I am driving out to Chattanooga for a set tonight and I’m very excited about it. As I’m getting ready to go, I thought I’d give you a couple of tips on comedy.
One of my comedian friends asked me recently, “What’s your ritual for getting ready for sets?”
So my ritual is, I come up with my setlist, and I run through it as if it’s a story to help me memorize the order of my sets, because I don’t really like to take a setlist up on stage with me unless I have to — especially for a show that’s not an open mic.
For example, tonight my setlist is — I’m going to open with my opening joke. I find that’s the best place to put your opening joke, is at the opening.
[In a quarter mile, use the left two lanes to turn left onto South Marietta Parkway Southeast]
And then after that, you’re going to tell another joke, and then a joke after that. And the joke I’m going to tell after that is going to be: the next joke. And then the joke after that is going to be a joke —
[Use the left two lanes to turn left onto South Marietta Parkway Southeast]
And then I’m going to tell another two jokes after that, and then I’ll end with my closing joke. Now what you don’t want to do, is start with your closing joke and end with your opening joke. Unless you do, and then do that.
Sometimes I’ll switch it up. Sometimes I’ll do a mirror image of that, horizontally. So it’ll be the same set just horizontal. Or, I might do a mirror image vertically, in which case it’s basically flipping it around, and instead of doing, “Joke, joke, joke, joke, joke, joke,” I’m doing, “Joke, joke, joke, joke, joke.”
But what you don’t want to do, ever, is instead of doing jokes, you don’t want to do: Saying something that’s not funny, then not funny, and not funny after that, and then not funny, not funny, not funny, and then ending on something that’s not funny.
So the whole idea to writing your sets out and deciding the order it’s going to go in is you always want to make sure you do the jokes. It’s like my mom always says:
[Continue on South Marietta Parkway Southeast for three quarters of a mile]
“In order to avoid bombing,” (especially new comedians, listen up) “in order to avoid bombing, you want to be sure to pick out your best jokes, and do those.”
This is comedy tips with Lauren! I hope that was helpful. You guys have a great day, and an excellent set.