Advanced Class 1

Thank you again everyone for being in my STAND UP WRITING class. I loved the first class. Some of the jokes and tags received applause breaks from the class. I love that enthusiasm and support. What we’re going to achieve in this class is: learning to mine our theme. ( please run the exercise where you look at your five top stories of your life, your favorite movies, books and jokes and FIND THE PATTERN. What are your lists telling you about you? Find the theme and USE THIS AS THE TEMPLATE FOR YOUR MATERIAL.) We’re going to learn to embed emotion into our material and we’ll achieve this through MISDIRECTION.

1) I’m choosing the story about the time I went sky diving. ( I’m choosing this because it amplifies my theme: IDIOT.) We’re going to be using misdirection : A) Choose a PREMISE/ IDEA. B) Ask yourself what the emotion is in the premise and what you’re resisting in admitting in the premise. This is where the punch line is. Also, make sure the punch line is the opposite of the premise. C) Insert amplifying statements that prop up the premise. This is the bait and switch, these statements take our attention from the punchline. (ALSO: if you don’t use the amplifying statements and just the premise and punchline you have SARCASM.)

EXAMPLE: “Why do we only hear God when we’re near death, plane crashes, Earthquakes, head on collisions? It’s as if God doesn’t care I have a tooth ache.” (What’s something direct opposite of death? Sore tummy, tooth ache, stump my toe….)

Look at the story you chose. Apply misdirection to the OPENING, MIDDLE AND CLOSING parts of your 3/4 minute story. Make sure you use single examples as the amplifying points. Notice my joke, edit, keep it simple.

For next class.: 3/4 minute story, 3 misdirection jokes, make sure your theme is in the set, have a printed copy of your story without the jokes in them. Have fun everyone. Remember, work harder than you think you can. That’s where the jokes are.

Up Coming Events.

I’ll be Skyping my first Stand Up Writing class beginning Monday April 25 at 7:00 PM. If you’re interested in being in this class or would like information about: my Advanced Stand Up Writing Club Class, information on my Novel or booking me for a KEY NOTE, WORKSHOP OR CORPORATE SHOW, E mail me at:

February 17, Grande Prairie Casino

February 19, Niacin Saskatchewan Curling Bonspiel

March 2, Metro College Comedy Grad, Yuk Yuks Edmonton, 7:30 PM

March 3,  Comedy Factory:  8:00 PM A Night Of Laughs: ( Fundraiser for Alberta Cultural Exchange)

March 4, Red Deer Legion. 8:00 PM

March 7, Advanced Writing Class, Yuk Yuks Edmonton. 7:00 PM

March 9, Fort Mcmurray Casino. 8:00 PM

March 11/12 Cranbrook BC, Comedy Lounge

March 29, Advanced Stand Up Writing Grad, Yuk Yuks Comedy Club Edmonton. 7:30 PM

April 9, Volunteer Appreciation Night Edmonton. 8:00 PM

April 23, Beaver Lodge Alberta  Fire Department Talent Contest

April 24, Advanced Stand Up Writing, SKYPE Class. 7:00 PM



You are not alone. March 7 Writing Class.

If you’re reading this, you’re reading because of synchronicity, happenstance or coincidence, what ever the reasons, thank you and it’s no accident! It’s no accident that you happened onto my blog. There are forces around us and within us that nudge at us through the day trying to get our attention, positive, abundant incredible forces. It’s no accident you’re reading this, you needed to be reminded that you’re incredible, a one of and are needed. What you bring to the table of the human banquet can not be replaced or shared or discovered anywhere else in the Universe. Today know that you are a miracle a point of the circle that can only be seen by you. DOUBT! When you read these words do you doubt them? I’ve learned to top feeding this part of myself so can you. The part of you that thinks everything is so far away, impossible, can’t happen- was not part of us when we arrived on this Earthly plane. Humor is fuel and a pathway to re remember our authentic selves. Take your depression, your heartbreak, your fears seriously but not yourself. This is the basis of all my writing, my novels and the classes I teach. My next class begins March 7. If you’re interested in mining the possibles of your true self, begin with discovering the depths of your laugh. E mail me for class details at:

Outline for November 16 Writing Class.

