This past Thursday, I peformed eight minutes at The Comedy Spot in Ballston, Virginia. Despite the extremely small audience (one patron and six comedians) I got a lot out of this open mic. Only one of my jokes had been previously told (the joke was written specifically for the "dirty show" I did a few weeks ago but has made it's way into my regular set). The rest of the set was either brand new or improvized. When writing new material, these sets are great. I think a few of these ideas are going to stick.
I had a similar experience at the Terra Cafe in Baltimore, Maryland the following night. My eleven minute set was mainly used to work on the wording for new bits and trying out new ideas. It was a very productive and character building set.
I closed out with the week with a twenty-two minute set at Laughter in the Basement in Leesburg, Virginia. This was a lot of fun and a really good set. I did mostly polished stuff but also had fun playing "F, Marry or Kill" with the cast of "What's Eating Gilbert Grape". Fun times.
The show in Leesburg will probably be my last booked show sometime (with the exception of a trip to New York next month). I haven't been trying to get a lot of shows and want to focus on writing and building new material for the next three months. I'm looking to book a ton of shows in January and February and then recording a live album in late February. So for now... It's all about writing and hitting open mics.