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Episode

87

LYNN HARRIS IS BRINGING THE POWER OF COMEDY
TO WOMEN AND NON-BINARY PEOPLE

Lynn Harris is the CEO and founder of GOLD Comedy — the online comedy world for young women and non-binary folks who want to nerd out about comedy together. Lynn is also a creative partner to select brands, organizations and individuals, blending her experience in writing, communications, advocacy and entertainment to create strategic content that brings maximum fun to serious issues, for maximum impact.

IN THIS EPISODE

 

[00:42] What she’s most passionate about

 

[01:08] Comedy as power.

 

[03:53] Her childhood and when she knew she was funny

 

[05:09] On humor always being a part of your household

 

[05:41] On what sparked her interest in comedy and pursuing a career in it

 

[10:17] On going to college

 

[13:54] Her work as a journalist

 

[22:02] Co-creating Breakup Girl

 

[27:01] Starting Gold Comedy

 

[33:33] How to get involved with Gold Comedy

FULL TRANSCRIPT

 

Passionistas: Hi, and welcome to the Passionistas Project podcast, where we talk with women who are following their passions to inspire you to do the same. We're Amy and Nancy Harrington. And today we're talking with Lynn Harris, the CEO and founder of Gold Comedy, the online comedy worlds for young women and nonbinary folks who want to nerd out about comedy together, but is also a creative partner to select brands, organizations, and industry.

 

Blending her experience in writing communications, advocacy, and entertainment to create strategic content that brings maximum fun to serious issues for maximum impact. So please welcome to the show. Lynn Harris.

 

Lynn: Thank you.

 

Passionistas: What's the one thing you're most passionate about?

 

Lynn: Besides salt? I'm into salt and I'm into comedy is power. I'm passionate about a lot of things. I'm passionate about a lot of things. I think the most on-brand thing for me to say right now is comedy is power and comedy, as I'm passionate about comedy as power. And that's why it matters to me. Who's got the mic so to speak.

 

Passionistas: So what does that mean? What, what does comedy as power mean and why is it so important who has the mic?

 

Lynn: It's certainly at an individual level and to the cultural level. When you make people laugh, you make people live. And comedy really has been, as you know, at this sort of level of joke and at the level of industry and at the level of culture has really been defined by a kind of a small narrow group of people since the beginning, which is.

 

Because if you think about it, comedy, everyone thinks of comedy as this outsider, art that you get into comedy. Cause like the underdog and you're punching up at power. And why are white dudes running the whole thing? It makes no sense. I'm working to try to change that. How are you changing? The more women do comedy.

 

The more women define comedy. And that's true, not just for women, but for anybody who is not a straight white dude, many of whom are very funny, but I think that comedy will be funnier if it is defined by more types of voices. And if comedy is funnier, the world's a better place, honestly. Not just because laughter is the best medicine, which it's like the second best the COVID vaccine is the best, but also because comedy affirms connections.

 

When you laugh at a joke, that means you get the joke. And when you get the joke, that means you're in on something you like, you got the reference, you follow the comic on there. On their bait and switch. And a lot of people say that, you know, that's, that's the reason that comedy brings people together.

 

I'm not super convinced that it does because for better and for worse, I think it's sort of affirms who we are. Not that it doesn't have something to teach us, which I can circle back to, but I think, you know, comedy does affirm who we are and what we think is funny and, uh, what we think is important. And it can also change that to some degree it can, um, cause as comedy, you know, comedy kind of is sort of a fun house mirror for color.

 

And what we're allowed to laugh at can change for better and for worse, usually for better the arc of a let's see, how can I destroy that? Quote, the, you know, the arc of, of comedy? What is it? They have bends toward justice, right? As things become okay to say not okay to say, I think that's a, both a driver and a reflection of culture evolving, and that's why it's important to have. For a lot of us to be in charge of how that culture is evolving.

 

Passionistas: So let's take this back. Tell us a little bit about your childhood and when was the first time you remember that you were funny?

 

Lynn: Okay. This is so dumb, but I remember I was, I don't know, six, seven, I don't know. And my mother was kind of the kind of person who, like, if you sneezed, she would be like, what's wrong.

