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Archive for December, 2015

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What 2015 has seen

As it is the final day of 2015, I will now recap what has taken place in the past 12 months.

I have chalked-up the lowest amount of gigs since I moved to London six years ago, with a measly 105. I’ve previously averaged about another 25 in previous years.

This is for a number of reasons, firstly is that a few of the gigs I relied on previously either stopped this year or were put on hiatus for large periods. I’ve also had much less time to book gigs as since I got promoted in the day job, I have a lot more work to get on with.

I’ve also not been writing anywhere near as much material this year. I’m not entirely sure why this was, partly because the gigs I’d use for trialling this were not available, but it is something I’m planning on rectifying next year. As a result, very little of what I have written has made it into my club sets.

But the one obvious thing is that stands out for 2015 is my Fringe run. I don’t know if you were aware of this, but it actually went pretty well. In fact, I was utterly unprepared for how well it did go. At the start of the year, if I’d been offered the chance to have the Fringe I did in exchange for doing the lowest amount of gigs and new material written then I would have taken it. Actually, I may have refused the deal just to be typically difficult.

Nevertheless, I do feel it has made me complacent and it was difficult going back to the scarce audience surroundings of the London open mic circuit after performing to full rooms throughout August. I can’t really complain though.

Within the next month, I will have moved to Manchester and will be a regular driving comic for the first time ever. I don’t know what the next 12 months will bring, but I am looking forward to them.

Best film: Star Wars – The Force Awakens. I went to the midnight screening and had to be in work for 9am the next day. I was so relieved to discover that the film was good. It wasn’t perfect, but it was hugely enjoyable and got me even more excited about seeing what happens next in the series.  Since Walthamstow has had a cinema, I’ve seen far more films than possibly since university.

Best album: The Darkness – Last of Our Kind. No surprises here. I didn’t actually buy that many new albums this year, so it was a toss-up between this one and The Force Awakens soundtrack.

Low of 2015: The Tories getting a majority at the general election. Still, at least David Cameron will be remembered as the prime minister who put his cock in a dead pig.

High of 2015: Edinburgh Fringe.

What I’m looking forward to most about 2016: escaping London and getting my own flat.

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Manchester calling

It has been some time since I’ve written anything on here and I have some news: I am moving to Manchester in January after six years in London.

When I moved to London at the start of 2010, I knew it would never be permanent; but it has been much longer than I originally planned. Every time I kept trying to leave, something kept making me stay.

I’ve wanted to move up north for some time, as it’s a lot easier to progress to paid gigs. In London, you can do multiple try-out spots at the bigger clubs. Even if you do well every time, there’s no guarantee you’ll end up getting booked for a paid spot. This is partly because there are so many people pushing for a finite amount of gigs.

I’d been looking at the possibility of finally making the break this year, even setting aside five days holiday after Edinburgh specifically for job interviews. Then it turned out that my current company has bought an office in Manchester and wanted to send me there anyway. Thus my ridiculous run of luck in 2015 extends further. I have since ended up using the five days for my first holiday since 2007, with a week in Malta.

Another positive is that my six years of house shares is coming to an end, with some downright bizarre and uncomfortable experiences. Although my current place is my favourite house-share I’ve had, I‘ll be able to rent my own flat in Manchester for what I pay at the moment to live with four other people. I’ve also worked out I’ll be saving around £150 a month on travel, as a monthly pass in Manchester costs the same as a week’s in London. I also plan on buying a car to drive around to more gigs.

I barely know anyone in Manchester and have never been there, which is in line with being a Man United fan when I was growing up. Everyone I’ve spoken to has been hugely positive about the place, and I have some flat viewings booked for next week. This is the start of an exciting new adventure.