Stand Up Writing, Class Outline.

To register for this class send a transfer of 275.00 to

Once your funds are deposited I’ll send you a writing exercise to give you a pre-class work out.

The out line for my Stand Up Class is as follows:

Class 1: Stand up Writing, tagging.

Class 2: Theme, emotion and premise.

Class 3: Framing, inserting material into our theme.

Class 4: The business of Stand Up.

Class 5 Preparing for a performance.


-Just like listening to an MC as a comedian, It’s important to listen to your class mates when they’re on stage, ask yourself why a certain thing they said connected to you, also, how would you share an idea they had if you wrote it (tagging.) This ability challenges you to see ideas from another perspective.

-Always record your set when you’re on stage so you can listen to it during the week. This is also tagging because you can find ways to improve on the idea. And again, listening is another point on the circle besides writing.

-I ask that while you’re in Stand Up Writing that you journal 3 pages every day if you can. Writing a journal and exploring a premise within 3 pages will have a profound effect on your writing .

-It’s important to go over your set every day. 15 minutes is great. 5 if you’re in a rush. Sharpening your saw and rehearsing your set each day, adding tags and editing older ideas as well as giving the people in your set their own voice and perspective gives your set layers.

-I will have your homework on my blog the next day after class. You can see this at:

-Unless the date changes, December 15in Yuk Yuk’s Comedy Club will be the grad night for our class. We’ll be raising money for Highlands Dog Rescue. Tickets are 10$ at the door.

– I’m a nationally touring Comedian. If you’re interested in bringing me or my work shop or my Stand Up to your next event or business, please E mail me at:

– I can be seen on You Tube and Face Book. My Novel “The Angel’s Claw.” Is available through my web site on Book Baby and at Indigo North Town Mall 9450-137 Avenue. I have a book signing October 17 at this location from noon until four PM. If you can make it to the signing I can share more information about the class with you.  If you have any questions about my class, my novel, or booking information, E Mail me please at:

November 16. My next Stand Up writing class.

Everything I share in my Stand Up Writing Class you can apply to your: stand up, public speaking, business, social events and life. The key to my 5 week class is theme! We mine the theme the patterns of your life, your voice, your vein of gold.

Once we begin to locate our themes we then write material from this pattern. We no longer look for the punchline we look for YOU, your theme in the premise. The set we build in my class as well as the lessons build off of your strengths, your theme your vein of gold!

What this achieves is your market brand your Coke! When we locate the stories in your life, the moments that are in your creative DNA, we not only locate who you truly are as well as well as your market brand, in locating your theme, we also locate your confidence, your courage your inspiration and most important, your audience.

In creative matters, voice is everything. It’s what makes us original, dynamic and noticeable. Too often we get lost in the line up everyone else is standing in, everyone chasing the same carrot. I believe each of us should be the creative force that is desired, we’re the carrot, we should be where the line up leads to. Trust your bliss follow it.  My class is where it begins. I hope to see you there.

If you’re interested in being in my next class, E MAIL me at:

Class Grad October The 6th

Before I begin the final blog for this September writing class I want to thank everyone who registered for my class and especially Carla and Sarah for putting in the work each week. You inspire me ladies.

Second, I want to remind everyone that I can bring my work shops to your office and also perform Stand Up Nationally and would love to perform at your Christmas Party or Fundraiser. E mail me at: for any and all inquiries.


Alright, as you read this blog, close your eyes and see yourself on stage Tuesday night! Feel the laughter, hear the audience applause, feel the joy of all the hard work you put in to make your performance happen! How does it feel to being doing so well? How does it feel to pause after each joke and allow the audience to laugh? How does your frame feel, your story, and the jokes you inserted into your frame?

Now it’s Wednesday. You’re thinking about all the compliments you received the night before, thinking about your jokes and your frame and you’re happy about your set but are thinking, if I had a second chance, what would I do differently?

1) Go over your FRAME/STORY. Say your frame without the TAGS/JOKES say the story, record it and listen to it. Make sure you know the story, the beginning, middle and end as well as the POINT of the story as well as all the sub points. ( While you’re speaking out loud, allow your energy to be POSITIVE! Let go of all doubt, regret, self negative talk and immerse yourself in the creative fuel of self kindness and certainty!