 

And I remember I was little five or six whenever and she said, Are you and she heard me cough, or like I said something, I don't know what, and she said, are you okay? You're a little horse. And I said, no, I'm not. I'm a little, child's obviously my parents thought that was side splitting and I got a big laugh and I was like, oh, I can let them getting last as fun.

 

That's the first one. I remember, by the way I moved away from puns. Another time they were building. They were building like a new bath or renovating our bathroom, the house I grew up in. And so there was like the frame for a closet, but there was nothing in it yet. It was just like, the space was defined.

 

And so I went into the closet and I said, look, it's a Lynn in closet. That's where it all began. Folks

 

Passionistas: Was humor, always a part of your household? Like where your parents funny?

 

Lynn: Yeah. My parents are funny, white parents in very different ways. And they also, but in very different ways, but they definitely both of their families or also super funny in very different ways. But at the end of the day, they really just, they just, they liked a good joke. They just really liked a good joke. A funny movie, funny TV show. It was, there was, it was definitely. But like a high-value currency.

 

Passionistas: What sparked your interest in comedy? And did you immediately want to pursue a career in it?

 

Lynn: Maybe the career part came when I was a little older and wanted to find ways to upset my parents as opposed to delight them. But I just, I always just gravitated toward, I never defined or pursued a career in a certain kind of comedy, a certain kind of. Like my, I did stand up for a long time, but my goal in doing standup was to do stand up.

So I didn't, which is nice because it kind of took the pressure off. I worked at it, but I didn't, I didn't attach not that this is a bad thing, by the way, this is a completely legitimate and great thing. My goal at the time, wasn't to like, get on a show or get to, or, you know, get an agent and move to LA or whatever it was.

 

So either it just means I had, I was just content or just that I was really not at all. I just really liked standup. I just like it as an art form. I just, I just like it. I never attached it to a next level dream. And then I just kind of stopped doing it when I just got tired when I just couldn't stay up past 10 anymore.

 

Basically I used to host shows that started at 10 and now I'm, I don't know. And I'm not a napper, so I don't, I just powered through, I just always gravitated toward basically like the wacky red head, not the lead, but the leads weird from. Like the Janeane Garofalo character in the truth about cats and dogs, not to directly compare myself to her majesty, but, um, Jimmy grew up a little, but, um, but that idea was always my jam, I think in high school.

I went to, I had a pretty good experience overall, but I went to a very preppy high school and I had very preppy. They were very nice, but very preppy classmates who were sort of all tall and live and blonde. Um, none of which describes me. And they could like burst into lacrosse the way that I like the fame kids burst into song.

 

And so it just wasn't, I wasn't like miserable. It just was not, that was the central culture and I was not in that. And so I think I defined myself against it even harder by being like the theater kid played the goofy roles. That was just, I think it, I probably would have been that anyway, but I think I probably kind of defined myself against the lacrosse team.

 

And now. When I was in high school, um, I went on a ski trip. It was like a Jewish youth group ski trip up to this winter Wonderland. Um, that was called every year. It's still going on, still going on. This is the eighties it's still happening. And we all went up to Manchester, New Hampshire to ski and do other stuff for the weekend.

 

And on the Saturday night, um, a bunch of dudes. Somehow got ahold of like some grapefruits and some borrowed nightgowns and went and did this completely made up impromptu improvise, drag skit in the social hall that brought the house down. And my, it was sloppy. It was made up. It was, there's nothing inherently funny about dudes dressing as women, but it brought the house down and I, my first thought was okay, what are the girls going to do?

 

And my next thought was. Because I knew even then that wit girls would not be received the same way we could not be equally slept. And, and bring the house down. Not because we're not funny, but because that's not the way people view women as funny, or, you know, it's just women don't have that kind of audience.

 

Um, we didn't in the end, we maybe more now, definitely not back then. And so, like I just kind of, you know, my my third thought, you know, my first thought was, what are we doing second thought? And my third thought was. And so we didn't, I didn't say con let's come on, Debbie and Jenny let's go. So I didn't say anything.

 

And, um, I don't regret that because I think my instincts were correct, but I was bummed out out of, I was bummed out about it for years and I, that really, really stuck with me. It really, really stuck with me. I had this real sense that. That was not cool and not fair. And, uh, something would have to change.

