Convincing: Practice in front of a mirror. Seriously. Practice, and then do a little mental separation of yourself from your action–see yourself as the mark on yourself. Do you respond to that motion? What are the factors that force you to respond to a thrower when you’re on the mark? Step? Shoulder motion? Some facial or other dispositional cue? Is it the disc leaving the hand? (Probably too late, if that’s the case). When do you KNOW that the throw is coming, and how can you recreate those cues with your fakes? Try doing your regular throwing motion and holstering it. How late can you stop your throw? Envision an on-field situation, a dump cut or a juke you didn’t anticipate–can you withhold your commitment to throw in time?
Effective: Do your fakes leave you exposed? Think about turnaround time. If that super-convincing forehand fake requires you to flick the frisbee around your fingers, it may only prove marginally useful compared to a fake that allows you to instantly throw if the option appears. Think about “throwing without throwing”–using everything but your wrist snap and grip release as you normally would.
Think about pivoting. If your fakes take a slightly upward trajectory (that is, if your body does–remember, the throw at least has to start out looking the same as your/a regular throw), you’re already starting your body to move to the other side, while your mark is hopefully off-balance trying for a throw that isn’t there. Think about throwing without pivoting–can you go from forehand to throwing backhand without stepping? Vice-versa? Sometimes it’s not the spatial advantage of a pivot, but the temporal advantage of a faster release you need. At the very least, learn to fake to either side until you find an opening you can exploit/attack.
Think about how far you pivot. If you overextend, you’re slower to change than your mark. When you commit, and you know you can beat your mark, you can really get out there–but otherwise, pick your spots to extend. You can step sufficiently to make most marks respond (6’6″ behemoths marking 5’8″ miniatures notwithstanding) without using your full range, and you’ll leave yourself room to exploit for the real throw if all else fails.
Get in front of the mirror! Start thinking! Take a good, long look at yourself and take a scalpel to your abilities. Dissect out the cancerous, work around the vital spots, and clean the rough areas.