OPENING JOKE. This is built off the first sentence in your STORY that will be the FRAME of your SET. My first sentence is: “I don’t know what I’m doing. I went to the Halifax Comedy Festival and made fun of Anne Murray.”

Our OPENING JOKE achieves a few things: It gets the audience’s attention, it shares our THEME ( mine is, I don’t know what I’m doing. It’s a good idea to share your theme in your opening joke.) Our opening joke lets the audience like us! It’s always wise yo GET TO THE POINT in the opening joke. SARCASM as well as SIMILE, making comparisons  is a great vehicle for this, So EXPLORE THE SARCASM and comparisons  in YOUR opening joke.

What’s the SARCASM in my opening joke? (over the top statements?) What about the misdirection ? (Setting up a joke for an unexpected PUNCHLINE?

MISDIRECTION: 1) Premise, locate the emotion of the premise. locate the exact opposite point. 3) Insert three statements that amplify the premise. This is where the bait and switch takes place, taking the audience from where you’re going.)

I made fun of Anne Murray at the Halifax Comedy Festival.   Emotion: stupid, misinformed, insensitive, delusional. Here’s an example of what I came up with:

“I made fun of Anne Murray at the Halifax Comedy Festival,  not my smartest moment. I should have went all the way and made fun of Sea food, Stompin Tom Conners and the Great Big Sea. Doesn’t matter, they’ll never hear about it in Fort-Mcmurray.

Try using this template: premise, locate the emotion, then use the 3 statements then locate a point opposite of your premise. Here I used Halifax and Fort Mcmurray.

REMEMBER: invite as may friends as you can for Tuesday, we’re raising funds for a dog rescue. Have fun rehearsing! See you in class Monday!!!!

Framing. September 24. 2015


Story! The most important element of our set is STORY, beginning, middle and end. Story mirrors everything we do in sharing our craft our creativity. A simple joke: “A horse walks into a bar. The waitress says, ‘what’s with the long face?’ this simple joke is a story. In the bigger picture, something like a 7 to 10 minute set, we could string a a bunch of disjointed simple generic jokes together and get laughs but we won’t really be remembered, the audience won’t find out anything about who we are and we move into the realm of just doing time. Our story, our secrets stories that we’re afraid to share are our brand, our Coke, they reveal who we are and connect to an audience on a deeper level because of their honesty.

FRAMING: What framing is, is a story from our life that reveals our THEME. My theme is, ( I don’t know what I’m doing but I’m doing it anyway, Idiot)  Here’s an example:  “1) The first time I tried stand up comedy I fell off the stage into the audience.2) It was my turn at an open mike to share my jokes, I walked up, stood under the light and forgot my name, that I was humane, forgot my jokes and most important, forgot where the steps were to get off the stage.  3) After about 45 seconds of abject silence, I just turned and stepped where I thought the steps were. 4) I plunged off the side of the stage face first onto a table. 5) The table collapsed, all the drinks fell onto me, I got up, ran to the first door I saw in my panic and, disappeared to the sounds of being laughed at, not with, because there is a big difference my friends.”6) Exit Paul Sveen. And scene!

This is a powerful story. REMEMBER, the more emotion in a story the bigger the laughs and the greater the connection to an audience. What we do now, is look at each sentence in our story and TAG IT, (TAGGING, creating, developing material, jokes from a premise or existing joke.)

So lets look at the first sentence. I numbered each sentence so I know how many to tag. Write the first sentence out. The first sentence is going to be our first joke, our OPENING JOKE. This is important because an OPENING JOKE should get an audience’s attention, it sets up our performance, No pressure.

OPENING JOKE: The first time I tried stand up comedy I fell off the stage into the audience. 1) Locate the emotion of the sentence: desperation, panic, fear, regret, doubt. 2) Create the vertical and horizontal lines across a page. 3) Choose four different perspectives to write from; me, the audience, my dad the critic, the MC. REMEMBER to write the word POOL near the bottom of the page.