 

Uh, and so I I'm, who knows, but that may be, oh, and fun fact, one of those dudes may or may not have been Adam Sandler who was there. So, um, I, as a civilian, it was his high school. So I have Adam Sandler to thank for Gold Comedy. And what I'm doing now is.

 

Passionistas: So that was high school. Where did you go to college? And, and what did you decide to focus on when you were in college?

 

Lynn: I went to, as we all like to say, I went to college in new Haven and, and very much enjoyed the pizza by the way, in new Haven, as the New York pizza snob, I will say that navens even better. So yeah, I went to, so I went to college at Frank Pepys and.

I did there wasn't any, there was improv. This is, this is the eighties. There was improv. I believe there was maybe a sketch group, but there was no awareness. There's no standup. Like now I hear they have stand up groups and I'll get back to that, but I didn't do it. So I didn't do like straight up comedy in college.

 

What I did do was I was in an acapella singing group once again, continuing on my nerd track. And I became, I was, I am not a great singer. What came naturally for me was doing the, like the shtick in between the songs. And so I became the ringleader of those things and that's where I kind of scratch the scratch to the comedy itch.

 

What did you do after college? Did you pursue a career in comedy or did you do some. I was always drawn to being a writer. That was always just what I was. I never decided that was what I was going to do. I just kind of knew that I was going to do something where I had to write. And I just had this tractor beam of wanting to be some form of writer, not in the way that, like I thought about it.

 

I didn't think about it. I w I didn't like journal about what dreaming of being a writer. And I didn't watch movies about thoughtful writers that I didn't, I just do it. And so after college, so I did a lot of journalism in college. And after college, that's really where I focused in terms of it didn't occur to me.

 

I could really make money as doing comedy. I loved theater and I was always, I loved being on stage, but I knew that I didn't have the gumption or that Moxie or the, I just didn't think I wanted to go to LA and compete with anybody. In that world. And I just didn't see myself as really an actor. I saw myself as more of a I cam then, or just a wise ass than a serious actor.

So I didn't really occur to me to head to the head, to the, to Hollywood or even New York for a few years. I went back to Boston for a little while and then, but I started doing, I started taking stand-up classes when I lived in Boston, when I lived. Laundry distance from home. Basically, I actually sort of freelancing as a journalist and I took a stand up class and I also had a day job.

 

My dad is a retired MIT professor. He, my dad's actually a very famous phenologist, which means that about seven people know who he is and that he's a heartbeat away from Noam Chomsky, which made me very popular. And I did. I had an office job at MIT that I'm sure was pure nepotism. So I called myself the rejectionist.

 

So I sat at a desk and told students that they had the wrong forms. And, but then more and more as I was able to get paid more and more for journalism, I phased out. My night job became my day job. And then I also did, started doing standup in Boston and Cambridge.

 

Passionistas: Tell us about your work as a journalist. Because I, uh, we saw that you like wrote like the first national mainstream article about dating violence and what kind of, uh, topics were you writing about and what drew you to those topics?

 

Lynn: That is a true story about you. Remember, you know, Parade Magazine, they insert. Frankly, if you want to get an issue out there, I think it has the pattern or had I'm going to get this wrong, but either the first or first, second, or third largest circulation of anything.

 

And so I, I did make a choice back then based on two things, I always cared a lot about various social justice issues. Influenced by my parents, especially my mom. And especially I, I wound up carrying the most about gender, gender justice, and related, um, you know, feminist stuff back then, we were not as nuanced about what we meant by gender justice.

It was, it was much more narrow focus on, on women's rights and probably white women's rights. I'm sure. But, you know, I thank my mom for, you know, making, being a feminist, not rebellion. So I, I gravitated toward social issues. Social justice issues, especially I was always really interested in how pop culture reflects or shapes culture.

 

As before. When I was talking about comedy, I was, I've always been interested in that in any culture, in any forum when Ellen came out. And culture had led it to be okay for that to happen. But then when she did it, it also changed culture. Like it's back and forth. And I just cared about it mainly because I really love television.

 

And, and in all seriousness, I do think, I think it matters. And it was always, there was always some combination of what gets me out of bed in the morning is social justice. And what keeps me up at night is till. Burning the candle at both ends. And so at that somehow first, it just kind of happened. But then I evolved into making a real choice about choosing to write for the most mainstream possible publications about issues that would kind of push them a little bit, push things a little bit, maybe not push the publication, but push people a little bit.

