Odds of Hanging On
You're only as good as your last hit. So they'd better all be hits. All of them.
There are many factors that go into that glowing New York Times review. Sometimes the critic is cranky, sometimes he's overly gassy during the show. Sometimes it's both.
You've got to have some thick skin, incredible luck, and a touch of insanity to hang in there, but as long as you can get a bunch of performers to listen to you while they pretend to be somebody else, you'll be golden.