Raising Your PAR

In order to start improving your PAR, you first need some information about the dynamics of time on stage as it applies achieving the PAR you desire when you perform.

Your rate of speech and PAR

    * The normal rate of speech for most people is about 150 words per minute (plus or minus 10 words per minute). That comes to 2.5 words spoken per second.
    * Each second of PAR you achieve effectively reduces approximately 2.5 words you can say in that minute. Ten seconds of PAR takes away 25 words. If your audience is laughing or applauding, you shouldn’t be talking.
    * To be highly effective on stage, you will need to get 4-6 solid laughs consistently each minute you perform as described in the Killer Stand-Up Comedy System (from Keep in mind that PAR will vary each minute you perform. PAR in the beginning of your act will not be as high as it will as your act gathers momentum.

To achieve an overall PAR of 25 during your act, regardless of how many minutes you perform, an average of 15 seconds of each minute must be filled with PAR. That also means you only have an average of 45 seconds each minute to set up and deliver punchlines.

In other words...

    * To achieve a PAR of 25, you will only be able to use about 112 words per minute (based on a speech rate of 150 words per minute).
    * To achieve a PAR of 33, you will only be able to use about 100 words per minute.
    * Headlining comedians consistently achieve PARs of 30 or more.

Audience size and PAR

The PAR you can generate is also directly affected by audience size. PAR duration (and intensity) will increase as the audience size increases. That means:

    * For smaller audiences, you will ultimately use more words each minute because the PAR will subside sooner each time you generate it.
    * For larger audiences, you will ultimately use fewer words because of the longer and more intense PAR you can generate from the larger audience dynamic.

You want to maintain your normal speech rate no matter how big or small the audience is. Otherwise you will set up an environment that is awkward for both you and your audience if you speak too fast or too slow.

If your audience is tired from laughing hard for an extended period of time, you can experience a decrease in PAR for several minutes. This is not because your material isn’t effective – it’s because your audience will need some recovery time before they can laugh hard again for an extended period of time. But you should look very closely at any minute of your act that has a very low or no PAR. Every minute of your act should contain more than just a few seconds of PAR no matter what part of your act you are delivering.

There are also other audience and environmental factors that can affect your PAR that are covered in detail in the Killer Stand-Up Comedy System [oook... we know what they're sellling now...].

Writing versus speaking

Most comedians use the term “writing” comedy material. However, stand-up comedy really involves speaking naturally to an audience and getting PAR as a result of what is said.

Using words written on paper solely as a means to develop high-level PAR is difficult at best because:

    * We write differently than we speak.

      Because words on paper are one dimensional, MANY more words and sentences are needed to paint a picture in the mind of the reader.

      Audiences don’t read a performer's act. They experience it in a multidimensional way. The performer uses body language, voice inflection, and tone (in addition to words) to communicate ideas and paint a picture in the mind of the audience.

      Words only amount to about 7-10% of spoken communication. Words amount to 100% of written communication that is intended for a reader – not an audience that is waiting to laugh. Many more words are required to communicate in writing than in speaking. Such is the case with an act that is strictly written and not designed to be spoken.

      This is one of the reasons why so many comedy performers struggle to get the PAR they desire. They write an act on paper using the writing skills taught in school. Then they try to say the all the words necessary from a “writing” perspective on the stage, which actually involves “speaking” where far fewer words are needed.

      Ultimately, the result is that the performer uses too many words to get to the punchlines. The more words spoken by the performer means the lower the PAR score they can achieve during their time on stage. It’s as simple as that.

    * What is funny written on paper is not necessarily funny when spoken on stage.What is funny on stage is not necessarily funny on paper.


      Again, communicating with the written word for a reader is different than communicating with the spoken word for an audience. Stand-up comedy that is “written” on paper often will not “read” funny because it is lacking the body language, voice inflection, and tone to deliver the message.

      Sentences that are funny when you read them usually require many more words to make up for the missing body language, voice inflection, and tone that comes with spoken communication.

How to increase your PAR

1. Record your act each time you perform using an audio or video recorder for evaluation after the show.

2. Evaluate each performance using Comedy Evaluator Pro. This will allow you to:
    * Determine your baseline PAR (for your total act or for individual bits).
    * Objectively identify material strengths and weaknesses for focused improvement based on PAR.
    * Monitor your progress as you make adjustments to your act to improve your PAR.

3. Remove redundant sentences and words from your material. Realize that your delivery (a combination of words, body language, and voice inflection) should take the place of the use of words alone to convey your material to an audience. Use Comedy Evaluator Pro to determine which minutes of your act contain too many words and not enough PAR.

      Also, excessive use of the same words or profanity over and over again will effectively reduce the PAR you are trying to achieve.

4. Do not hang onto material that will NEVER give you the PAR results you want. Poorly constructed comedy material will not get better with more performances or by continuing to measure the absence of PAR. At best, you can expect hit-and-miss results that are unpredictable. Use your PAR evaluation results to keep, revise, or eliminate material from your act.

5. Reduce the number of set-up lines, and increase the number of effective punchlines.

For more detailed information on how to raise your PAR, please refer to the Killer Stand-up Comedy System [yes yes... - we get the subliminal message... *hint, *hint!] (from

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