And, um, and even if I had to do a little bit more, more like both sides or whatever, To appear balanced or whatever. And maybe I wouldn't write it quite the same way as aggressively as I would write it for, um, uh, you know, a real, like a lefty. We didn't have blogs then, but blog, I made the choice also financial, you know, because they paid more to, I'm not, I wasn't that noble to write for.

 

Um, I kind of got lucky with Parade, but, um, no. Okay. I worked hard on that, but I wound up gravitating toward women's magazines also, which were. Terrible in many ways, but way more feminist than people ever thought. I'm way more aware, like anyone who didn't think Cosmo was performance art and God, I just, nobody should have any, should waste any time being angry at Cosmo it's it was, I just don't.

 

I never understood that. And so I wrote a lot for Glamor and Glamor was way ahead of a lot of those. They went back and forth a little bit after. With Whitney, but under Ruth, they had a Glamor had this column about all the female senators, all of them, the definitive legions, a female senators that reported on exactly what they were doing.

 

Exactly what they were. And weren't doing for Glamour readers. You're not gonna find that elsewhere. Um, no one else has wrote about the women's senators. Nobody cared and. And so in Glamour, would you way back then would write about abortion and all those things. And sure. Their audience was huge and included people who were anti-abortion, but I, but then when I got to write about it, I wasn't preaching to the choir necessarily, and you can humanize the issue and you can really actually change hearts and minds a little.

 

And so I that's what I, that's what I gravitated toward. And I was able to eventually. I worked so hard at writing for so many different types of publications. I wrote for a sewing newsletter. I wrote for obviously Glamour tons of different publications each with their own style. And the most important thing I learned was aside from feeling that I was, in some cases, doing something important, the most important, important skill I learned was to be able to write in the publications voice and not be fancy about that. Cause I wasn't ready to express myself. I was running cause I liked writing and it was, I mean, I just, wasn't all precious about that. I, it was a fun game to be like, okay, how do I write about this thing in that voice? And how do I channel that voice? It's really, it's interesting. It's a project.

 

It's a puzzle. It's not. Like, that's what you do in your journey. For those of you watching the podcast, I'm miming, I'm listening to the podcast, I'm miming some sort of like, kind of BS self-expression, but like you wouldn't have to deliver a product and it's, it's fun only after you learn how to do that.

 

Do you really get to a place? I think where you then get you get assignments from people who are asking you to write in your voice. Um, so that eventually after I worked and worked and worked for years and years and wrote. Uh, probably thousands of articles. I can't even remember. Then I was able to do things like for Salon and other publications where they'd be like, no, please, you do you.

 

And, and, and really have my own voice. I had a bunch of different columns in my ear that were supposed to be Edward a column for the DailyToominNews. Like things that we're supposed to be sound like me, not sound like them, but that is not where you start. And, and, and, and it's, it's so much the better, you know, the better for it.

 

It's like TV, it's like TV. Our usual friend, Amy Toomin Strauss was, um, is teaching for Gold Comedy now. We were talking to her about what to teach and when, or what are the different things that she could teach. And, and, you know, I do sort of hear and feel out there that everyone's like, well, I've got a great idea for a show, um, because, because rightly things have been, so, um, the platforms have been so democratized now that like, sure you could do, you, you could write your, you know, put your show on YouTube and maybe.

 

You know, maybe it'll get picked up or maybe, you know, that it's not that that doesn't happen now, but Amy's point was. Yeah, but I don't want to teach how to write your own show. First. I want to teach how to write someone else's show and it's the same thing. Learning how it show you needing to be able to show a show runner that you understand, obviously the basics that apply anywhere and everywhere, but also how to write for that show, how to channel those characters, those voices, those situations.

 

How to replicate that world. And so it's definitely analog that I really learned in journalism. I've learning how to write the other stuff first. Then you get to do your own thing. It works the same way on stand up. I'm not that you should go around telling other people's jokes or writing other people's jokes for them.

 

It doesn't really start that way unless you're Ava on PACS, which we love. And she didn't start that way either. But anyway, 2, 0 1 almost comedians. I know. Or people who either teach or mentor comedians always say, find the comedians that you like and learn them, know them, live them, and even go ahead and do the exercise of writing jokes.

