One of strangest questions you get asked as a stand-up comedian is: “Do you write your own material?” Well, of course. Unless you are someone who needs to fill more time than any one person can write for, the burden is on you. You need to have enough material to fill time you are hired for. There are many things you can do “on the fly” while performing, like crowd work, but as a rule you need to have enough material prepared for your allotted time.
Jokes however are often bought and sold, and sometimes just given between comedians all the time.
As a joke writer I have sold material to Jay Leno, Dennis Miller, JimmyTingle, Rich Ceisler, and Bucky Lewis, but I in no way claim to have written their acts. That is not how it works. They are all gifted comics and great writers, but sometimes you will write a joke that best suits someone else, and often they buy that material.
I was the head staff writer for www.drunkenfan.com. A web site dedicated to sports related humor owned and operated by comedian Jimmy Dunn. Although I am no longer working on the site, Jimmy has taken it to the next level and made it funnier than ever.
Writer Tom Stern hired me to contribute to his book: “CEO Dad: How to Avoid Getting Fired by Your Family.” He didn’t list me in the acknowledgments or credits, but the checks cleared.
Finally, I started writing publishing “The Elwell Report,” in 1997. A 2,000 word monthly newsletter, it was an innovative marketing tool during my years as a full time stand-up comedian. Reviewed by the Boston Globe on 1999 as “…sharp a and smart political and social observations…,” it helped set me apart from many other comics.
I am currently writing children’s books for All MIghty Productions / Beantown Pals. As well as my first novel, “Project Hidden Dagger.”