Comedy may be the most critical job for bringing joy and happiness to others. Laughter releases serotonin, and people love to be pleasantly surprised with humor. Unfortunately, no job is perfect, and every comedian has to deal with their fair share of highs and lows.
Some problems are universal for these artists.
Here are the most significant challenges every comedian faces and what these artists can do to fight against them.
Stolen Content and Making Original Content
There’s nothing new under the sun, including that saying. For comedians that rings true more than most since their entire job is about short-form creativity. Pay attention to what media you consume, and if a joke you write feels too familiar, research it to ensure you didn’t accidentally pick it up from something you’ve watched or listened to.
On the other hand, if you notice that someone else has taken your jokes, it can hurt. One mark similar to yours might not be much more than a coincidence unless it’s personal to your life. If there’s more than one stolen joke by this person, though, you must talk to them about it. Many conflicts can arise from an accusation like this, but you should keep a level head. Your creativity is yours alone, and you deserve credit and compensation for it.
Finding Paid Work
Being a comedian is rough because people underestimate the work that goes into it and can treat these pros like dirt. When you’re starting, it’s okay to do an open mic for free, but once you hit a certain level, you shouldn’t do work for free or exposure. You deserve to be paid fairly for what you do.
Not everyone in an audience can be pleased. Critics can be the literal pros who know the business’s ins and outs, but lately, anyone with an internet connection can get online and make a critical blog or YouTube account. One bad review isn’t so bad, but sometimes they can add up, despite being far fewer than the good reviews, and can eat away at a comedian’s ego.
The best advice for this issue is to pay attention only to valid criticism of things that can be changed. If they make fun of your voice or your appearance, ignore them. Instead, if the complaints are about gross stuff you’ve said or done, you must consider them.
Being Taken Seriously
Unless you’re a big pro like Chaunte Wayans, the chances are that many people in your life won’t take your passion seriously. A significant reason this happens is that popular media has formed public perception, which is never kind to comedians. In television and movies, most comedians are either embarrassing drunks or humorless and mean.
That’s now how these performers are.
Comedians are diverse, creative, and intelligent people who know their way around a stage. To fight back against this perception, keep yourself away from addiction, and invite those you care about to stand up. You deserve a career that makes you happy and for those around you to celebrate that job.