WE BEGIN: We start with examining the KEY WORDS in the  sentence: FIRST, TRIED, TIME, STAGE, FELL, AUDIENCE. (These could be the PUNCH WORD of a joke I develop)  From my perspective I’m going to Q and A the sentence:1) Why did I forget my material? 2)Why was I so scared? 3)What was I afraid of? 4)Why did I go on stage unprepared? 5)Why did I run out of the club? NOW, we ANSWER the questions:1) I didn’t have material. I had street jokes that I forgot. 2)I was terrified because I felt the audience wouldn’t like me. 3) I was afraid of being rejected. 4) I thought if I could be myself I would be fine. 5) I ran out because I was humiliated.

I begin by TALKING around the material I’ve developed and by continuing to Q and A the 4 perspectives.

JOKE 1) “My first time trying stand up comedy I fell off the stage.  Let me put this into perspective. This is like a virgin’s first sexual experience waking up hand cuffed naked and duct taped to a hot water tank.”   I’ll tag this joke, looking for different ways to articulate it. Writing is re writing! ( Under pool I wrote, worst case scenario.) This could e a great premise. Also I’m going to add, everyone is afraid of public speaking.)

Alright, your turn. Q and A from the 4 perspectives. Keep talking out loud around each sentence and keep digging for the emotion, and keep editing! Add the questions and answers together and rewrite them.



Class 2 September 14/ Framing

Alright, great first class and second class!!!! For your homework next Monday September 21, have a 3 to 5 Minute set. RELAX, HAVE FUN! What ever you bring to class we can build off. These are the steps for your homework 🙂

We’re going to take a moment from your life and write some material for it. This is called, TAGGING. When we take an idea and expand off of it, the stand up term is called TAGGING. Tagging is the same as building off or expanding.

Tagging and using it in on a memory or story from your life is different than lets say, writing jokes about the news. If I play with a news story like a robotic lawn mower, I can QUESTION and Answer the PREMISE within the CIRCLE from different perspectives and come up with a joke like: “You can now buy a Robot Lawn Mower. How much does it cost? If you’re too lazy to get off the couch to mow your lawn, you can own a Lawn Robot for the low low price of, DIABETES!”

Now, if I have a story about lawn work I can drop this joke into y set but what I’m asking is: 1) Locate a moment that really tells us about you. 2) Q and A EACH SENTENCE OF THE STORY and INSERT THE JOKE AFTER EACH SENTENCE. (you’re tagging each sentence. 3) Tape your story with it’s tags and rehearse it for Monday’s class.

EXAMPLE: I was in a Canadian Tire last Spring waiting for my car to get fixed, (TAG, I was having it neutered.) so I decided to jump on some of the Christmas sales and do my Christmas shopping 8 months early.(I’LL TAG THIS) I bought one of those rings you can slip through 18 plastic bags so as to make my wife’s grocery experience more pleasurable. ( I see a tag here for the word RING.) I also got her a New York Jets steering wheel cover (TAG) and get this, a talking Christmas card that when you opened it, played Jingle bells, (TAG) well it would of if the battery didn’t die waiting 8 months to be opened.  I’ll tag this story for class. Please do the same. with your story.

We’ll be playing with MISDIRECTION in the next class.

REMEMBER: YOU CAN SEE ME ON YOU TUBE AND FACE BOOK. You can also have me appear at your Christmas Party. Ask me in class about my work shops for your office and retreats. E mail me for any questions at:


Class 1 August 31

Thank you Carla, Greg, Brian and Sarah for being in my Stand-Up writing class. The first class is an introduction to stand up mechanics.  We as well as our audience are conditioned to story, our favorite book, movie, painting and commercial, yes, commercials are story.  A well crafted joke is the same thing, a story, a beginning, middle and end.  Here’s the steps in constructing a joke.

1)Premise: this is the idea. “A horse walks into a bar”. 2) Punchline: “The waitress looks at the horse and says.” this is the sentence where the information is. In a script it’s called the ‘plot point.’ the inciting incident, the scene where the alien pops out of someone’s stomach! 3)Punch Word: “What’s with the long face.” in every joke, there’s a single word that creates the laughter, it’s the match that lights the dynamite. “A horse walks into a bar. The waitress looks at the horse and says, what’s with the long face?” (FACE) is the punch word. Notice it’s the last word in the joke? If we write a joke an the punch word is in the middle of the joke, your audience will be giggling before you get to the end of the joke.