 

Like there's obviously you can't go and do that and get paid for that. Or, or, you know, there's a point past which that's stealing, but just that the imitation. The imitation and the practice and the imitation and the practice is really helpful. And it helps you learn how any joke works.

 

Passionistas: We're Amy and Nancy Harrington, and you're listening to the Passionistas Project Podcast and our interview with Lynn Harris.

 

If you're a young woman or identify as nonbinary and want to turn your sense of humor into your superpower, visit GoldComedy.com.

 

If you're enjoying this interview and would like to help us to continue creating inspiring content, please consider becoming a patron by visiting ThePassionistasProject.com/podcast and clicking on the Patron button.

Even $1 a month can help us continue our mission of inspiring women to follow their passions. Now here's more of our interview with Lynn.

 

So in 1997, you found your own voice and you created Breakup Girl.

 

Lynn: Co-created.

 

Passionistas: Co-created. Yes. So tell us about that character in the show and how it expanded as time and technology.

 

Lynn: I co-created a Breakup Girl with Chris Cobb. So, so in '97 it was much, much easier to get a book contract. You didn't have to already have a blue check mark. You didn't already have to have a sub stack or whatever, like you, if you had an, you really just had to have a good idea. Seriously. I had an idea about writing a humor book about surviving a breakup and.

 

I went to bat to have Chris who's a brilliant illustrator. And we had collaborated before I went to bat to have Chris have us be a package deal. It'd be the designer and illustrator of the book, which also would never happen now. So we actually, literally, we actually realized we were roommates in a different block and you were sitting there figuring out all the real estate and what we had written and what he had designed.

 

And we realized we had like a few more, like we had like. You know, 16 more pages to fill in. We were like, ah, and then Chris was like, you know, I was just kind of thinking that we, that, I don't know if there should be like a superhero character. And I was like, oh my God, we should've done that from the beginning.

 

And so we created this, it was originally Chris's idea. But, but from that moment, we collaborated and came up with the idea of this, the superhero who helps people with romantic emergencies. We have superheroes who can bend steel bars, but how about one that it can mend broken heart? And so that we invented this kind of classic, like kind of a winking version of a classic superhero who had like a utility Fanny pack.

 

And who's really, but actually really smart and thoughtful character who had her own problems, but was able to help others. And so we added her origin story and all this other stuff in the book and added her as this voice and presence in the book. And then the book did. Okay. But then people were like, what?

 

I liked that character. And so in actually that was in '91, whatever '96, I don't remember '96. And then in '97, Chris was like, there's this thing that mostly NASA uses, but it's called the worldwide web. And I think it would be super fun to make a page on the worldwide web about. And so we created a website in '97.

 

That was literally an overnight success because no one else was doing anything remotely like it. And we just did it. We did the thing that does not happen now, which is we built it and they came and it hasn't happened yet. But the advice column, I decided to write an advice column. It got super popular. I think it was, you know, Chris's artwork is amazing, but I do think that, um, and this goes back to the idea of the intersection of pop culture and social change, what we were doing that was different.

 

And this was intentional. We kind of wandered into this enterprise, but the part, once we kind of get our bearings, um, the part that was intentional was that it was not going to be a female superhero talking to women about related. Because that's stupid and it's reductive and in the world, at least of like binary, heterosexual people, half the people in relationships are dudes.

So like, why is it thought of as like this lady thing that's so stupid. And, and we kept coming up against that because then people would assume that because Breakup Girl was female, because we were talking about relationships that it was a site for women. And it never was never, not even, it never was. We just, we made it it's about relationships and we wanted to change.

 

This was, we were like intentional about this. We wanted to change the way people thought and talked about relationships. So from the very beginning, the letters that we would get online, we're not even close to all from women. So many from dudes. And we had no letters from people that we have different words for.

 

Now, people would say, do your breakup girl, I'm a secret. Cross-dresser my wife doesn't have. And all these things that we talk to gay people and straight people, a trans people at all these things that no one else was doing, not because we were like brilliant, but because we, there was intentional that we really did think it was dumb that, that only half the people in relationships were talking about relationships or had a place to talk about relationships.

