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fhood
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Southern California
86 Posts

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I'm very disappointed with the mentalist effect called "The Right Write" from Elmwood Magic. Normally, Elmwood's site is top-quality -- I've ordered from them many times. However, this product is the pits! The ad copy says that by using these 3 special Bic pens, one will be able to tell which of 3 spectators wrote what using each of the 3 pens (each spectator gets one of the 3 pens to use). I was under the impression that it would be possible to have the 3 spectators answer a series of four or five questions with each one- or two-word answer on a separate slip of paper. Then the slips would be mixed together and I would proceed to read each slip and discern who wrote what. However, that IS NOT the case with this item. The effect requires the performer using and handling the pens after the spectators have written their responses, and at that rate the performer can only have one thing written by each spectator because the spectators' reponses are folded up and clipped to their pen. And the gimmick relies on one of our 5 senses (you can exclude sight and touch which would've been the easiest and least conspicuous -- hope this doesn't give it away!)

All in all, the ad copy was sort of misleading. I wish there was a way sometimes to find out how an effect is accomplished before shelling out the bucks, and then finding out it's a cheesy concept that's rather limited in its use.

Oh well. Least I've done my part (again) to stimulate the national economy!!!

Frank
joseph
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Eternal Order
Please ignore my
17103 Posts

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Frank
It is worth an email to Elmwood (a great site)to at least explain this to them, even tho you probably won't get a refund, etc. I had this happen with the effect, Xerox Money, where a store ad explained everything except that it needed a Himber type wallet($35) to perform it. I didn't email that store, and I should have. I think even tho the magic store didn't write the ad in this case, it should be brought to their attention, so there would be less angry or dissatisfied customers like us, and probably many more. Smile
"Everything should be made as simple as possible, but no simpler." (Einstein)...
Paul Richards
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Frank:

As owner of Elmwood Magic, producers of the Right Write I thought I should make a few comments here. I’m not sure what was misleading about the ad copy? As you say in your post:

“The ad copy says that by using these 3 special Bic pens, one will be able to tell which of 3 spectators wrote what using each of the 3 pens (each spectator gets one of the 3 pens to use).”

This is true. It is explained in the Mental Threesome effect in the instructions.

You also say:

“I was under the impression that it would be possible to have the 3 spectators answer a series of four or five questions with each one- or two-word answer on a separate slip of paper. Then the slips would be mixed together and I would proceed to read each slip and discern who wrote what. However, that IS NOT the case with this item.“

While we do not have this exact effect explained in the instructions, nor do we say you can do it in the ad. I don’t see why you couldn’t perform this effect with the pens, as they do directly connect each user to their particular piece of paper. You would simply need to have each person write their multiple answers on one small sheet per participant.

I would also add this…We (Elmwood Magic) are always willing to help our customers as much as possible when it comes to making a purchase. I believe anyone who has dealt with us on a regular basis will attest to that. We do make it a rule not to arbitrarily expose methods…but in many cases when a clearly knowledgably customer asks direct questions about method, we will give as much information as they need. Unfortunately, if a customer makes purchasing decisions based on impressions and assumptions about a product, INSTEAD of asking questions…you may walk away unhappy.

Finally, if you are unhappy with a product we manufacture, tell US. I have ALWAYS stood behind the items I manufacture. I will gladly offer you a full refund on the item or shop credit, which ever you prefer. Thanks for your time and patronage!

Sincerely,
Paul Richards
Elmwood Magic

PS…I have been lurking in the Magic Café for some time…at the very least this complaint motivated me to become a registered user! I think Steve Brooks has given us all a really wonderful forum here!
fhood
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Southern California
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Paul,

Thanks for responding. Let me explain a little bit further why the effect "The Right Write" is misleading in how it's advertised.

Nowhere in the ad copy does it state that the performer will have to pick up and use the pens to determine which spectator used and wrote with each of the 3 pens. I was under the impression from the ad copy that once the 3 spectators wrote down their responses on slips of paper, the Bic pens could be discarded or put away and not be needed again. I figured that the performer would be able to discern who had written what by looking at the ink perhaps or utilizing some other clever and devious method. The method that IS required (and not mentioned at all in the ad copy) involves the performer having to pick up each pen with the spectator's response folded and clipped under the cap. Without giving away the effect, I'll just say that the manuever the performer has to do in order to determine who used each pen is somewhat obvious and cumbersome. It only allows for a one-chance to get it right, and if the performer would need to do it again due to sudden background noise, etc., it would appear so obvious.

To be fair, the ad copy should've stated that the spectators will write down their response on a slip of paper and then will fold that paper up and clip it under the pen's cap. Then the ad copy should've stated that the performer will pick up each pen with the clipped paper and, utilizing a manuever, will be able to discern who used that pen to write the reponse clipped to it.

Had that been the case, I would not have bought the trick in the first place. Like I said earlier, the ad gave the impression that the pens would no longer be needed or used once they were used by the spectators.

Oh well. Thank you for offering to give me credit or an exchange, but I'll keep the pens. They were only around $20 -- isn't like I just spent $75 or $100+ on something. And you know what? I'll probably order from your site again in the future, but I will be MUCH more careful. And I'll have an even stronger clutch on my wallet than before.
Andy Leviss
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Inner circle
NYC
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Frank,
While I can understand your unhappiness with the effect for other reasons, I have to disagree with your comment that, "the maneuver the performer has to do in order to determine who used each pen is somewhat obvious and cumbersome."

With a small amount of practice, as explained in the instructions, it's covered in a perfectly natural action that makes perfect sense in the context of the effect. In performances for lay audiences, it completely flies by unnoticed, because there's no reason for suspicion at that moment.

Furthermore, when I used to frequently demo this item at magic conventions, magicians would watch the effect multiple times, burning me the entire time, and still never notice a thing out of place. I used to offer a challenge to attendees that if they could discover the method, they'd win a free set. I only had to give a set away once, and that was to somebody who'd spent a good half hour throughout the day playing with the pens, and discovered it by handling them over and over again; he still had no clue from the performance, despite having watched it closely many times.

Again, if you don't like the effect, that's fine, I just don't want to let that particular inaccuracy go uncommented. There are environments it is great in, and environments it's not great in; there are people it's great for, and people it's not.

Along with Paul, I'm truly sorry that you felt deceived by the ad; I didn't write it, so I can't really speak for Paul on that, but I know neither of us intended for anybody to be deceived or misled by it.

Sincerely,
Andy Leviss
Note: I have PMs turned off; if you want to reach me, please e-mail [email]Andy.MagicCafe@DucksEcho.com[/email]!
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