History Of The Nail Writer

Discuss the historical aspects of magic, including memories, or favorite stories.

Postby Lee Almond » 04/07/09 08:31 PM

Can anyone provide a reference to the history of the nail writer? Just wondering as I ordered my first one and looking forward to getting it in the mail. Thanks in advance. Peace.
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Postby Joe Pecore » 04/07/09 09:08 PM

Share your knowledge on the MagicPedia wiki.
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Postby David Alexander » 04/08/09 08:45 AM

Lee,

Tom Baxter, a long-time working professional mentalist, has compiled the most comprehensive book on the nail writer. As Joe indicated above, it is available directly from Tom.

You might find my review to be of help. See: http://www.geniimagazine.com/forums/ubb ... Post190765

Combine Tom's anthology and the first chapter of Corinda and you have everything you need to use the nail writer in an effective and devastating manner.
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Postby Lee Almond » 04/09/09 09:01 PM

Thank you David and Joe! Wonderful information as I just received my nail writer today. Thanks again for the info.
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Postby NCMarsh » 04/10/09 01:16 PM

I hate to admit it, but I've just gotten around to reading Corinda, and -- while I haven't read the Anthology -- I can heartily, heartily second David's recommendation on the Corinda chapter...some damn good information from someone who, you can feel in the text, really used it...the nw chapter is indispensable if you're working with a writer

If you're interested in mentalism and -- like me -- had been putting off reading it, read it before reading anything else on mentalism...this $20-30 book will give you far, far more than the latest $80 "book" of a few xeroxed pages...

Jon St. Germain has a great DVD out (he may have published it as John Riggs...I don't recall) called Secret Writing that gives some fantastic information on boon, pocket writing and some stranger methods (belly writing)...it's definitely worth a look if you're into nw...Lincoln put out a two disc dvd on the boon, solid...but I would look at the other sources first...

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Postby Jonathan Townsend » 04/10/09 01:37 PM

Any suggestions for how to develop legible (nice would be a good thing) handwriting?

Real question
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Postby NCMarsh » 04/10/09 04:26 PM

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Postby T Baxter » 04/10/09 05:49 PM

In A Boon For All Seasons, Barrie Richardson and Eric Mason offer some excellent tips on improving your writing with a Boon writer or Nail Writer.

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Postby David Alexander » 04/10/09 08:02 PM

Jonathan Townsend wrote:Any suggestions for how to develop legible (nice would be a good thing) handwriting?

Real question


The same way you get to Carnegie Hall. Practice!
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Postby Jonathan Townsend » 04/10/09 10:07 PM

Would you be more specific? I'm not exactly happy about having bad handwriting.
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Postby Dick Christian » 04/11/09 10:12 AM

Jonathan,

I hate to be the one to break the sad news to you, but your problem is that you were born too late. As a result, you and at least two generations that follow you are the victims of a seriously inadequate education caused in large part by the steady and continuing decline of public education in the US. Those of David's and my generation were schooled in penmanship -- a word you may or may not even be familiar with, but a subject that vanished from the public school curriculum sometime in the 1950s or 60s -- from kindergarten through the 4th or 5th grade.

Even more distressing is the fact that today, it is not only penmanship that is no longer taught, but spelling, grammar and punctuation as well. Studies consistently reveal that despite the fact that the educational bureaucracy continues to sing the praises of our public schools, the functional illiteracy rate in the US approaches (and may even exceed) 50%. I suppose that since so many of our citizens cannot spell, punctuate or compose a literate sentence, the fact that their penmanship is illegible is of little consequence.

If anyone wishes to dispute my assertions regarding the currently depressing state of literacy in the US, they need only spend five minutes on the Magic Cafe to see the proof.
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Postby Bob Cunningham » 04/11/09 10:47 AM

Two of the best know old schools of penmanship were the "Palmer Method" and the "Champion Method".

These methods include instructions on how to hold a pen and position the paper - obviously these are useless for nail witting. However they also include instructions on how to form the letters and exemplars (samples you can trace) that could be used to practice nail writing. Repeated tracing of these letters should make you legible with a nail writer.

The links I have included are PDF's of the original courses.

Good luck with this,

Bob


http://www.iampeth.com/books/champion/t ... index.html

http://www.iampeth.com/books/palmer_met ... index.html
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Postby Jim Riser » 04/14/09 02:45 AM

Jonathan Townsend wrote:Would you be more specific? I'm not exactly happy about having bad handwriting.


Jonathan;
As Dick pounted out above, you missed out on penmanship training in elementary school. When we were students in elementary school learning to read and write, we each had little writing books for practice. An example of each letter was shown and below the example were lined places for us to write the letter over and over and over and over.....

