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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Penny for your thoughts » » Do you ever stop collecting? (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Scott Burton
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My joy comes in seeing my routines get better with age. Just when I think I've got 'em just right after 5 or 10 years of doing them, a few more years pass by and the subtle improvements and comedy I've introduced make my show all that more special. I wonder how much better my routines will be years from now! Learning and introducing new effects seem so drab to me in comparison. I suppose I enjoy the performance work more than the nitty gritty of learning new effects. Of course, I say this with the luxury of having 2 commercial shows put together which is more than enough to support my career.

I do understand that it's a all-consuming hobby for some. I have a passion for running ultra-marathon races which can be seen as a bore and waste of money to others (although I do incorporate the stories into my work so there is business benefit). To each their own and I respect that.
harbour
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Agree with Max.
Acecardician
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YES TO BOOKS! You cannot have too many books. I buy books constantly. I collect books. I just bought 2 books last night I cannot wait to get.
Too many new and young magicians do not realize the value of books. Now, with one trick DVD's for 35-100, books are even more valuable. For $35-$100 you can get dozens to hundreds effects in a good book.
And a lot of the new stuff I see out is just variations of stuff in books. With a little imagination, you can create your own variations from effects in books and be unique. Plus they explain better and give you valuable insight you cannot find anywhere else. I also like books about past magicians. Those give you a ideas on how to be dramatic or funny and show different styles, and help you find your own style to perform successfully.

Good luck and take care!

ACE
John C
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How many of the effects in dozens of books can you really perform.
The ULTIMATE Routine Series: rebirth soon!
Acecardician
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Quote:
On 2013-04-28 18:41, John C wrote:
How many of the effects in dozens of books can you really perform.


Thanks for that question. It is really a very good one.
One of the oldest members of our local IBM ring used to end the monthly club newsletter with: "read or learn one new trick a day," or something close to that.
Books go far beyond teaching "tricks" or just doing the tricks. You learn Theory, Art, Practice, Presentation, History of magic, and lots more, which makes you a better magician. And Principles! It is the difference is watching a movie on TV or reading the book. You gain so much more Knowledge from reading. Knowledge is power. As a working magician, sometimes there are situations you need to handle, and books prepare you for that. Just knowing all the stuff from reading hundreds(not dozens)of books has helped me become a better magician. I know what to do in almost any situation that may arise. I can also pick up almost any common object off a dinner table or bar and do a trick with it (IF I WANT)
I see a lot of the "top name inventors" re-creating tricks that are in very old books. Or taking what is in an old book, making the gimmick and doing a DVD on it and selling it. I could have done this a long time ago, but I am not a "big name inventor" and I did not think it was anything new, just a new presentation. I thought it was not original to take something already in print and redo it on video. Apparently it is... Most of the guys who go on the lecture tours today are doing variations of stuff from books. Most of the instant download of tricks I see are in books. The good thing about the new guys doing this is you get to see the new presentations and learn about the specifics magicians experiences.

Here is a quote from the latest book I read, I think it is worth sharing: "Only once in 50 years or so is a truly new trick invented. Most of what we do is as old as Egypt. But we make our tricks appear new by changing them around and adding new wonders to the old." According to this book I read, this was said by Carl Herrmann to his younger brother Alexander in the 1800's after they lost most of their equipment, and had to come up with a new show with what was left. They went on to become the Greatest magicians of their time.
I also read stories about modern magicians having their luggage lost on the way to Corporate shows. With the knowledge from books, they were able to get stuff from the local stores and go on with the show(THE SHOW MUST GO ON!) Give me about 20 minutes in Walmart(not counting time standing in line) and a credit card, and I can get enough stuff to make an entertaining corporate stage or close up or even a kid show.

I vote for magic Books. I challenge everyone, every time you make an order for or buy any magic anytime, add a new magic book to your order each time. I do.
I am sure there are lists of recommended reading elsewhere in this forum. Do a little research.

ACE
Acecardician
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Since my last post I found this list of books, it is a very good list:
http://www.penguinmagic.com/mhpt.php
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