the correct spelling of the word.

The easiest way to find out if your spelling is correct is to ask an adult or someone who can spell easily. If nobody knows how to spell the word in question, use a spell-checker or the *gasp!* dictionary!

Grammar and Punctuation: Read your caption aloud to yourself or someone else. If it doesn't sound right, find your problem. Here is an example of bad grammar for you to practice with:

Cybunny: I luv cheese it's so good do you like it.
Techo: Cheese is okay but I love oranges even more?
Cybunny: Oranges, i luv oranges even more then I luv cheese!

Here is the caption, if you would even call it that, in an edited version:

Cybunny: I love cheese! It's so good. Do you like it?
Techo: Cheese is okay, but I love oranges even more!
Cybunny: Oranges? I love oranges even more than I love cheese!

I know, I know, that caption wasn't the best example. But doesn't it sound more fluent and interesting once you make it understandable? Personally I wouldn't enjoy a caption as much if I couldn't understand half of what the author was trying to say! I hope you understand grammar, spelling, and punctuation more now through my pathetic examples and unhelpful tips! Hehehehe….

Wonderful word choice!

Word choice is very important to all types of writing. It makes your writing colorful, enjoyable, and *cough* unlike my writing *cough*! Better word choice makes a bunch of bland, boring words into a fantastic, thought out story, or caption in this case. Try changing this uninteresting caption into a cool one:

Wocky: Do you mind? I'm trying to sleep!
Pteri: Oops, I forgot you were in here.
Wocky: Humph!

You want to say something more like:

Wocky *blinking rapidly in the bright light*: Do you mind? I'm trying to sleep! Turn that light back off!
Pteri *startled*: Oops, I forgot you were in here! I'm terribly sorry!
Wocky: Humph! You STILL haven't turned the light off!
Pteri: *Turns light off and gently shuts the door*

That caption was more descriptive and interesting, in my point of view. I would want to read that version far more than the other one…

Now I hope you will be ready for the real caption contest, and won't burst into tears when you see other users' humorous captions!

What do other Neopians like to read in the caption contest? Keep reading…

I decided to go the "Help" chat board and see what people liked to see in captions. Here is what they had to say:

poppi_m_demon: I like to read something that makes sense. I don't laugh easily, it comes natural! Plus I love it when they add characters that aren't even in the picture!

charlausa: I like to read funny original stuff. I also like to read stuff about tiny details that you don't see! For example if there is a Slorg that is hard to notice on the corner of the image I would like to read something funny about that Slorg.

autumnfaerie826: like funny stuff that has only a little bit to do with the picture. Also I like when it makes you think.

rose9vwl: like to read funny corny jokes that come from inanimate objects.

light_dragon_rose: i like to read something strange yet funny. Something out of the ordinary

titan_girl13: like captions with funny comments that all types of Neopians can enjoy.

coriakin: I like to read something witty, that makes you think of the picture in a different way than before, or makes you notice an expression or little thing you didn't give thought to.

totoi_chiisai_yume: I like captions were things aren't being said. Like I was reading through articles before, and it said: The sun was asking the tent to move out the way, but it wouldn't. Things like that.

Bub: My favorite was the one that said: Neopian sitting at their computer- I hope I win this time! That one really relates!

Did you notice almost ALL of the Neopians said that they LOVE to read about unnoticed things? Or corny jokes? That's exactly what I was saying, and there's proof that that is what Neopians want to read!

There is one more thing I have to add before I end this article. Neopets doesn't really choose the most interesting captions all the time. They sort of pick the entries at random, as long as they are appropriate. Good luck!

I really hope you all enjoyed this article. If you didn't, I hope you at least got some good tips out of it. If you want to Neomail me regarding this article go ahead. I don't bite!


Note: I really do like to laugh at captions; I just wanted to add some cheesy humor to my article. I never feel like bursting into tears when I read funny captions! I sincerely hope that you don't actually take my absurd advice and try not to smile and laugh at captions! Hehehehe….

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