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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Penny for your thoughts » » People Writing on Billets (4 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

ryanshaw9572
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I’ve noticed that when mentalists perform routines that require people to write on billets, they don’t provide any hard surface to write on. Do the people doing the writing end up finding something to write on, like their wallet, phone or something else? If not, when they try to write in their hand, is it messier, making it harder for you to do your job? Has anyone ever asked you for a surface to write on? I’m planning on workshopping Bob Cassidy’s Name and Place on friends/family, and then at open mics and other venues where I can find free stage time that will both challenge me and set me up for success. As I rehearse, these are some of the questions running through my head. I appreciate any help you can provide!

Best,

Ryan Shaw
Michael Zarek
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I use stiff cards and a marker.

Super easy to just write in your hand
Reader discretion is advised.
ryanshaw9572
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Quote:
On Jun 13, 2021, Michael Zarek wrote:
I use stiff cards and a marker.

Super easy to just write in your hand


Yes, that’s definitely an option. Thanks for your reply Michael!

One thing I like about using index papers cut in half and golf pencils is how cheap they are and that it seems (at least for me) that the thinner paper helps for things like Acidus and CTs. May just be personal preference. I am definitely curious how those who do use index cards go about handling what I mentioned above. Thanks again!
cuchullain
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I bought my first billets off Richard Osterlind's site. They were just stiff enough where a 2B pencil would leave a readable mark, or non-permanent markers would not bleed through. I was then able to be on the lookout for local alternatives
ryanshaw9572
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I tried writing on an index card that was cut in half and actually found it to be incredibly easy to hold it up against my own fingers. For some reason I was imagining it to be much more difficult. I guess I should’ve done that BEFORE posting a whole new thread about it!
otreboR
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If magicshops started selling billets, it would make our quests much easier. Smile
In the descriptions they could write about the easy tearing, folding, see through and writing on the billet.

I am still waiting for this day to come.
John C
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I THINK therefore I wrote
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Quote:
On Jun 14, 2021, otreboR wrote:
If magicshops started selling billets, it would make our quests much easier. Smile
In the descriptions they could write about the easy tearing, folding, see through and writing on the billet.

I am still waiting for this day to come.


That one magic shop, I think it's called Amazon, they sell that stuff.
The ULTIMATE Routine Series: rebirth soon!
KungFuMagic
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Adding bullets to a shop's existing magic offerings is probably cost prohibitive. Competing with pricing by Places like the Big Auction sites and Online Merchandise Juggernaut will likely be impossible in terms of profitability. Unless there is a product with some specialized attribute/quality. Just cannot make money on packs of little pieces of paper.
Nick Sasso
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bevbevvybev
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If you’ve seen video of Bob C doing any of his stuff you’ll be pleased to see that no one appears to have any problem writing on bits of index card with a golf pencil
ryanshaw9572
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Quote:
On Jun 17, 2021, bevbevvybev wrote:
If you’ve seen video of Bob C doing any of his stuff you’ll be pleased to see that no one appears to have any problem writing on bits of index card with a golf pencil

Yes I noticed that too! As I watched I wondered whether people in the audience were finding something on their own to write with or if they were just writing right on the card. It turns out it’s easy enough to just write right on the card. RIP Bob Cassidy, what a legend!
CurtWaltermire
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You simply must know your performing environment and exactly how the billets need to be handled and what type of routine you're performing. There's no "one-size-fits-all" or even "most." The vast majority of places I perform involve audience members seated at tables (comedy clubs, corporate banquets, cabarets, etc), so it's hardly ever an issue for me. In some places, lighting is also an issue for the audience (like comedy clubs) being able to see and write. Impromptu effects in everyday scenarios with billets are a different animal, but you can learn to control it as much as possible with a little forethought and planning. Lots of stuff out there written on this very subject. If you don't already have it, try to get a hold of Richard Busch's book "Peek Performances." Excellent stuff on billet work.
Ever Elizalde
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I have a small table on stage that they can use as a surface to write on if they want but most of my volunteers just do it in their hands. I too use index cards cut in half as my teacher Bob Cassidy.
NEKKODDD
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Yes, use a card stock that is stiff to be able to write in your hand.
kleqy
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If the paper is folded into quarters and then opened up in order for the spectator to write on,it might not be that easy to write in the hand.

By the way I use business cards that have a black side on the front with all my info on it and another blank side on the front to write.This way the writing will not show from the other side because my card is stiff and black.
Andrew Aspen
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I use cut index cards and pens and have never had an issue with spectators needing a surface to write on. Most do it on their hand without a issue but if someone seems like they are looking for a set face I’ll ha d them a deck of cards to write on. If you are in an open mic situation people can write on the nearest table if it is an issue.
252life
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There's almost always a surface to write on just beware of wet and textured areas.
Look for all the world like you're counting the brain cells in his cranium.

-Theodore Annemann
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