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I have become verbose lately. I talk in a circuitous way. I repeat phrases, belabor points, embellish my statements with words and more words.
And I’m not aware that I have become profligate with words, until I viewed a video of my recent performance.
I thought I was following my script. The truth, however, was that my script got bloated over many performances. One sentence to make a point is now two. Two sentences are now three. A paragraph is now one paragraph plus a couple more sentences.
My inflated patter now borders on being boring. The punch lines have somewhat lost their laugh potentials.
The experts on script and comedy writing are right. Conciseness is a virtue. Pithy patter can be more entertaining, more laugh provoking, than long-winded talks.
Lengthy talks, however, although good for the health (as they put the audience to a relaxing sleep), is bad for my confidence. I’d be a mental wreck if people watching me go to sleep during my performance. I am an entertainer, not a hypnotist.
So how do I remedy the situation?
I go back to my script and study it again as originally written. I allow a few revisions and addition to update them. I then pare down my current patter (as I deliver it), so that it hews to the written script.
The idea is to get my point across as quickly as I can,and not to embroider my statements with grandiose terms. I want to prevent wordiness from boring the audience and dampening the humor potentials of the punch lines I deliver.
If you are like me, who perform a “talking” magic as opposed to a silent act and don’t want to bring your audience to dreamville, review your script. The chances are it’s now padded with unnecessary verbiage. Trim down its fat and you should be okay again.
- The Way to Sparkling Patter (innermagicclub.wordpress.com)
- Reaching your audience with conversational language (prsa.org)
- the art of concise writing: samuel menashe (orgtheory.wordpress.com)