When I got into comedy almost 20 years ago,
my friends thought it was cool. I vividly remember a party in which people egged me on to “tell a couple of my jokes.” So I did. And guess what? I got no laughs. The jokes I told were getting laughs in the club, in fact those same people laughed at them sincerely when they heard the jokes in the club, but the jokes fell flat in front of friends at a party.
I tested the jokes out on the wrong people in the wrong situation. What I’ve learned is that it’s very important to test jokes out and get feedback, but you have to find a supportive environment to do it in. That’s why I highly recommend that you find someone that connect with comically to write with.
Don’t think that your
friend or your spouse or your significant other has to be that person either. I haven’t found a ton of people I can write with – not all comics can mesh their joke writing well – But I have found a handful of comedians, and that’s more than I need.
A couple things you should look for:
- You need someone who thinks on your same wavelength in comedy.
- Someone you think is truly funny.
- Someone who truly thinks your funny.
- Someone you respect so you take what they say as truly constructive.
- Someone you trust – these are your joke ideas and you don’t want to have to worry about them being stolen.
These are the top things
I’d look for in a comedy writing partner. It’s fun to bounce ideas off of other people and get their perspective PLUS as you’re telling someone about a funny experience, it reminds you of other funny experiences you’ve had and you wind up with more joke premises! So don’t confuse your ski friends (like above) with your writing friends!