I watched Joan Rivers: A Piece of Work tonight and I’ve got to say it’s one of the best documentaries I’ve seen in a long time and should be required viewing for just about anybody that’s interested in a comedy career. In addition to that, there were two things in the documentary that jumped out at me as being relevant to Connected Comedy readers:
1. Are you willing to work as hard as Joan Rivers?
I’ve previously asked you to compare your effort to that of NBA player Kevin Durant, but it’s probably even easier to compare yourself to Joan Rivers. It’s clear in the documentary that Joan works HARD…and not just on projects that pay her a lot of money. She’s constantly writing new material, working on her act in small clubs, and scratching and clawing to create new opportunities for herself. Here’s a clip from the documentary that should give you a sense of just how hard Joan works at creating content:
2. What are you going to do on Monday?
In the documentary, Joan’s agent (I think) tells a great story about Richard Pryor. Years ago, the agent had met with Richard Pryor and was talking to him about his plans for Pryor’s career. He said something to the effect of, “We’re going to do this, and we’re going to do that, and then we’re going to do this…” But then Pryor interrupted him and said, “I don’t care. What are we going to do on Monday?”
What a great quote and a great way to look at things. It’s important to have goals in your career and have a sense of where you want to go, but what’s more important is to think about what you’re going to do right now, in the moment, to get there. You can’t control what you’re going to do down the road in your career, but you can control what you’re going to do on Monday. And that’s probably more important anyway.