Los Angeles, USA

Waking up with a Smile

I am the kind of person that wakes up with a smile. At least once I’ve smelled my espresso brewing, I’m contemplating a great day. To say I am an early bird is the understatement of the century.

But with all that has been going on lately, I’ve found myself at a little bit of a loss. I love performing. With no live audiences, I’ve missed the creative push, the interaction with others and frankly, the joy. I know people are doing zoom magic shows, but I don’t care to. To me they don’t look good and it’s just not like working for a live audience.

I do have something really fun that I get to do now. It’s putting a real spring in my step. I’ve set aside some time to do some writing every day. I wrote a column for a women’s magazine years ago. I even had my own magic publication called, Second Sight for 3 years in the now distant past. It was about the business of magic (booking, theatricality, tour planning, business law, etc.) There were no magic tricks but lots of good advice by me, my husband, and a number of other professional magicians who were great contributors. I got to interview top professionals such as Jay Scott Berry, Alan Wakeling, Peter Samelson, and Tom Ogden.

In re-reading through my husbands new book which is now in paperback on Amazon.com – shameless plug – The Theatrical Approach to Magic:  Adventures in Show Business, Magic, and Life-Long Romance by Geoffrey Williams – I came across the following that Bascom Jones, Editor of Magick and a real legend in mentalism had written to us at the time about Second Sight, “OUTSTANDING! I read every word of every article, and then went back to re-read parts a second and third time. It’s a first class publication and should be a must read for every serious performer.” It just doesn’t get better than that.

So, I’ve begun writing two new books (one on magic and one as branding for my new act) and for one of the biggest magic magazines out there, The Linking Ring. If you are not familiar, it is published by the International Brotherhood of Magicians. The IBM is the world’s largest organization of magicians, with members in 88 countries. When my husband was active in magic, he wrote articles, Parades (collections of original magic effects) and even had a long running column in The Linking Ring. I just started being one of the contributors to their Hocus in Focus column. It is surprisingly challenging and very fun.

I learned magic primarily from books, and we have a decent sized library. I have a special fondness for books and really can never have enough good magic books. I always say, if you want something new in your act, go find something old (that people have forgotten about) and rework it. I love to go to the Magic Castle Swap Meet once a year (not this year, of course). I alternate between having a table where I sell my old magic tricks and buying. It’s one or the other, and believe me, I have a budget when I was buying like last year. Joan Lawton had a ton of wonderful books from an estate she was selling to benefit the Dai Vernon Foundation. I got so many wonderful volumes, and seeing her was just the best.

Like most people, I am not as creatively productive as I would like to be during the current crises. Fortunately, I have a job. I am still working at Cedars-Sinai, a top hospital in California. It is a wonderful organization. I get to work with so many smart, talented, dedicated and brave people. I feel like I am making a little bit of a contribution, even working from home.

I had my own medical emergency to deal with. My husband got severe sepsis with organ dysfunction and had to go into the hospital. He is home now, but weeks later he is still not fully recovered. It was caused by a mosquito bite, and they believe it carried some type of bacteria that raged out of control in Geoff”s system. We are so glad I took him in when I did, because if you delay treatment you can die. It’s no picnic when no one can visit you at the hospital like now, but the nurses were so wonderful. They even sent him a get well/thank you card after he got home.

The whole world is suffering right now, and it is so easy to be overwhelmed. But a little bit of writing, an opportunity to work, and the love of a wonderful man make each day better.

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