Monthly Archives: October 2014

Class 3 “Inner Child.”

If you get a chance, check out my Stand Up PAUL SVEEN on YOU TUBE and on this WEB SITE. If you want me to perform at your Christmas party or share a KEY NOTE at your next event , E MAIL ME:

Alright, class 3: for the next class you’re sharing a 4 minute story about your CHILD HOOD. REMEMBER:  1) Make sure you identify the emotion of your SET and that each sentence in your story MASKES A POINT! Q and A each sentence to make sure you have a point! Also, if there’s ANOTHER PERSON in your story, give them their own VOICE. Bring them to life! THEME. Make sure your theme is in your child hood set:  What is the theme you found from last week’s class.  My theme is: “I don’t know what I’m doing but I’m doing it anyway!” I’m also going to put up some MIS DIRECTION.

REMEMBER:  BE YOURSELF! The premise or CHILD HOOD STORY you share should REVEAL you, tell us something about you. STAND UP COMEDY is about STORY and TRUTH and INSIGHT into YOU! If you’re not telling us about you, being vulnerable, you’re not connecting to your audience! Also, make sure you GET OUR Attention with your OPENING JOKE and leave us wanting more with your CLOSING JOKE.

EXAMPLE:  CHILD HOOD: (The last time I went Halloweening  I was 11 and was beat up for my bag of candy. This will be my set. These are some jokes I developed for that set.)  OPENING JOKE:  1) “I still remember my first Halloween. I was 7. I put on some torn pants, a ripped shirt shredded running shoes, then asked my parents when they were getting a job. (mis direction- premise,  3 contradicting statements, un expected punchline)  TAG 2) When I went door to door, my Dad made me ask for beer money. 3) Halloween. It’s been many years since I walked the streets looking for candy. The last time I did , I ended up in John School.” 4) Don’t get me wrong. My wife and I still roll play. Last Halloween we dressed in our Sunday best went to the Mall and begged for a loan.

* Write out your child hood story and Q and A each sentence.  Find the emotion in each sentence and try and share the emotion when you share your set. JOKES MAKE A POINT! What you’re telling us is THE MESSAGE OF YOUR STORY. What is that? Make sure your jokes tell us about you. AND “HEY!” HAVE FUN!!!!

If you comment on my blog please comment on something specific you liked, so I can comment back.

E mail:

The Edmonton Comedy Festival.

I just finished my second appearance at the ATB Edmonton Comedy Festival. What I learned from the comedians from all corners of the World was “SUBTLE.” Don’t be so blatant with my punch lines, at least not the whole set. It’s alright to be subtle. It’s a great lesson. Never under estimate the intelligence of an audience.

I performed 4 sets. One was a 10 minute show case set at a great little soft seater in the Arts Barn. The other three were me as the host for the other comedians. I’ve always prepared for my sets by journalling and taping my set and watching it the next day. It’s always been about story, the moments in my life that really reveal who I am. I take these moments and write material about them and then, put the material back in the story to embellish it.

I really liked Alingon Mitra, an East Indian comedian from Boston. He’s really relaxed, soft spoken and great at sharing his darkest thoughts. Edmonton Comedian Tyler Hawkins had the best set I’ve ever seen him have. He crushed it. It was great to talk to Chicago Comedian Rondell Sheridan. He’s a tonight show alumni and talked to me about working with Bill Hicks in England. Edmonton comedian Kerry Unger is seriously one of the funniest comics I know. His material is as natural as he is. He melded the guy living in his basement  to depression and telling what the weather was going to be. So funny!

I watched all the comics, talked to Andrew  and Carole Grose the festival organizers, Tim Koslo a local comedian, Kenny V another veteran extremely funny comedian. I caught up with Kristine Von Hagen from Las Vegas,  Marry Allen Hooper from Florida, World traveller  Larse Callieou from Edmonton and the AMAZING Donny and Mark from Atomic Improve.  The four days went SO fast.

I was blessed to share a Stand Up Work shop where several of my students attended. That was an honour. Another honour came the night before. I had just wrapped up the show and stepped off the stage. A young man walked up and said that tonight was the first time he laughed in 5 years. He asked if I had really Drummed for Stompin Tom Conners. I said that I had. The man began crying and walked away. His buddy walked up and said that his friend was crying because his brother was a Canadian Soldier who’d been killed in Iraq and that his brother loved Stompin Tom Conners. I ran over and held the young man for a moment. It made me think about how many times have all of us shared something funny that reached and healed someone else and how they use the joke or story for years after we forgot we even told it. Dare to share your humor. It’s needed, more then you can ever know.

If you want to book me for as a Stand Up Comedian or Key Note Speaker or want to be in my next class January 26th. E mail me please:

Continuing Education: Class 2

I’m on YOU TUBE and FACE BOOK. I’ll be performing 4 shows at at the Edmonton Comedy Festival this week. I’ll also be giving a free work shop at the RANCH  this Saturday. 11AM to 12:30  All my times and dates are on my web site. This is Christmas party Season already and if you want me to appear at your party please E mail me: paulsveen@shaw. ca

Alright, for class 2 we’re working on THEME. The reason why this is important is because, theme gives you an IDENTITY. It narrows your search when you’re looking for material and your voice. It also makes you memorable and this is the point of  Stand Up Comedy and branding, trying to connect to your voice and your audience.

1ST: We look at 5 MEMORABLE moments from our life. 2ND, we look for a pattern in these 5 moments. 3RD, we create a statement from this pattern defining our theme. 4, we take our theme statement and search within ourselves for a moment that REVEALS OUR THEME.

EXAMPLE: 5 moments from my life: (1) having a car repossessed when I was 19.( 2) My Mother buried a bag of my pot in the back yard to hide it. ( The bag of pot grew into almost a pound) (3) I almost fell off a swing stage washing windows 30 floors above the ground. (4) I was beat up for my Halloween candy. (5) I had a car die and roll up to a hitch hiker.

