Open Mic Advice

Hey y’all!

We know that performing your work outloud, in front of an audience of people you may not know, is probably one of the scariest things ever. Even scarier than clowns and boogey men. As a writer, it is important for you to get your stories out into the world and receive feedback. What you have to say is important! I have found that if you talk people will listen!

Below is a small list of things to help out in an open mic situation!

1. Choose your piece early! This will ensure you have time to do step number two!

2. Practice! Practice! Practicing is so important! It will help with nerves because you will feel prepared and it will also help prevent stuttering and tripping over words.

3. Understand that the audience understands. People attend an open mic knowing that it is an open mic. We expect nerves (its scary) and we expect things to not necessarily go as planned. The audience is not expecting perfection, so you shouldn’t either!

4. Support other performers. This is a literary community! We support and encourage one another, but that goes both ways!

5. Invite your supporters. Never go into this alone! It can be intimidating and although it is a place to mingle and meet others in your craft, it’s not the same as having people rooting for you at the start.

There are so many other things you can do to prepare for an open mic event. What are some other strategies y’all use?

Published by


The literary journal of the University of Illinois at Springfield.

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