This is where we begin. What do you care about?  In the first class we talked about, “everyone wants to be happy” and “children ruin everything.” The premise, “kids ruin everything.” We began looking at the idea by writing: “kids ruin everything.” on top a blank page. 3/4 way down the page we wrote the word. POOL. When we get a random idea, a quote, something that gets our interest but may not be connected to the premise, like the phrase, “we can’t have nice things.” write it under the word pool, we might be able to use the idea later and the rest of the ideas later.  By talking out the premise, we came up with the things a child might ruin. ( As I thought of the word ruin, I thought of the “Roman Ruins.” I jotted it down under pool.” What do kids ruin: clothes, furniture, toys. We then thought of something a child couldn’t ruin and this is how the joke developed: “Kids ruin everything, clothes, furniture, toys. You know what they can’t ruin, a 3/4 inch reinforced steel cage. Try ruin your way out of that Timmy.” (If I replaced the word TOYS, with the word, MARRIAGES, does that help the joke? ) I ask, because the more emotion in the joke the better the joke.

The second idea was: “Everyone wants to be happy.” The way we worked this premise and the first premise was begin asking questions: Does everyone want to be happy? If the first 2 letters in happiness spell “HA” Why aren’t more people laughing? If wining the lottery makes you happy why are so many people miserable when they win ?  And here’s the 1st joke. ”
“Not everyone is happy when they win the lottery, you know why? The giant check, it weighs a ton! The first thing you scream when you win the lottery shouldn’t be MEDIC!”

HOME WORK: Take an idea you like, write it on top a page, pool near the bottom and ask and answer some questions about the premise. Above the premise, write the emotion, what is the feeling behind the lottery for example? Greed, desperation, peace, joy, excitement? Ask and answer questions about the emotion of your premise. Also, what are you afraid or resisting to share in your idea? Ask and answer questions about that also. Next class, have 5 jokes please.  Record your first ideas and listen to them, talk out loud, write them out. We begin here. Have fun . See you on September 14 at Yuk Yuks in Century Casino at 7:00 PM. E mail me if you have any questions.

You can book me to bring a work shop to your event and also have me perform at your’s or a friend’s Christmas Party or Fund Raiser. E mail me for details. I can be seen on You Tube and Face Book. Also, our class grad is October 6th. 7:30. Tickets are 10$ at the door. We’re raising funds for Highlands Dog Rescue. Spread the word.

My Secret.

I’ve written and published a novel, “The Angel’s Claw.” I’ve written 3 Fringe plays, was the winner of the Walter Dale theater new playwright contest. I’ve performed at every comedy festival in Canada, and have an hour comedy special on CTV’s Comedy Now. I’ve taught Stand Up Comedy for 20 years and performed Stand Up for over 30, and my secret is, I still feel I’m not good enough, as if I’ll never reach the person I’m capable of being.

Somewhere in me, part of me feels like I’ll never be good enough, I’ll never be able to reach what’s just outside of my finger tips. Yes, I’ve tried to drown this part of me with alcohol, drugs and food. None of it worked. This abyss that’s in me is a dark place that will never be filled with anything from the outside of me. But I do have an answer for my flaw.

Sharing my Stand Up Classes over the years with all my students, listening to you, watching you grow in your creative bliss has given me the continual strength to ask more of me, to always sharpen my saw and become a better teacher, friend, writer and comedian, for you.

I’m not sure what this flaw is in me or where it came from , or who put it there. I’ve always thought that there was never enough, that I’ll always be adrift in a sea of scarcity. I’m not perfect, in a large sense I’m broken, flawed but I embrace it. as one of my students shared with my class: “embrace your imperfections.”

I choose to keep moving into my secret that I’ll never be good enough, that I’m kidding myself that I could ever be anything but a shadow. The Universe doesn’t make junk, we do. Where ever this secret I have came from, you’re being used by the person you’ve been using and manipulating all these years. I’m mining the lie that I’m nothing and have been since the very first moment I whispered: “I don’t know what I’m doing but I’m doing it any way.”

My class is performing Tuesday June 23rd at Yuk Yuks in Century Casino. Show Time is 7:30. Please come out and support the new comedians.