By The Book

Wednesday September 5th, 2012 – Fox Lake, IL

   It’s absolutely horrifying to admit, but I think the whole comedy game is passing me by. I can’t just sit here and watch it happen, or I’ll really be screwed. Like it or not, I have to fight back with a new plan or bow out of the mix entirely. I’m not quite ready to do that, so I’ll have to regroup.

There are all kinds of legitimate reasons for this happening, but they’re all happening at once to make things extremely difficult for not only me but an entire generation of comedians that I am a part of. We’re all blacksmiths, and cars are taking over. Nobody wants our horseshoes anymore.

If we don’t readjust and reinvent, we’re out of business. I know a lot of very funny comedians who are having a rough time staying booked consistently, and I’m becoming one of them. I have always been able to get as much work as I want, even if all of it isn’t always the highest quality.

I never had to think about bookings much like a blonde with giant knockers doesn’t think about buying a drink or changing a flat tire. Someone is always there to do it so why should she worry? Then when those boobs start sagging and the hair turns grey, it all changes. That’s where I am.

As far as comedy clubs go, I’m finding myself aging out of the target demo. There are still a lot of people my age who need to laugh, but most of them aren’t going to comedy clubs. They prefer cleaner shows as a whole, maybe in a casino or theatre setting. I could totally shine in that sort of environment, but I need to establish a draw to get people to come out to see me. It’s a challenge.

If I’m going to meet that challenge and win, I’m going to have to put a plan together and really work it. I was spoiled for a lot of years by not having to look very hard for work. After a while it came looking for me, and all I had to do was fill in the blanks and work whenever I wanted to.

Sadly, I think those days might be gone forever. It’s a whole new world out there and the rules are completely different in it. The internet is king, and those who are masters of social media on a large scale are those who stay in the game. That’s where most of my generation gets passed by.

Facebook and Twitter and You Tube are all tools that need to be implemented in order to have a chance at building any kind of a following, and every comedian needs a following. Gone is the model many clubs used for years that it didn’t matter who was on stage, the shows would be hot.

That worked for a long time in a lot of places, but it’s not the norm anymore. If a comedian can get people to show up, it doesn’t matter what the act is. It used to be that funny mattered, but that is no longer the case. It’s the Wild West, and everyone is for themselves to bring in an audience.

I don’t have to like this, and I don’t. But I do have to play by these rules, and that means I need to find a way to become a draw more than ever. I’ve been trying since I started, but it’s not close to being as easy as it may seem. I’m going to have to step it up, or I’ll have to step aside. Making time to work on my bookings each week is a must, and I’ve decided that Wednesdays will be my booking day. I began today and actually got two gigs. That’s a start, but I need to do a lot more.


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