About the book - 2017 Update
This book shares fourteen years experience of producing shows at the Fringe for the price of two café latte and a muffin, without the social awkwardness of having to sit with the author in a coffee shop. This guide is aimed at performers interested in producing their first shows at the Edinburgh Fringe. Highlighting the author’s personal experiences of half-full houses, flat mates gone bad, hostel horror stories, campsite calamities, and general comedy cock-ups.
Although the author’s background is in producing and performing stand-up comedy, the principles of venue hire, promotion and publicity are the same for shows of other genres, such as sketch comedy, cabaret and theatre shows, as are the problems of managing large groups of performers.
The section on how to write shows details the author’s approach to writing his shows as opposed to being a general how to write comedy guide.
Unofficial about the book
As well as the usual advice on booking venues and ordering flyers, what I’ve tried to do is give my personal experiences of the Fringe, so for most of the pieces of advice there is a story about how I ended up doing stuff that way.
The final section of the book is a collection of first-hand war stories from the Fringe which most of the people who have read them have laughed at. There are a couple of shall we say incidents involving assaults with deadly weapons, mental break downs, general flat mate gone bad stories and heart attacks which don’t generally raise a laugh but they all happened and made the experiences much more interesting. I’ve used pseudonyms in some cases or omitted names entirely because you might well have been gigging with the people involved recently.
I’ve also included my approach to writing two shows I did at the Fringe to give you an idea of working practices and how I put shows together.
Hopefully the reader will be able to take something away from my experiences.
The book will hopefully be updated as I go along. If you bought it – and I’m pleased to say that it is off the grid with sales, then do say hello. Both the Kindle and on-demand printed version have an address in them which lists where you can find the updates on-line, It seems a bit unfair you having to pay for small updates.
Quotes about this book
"If you're a young comedian starting out I would urge you to read this book instead of going to Edinburgh."Ian Cognito
"Ian's book helped me bring my show from NYC to Edinburgh. It helped me write it, market it, produce it and sell it. Most of all, it helped me have fun with it. Ian knows his stuff." - Peter Michael Marino, New York (formerly of Off-Broadway smash 'STOMP' "This is the complete guide. Anybody thinking of taking a show to the Fringe needs this book!" David Crawford, Screen and Stage Actor featured in George Romero's 'Dawn of the Dead' "Essential for anyone going to the Fringe. It's got everything you need to know but might never think of. The ultimate guide - and lots of great anecdotes.” - John Fleming, Organiser Annual Malcolm Hardee Comedy Awards “I have never had any aspiration to perform at The Fringe, but I found I could hardly put down this book such was the interest it evoked in me, so I guess if I was a person who did want to experience the phenomena then this should be a must read.” - One4Review.co.uk "Even those that have already been performing at the Fringe for a few years are still likely to take something new away the book."British Comedy Guide