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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Time after time » » Do you keep a notebook? (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Gary Kruse
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Colorado Springs
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Life was simple (but boring) when I did a certain routine with 5-6 known card tricks in sequence. Now, I'm spending much more time reacting to impromptu requests to see some card magic. I've been showing 1-2 items per request which is now starting to stretch my repertoire. I've realized the value in not losing some of the stuff I used to know and do. I figure that I'll keep a notebook of effects I learn as I go through books to refresh myself. I figure that I would keep track of where I learned it, whether it can be done impromptu, or with some kind of setup. Any tips or insights? Do you do something similar?
tommy
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Eternal Order
Devil’s Island
15819 Posts

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I just make notes all over my books with red pencil.

Tommy
If there is a single truth about Magic, it is that nothing on earth so efficiently evades it.

Tommy
Samuel
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Norway
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I have a notebook where I write down the the key elements of a trick, in order:
Effect
Preparations
Technique and Patter

This way I can keep track of the tricks I do well, and if I forget them, I'll just look them up Smile
Samuel

Magic is everywhere
Jonathan Townsend
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Eternal Order
Ossining, NY
27032 Posts

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I write stuff in letters, notes, online, scribbled things here and there. Takes forever to get stuff from notions to performance ready and tested material.
...to all the coins I've dropped here
Charlie Justice
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Inner circle
Mount Dora, Florida
1142 Posts

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I got 3 notebooks, dozens of loose papers, napkins, etc, etc. I got things written on anything that records ink and pencil dating back to the early 90's ... plus a couple of word documents that are in desperate need of organizing.
drumdemon420
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I keep a small memo pad with me all the time. it has everything from full descriptions of effect, to half baked ideas for sleights or alterations there of. Perfect for that sudden burst of inspiration.
Alan Rorrison
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V.I.P.
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I use a cam corder, make a short clip discribign everything

alan
MTaylor2002
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I keep two types of notebooks. The first I have maintained since my very first show -- 27 years ago! In these spiral notebooks I have recorded every formal show I've ever done, the paying ones as well as the freebies. Each entry includes the date, location, event, the routine, the audience size, now much I was paid, and finally a self-critique of the show. It has helped me keep up with the effects I once performed regularly but forgot about, which ones I want to change or practice more before a repeat performance, which ones got the best reactions, and, of increasing importance, which effects I have done for a particular audience. This last bit of tracking has prevented me from unintentionally repeating effects for those organizations that have called me back several times over the years.

The other type of "notebook" I keep is in a three-ring binder that's sectioned off into various subjects including favorite effects and their original sources, effects to practice regularly so I can always be ready with them, sleights I want to practice or maintain, effects I'm thinking of buying, and a few other categories I can't recall at this moment.

Both of these notebook types have been invaluable to me through the years and are among my most prized possessions.
Justin2200
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Never thought about this...I should give it a go
The Presitidigitationist
Alewishus
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parts unknown
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I used to keep a notebook filled with images, until recently I was paid by a group of metalists to plaster huge eyeballs all over the urban landscape.

I know, it's weird.

Now I only keep a diary of my bowel movements and related info.


A.
Sack subs, ok Ross?
We miss you asper.
docelk
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St. Pete, FL
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Buy Avery Postcards/Index Cards #8577. they are perforated and come 4 to a page. Your computer can auto setup to these avery numbers, so that you can write the instructions for four separate tricks, print them, and then separate them at the perfs. If a trick is too long, use two cards. I glue stick them in a SMALL, ring binder, and keep an extra copy in my card suitcase. Uses Microsoft Word. Tried the three by five cards, but they are too small, and couldn't find avery computer 3x5 pre-perfed cards.

ON THE CARDS: I place the parts I screw up on, or the key elements of the trick in bold, (as a reminder)the patter in italics, and the order of the packet or deck at the beginning of the note. Title of trick goes at top in Larger Font. Before a trick, I can turn to that page and review the trick instantly. You can also move the pages around in the ring binder to create an order for an act.

Works for me.
Life is a test. It is only a test. If this had been a real life, you would have been given further instructions on where to go, and what to do.
irishguy
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Ohio
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I keep a notebook of ideas as well as one with routines complete with what book they are from, page numbers, etc. for ease of reference.
fredrux
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My home was full of magic thoughts written down on scraps of paper, envelopes, newspapers etc. Then the computer entered my life. Chaos transformed into visible structure. That was like real magic. Fredrik Jakobsson
Gary Kruse
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Colorado Springs
146 Posts

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Michael Skinner used to memorize tricks in 3's. It seemed to work well for him as he was never at a loss to show something new.

docelk- I think that the Avery notecards might work well. I've written all over my magic books like some of the people mention above, but I want to have a quick reference for what I have practiced to jog my memory. The notecards might be the answer.

I was thinking of grouping the stuff I have learned into categories. Things like: Can be done be with a borrowed deck at any time / have to be done seated / Needs a trivial setup / Needs a memorized deck stack / Needs a trick deck - like Bannon's Detour DeForce. In this way I figure that if I am going to enter an environment where I might be asked to perform I can check my notebook for reminders that fit the situation. Any suggestions?
docelk
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St. Pete, FL
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Yes Gary, excellent idea. ---I also place a round magic marker(different colors) dot at the top right hand corner of the card, for some of those things. Each color denotes a different restriction, as you stated above. As you scan thru the notebook you immediately see them, rule the trick in or out depending on the performance type, or just put all the dots together by color---that's one of the reason I keep them in loose leaf, or just used my second set of cards (dups) to carry for a small show.

.--I like the pages in the order of the performance, though. when I screw up a trick, it is usually something I did that got confused with another trick (such as have the spec put the card back on top, instead of above the break, etc.) Then I go back to the 4x5 card, and highlight that area of the instructions with the marker also.
Life is a test. It is only a test. If this had been a real life, you would have been given further instructions on where to go, and what to do.
Gary Kruse
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Colorado Springs
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Thanks for the suggestion using colored dots. I guess that if you use dots and index cards you can always rearrange your effects based on performance conditions.

So... my norm is to comb through books, marking them up according to what I want to learn. From that group, the ones that I learn go in a notebook or on an index card. I think that I can live with this!

I wonder if any of you do something different. I imagine that some people can do hundreds of effects. I just wonder how those talented people remember to show them all...
Carron
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UK
958 Posts

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You quite simply Need a notebook, the amount of ideas and bits of patter that I have lost just from simply think ing oh I'll remeber that saddens me, make notes!
in the long term it's a great thing to look back on and see where your head was

Tom
jrandcc
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New York
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I need a notebook almost always. At almost every performance, lecture, jam session, or anywhere I have a notebook, to either write down tricks that I learn, or ideas that I see, or criticism that I have about other people's magic, or just ideas that I get. This helps me both expand my knowledge repetiore and ability to watch magic from many different perspectives.

Not everyone needs a notebook it depends on what you're looking for.
tommy
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Eternal Order
Devil’s Island
15819 Posts

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“The palest ink is better than the best memory.”
Chinese - Proverb.
If there is a single truth about Magic, it is that nothing on earth so efficiently evades it.

Tommy
weapon
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I am Emran. I have,
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I got a microsoft word file like 30 pages long with all my card effects...technology I say, TECHNOLOGY!...uh just make sure you back it up with cd-r or somthing cause technology can be a lil dumb somtimes.. =o)
Eternity by Emran Riaz (Gimmicks + Download) An IMPOSSIBLE prediction of ANY number, ANY word, literally ENGRAVED in a medallion they've been holding THE ENTIRE TIME.
http://www.penguinmagic.com/p/12181
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