Incorporating your business

Post topics about the business side of magic.

Postby Guest » 11/21/03 11:50 PM

Hi I have a question, when should you consider INC. your magic business? When you are having a constant stream of shows coming in? Also I heard if you are doing magic part time or full time and are not INC. you cant deduct all the things you do as business expenses. (e.g. tricks you buy, envelopes, gas to the performance, miles you drive to a show, anything else that is business related) Is this true? What are the advantages and disadvantages of INC? What happens if you INC. and have a really bad year and don't make a lot of money? I don't think I want to INC. yet because I am still a full time college student and I don't think I can put all my time and effort into it. I want to do it after I graduated from college and are getting a stream of shows coming in.

Thanks
Amir
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Postby CHRIS » 11/22/03 05:03 AM

Amir,

a simple rule for incorporating is the level of revenue you are pulling in. The tax typically works out lower after a certain revenue. You have to calculate this for your own special case. There could be other reasons why you want to incorporate, for example liability issues.

Even with a sole proprietorship, where you report anything you earn as income on your personal tax statement, you can deduct quite a lot.

Chris Wasshuber
preserving magic one book at a time.
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Postby Guest » 11/22/03 09:16 PM

Despite what you read in magic magazines I can assure you that most magicians are starving so I shouldn't worry too much about it.

It reminds me of the law brought in by the Irish Government. Free lance writers and artists such as sculptors, painters etc; (no, not entertainers)
pay no income tax whatever. The law is still in effect.

However one cynical writer said that most writers and artists did not earn enough to pay income tax anyway so the law was a bit pointless.

Not 100% true actually. Some famous best selling authors went to live in Ireland because of this. The Irish government got a bit fed up with them because they hardly spent any time in Ireland even though they were supposed to be residents.
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Postby Guest » 11/23/03 07:29 AM

Talk about cynicism....if "most magicians are starving," it's because they approach it as a hobby and not a business.

In every business there are people who do poorly and people who do well. To succeed as a professional magician, you need:

1) clear vision - knowing what possibilities exist in the marketplace,

2) specific business strategies - to help your business grow, and

3) concrete actions - doing what is necessy to move towards your goal.

You don't have to starve. To succeed in the business of magic, it takes a solid, commercially viable act, AND a healthy dose of business acumen.
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Postby Tabman » 11/23/03 03:17 PM

most of the magicians i know are not starving, or anywhere close either. just do good work (and do a lot of it), treat folks right and shower often. :cool:
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Postby Guest » 11/23/03 03:59 PM

Jim. I didn't say that you "have to starve" I merely said that most magicians ARE starving.

If they weren't starving you would have no prospects for your marketing course. It is mainly starving magicians that buy magic marketing courses to find out how not to starve. I will concede that a few non starving magicians will bite. That is no doubt because they used to work for corporate America and believe in that sort of thing.

I bet that Lance Burton and Sigfried and Roy don't buy the Dave Dee course, or the Randy Charach one. Why? Because they don't need to.

I hope they buy yours though. I am sure they won't, of course. However, I concede that you seem to be the sincerest and most helpful of these marketing types so I do wish you luck.

I don't know who this Tabman fellow is but I don't think he gets out much. Or if he does he must only mix with the high society of Tennessee.If there is such a thing, of course. I was in Nashville doing a trade show and didn't see much evidence of it.The place reminded me of Blackpool where drunken holidaymakers spew up in the street because it is considered out of place not to.

I can assure him that most professional magicians ARE starving. Amateur magicians don't starve-they are usually rich lawyers who hang around shopping malls watching svengali pitchmen because they have nothing better to do with their time or rich businessmen who hire rich lawyers who hang around shopping malls watching pitchmen.

Jim has proved my point when he says that a magician should have "a healthy dose of business acumen"

Most of them don't. That is why they are starving.
True artists are not businesmen by nature. True businessmen are not artists by nature. That is why most artists are starving and most businessmen are poor entertainers. The two tend to be mutually exclusive.

They don't have to be, of course. I am merely saying that it is the norm. Jim, it seems tries to help the needy with a lot of free advice. He is to be commended for it.

I think he gives the free advice because he knows in his heart that most magicians (except for the ones who live in Tennessee) are starving.

I urge all the starving professional magicians not to despair.

I and Scott Guinn will pray for you.

Reverend [censored]
Free Spiritualist Church of Canada.
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Postby Tabman » 11/23/03 05:26 PM

rev lewis!!
sorry you had a negative impression of central tennessee. lots of great folks here. course i know successful magicians from all over from my traveling days. best to you!!!
-=tabman
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Postby Pete Biro » 11/23/03 06:33 PM

In defense of the Tabber... He was a member of one of the top country music bands, moved into magic prop construction when he got tired of being "on the road" he also runs a successful recording studio in the Nashville area, and be careful about criticising him, as his wife "Glo" is an olympic marksman with a rifle!
Stay tooned.
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Postby Guest » 11/23/03 07:03 PM

Oh, that is nothing. I have heard that lots of Americans go around shooting people.
I have been led to believe that in the United States it is considered quite socially acceptable to shoot people on a frequent basis.

Ford Kross once told me that he used to shoot people quite regularly but he doesn't do it any more. He also said that I wasn't worth wasting a bullet on. I have no idea what provoked him to say such a thing, of course.

Regarding Nashville I will confess that I only saw it after dark when there were lots of drunken people about. I felt I was back in Blackpool.

Next time I shall visit it in the daytime.
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Postby Guest » 11/26/03 02:01 AM

Ok I started this post so I think I should finish it. First of all I think Psychic somewhat correct. The best magicians are not always working because they are worried about learning the newest trick. But on the other hand I think he is wrong, not all magicians are straving. I know magicians and other entertainers who are making a very good living $40,000-$100,000 a year doing what they love. So to say that all magicians are straving is not fair.

You have to be a better marketer then a magician to make it in the long run. Don't get me wrong having a good show is very important, but being a better marketer is more important. Also you have to have a hook, a niche, something that makes you stand apart from all the rest. I am 21 and still in college but I plan to purse magic as a career with my twin brother and that is hook, our gimmick.

There hasn't been a twin mental act in magic before we will probably be the first. So far is has worked we just got done shooting a documentary on MTV about our life and magic, so we know that it is a market act and it can work.

Also speaking about Jim snack and dave dee stuff. I have bought dave dee's material and jim snack material and all I have to say is that you can't be without this information. I talked to Jim Snack on the phone for a hour and he gave me so much good information and is a great guy. He told me if I take action I can do what I want. If you surround yourself with negative people, you will feel negative (and that is what psychic is being right now, a negative person). But if you surround yourself with positive successful people you will get the same results.

So in conclusion all I have to say is that I will get where I want in 5-10 years. I will have a act down with my twin by the age 23 and we will doing what we love. NO ONE CAN TELL SOMEONE WHAT THEY CAN'T OR CAN DO!!
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Postby Guest » 11/26/03 07:07 AM

I didn't say that "all" magicians are starving. I merely said that "most" are.

I do not believe it is true that marketing skill is more important than performing skill. In the short run, yes.

In the long run, no. Your marketing skill won't be worth a damn if you are no good.

I am pleased that you are so ambitious. However I warn you of the old adage that when you are young you are going to shake the world until the world shakes you.

You should be happy that I am being negative. It will discourage your competition.

[censored]
www.marklewisentertainment.com
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