Original Plots in Magic?

May 21, 2011
162
1
Bedford, England
Hey guys,

Recently, I've been brainstorming for some new ideas for routines and effects. The only problem is that I can't think of any original ideas. No, I'm not asking for ideas; instead I'm asking the following question:

With magic (especially Card Magic) being overflowed with plots, is there any more room for original ideas? Has every type of routine already been explored or is there still more ready to be discovered by some creative nut head?

Leave your thoughts below.

Thanks,
Josh
 
Apr 25, 2009
459
0
36
Yorktown, VA
Josh,

I promise that there are plenty of new ideas out there. But creativity is hard and it doesn't come over night. It is something that you have to continually work on. It is a muscle, that with practice can grow. I have found that by keeping a Magic Journal, I log in some of my ideas and then try to figure out ways to do them (with the help of books like The Trick Brain and Designing Miracles). Another thing that helps is sometimes a spectator will be like, "Hey, can you do something like this?" And this gets the cogs rolling on how exactly I would do that. In fact, that is how we have Audio by Eric Jones. A good book to get some of the creative juices flowing is as follows:
Ignore Everybody: and 39 Other Keys to Creativity.
I hope that helps.
 

RickEverhart

forum moderator / t11
Moderator
Sep 14, 2008
3,655
465
43
Louisville, OH
Sometimes you can be creative by taking older principles / plots and dress them differently.

Example: The Color changing knives (old) = Color Changing Flash USB drives

To me doing something like this may not seem like a huge break through but it is modernizing an older prop, principle, or effect.

Think of today's trends and things in society.
Example: my patter for Extreme burn for taking 5 ones and turning them into 5 Fives involves a trip to Subway and ordering
"Five...Five dollar footlongs"
 
Jan 1, 2009
2,249
3
Back in Time
Or you can an old plot/idea and change the pacing and timing of it and making it SEEM different. This is usually what a lot of the smarter performers will do with old effects, when performing for laypeople and not other magicians.
 

Josh Burch

Elite Member
Aug 11, 2011
2,961
1,096
Utah
With magic (especially Card Magic) being overflowed with plots, is there any more room for original ideas? Has every type of routine already been explored or is there still more ready to be discovered by some creative nut head?

I believe that creation is infinite. asking if there is anymore room for original plots in magic, even card magic, is a bit like asking is there any room for a new country song, a new sit com, a new romance novel or a new sci-fi film. The answer should be a resounding YES!

Something that should be remembered is that there is a near infinite possible things in this world and there will always be more impossible things than possible.
 
Dec 18, 2007
1,610
13
61
Northampton, MA - USA
Many wise and good things have been said here but I'll go a step further. . .

PERSPECTIVE IS EVERYTHING

The best we can do is twist older concepts. As we used to say at the Magic Castle, "Magic is the second oldest profession known to man (we just use a different kind of trick.)"

The big problem is that there are only so many effects that we can create and so many methods by which to bring them about. We can however, modify as well as mix and match methods so as to create a new paradigm. Assembling Aces is a great example in that there's at least a dozen variants to it, including two or three (that I'm aware of) that used special card gaffs in conjunction with classic knuckle busting.

As I point out to people wanting to do Mentalism and relying on playing cards, find a way to create a different story for the effect that incorporates a vehicle other than a deck of cards (use post cards, photos, business cards, flash cards, etc.) and in doing so, you end up with a "New" effect . . . look at all the variations to OOTW that have surfaced in the past decade. I just read about one that uses newspaper clippings that's mind boggling and more important, designed to work as a Mentalism bit . . . well, more important to me, at least. ;-)

This may sound corny but try it, it works. . . set aside 20 minutes in the morning and 20-minutes in the evening to simply get quiet and focus on a concept -- an effect that you like but want to put a twist to. Simply visualize that effect as you know it and then, as you move deeper into relaxation, start asking yourself "What if?" What if I used this move here? Couldn't I use this gimmick at this point to get a stronger result? and so forth.

You WILL slowly at first, start finding solutions INCLUDING patter that would fit both, the routine and your personality. Don't be surprised if you start dreaming about the bit and too, if those dream sequences don't turn your thinking up-side-down, giving you a totally different -- and better -- bit of business. LET IT HAPPEN!

This is something I've used for years and I know of some rather notable effect developers that use the same or similar methods. Keep in mind, we're all unique in how our brain works, we just need to experiment with different methods until we find the one or two that give us the best end results.

ONE LAST THING. . . I get lots of inspiration by reading short stories and parables. I also borrow a lot from actual history and regional legends, so you may want to venture down this path as well.
 
May 21, 2011
162
1
Bedford, England
This may sound corny but try it, it works. . . set aside 20 minutes in the morning and 20-minutes in the evening to simply get quiet and focus on a concept -- an effect that you like but want to put a twist to. Simply visualize that effect as you know it and then, as you move deeper into relaxation, start asking yourself "What if?" What if I used this move here? Couldn't I use this gimmick at this point to get a stronger result? and so forth.

Thanks! That's extremely helpful!! I'm gonna try that tonight and see what I come up with :D
 
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