Advice for new stand-ups, via John Heffron

Beginning and aspiring stand-up comedians always want to ask veteran headliners for advice on how to become better at the art and craft of comedy. I know I felt that way back when I performed. Some of the big name guys and gals were more patient than others in handling all of these queries. That's still true. The easiest, shortest answer is "Get onstage as much as possible." It's in the doing that you'll find your way, or learn that you should not be a stand-up comedian.

John Heffron, who won the second season of NBC's Last Comic Standing, recently gave an even shorter piece of advice to a newbie: "Don't suck." Upon further reflection, Heffron has offered up 10 tips that any beginning comedian should consider when taking to the stage in front of a live audience. Some of it is specific to comedy clubs, some of it is remembering to take into account what audience members are thinking, and some of it is just about being patient. But it's all pretty good advice.

Sean L. McCarthy

Editor and publisher since 2007, when he was named New York's Funniest Reporter. Former newspaper reporter at the New York Daily News, Boston Herald and smaller dailies and community papers across America. Loves comedy so much he founded this site.

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