What is the common theme of these 5 stories?  I’m a train wreck, I don’t know what I’m doing. I’m flying by the seat of my pants, I don’t have a plan.  I came up with:                                                                                                   “I don’t know what I’m doing but I’m doing it anyway.”

I’ve come up with a story that reveals my theme statement: “The time I cleaned my car, one fist full of garbage at a time.”

I’m going to ASK and ANSWER 10 questions and get 10 answers. ( if you get a Q and A you really like, ask and answer questions about it. REMEMBER to use the circle and Q and A from different perspectives. Also, if there’s another person in your story, GIVE THEM THEIR OWN VOICE. Do an impression of them. I’m going to put 5 of these into the story I’ve chosen. This is also your homework. Have a 3 minute set for next class.

I bring my work shops to offices and conventions. If you’d like me at your event or party, E MAIL ME AT:


Class I Continuing Education

1st, thank you, all of you for taking my class. I’m honoured. This is an introduction to stand up so please, let go and have fun.  2nd, my writing class is performing this Wednesday at Yuk Yuks at the Century Casino on Fort Road.  ( If you’re interested in taking my advanced class E MAIL ME: Please come down all of you and see these new comedians, they’re amazing. This will also be the club you’re performing in, so it will give you a heads up of the lay out. Tickets are 5$ at the door. The show begins at 7:30.

THE CLASS HOME WORK:  1) Choose a story about something you over came, took a risk and did it anyway. This is about your INNER CRITIC. 2) Ask and Answer questions about some of the sentences in your story. 3) Put the premise/idea into a circle and Q and A from different perspectives. 4) Allow your story to be about 2 minutes. If you want- give the other people in your story THEIR OWN VOICE. Do an impression of them.

REMEMBER: I’ll be performing at the edmonton comedy festival next week. My times and dates are on my web site.

I’m also a nationally touring comedian. If you’d like me to appear at your Christmas party,  or share a KEY NOTE  or WORK SHOP at your event: E MAIL ME AT:

My next advanced writing class begins Monday January 26th. E MAIL ME for details:


Class Four

I’m sorry it’s taken so long to get this up, I’ve had some challenges with the web site and I’ve been on tour as well as teaching but here we are. REMEMBER: I’m a Nationally touring comedian, check out my video on my web site and you tube as well, check out my book “THE ANGEL’S CLAW.” If you’d like me to perform at your function,  STAND-UP, KEY NOTE, WORK SHOP; please E mail me:

FIRST: Write out the STORY of your set AND NOTHING ELSE! Take out everything except the BARE BONES OF THE STORY.  LOOK at your story and DEFINE the EMOTION of each SENTENCE! Read each sentence OUT LOUD and give the sentence the emotion that’s in it when you speak. If it’s SAD, BE #*#ING SAD, EXCITED, angry, doubt, regret, GIVE IT EMOTION. Stop talking like you’re on meds, GIVE YOUR SET SOME LIFE!!!

SECOND. Look at all the jokes you’ve written in my class. WHICH ONES ARE YOU MOST PROUD OF? Pick a few and INSERT THEM INTO YOUR STORY, just drop them, ” don’t out think yourself, just put a few in your set, especially jokes that EXPOSE YOU, tell us something about you!

THIRD: RECORD your story WITHOUT THE TAGS ( the inserted jokes) As you’re listening, feel where you could INSERT JOKES. After you’ve listened to your story, INSERT some jokes and listen to it again. ( I’m coming from 30 years of stand up and 20 plus years teaching) TRUST ME and don’t beat your story up. Just trust me PLEASE!!!

FOUR: Take your favourite OPENING jokes and CLOSING jokes and make sure your STORY begins and ends with your favourite jokes!

EXAMPLE STORY: “When people ask me how long I’ve been married I tell them I have a ‘ follow me to the next garage sale sticker on my car’. That’s how long I’ve been married!  I love garage sales. Nothing like sashaying through someone else’s crap with a pocket full of change, high roller, coming through! Plus you can buy things at garage sales you can’t find anywhere else. I bought a new age alarm clock. That’s where when the alarm goes off, it’s something from nature, crashing waves, Sea Gulls. I wake up to an April rain shower. I lay there , the rain slowly nudges me awake, and I piss the bed. The clock seems to work!

(Here’s someTAGS. Where would you INSERT them in this STORY?)

#1 I love clock radios, waking up to music but you have to wake to classic rock not industrial death metal. I don’t want to jump out of bed to some guy screaming ” Satan lives in your rage stab your neighbour, stab, stab, stab!”                                                                                                                       #2 I also don’t want to wake to easy listening. If they play Anne Murray that’s going to put me back to sleep. If they play 5 Anne Murray songs in a row, that could stop my heart and kill me and the last thing I want on my coroner’s report is “death by, Can I have This Dance For The Rest Of My Life.”                                                                                 #3 I love music., old school music. Not a big rap guy. I’m older, what the hell do I know about rap? “I’m a middle age rapper, should be napping but with this prostate, that’s not happening!”

INSERT these jokes into my STORY, change them around, make sure you’re OPENING and CLOSING on the strongest jokes, then DO THE SAME THING TO YOUR STORY/SET!

REMEMBER, to BOOK me for your function, as a STAND UP, KEY NOTE, WORK SHOP, E mail me:

(My next class begins JANUARY 26TH) E mail me if you’d like to be in  it and KIDS!!!!! HAVE FUN PLEASE 🙂



Sorry folks!

We were down for a few hours, but we are back on the air, and ready to rock and roll!


Ladies and Gentlemen! Please join me in giving a warm welcome….