There is a particular type of widespread logic that new comedians fall victim to when it comes to trying to identify stand-up comedy writing techniques that can be used to write a funny stand-up comedy act that will kill audiences.
I’m going to call this sort of logic “rock solid, I would bet my house on that” logic when it comes to finding free information about how to write a stand-up comedy routine.
The best way I can think of to present this common logic is in a checklist format like this:
I want to be a comedian. All comedians write their stand-up comedy acts.
I know how to write. I’ve known how since grade school.
YouTube has free videos of the funniest stand-up comedy routines performed by the top comedians on the planet.
So all I really need to do is make some transcripts of those stand-up comedy routines word for word from the funniest comedians I can find on YouTube. Then I will easily have access to the top stand-up comedy writing techniques that I can use to write a super funny stand-up comedy routine for myself — right at my fingertips!
Please be aware that people have tried cordless bungee jumping too but oddly enough, it tends not to end well. This is much like the logic I have presented above.
So why doesn’t this “rock solid, I would bet my house on that” sort of logic work?
Actually, I could tell you EXACTLY why it does not work at all, but if you are among the vast majority of those who already “know” what stand-up comedy is all about and how it works (like I knew it did when I first started and tanked every time I got on stage), you wouldn’t even begin to believe me.
So here is what you may want to do to prove me wrong — give this “rock solid” logic your own test. And it won’t cost you anything except time:
1. Go to YouTube and find a half a dozen stand-up comedy videos that feature your favorite comedians – the ones you think are beyond hilarious.
2. Transcribe the stand-up comedy material in those videos word for word.
Note: If the stand-up videos you find on YouTube were posted in 2014 or after, there’s already a transcript of the video that is available right there — just click on the 3 dots just below the right hand bottom corner of the video, then click Open transcript.
In less than an hour or two you should have more than enough stand-up comedy material to study to extract all the stand-up comedy “writing techniques” you need to write a killer stand-up comedy act for yourself.
3. Spend the next several weeks studying those stand-up comedy transcripts you now have.
If you need to, find more stand-up comedy videos and get the transcripts of those. Spend a couple of more weeks studying those to acquire more than enough stand-up comedy “writing secrets” than you could possibly use.
4. Once you have a grip of transcribed stand-up comedy acts from the funniest comedians you can find and have studied them for weeks trying to determine the stand-up comedy writing techniques they used to develop that material, ask yourself this major question:
How come I couldn’t identify any stand-up comedy writing techniques that I could use to write my own funny stand-up comedy act from studying the word for word transcripts of stand-up routines from the funniest comedians on the planet?
Let me give you a hint: Most of what makes a comedian funny on stage is not exclusively about the words and sentences they use.
Here’s another very important thing to consider:
Writing and talking are NOT the exact same communication medium. If you don’t believe that simply do a search for the differences between talking and writing. There are only tens of millions of pages online you can review to verify that.
Let me put this another way:
Your comedy talent — the comedy talent that led you to consider taking a shot at stand-up comedy — is much more involved than just the literal words you use when you talk.
Unfortunately it is usually not until a new comedian gets on stage and can’t get laughs with their “written” stand-up comedy material that they suddenly realize that producing stand-up comedy material that gets laughs is not what they thought it was.
Now don’t get me wrong — there are a few things a person can learn from observing other comedians (not transcribing their stand-up comedy routine).
Still those things are not only very limited but requires a person to know exactly what they are looking for.
Like I said earlier, it seems logical that a person should be able to study comedians and easily identify something they can use to develop their stand-up comedy material effectively.
The reality is that you will have a much easier time trying to paint a house with a fork.
But should you ever become curious about why this apparent “rock solid, I would bet my house on that” logic not only doesn’t work but is a serious waste of time, you may want to check out the free stand-up comedy online lessons in my course for comedians.
No matter what, don’t blame me when you can’t seem to find any stand-up comedy writing techniques that you can use from transcribing comedian videos from YouTube and studying the transcripts from those videos — no matter how hard you try.