Hey, We're Reprinting The Vernon Touch!

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Richard Kaufman
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Hey, We're Reprinting The Vernon Touch!

Postby Richard Kaufman » December 31st, 2016, 11:56 am

One of the best books is magic is The Vernon Touch, a 600-page hardcover which collects (and corrects) all of Dai Vernon's columns from Genii.

The first printed sold out fairly rapidly, and we've had lots of requests to reprint. And so we are.

A 600-page hardcover, it is the only book written by Dai Vernon.

The Vernon Touch should be up on our website today or tomorrow. The price is only $25 plus $10 postage in the USA ($30 foreign) if you subscribe, renew, or extend your subscription to Genii. The retail price of the book is $95 plus $10 postage in the USA ($30 foreign).

The book will ship in February.

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Re: Hey, We're Reprinting The Vernon Touch!

Postby lybrary » December 31st, 2016, 12:06 pm

Richard Kaufman wrote:One of the best books is magic is The Vernon Touch, a 600-page hardcover which collects (and corrects) all of Dai Vernon's columns from Genii.

I hope for your own sake you are providing a detailed change log because Mr. Mullins is keenly awaiting it. You know what happens if you don't ...
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Re: Hey, We're Reprinting The Vernon Touch!

Postby Matthew Field » December 31st, 2016, 12:31 pm

One of the books I'm proudest to have worked on for the Chief Genii.

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Re: Hey, We're Reprinting The Vernon Touch!

Postby JustinM » December 31st, 2016, 12:48 pm

I bought this book years ago..... Easily one of the best books in my library.

Richard, any plans to collect all of Mr. Charlie Miller's columns into a book?

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Re: Hey, We're Reprinting The Vernon Touch!

Postby Ted M » December 31st, 2016, 1:44 pm

This is great. If Vernon is to remain valued, it's necessary to stimulate the old-timers' memories and educate the younger generation about him. How long has it been since the last Vernon feature in Genii?

Richard, is this the book whose pages you waved at the camera in More Genii Speaks a month or so ago? Or is there a totally new book coming our way as well?

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Re: Hey, We're Reprinting The Vernon Touch!

Postby Q. Kumber » December 31st, 2016, 3:08 pm

JustinM wrote:
Richard, any plans to collect all of Mr. Charlie Miller's columns into a book?


I second that!

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Re: Hey, We're Reprinting The Vernon Touch!

Postby Richard Kaufman » December 31st, 2016, 3:49 pm

I've had Vernon on the cover two or three times since buying Genii. I'm happy to do it whenever there's new information to publish. In one of the issues I explained a lot of his material on Erdnase that appears nowhere else, including his Diagonal Palm Shift and Bottom Palm. There was a time when people would have handed over their wallet to get all the details on Vernon's handling of those sleights, but no one really seemed to care when I published them.
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Re: Hey, We're Reprinting The Vernon Touch!

Postby Ted M » December 31st, 2016, 4:55 pm

How about an article on the Marlo vs Vernon rivalry that existed, if not directly between them, then at least among their acolytes? Recap the controversies around Tilt, et al...

Maybe with a twist: Ask a handful of prominent Marlo students to praise Vernon, with real substance. Similarly ask the Vernon students to praise Marlo.

How is the culture different today? Do we still have masters who hold court and shape groups of talented students who then subsequently shape others? (Or was that really ever the culture at all? Were the "schools" of Vernon and Marlo aberrations that just accidentally happened to take similar shape at the same time?)

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Re: Hey, We're Reprinting The Vernon Touch!

Postby Joe Mckay » December 31st, 2016, 5:04 pm

Would people really pick one side and then rubbish the other?

That seems a bit silly. I can't imagine anyone being that pig headed.

That said - when I was interested in card tricks - I never liked either of them. Give me Walton, Sadowitz, Elmsley, Trost, Bannon, Aronson, Jordan, Duffie and Kane over them any time.

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Re: Hey, We're Reprinting The Vernon Touch!

Postby PickaCard » December 31st, 2016, 5:17 pm

Is this the big book you have been hinting at or is there another Genii publication that will be announced soon?

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Re: Hey, We're Reprinting The Vernon Touch!

Postby Joe Mckay » December 31st, 2016, 5:32 pm

My take on the two schools is this.

Marlo was a noodler who was obsessed with recording all of his experiments with cards. There is a value to that work. In many ways he reminds me of Stewart James. But whereas Marlo was devoted to studying sleight of hand - Stewart James was obsessed with seeing what could be achieved without sleights.

As such - the emphasis is ultimately one of quantity over quality. And there is nothing wrong with that. When I was interested in studying non-sleight of hand card magic (stacks, mathematical principles etc) there was something inspiring about knowing you had about 2500 pages of Stewart James material to go over. It was pretty much mathematically impossible that you would not find something new and interesting with each read through.

And the same applies to Ed Marlo.

He put out so much material that you can always be sure of finding something new when going over it. It is like a treasure hunt that never ends. But - to quote Ben Train - instead of finding the occasional diamond you find the occasional 20 dollar bill.

