This is a very commercial, practical, and effective diary effect.
You begin by shuffling a deck and placing it on the table. You never touch the deck again. You now give the spectator your pocket diary which he may examine before placing it in his pocket. You never touch the diary again.
The spectator will now create a random date. He cuts the deck – this is a free cut – and turns over the card cut to. The value of this card will represent the month. This can truly be any value. He counts the cards that he cut – this will represent the day. This can truly be any quantity so long as it doesn’t exceed the number of possible days in a month. You can even offer him the chance to change his mind and do it again. It will not make any difference to the outcome. The trick cannot fail.
Maybe he cut to a Four spot – the fourth month is April. Maybe the number of cards he cut is 15. That is APRIL 15th. The spectator opens the diary at April 15 and reads out what is written against that date. You explain that the diary will tell him about his lucky card.
The diary might say, "21 DOWN!" But this is not a bizarre crossword puzzle. The diary is telling him where to find his LUCKY CARD. He counts to the 21st card in the deck. This card may be the AS. Finally you ask him to look at the back of the diary where he finds a card. Written on this card is "YOUR LUCKY CARD IS THE ACE OF SPADES."
1st edition 2008; 5 pages.
word count: 1585 which is equivalent to 6 standard pages of text