If you are getting into stand-up comedy to become wealthy, quit now
There is no money in comedy. You will perform for free for a very long time. When you actually start to understand who you are and how to actually be funny on stage, you will make very little money. At this point you may be just a guest spot or the host at a comedy club. It took you three to four years to get to this spot. Now what? It may take another three to four years to have enough material to become a feature at a comedy club. Still unable to quit your day job because a feature spot does not cover your bills plus road expenses. Three to four years later to have finally reached headliner status and you can finally quit your day job and focus solely on comedy. You still have not broken the bank. In that nine to twelve years you spent pursuing that comedy dream, you could have become a manager, senior manager, or something greater at your job. You could have invested your extra money into stocks and bonds. Been able to afford that new house and car.
If you are getting into stand-up comedy to become famous, quit now
Many people, maybe hundreds of thousands of people, get into stand-up comedy. Out of all of those people only a very small percentage of them are even truly funny. A smaller percentage of those people can make a living off of stand-up comedy. And an even smaller percentage of those people become famous. Talent alone is not enough. You have to get lucky and catch a break. Be at the right place at the right time. Even that is not enough. Your stand-up comedy is a business and you have to treat it as such. It takes time, a lot of time. Combine all of those elements and you still will probably not become famous.
If you are getting into stand-up comedy because you need a hobby, quit now
Find a hobby that is more fulfilling. Something like golf or bowling. You may suck, but at least you are having fun. It is a given that you will suck at stand-up. There will be times that you are at an open mic and nobody will laugh. Other times people will boo and even tell you not to quit your day job. One out of five times that you go on stage you may do well. In any other field you would be fired if you were good 20% of the time. Go play golf and get that hole in one and then go bowling and bowl that perfect 300 game. You may never actually do that, but you will feel better about yourself in the long run.
Stop wasting your time
When you first start out, the only time you will be performing is at open mics. You will have to drive thirty minutes to an hour just to get to the open mic. If you get to three open mics a week, consider yourself lucky. The open mics you go to will only give you three to four minutes of stage time. You can not make people laugh in that little amount of time. So now you have driven an hour to an open mic, been on stage 3 minutes and someone boo’d you. The same thing happens the next two weeks. You have just wasted time, money, and gas. It was not worth it.
Stop wasting people’s time
After going to all of these open mics all over the place and having bad set after bad set, you decide you are not even going to try anymore. You just get on stage and get angry, say whatever is on your mind, and put out a terrible product. All because you do not care anymore. At this point, you have wasted the audiences time. They came to laugh and now they are in a bad mood. Other comedians have been waiting and you took away from their time. The host has wasted his time trying to get the crowd back. Do yourself and everyone else a favor and quit comedy!
Why are you doing stand-up comedy?
If you are doing stand-up comedy to make people laugh, then continue to do it. If you are doing it for a challenge and for the rush, keep doing it. If you are doing it to get better each time you go on stage, please do not stop. When you go on stage, have a purpose. Make some short-term and long-term goals. When you reach those goals, make some more. Never stop trying to get better. It will show. Everyone will see it. Do not waste other people’s time. Do not waste your time. Stand-up comedy is not a hobby. Maybe one day you will be one of the lucky ones that worked hard and gave it everything you had and became rich and famous. Probably not, but maybe. Good luck!