Another friend of mine pointed out that the value in Marlo's work was often as building blocks to what came next. You may not find a lot of commercial magic from Ed Marlo. But a lot of his ideas did get built into classic effects that came later. His strategy of building a 2 way out as you cut into a stack of eight cards in his Estimation Aces is a good example of that. Or his foundational work in areas like the Faro shuffle.

There is value to work like that for those who want to obsessively pursue all the different combinations and permutations with a deck of cards.

With Vernon - there was more of an emphasis on setting himself problems and then only publishing the best solution he found. With Marlo he enjoyed wondering all over the fields of card magic and recording what he found. Whereas Vernon would spend time deciding on exactly what it was he wanted to achieve before tackling a new problem. As such - the creativity Vernon applied to card magic is focused on solving practical plots and problems. As opposed to randomly recording whatever it was he came up with that day whilst noodling with a deck of cards. As such - you see Vernon tackling classic problems in card magic and updating the classics that preceded him. Not just in card magic but with coins, rings and the cups and balls as well.

The Vernon approach spoke artistically to a lot of those who were students and admirers of him. Whereas the Marlo approach spoke more to the hobbyist side of magicians.

The Vernon approach was based around sessions with fellow magicians with ideas being shared and often not recorded in a formal way. Even when they were recorded - they might take years or decades before seeing print.

Whereas the Marlo approach was one directly tied into respecting and promulgating the printed record. As such - the Marlo side often started turf wars over who first recorded an idea in print. With the Vernon side caring less about such issues.

That said - I feel the defining legacy of Dai Vernon is not any one card trick he invented. But instead an aesthetic he shared with those around him and in print. Nobody else before him was as interested in the transcendent and artistic quality that card magic (or the simple execution of a sleight) could achieve. In a sense Vernon combined Hofzinser's idealism of what card magic could be with the technical rigor of Erdnase. And the fact that Dai Vernon was one of the most charismatic and interesting people who ever lived only helped him burn those ideals into the generations of magicians that followed.

The school you find most inspirational largely comes down to how you approach card magic. Is it a largely academic interest in which you want to study all that is possible with a deck of cards? Or is it a practical interest in which the ultimate goal is to try and approach perfection in performance?

A Marlo fan would rather find 20 fresh new ways to approach the Collectors plot. Whereas a Vernon fan is more interested in finding a more elegant way to catch a finger break during a card trick so that the trick can be improved by 5-10%.

That is my 2 cents...

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Re: Hey, We're Reprinting The Vernon Touch!

Postby Richard Kaufman » December 31st, 2016, 6:52 pm

There is no controversy surrounding The Depth Illusion. No one should ever use the word Tilt. That only helps to perpetuate theft.
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Re: Hey, We're Reprinting The Vernon Touch!

Postby performer » December 31st, 2016, 8:12 pm

I have the Vernon Touch. I find the print too small to read. Sign of age I suppose.

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Re: Hey, We're Reprinting The Vernon Touch!

Postby Ted M » December 31st, 2016, 9:51 pm

Richard Kaufman wrote:There is no controversy surrounding The Depth Illusion. No one should ever use the word Tilt. That only helps to perpetuate theft.


See, it's fascinating stuff that provokes emotion even to this day. And I know you've personally laid out all the totally legitimate history that shows Marlo was late to the game on that move, but he did give it a catchy name that stuck with a whole lot of people. And that still feeds the conflict...

Maybe a feature on historic feuds in magic?

Goldin vs Selbit, Robert Nelson vs Burling Hull, Burling Hull vs Houdini, Burling Hull vs everybody...

This too is part of conjuring's cultural history.

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Re: Hey, We're Reprinting The Vernon Touch!

Postby performer » January 1st, 2017, 5:42 am

I am very selfish and pragmatic over these matters. Who the hell cares if the bloody thing works?

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Re: Hey, We're Reprinting The Vernon Touch!

Postby Dave Le Fevre » January 1st, 2017, 8:22 am

performer wrote:I am very selfish and pragmatic over these matters. Who the hell cares if the bloody thing works?

Referring to it as Tilt rather than Depth Illusion appears to irritate some people. And I can understand why.

I find it even more annoying when the mis-credit includes the name of the wrong person, such as the Tenkai Pinch being called the Goshman Pinch.

However, being in no way an expert on the history of such things, I usually just wince internally rather than "correct" them.

Dave

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Re: Hey, We're Reprinting The Vernon Touch!

Postby erdnasephile » January 1st, 2017, 10:12 am

Ted M wrote:
Richard Kaufman wrote:There is no controversy surrounding The Depth Illusion. No one should ever use the word Tilt. That only helps to perpetuate theft.


See, it's fascinating stuff that provokes emotion even to this day. And I know you've personally laid out all the totally legitimate history that shows Marlo was late to the game on that move, but he did give it a catchy name that stuck with a whole lot of people. And that still feeds the conflict...