 

I think that plus the combination of humor, she had a really specific style of nerdy, superhero comic book humor that people felt comfortable with. And was nice to everybody. It got really big. And then the property. Got we got acquired by Oxygen and, um, in a really kind of great deal because they hired us.

 

They didn't buy it away from us. They ha they bought us with it. So we got hired to create it for Oxygen on an even bigger platform. Um, and that all went straight to hell a while ago, awhile, awhile later, but that's a story for a less Jonty podcast, but, but out now we actually are. We're playing around with it with a new version.

 

A lot of the stuff that she talks and talked about is, is eternal. But a lot of it is like, we talked about like computer dating. Um, and so, you know, some of that stuff has to be updated.

 

Passionistas: You have so many things that we could talk to you about, but let's focus a little bit on Gold Comedy. When and why did you start.

 

Lynn: Well, that part goes kind of goes back to Adam Sandler and wanting to, and also having them stand up myself. And I didn't have a lot of people have a lot of women who worked a lot harder at it than I did and did a lot more of it than I did have much worse stories about, about everything from just garden variety, sexism to outright horrific.

 

And not just the harassment itself, but would it having a law? I didn't really get into the whole world where I, that many other women did, where you have to actually make choices about jobs that you don't take and jobs that aren't even offered to you because they're cause you don't, you can't work with that guy or because that guy already has a woman or whatever.

 

So even my mild experiences were exhausting and outrageous and. All paths lead to this idea of making sure that women, especially young women and anyone else outside the comedy norm, which is often a way to name norm had access to the fun of comedy and the power of comedy. And it matters. It matters because women are people and it matters because comedy is a job and it ma it matters because comedy is power.

 

I just had this idea of how much better would the world be if we had an even broader idea of who's funny or, or who makes us think, or who helps us process that, that day's crazy news. And I thought, what if I just start building the farm? And so now it's gone through various forms in reality, and in my mind, but now what we have is the only, and this was by the way, just, we, I was envisioning this online long before anyone knew about any kind of COVID or a pandemic, because part of the vision for me was, first of all, nobody wants to, I don't recommend starting a brick and mortar place in New York City because it's.

 

But also, I wanted to find the funny young people and not even young people who don't live in New York, Chicago, San Francisco, LA, Toronto, where can we find the Carrie Underwood of comedy? Let's like if they can Zoom in from Dakota and they're funny then. Great. So I always had this idea of creating an online school and community and online place of learning and social interaction, where, where you could find your comedy crew no matter where you live and get the learning and collaboration and interactivity interaction and helping each other out that I did get from my crew in New York and many people do, but it's hard to find.

 

And again, what if you don't live in New York or what if you're not old enough to go to club? We opened again, went through lots of different ideas and permutations, but we opened our current members member, only members only club last fall. And so we now have this amazing online platform, which is powered by a company called mighty networks.

 

Basically they built the bones of the app and we just bring our people in our stuff. And we have a place where. Women and young women and non binary folks come to, let's see Mondays, we have open mics with feedback. Like they're the nicest open mics in the world. Plus you get feedback from me and other and your peers Tuesdays and Thursdays usually are when we have our courses right now, we're in the middle of the standup course.

 

We just finished improv. We posted on storytelling and sketch, which yes, you can do all of this online. Wednesdays, every Wednesday we have a Q and A with a comedy pro or celebrity. Writers who have toilet in the trenches whose names you don't know, but who shows, you know, to, uh, Rachel Dratch and Bloom, Ashley Nicole Black from A Black Lady Sketch Show, like an amazing range of people.

 

And you just show up in the Zoom and ask them like you totally just fan girl out and ask them questions. We have monthly shows that are open to the public. We pay our own comics for. For performing because it's work and you want to set that tone set that precedent. We just did a pride show, which is amazing with Murray Hill and Sydney Washington.

 

And so we basically just create the experiences that, that, that young or new, or not even new medium. We have a lot of comedians in the gang who have been doing comedy for a little while, but still want to find the people in the place to really nerd out and really like level up as fast as they can. And we have folks.

 

I think our youngest is an eighth grade with a couple of eighth grade and then all the way up to people Myers. And then we just. Uh, a course that's outside the member's club. So like we had, so you get all that with a subscription, it's all inclusive with a subscription. Then we have a one-off course that we call gold label, which is being taught by your friend and mine, Amy Toomin Strauss, who is the one who wrote The One With the Embryos, um, on Friends.

