So, what can we expect from this year from "The Trouble With Being Des"?
It's the most personal show I've ever done. So I'll probably learn a lot more about myself and/or have some sort of breakdown.
How much of it is written?
I've done all the set ups. Just the punchlines to go now.
Do you enjoy previews?
I used to get really stressed about them but now I get quite excited about breaking in a new show.
When was your 1st Edinburgh festival?
2000. That was a quick 14 years.
Why did you come?
I was taking part in the big open mic competition, So You Think You're Funny. Plus I live in Glasgow so it would be rude not to pop along the motorway and see what all the fuss is about.
What did you expect?
To learn a lot and hopefully hold my own in front of a festival crowd.
How did the reality differ from your expectations?
I didn't realise how full on the fringe really is. Exciting, intimidating and arousing at the same time.
What is the best thing about the festival?
You always come out of it a stronger comedian and it's brilliant to build an audience who choose to come and see you specifically. Also great to see hang out with your mates and go to see lots of other shows.
What is the worst thing about the festival?
It can be a long old slog. I also do a breakfast radio show every morning so my body clock takes a hammering over the month.
What has changed over the years?
A/ For the better – The development of the free fringe. Better value for audience and performers.
B/ For the worst – A lot more shows now so it's harder to get noticed.
Roughly how many shows do you see each festival?
As many as I can. At least a dozen.
What has been your favourite Edinburgh show to watch?
I saw the legendary Late n Live at the old Gilded Balloon almost every night in 2001. That was the final year it was held there and it was pretty special.
Who is your favourite overall performer (s)?
A tie between Daniel Kitson and Tommy Tiernan.
What is your favourite venue?
The Stand. A brilliant venue all year round and is always buzzing at festival time.
What is your favourite place to eat/drink?
Italian restaurant Ciao Roma, on South Bridge. I go there every year, it's become a bit of a tradition.
What are you most looking forward to in Edinburgh this year?
Doing my new show, a panda being born at the zoo and the new trams being up and running.
How do you keep sane throughout a month of mayhem?
I stay in Glasgow. It means I can escape the madness and sleep in my own bed.
Des, it is easier being a Scottish performer at Edinburgh in front of a local audience?
The festival has such an international audience it's pretty much the same for everyone.
As a Scotsman what do you think about comedians from all over the world "invading your patch"?
Bring it on! It's great having them here. The Scots performers are well outnumbered though. It's pretty cool being a novelty act in your own back yard.
Should the impending Independence vote be a major part of this year's festival?
It's up to each performer and whether they care about it. The key thing is trying to find something new to say about it.
You can catch Des Clarke at The Assembly Rooms, George Street at 7:30pm daily (not 11th)
Preview – 30th July @ £9 / £8
1st-10th August, 12th-24th August @ £10 / £9
TICKETS: 0844 693 3008/ www.arfringe.com
Image: Sandra Keddie (2014)