Tuesday, 26 June 2012

The Hack Trap (or why I have thrown away lots of my material)


I am finishing writing my Edinburgh show for this August. I have been going through the 3 notebooks I have filled this year with jokes and ideas, with the aim of writing another 10/15 minutes of material. And I have been crossing most of them out, 4 weeks before the festival starts. Not only that, I have also culled some material from my set that works, that’s tried and trusted (self-service check-outs anyone?).

Why have I done this? Because these jokes/ideas are “hack” or easy. I define “hack” as topics that have been covered before by other comics (or are being covered now). I define “easy” as Padlovian jokes where the structure is good and will get an audience response, but the contents are uninspired or dirty.

Why would I throw way almost a year’s worth of work? Why am I getting rid of material that works and will work in Edinburgh? Simple: it is effective but not unique. It is good enough but not outstanding. Being very good is not enough anymore in a competitive market place. You must be remarkable. You must stand-out. I am taking a short-run risk in order to make a long term impact.

It is riskier, dumber, in the long run to be similar to other people.


ENJOYED THE POST? Please subscribe for FREE on this page. And why not share the blog on Facebook or Twitter? Thanks.

No comments:

Post a Comment