The easiest way to write jokes that work to get big audience laughs as a comedian is to use and apply the exact same strategies and methodologies that you already use with ease to generate laughs in everyday conversations.
In other words, you have already been “writing” jokes and using using stand-up comedy strategies and techniques suited specific to you and your sense of humor for years.
In contrast, the absolute most difficult way to write jokes that work to get big audience laughs is the one the vast majority of people use (and fail) to become a comedian and that is trying to “write” fabricated jokes onto blank paper in some sort of formulaic way.
Oddly enough, virtually all of the other stand-up comedy experts who produce books and other educational materials for new comedians promote a paper generated “written joke” approach when it comes to producing stand-up comedy material for the stage.
Let’s approach this from a different perspective and ask some questions.
Did you develop your comedy talent by taking written notes or relying on any kind of writing at all? The answer is likely no. Most comedians develop their sense of humor and comedy talent through talking, expressing themselves, and interacting with others.
But are writing and talking the same form of communication? If you believe so, you might find yourself in the “waiting to bomb on stage repeatedly” category. The truth is, talking and writing are as different as the sun and the moon.
Do you trust that your sense of humor and the way you express it is good enough for audiences?
Many new comedians don’t and feel the need to develop a new, special, or better sense of humor. But the reality is, you already possess the comedy talent that generates laughs.
It’s important to understand that every aspiring comedian has developed and delivered their own comedy material that generated laughs when they talked — not some paper-written, fabricated version that was read out loud. Embrace your unique comedic style and hone your delivery, timing, and stage presence. By doing so, you can bring your natural sense of humor to the stage and deliver an unforgettable performance.
So, put down the pen and paper and start working on your talking skills. With practice and experience, you can become a successful comedian and make a name for yourself in the world of comedy.
So let’s look at what I have present a bit more closely.
Not one single individual who wanted to be a comedian developed the live and in person comedy skills they bring to the table by passing along paper written note and jokes that others read and then started to fall down laughing.
In other words, not one lick of “writing” skill was needed to generate those live and in person laughs you have been generating for years when you talk to real live people — just like the real live people you will ultimately talk to as a comedian.
But now that you have made the decision to take a shot at stand-up comedy, you somehow now must magically have to learn how to somehow produce paper or word processor “written” jokes out of thin air — jokes that do not reflect your real comedy talent and the comedy skill you have in the live and in person environment.
Don’t get the wrong idea — stand-up comedy material should be written down (which is different from trying to “write jokes”) for the purposes of editing, structuring, line control and punchline frequency.
Since you can’t see words as they are leaving your mouth, you need to have some way to sharpen, hone, edit, etc. what you are going to say to an audience without losing how you communicate and express yourself verbally in the process (otherwise, you end up muffling your comedy talent).
That is exactly how you set yourself up to get the average of 4-6 laughs per performing minute you need to move up the food chain quickly as a comedian.
But trying to “write jokes” out of thin air using only words that are structured for ONE reader to read generally gets little if any laughter response from a live audience because too many words were used and the punchlines aren’t funny.
So the easiest way to “write” jokes is to not actually “write” them in the literal sense but more from the perspective that stand-up comedy is about talking, just the way you have been talking to others and making them laugh for years.
It’s about structuring the talking that you already do to get laughs when you casually talk to friends, family and coworkers everyday.
Once you know and understand that you can use and apply the comedy talent and skill you have developed — you can very quickly produce a potentially powerful stand-up comedy act for the stage that does use and reflect your comedy talent and skill in the most effective way possible.
And if you know what you are doing to develop a well prepared, tight, big laugh stand-up comedy act – you will move up quickly in the world of stand-up comedy. How do I know that?
Simply visit any number of stand-up comedy open mic nights and count the comedians who are trying to croak out 3 minutes of paper written jokes that aren’t even remotely funny.
You will also find most of those comedians have been doing the comedy open mic scene for MONTHS without making any real progress and continuing to suck performance after performance.
Before you go any farther, take the time to check out the free Episode 2 audio (50 minutes) about producing stand-up comedy material.
Like most everything else in life, there is a hard way and there’s an easy way to approach becoming a comedian and developing the comedy routine that will blow audiences away.
Just know that you don’t have to “write jokes” in order to be able to develop and deliver high level, big laugh stand-up comedy material in record time that is based on the comedy talent you already have.