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Loyal user
The Netherlands
219 Posts

Profile of Tabasco
Born to perform is nice, but can be a bit frustrating for a beginner. Start looking on the web there are many tricks to find, and then decide what flavour you like. Then you have a good starting point
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466 Posts

Profile of acmp
Penguin Magic is a good site for seeing tricks before you buy them, though their range is not exhaustive. They do have download videos of the effects so you can see it before you buy. I find this very useful.

Penguin do get a slating in this forum though. Although the 1 purchase I've made from them was delt with OK.

Have a surf over to them and look around a bit. or (depends where you are)

"Well if I had one wish in this god forsaken world, kids
It'd be that your mistakes would be your own"
Kent Wong
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Inner circle
Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
2458 Posts

Profile of Kent Wong
I'm glad that you took our joking around with a grain of salt. I've always found the members here extremely helpful but, as shown, we do try to respect the ethical guidelines of the Craft.

Now, for a serious answer to your question. Getting started in magic is a completely overwhelming process to say the least. If you are looking for a good resource to learn some fundamentals, then I would certainly recommend Mark Wilson's book. It canvasses almost every area of magic and is a very comprehensive guide to learning tricks and basic sleight of hand.

I have also heard that Magic for Dummies is a pretty good book for beginners. I haven't read it myself, but I know several magicians who have benefited from it.

As you progress, you may also want to pick up additional books like:

1. Royal Road to Card Magic
2. Modern Coin Magic

But that's only if you are interested in these areas of magic. The one thing that I would highly encourage though, is not to go out and buy a ton of tricks all at once. Instead, learn 3 or 4 tricks extremely well. Once you have perfected the technique, then go on to perfect the presentation. This can be the really hard part.

Too often, I have seen new magicians buy magic like it's going out of style. Then before you know it, they have a closet full of junk and no presentational skills. You have to remember that every magician, above and beyond anything else, is an entertainer. Without the presentational skills, you're just wasting peoples time.

So, I would also highly encourage that you pick up one or more of the following books to keep you focused on the showmanship side of the craft:

1. Magic and Showmanship (Fitzke)
2. Showmanship for Magicians (Henning Nelms)
3. Maximum Entertainment (Ken Weber)
4. Stronger Magic (Darwin Ortiz)

Of all these books, Webers is the easiest to read, but eventually, they should all find a place in your library. I can't recall how many times I have read and re-read these books over the years.

Hope that helps.
"Believing is Seeing"
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Profile of operator_error
Hey K, just wanted to let you know that you and I are in the same boat...but I just picked Mark Wilsons book up and its been an AMAZING help. It is a bit overwhelming, what with all of the information it covers, but I was doing some sleights and had a couple of card tricks down in the first few hours.

I got my copy from Amazon for about 14 bucks. Good Luck!
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