While I was busy working on last week’s entry, I had several people suggest that I write about the same pet peeve that a lot of us have. It’s people who use the term “Comedian” in their profile name on Facebook, etc. I can understand (not really) that these people think it’s going to funnel all Google searches to their profile, but it doesn’t. Perhaps these people (along with my 68-year-old father) should meet at the free Computer 101 classes offered at every public library. Nothing says, “I’m not a real comedian,” like putting “Comedian” before your name.
Jeremy Essig texted to me (Might I add he texted while driving because he hates people who are guilty of this so much that it couldn’t wait) the following, “It makes you look like a douche. No one would put Waiter (in front of their name). It also echoes some weird Orwellian dystopia where the Polit Bureau requires identification by job.”
As with all Essigian statements, I’ll give the younger readers who haven’t graduated college yet a few minutes to use wikipedia and then appreciate the reference.
Someone else said, “It’s like a fat girl taking a profile picture of herself by holding the camera from above to try and show that she’s not fat.” Gees, who would say that? I think the point is you can’t trick people in your profile. Just show who you are, we like you that way.
Last week you learned why not to use a stage name. This week’s advice takes it a step further and says use only your name. You could say there’s a small theme of “just being yourself” developing here. It’s just like being on a date only comedy is harder, less profitable, and more time consuming even when you do it right.
Continuing on with the correct ways to promote yourself early in your career….Keep things very simple for now and don’t take yourself too seriously. A Facebook post about where your next show is will be really all you need to do at this point. And please, only invite people within a 25 mile radius. Got that comics who moved to New York? We’re not hopping on a jet to Newark, taking the airport monorail to the stop which has a train to Penn Station, then getting on the subway, and then walking four blocks to see you do five new minutes (probably about abortion and domestic violence, yeah, we’re shocked). Instead, go through your friends list and click on those people who are always saying, “Oh, you’ll have to tell me next time you’re doing one of your little comedy skits!” (They still won’t make it.)
Mandatory book plug time. I should mention that none of these blogs are taken directly from my book, they’re additional pieces of advice that accompany it. Don’t Wear Shorts on Stage…A Stand-up Guide to Comedy not only addresses these types of early career issues, but also answers a lot of questions that comics further into their career might have. In next week’s entry I’ll discuss a more advanced issue about who your comedy aims to please. I’ve also decided to point out something stupid that I used to do so that I don’t come off like the all-knowing “Comedian” Rob Durham.