Exercising is tough. Once you break from your routine, it’s hard to get back into it. And the longer you wait the harder it gets. Plus, there’s the knowledge that when you do start back up, it’s going to be painful. Unfortunately, the same applies to comedy writing as well.
That’s the predicament many of us find ourselves in right now. We’ve taken some time off, unwilling, but now are seeing a light at the end of the tunnel and realize we need to get back to work. If you had been away from the gym for three months, you wouldn’t just start back up where you left off. Your muscles aren’t ready for that. If you haven’t been writing, your comedy writing muscles aren’t ready, either.
So let’s start slowly and begin warming up.
Day #1 – Pick a topic that you want to write about. It can be a current event or something that you want to add to your routine. Now write a joke on that subject. That’s it, just one.
Day #2 – Continuing with your topic from yesterday, now write 2 jokes.
Day #3 – Did you guess it? Today you are to write 4 jokes.
Day #4 – Yep, today it is 8 jokes…same topic…so you may need to work a little harder. Those comedy muscles may begin aching a bit.
Day #5 – Did you guess 16 jokes for today? If so, you are wrong. Today’s assignment is to take the 15 jokes you wrote and look them over. Are they good? Do you like them? Mark the ones you want to keep and ditch those that don’t thrill you. Rewrite any that you feel merit the extra attention.
Day #6 – Write enough jokes to bring your batch up to 15. If you threw out three, write 3 new ones. If you threw out all 15, you’re going to have a long day. It will be worth the payoff because, you now have a nice bit of material.
Day #7 – We’re going to start again. Pick a new topic if you like or continue on with the one you had. If you feel ready jump back in and write to your daily quota…whatever number that is. If you still feel rusty, do this exercise again.
Keep it going. Writing regularly is vital to good comedy writing.