As our skills progressed, we moved up to connecting letters, copying complete words, and finally short sentences.

I clearly remember being in the third grade when the old cast iron and wooden desks with their ink wells were removed and replaced by modern sterile looking fiberglass individual student desks. It was a sad day for public education.

Most of us proudly took care of our fountain pens. I was especially fond of my snorkel pen. It was a beauty. Unfortunately, when in high school working as the church carillon player, it fell out of my shirt pocket and through the cracks in the floor boards of the old the bell tower. I'm sure it is still there. I loved that pen. I replaced it with the much inferior new fangled cartridge loading pens.

To learn to write well, is to master the fountain pen. For right handed people, this should be a breeze because the movements with the pen in forming characters are a dagging/flowing movement. This is a natural movement for fountain pens and the ink just flows onto the paper.

Lefties like me had a much more difficult time as we need to push the pen nib rather than draw it naturally. The pens were not made for this motion nor was the writing system designed for lefties. This is why da Vinci wrote in a mirror script - for ease of writing.

To develop good penmanship requires practice. Rather than spending hours making all of your tens of thousands of postings on forums, you could be practicing your penmanship. You need to practice writing well on every document you set pen to - everyone. If you really want to improve, you can do so. The question is whether or not you have the will power.

I took a calligraphy class back in the 1980's and the same technique was used to learn the shapes of the letters. I practiced on everything from post cards to checks. Eventually, even my left handed calligraphy was acceptable.

If you have poor handwriting, are upset about it, and do nothing about it, it is your own fault. On your own make up for what you missed out on in school.

If you learn proper letter control, using a nail writer is easy.

I look forward to less postings from you indicating that you have picked up a good fountain pen and are trying to improve your penmanship.

Stick with it and good luck.
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Postby Lee Almond » 04/14/09 09:17 PM

I want to thank everyone for the reply on the nail writer. Thank goodness I had Corinda on the bookshelf! Why I waited this long to get a writer in beyond me.....better late than never as they say. I have practiced on my lunch hour at work. Very cool how one can get so much better in a week and will continue for some time. Damn the thumb is sore! However, the discovery of technique has been a gas. Thanks again everyone for the information. Peace.
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Postby Greg Edmonds » 04/23/09 01:53 PM

Other writers, not mentioned above, are the thumb tip variety. I believe these are still available from various sources. I created both a pencil lead and Listo (TM) version of the gimmick called "The Retractable Thumb Writer." The gimmick (or gimmicks) came with a book of various routines entitled "Rules of Thumb."

Mark Strivings now owns all distribution rights to said commodities.

As to penmanship, I can vividly recall receiving either an adhesive blue, or better, gold foil star on my report cards designating my efforts in this category. Due to neurological issues, my penmanship is now so horrible I can barely read it myself (the same reason I retired from performing over four years ago, and rarely post on the Internet these days).

As to the amazing John Riggs, I spent a good deal of time working on his collected works, to be hard (cloth) bound, and sold in limited numbers. Unfortunately, once again, my health has not permitted me to do work on anything for some time now.

I was, and still remain, in hopes that I will someday be able to finish John's, and several other projects, and am still undergoing regular medical treatment to that end.

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Postby T Baxter » 04/23/09 04:52 PM

Greg:

I mentioned your retractable thumb writer in my Nail Writer Anthology as an example of how things are evolving. I didn't give away the working, just said pretty much what you've said above.

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Postby Greg Edmonds » 04/23/09 05:11 PM

Thanks T, I'm very heavily medicated these days and a bit slow on the uptake.

I appreciate the work you've done. I was, for a time, the first "official" historian for the PEA. I have a fairly extensive library, but am constantly amazed by how far mentalism techniques go back - some literally thousands of years - when I read older texts.

There truly is (almost) nothing new under the sun when it comes to conjuring techniques AND apparatus.

Greg
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Postby T Baxter » 04/24/09 05:36 PM

Greg Edmonds wrote:There truly is (almost) nothing new under the sun when it comes to conjuring techniques AND apparatus.
Greg


Dunno about that -- I have a new version of ACAAN just about ready to come out, and it's unlike anything that's been seen before.

In any case Greg, please send me your email address by pm. I'd like to send you a copy of The Nail Writer Anthology as a gift. I think you'd find the historical aspects fascinating.

Cheers,

T. (for Tom) Baxter
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Postby Mats Kjellstrom » 04/25/09 01:47 AM

Syzygy on Swami (Teach-In) - Lee Earle.

http://www.wizmomagic.co.uk/syzygy-swam ... p-163.html
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