DC Pierson on giving away his stand-up for free to sell his book

Earlier this week, DC Pierson uploaded a half-hour of his new stand-up comedy material to YouTube and gave it away for free to fans and potential new followers.

As Pierson said in introducing his footage, “You’re about to watch 30 minutes of stand-up by me, DC Pierson. I put it out for free, so as a favor, in return, I would really appreciate it if you would go to CrapKingdom.com and buy my new book, ‘Crap Kingdom.’ If you’ve already bought my new book ‘Crap Kingdom,’ then thank you very much. I appreciate it. Either way, enjoy the show.”

Before you watch a half-hour of stand-up for free, I thought I’d ask DC Pierson to explain himself a little further.

When you originally recorded this half-hour of stand-up, what were your plans for it? How did you decide to tie its release on YouTube to the new book?

“I taped it for the explicit purpose of releasing it when I got enough pre-orders for the book. It’s part of an effort to make all the irons that I have in the fire work toward the same purpose. I’ve been spending the last few years trying to get one of those irons to heat up enough (and here I’m extending the metaphor past its breaking point) that it would catch fire and the massive fame that would bring me would allow me to… set fire to? I am torturing this metaphor Zero Dark Thirty style… all my other endeavors.”

“With the book coming out I realized, I don’t need to wait for outside validation. I can make all these things work for me at the same time rather then keeping them all separate and hermetic and waiting for one of them to pop.”

“I think “popping” might be a fake idea. You are always popping to someone, somewhere. I think of someone like Aziz as having “popped” about as much as anyone can and yet I’m sure there’s some kid right now who is waking up this morning and just discovering him.”

“So I released the stand-up when I got enough pre-orders, and I released a rap mixtape when I got enough pre-orders, and I may release my one-person storytelling show DC Pierson Is Bad At Girls sometime in the next week, probably after the book is available (it comes out Tuesday).”

And did you wrestle with the idea of releasing this much stand-up material online and thereby “burning” it, or is this just where comedy is in 2013, in that we must throw some of what we have out there as bait to reel in potential new fans? Or am I off base and the real answer is something else entirely?

“I did wrestle with it, but I figured it would make me terrified enough to want to write new stuff. I don’t think everyone should be releasing six new hours of stand-up a year. There’s obviously great value in honing things and testing them and only releasing stuff when it’s ready. I didn’t engineer this half hour over the past few weeks, this is at least a year and change worth of jokes. So that makes it painful to put it out there knowing I probably can’t do it anymore in most situations. But it also means it’s ready to be put out there.”

“The stuff I just put out is good. The next one I do will be better.”

“And I think the bottom line is, I do a lot of stuff. And I want all the different things I do to coalesce instead of competing. And I happened to have been working on a lot of different things over the past few years that it made since to release around the time the book was coming out, because I’m very proud of the book, and I really want people to check it out.”

Thanks for reading The Comic’s Comic, and let us thank everyone everywhere for still reading.

“No problem. In other news, I’m auditioning for a character named “Sean McCarthy” today. Any insights?”

Wait. What now? Stay tuned! And tune in to a half-hour of DC Pierson doing stand-up. Roll it.

Order a copy of Crap Kingdom now.

If you did so by March 7, 2013, you might also see/hear DC Pierson rap about you. Like these 50 people just learned…

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.

View all posts by Sean L. McCarthy →