Thanks for asking about the show. I'll keep you in mind. Please note that if I do book you, it might not be right away. No need to keep following up. You're on the radar.
I'd like to be honest with you though. I'm extremely picky and I turn down the majority of people who ask to be on the show. If you wind up not getting booked, here's the most likely reason: It's not clear to me that you're funny enough. I know that makes me sound like a dick, but I take pride in putting on a top notch show. If someone comes out and deflates the room, it's a real blow to the show. So unless I know that you consistently kill, I probably won't put you up.
I get why this is annoying. I'm a comic too. I also hustle for spots on other shows and know what a hassle it is to get stage time. In fact, there are plenty of shows that I want to do but can't get booked on. The way I take it: I just need to get better so I reach a point where someone feels silly for not booking me.
A good show producer's priority isn't making other comics happy, it's putting on a great show. Part of that is saying no. The best shows are great because they have tough booking policies. There's a reason why it's hard for people to get a spot on, say, Whiplash — the producer won't put up people who might jeopardize the show. It's also why you have to be "passed" at the best comedy clubs — it's on the club if you fuck up. It can be annoying for comics, but it's usually a very good thing for audiences.
At this point, maybe you're saying one of these:
"I'm funnier than ______ and you had them on the show."
That's your opinion. I might disagree. And if I do agree, maybe it was a mistake. It happens. But I always try to book the best mix of people at each show that we can. Also, I might have reasons for putting someone up that aren't clear to you but make sense to me.
"I booked you on my show so you should have me on yours."
I don't believe in spot swapping. I'm really happy you had me on your show but I don't do straight up trades for spots. I know other people do this but it's just not how I run my show. Sorry.
"But I'm your friend, come on!"
Some of my closest comedy pals are people I haven't booked on the show yet. It's not a popularity or friendship thing. So please understand and still be friendly. I'll do the same. I'm just trying to put on a good show, not piss you off.
"I come to the show all the time though."
Thank you, I love ya for that. But like the spot swapping thing, I'm also not into giving spots out to people just because they show up.
Just to say it again: I really appreciate your friendship, booking me on your show, and/or coming to the show. It's totally not a personal thing. PLEASE continue being my friend, booking me, and coming to the show. (Unless you really hate me. Then do what ya like.)
But I hope you at least appreciate where I'm coming from and the honesty of this response. I know other show producers who either 1) never respond to emails at all or 2) hide out from other comics in order to avoid confrontation. I don't want to be like that so that's where this is all coming from. Cool? I hope so.
And keep in mind this isn't a forever no. It's a right now no. The best way to change my mind: Start killing. All the time. If you're not at that level yet, then keep working harder. Write all the time. Do mics all the time. Become so funny that other people start talking about you.
If you're consistently hilarious and everyone knows it, booking you becomes a no-brainer. (Realize that might take months or years of hard work though.) When you get to that level of funniness, I'll definitely reconsider. Thanks for understanding and good luck.
If you're a show producer and you want to use this text or any part of it, feel free. (If you do repost any part of it online, please link back to Sandpaper Suit.)
Permalink | 5/06/2009