My son wants to do stand up, so we’ve been going to comedy clubs. Almost every rule you wrote is stuff we’ve been thinking about.
We were talking about a kind of comedy set tree, where the feedback from the crowd will lead you to a completely different story line of maybe a minute or two of material.
A couple of other observations:
The thing that separates average comedians from good comedians is the ability to be funny on multiple levels. One comedian we saw combined witty jokes with different voices and some subtle body language. Another one was really good at riffing with the audience and tying his story back into the responses he got from the spectators. A third was incredible doing sound effects with the mic, while being able to tell jokes structured into his story.
The thing that separates good from great comedians is the ability to tell a cohesive story that calls back to the original premise throughout the set, while challenging the audience’s perceptions of current issues. Dave Chappelle is one of the best in the world doing that.