Maybe a feature on historic feuds in magic?


Did Marlo and Vernon get along well personally?

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Re: Hey, We're Reprinting The Vernon Touch!

Postby performer » January 1st, 2017, 11:04 am

I think they did. I have seen complimentary remarks by Vernon in the Vernon Touch concerning Marlo. I have also seen him on video criticising a double lift technique of Marlo's but in a jocular humorous way which made me think he probably got on well enough with him. Incidentally I think Vernon was wrong in his criticism. I have seen the Marlo thing in the Paul Le Paul book and it is excellent. I use Vernon's technique myself but there is nothing wrong with the way Marlo did things.

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Re: Hey, We're Reprinting The Vernon Touch!

Postby Leonard Hevia » January 1st, 2017, 11:51 am

This book needs a few corrections under the photo captions. It would be a shame if the corrections were not made before republishing it.

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Re: Hey, We're Reprinting The Vernon Touch!

Postby Leonard Hevia » January 1st, 2017, 12:32 pm

Inside my copy, I slipped a small sheet of paper with some of the corrections notated:

1. On page 311, Joe Cossari is in the photo with Vernon and his family but not noted.

2. On page 376 that's Carol Roy seated at the left end of the table. It should not say "Unknown." The standing individual behind Carol is the unknown.

3. On page 275, the caption for Vernon's Roosevelt silhouette should read "1932" not 1942.

4. Derek once mentioned here on the Forum that the woman on page 20 was not this mother Jeanne. I also think she doesn't look like her.

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Re: Hey, We're Reprinting The Vernon Touch!

Postby kkaiser343 » January 1st, 2017, 5:07 pm

I literally just subscribed to genii yesterday.. nothing about the vernon touch on the page as an add on.. anyway i can change my choice at this time. i ordered card college so i could regift it. i prefer books. the vernon touch would be mine forever...let me know if there is anything I can do to switch.. thanks

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Re: Hey, We're Reprinting The Vernon Touch!

Postby Richard Kaufman » January 1st, 2017, 7:58 pm

Sure you can switch: call the Genii office at 301-652-5800 this week.
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Re: Hey, We're Reprinting The Vernon Touch!

Postby kkaiser343 » January 1st, 2017, 10:39 pm

your the man..

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Re: Hey, We're Reprinting The Vernon Touch!

Postby Philippe Billot » January 5th, 2017, 4:14 am

In Genii, issue 7, July 1983, page 453, two paragraphs are troncated. The end of the first missing as well as the beginning of the second.
Have you succeed to complete them?

Next to lecture was John Cornelius. He had everything arranged so he stood close to the mike at all times and all his effects were perfectly shown. John is one of my closest friends and he is truly...

...disappear with ease. But joking aside, Charlie did a bang-up job and when he wound up with his rice bowls routine he received a standing ovation.

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Re: Hey, We're Reprinting The Vernon Touch!

Postby performer » January 5th, 2017, 5:40 am

Talking about Charlie Miller I heard that years and years ago he did a lecture at the Magic Circle and they were all very disappointed and it died a death. From what I gather he did practical stuff like the Rice Bowls which were more in line with the material that a professional magician would lean towards. However, they expected all the inner card technique that he was known for and he just didn't do any of that stuff. Or so the story goes anyway. I wasn't there.

I actually did see him do the rice bowls on television and had no idea who I was watching! I found it quite pleasant to watch! I also remember watching Slydini on TV years ago and not knowing who I was watching. I remember thinking, "He is very good indeed but I can't quite follow the effect". I am afraid I am a very bad audience for a magician as I have a low attention span. Unlike other magicians I get bored very rapidly watching magic.

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Re: Hey, We're Reprinting The Vernon Touch!

Postby luigimar » February 2nd, 2017, 11:30 pm

Hi Richard,

Last month I extended my subscription to 3 years and I talked to Margret so I could order the book. It is already February, and I was wondering if you could tell us when in February the book will ship so I can tell my mailcarrier to be on the lookout. Thanks!
luigimar

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Re: Hey, We're Reprinting The Vernon Touch!

Postby Richard Kaufman » February 3rd, 2017, 10:58 am

Book should be shipping in about a week.


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Re: Hey, We're Reprinting The Vernon Touch!

Postby luigimar » March 10th, 2017, 4:43 pm

Is it already shipping?

Has anybody received the book yet?

I was wondering because nobody has made any comments about it...
luigimar

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Re: Hey, We're Reprinting The Vernon Touch!

Postby performer » March 10th, 2017, 5:02 pm

I shall get my magnifying glass out and try to read it again. It was very good but I missed the best bits because the print was so small. Or perhaps I did read it and thought it meant something else.

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Re: Hey, We're Reprinting The Vernon Touch!

Postby Richard Kaufman » March 10th, 2017, 7:08 pm

Yes, it's been shipping for weeks.
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Re: Hey, We're Reprinting The Vernon Touch!

Postby luigimar » March 12th, 2017, 1:09 am

Ok, thanks Richard!
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