 

And she's teaching in a three series on about TV writing, con TV, comedy writing, and that's open to people inside and outside of the. It's really the place. It's the place to find your way to level up your work and find your crew. And it's great if you, you know, there's a lot of like improv for T-Mobile.

 

And stuff like that, which is great. But we really present comedy as a path to comedy it's comedy for comedy. However, there are many people, we also attract a lot of people who may or may not want to be professional comedians in whatever capacity, standup writers, whatever, but who know that comedy skills are life skills and they like comedy.

 

So they're like, well, that's perfect. I can learn to be, I can use this thing. I love. To learn how to, you know, write better sink faster, listen, better, get out of my head. Um, stop self-editing react more quickly. Um, all those things are, things are things you can do. And, you know, find your voice, which is, which sounds abstract and woo, but it's a thing.

 

Um, understand your what's, your unique take on things. You can do all that. So we have a real mix of people. It's sort of varying levels of intensity around their comedy career goals, but there's room for everybody.

 

Passionistas: How does the average person get involved? How do people become a part.

 

Lynn: Funny, you should ask. Um, all you need to do is visit our website, which has a lot of free resources on it. Also, I believe that the, uh, irritating term for that is freemium. If lots of articles and, you know, useful, actionable snackable, actionable resources to, to help you just kind of learn. Basics of joke writing and you know how to make your PowerPoint funnier without being a group without being too much of a dork.

 

So there's just a ton of ton of free resources. And then if, um, if folks are interested in joining what we call the, the club, the Gold Comedy club, um, Click right through from our website to there and learn more about that, frankly, the price is amazing. Um, and frankly, it's going to go up. Um, so one of these days, so, so it's $299. 99 a year for all of that stuff.

 

Anything we do in the club, you get any course, um, any, all of our self-paced, we have a ton of one-off classes that are just an hour. With, you know, a writer from James Corden talking about topical jokes, you know, um, you could just nerd out without, and just inhale all of that stuff. You can take our, um, our lives, you know, live on Zoom classes, all those things.

 

So that's all with that one price. Um, so, and then we, we, we record and archive everything that we do. So you also have active. That's why eventually the price is going to go up because our, our resource libraries is getting bigger literally every week. So, um, it's really, really fun. And the. As much as I'm proud of all the resources and I'm happy to like drop all the names of the famous people who have, you know, who swing by and answer questions.

 

And I'm happy to talk about the quality of the, of the instruction and all that stuff. Really. The thing is the community, really the thing. And because you all these people who have literally never met, unless it's their friend that they brought in, um, are like this incredibly supportive. Like cheering section for each other and people will post like stuff they're working on and get feedback.

 

Um, people will come to other classes, final shows just to cheer the others on. Um, people really have there's. We have a lot of 1, 2, 3, few people who have now done open mikes for the first time, because they felt, you know, got those skills and the confidence from us. And, um, and then, and now like people are going now that we can do this.

 

People who live in the same city are like starting to go see the other people in your life. And it's a whole thing. So it's really, um, just it's that kind of, you know, safe, supportive ad-free, um, welcoming place that you can't, you can get. And, and most comedians say like the most important thing is to find your crews.

 

You can do that, but this is. This is not, instead of, if you start doing comedy in some city and you meet your friends, it's not instead of that, but this is, this one is going to be there for you wherever you are, um, and all the time and it's on your phone. Um, so, uh, yeah, it's really, that's the most moving thing that I've seen. It was my goal. So I'm not surprised, but I'm delighted that it really has turned out that way.

 

Passionistas: Listening to the Passionistas Project Podcast and our interview with Lynn Harris. If you're a young woman or identify as nonbinary and want to turn your sense of humor into your superpower, visit GoldComedy.com.

 

Please visit ThePassionistasProject.com to learn more about our podcast and subscription box filled with products made by women owned businesses and female artisans. To inspire you to follow your path. Use the code FALLMYSTERY to get a free mystery box with a one-year subscription. And be sure to subscribe to the Passionistas Project Podcast, so you don't miss any of our upcoming inspiring guests until next time.

 

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