Saturday, July 19, 2014
Ye Olde Zine Reviewer has been offline more, dealing with work, life, stress and changes internal and external. When I'm not at work I'm often so exhausted that I fold into a quiet state of existence. Growing older creates its own internal rhythms and boundaries. I'm in the process of awakening to eldership & having my eyes opened in complete horror of what's been disguised as our American culture. It is a path of pain, but also a path of growth.
Therefore, as I endeavour to "spend" my "free" time on this earth more wisely, when I make the time to post reviews on this blog, they will be reviews of zines that ignite and affirm my love for the artform we call zines and zines that speak to my internal ethics. Mostly, rather than posting reviews online, I will be reviewing for paper publications such as Xerography Debt and my APA zine Cuneiform.
So ... dear readers in zineland ... please do not send me zines like Kiss and Tell Volume 2 for review - you're wasting postage. One of the last things I want to spend my time reading or writing about is a poorly written, narcissistic expose of someone's so-called sexual adventures, or lack thereof.
Sunday, June 29, 2014
40 pages, color cover, b&w interior, 9.5" X 5.5"
Reading review zines is a passion for me - I love to discover new publications that I haven't heard of. Zine Nation #2 focuses on primarily Canadian zines. There are also interviews with Ghost Pine creator Jeff Miller & others.The reviews here are fully detailed and informative. My one criticism is that this seems to be a review zine for the internet addicted only - with email and web contacts given - no postal mail. Somehow, that feels counterproductive to the zine culture that I love. At least the zines reviewed are paper zines. It's been a decade since the first edition of Zine Nation & I'm hoping that it won't be another decade before we see the next.
Tuesday, June 24, 2014
Let It Sink #7
32 pages / half letter
available from antiquatedfuture.com
This is a wholly unique zine unlike every other I have ever read.
That statement might be true of any zine, or every zine.
It is certainly true of this one.
I could go on like this. It reminds me of dreamtigers helping Brautigan with his arithmetic.
Let It Sink #7 contains three bodies of work – an excerpt from Pablo Neruda’s memoir, an essay about modern hauntings, and a meditation on prayer. The creator of Let It Sink offers several ways to read the zine with accompanying illustrations. It’s a simple but effective visual / lateral way of experiencing the zine.
Jim Joyce (any relation to you-know-who? Or is that a pseudonym?) knows how to mesmerize with words. Like most new delightful and surprising discoveries, I want to visit previous issues. Where can I find them?
Sunday, May 11, 2014
Some Notes on Film Vol. 1
8.5 X 5.5 / 56 pages / $4.50
First issues of new zines tend to be ambitious, with the creator trying to both convey the thematic content and build the foundation for possible future issues. Some Notes on Film is succinct in both of these aims – it is a zine that is visually beautiful and brimming with exceptional writing. The introductory essay offers one of the most coherent messages regarding the world of websites and blogs vs. the world of print that I have ever read. Some Notes on Film then explores a scene from “The Jerk”, a premise on art-maing proposed by Brian Eno, and much more. This is a substantial work that film lovers and non film lovers can enjoy. If a zine’s mission is to educate, entertain, and expand the reader’s horizons, this one succeeds on every level.
Sunday, April 27, 2014
Folks at The Cultural Aether blessed me with a good mail day when they sent me three of their illustrious zines to review. Writing about these zines with no accompanying visuals is a challenge: they all feature eye-catching cut and paste collage mixed with thematic text. The most straightforward in this collection is The Doomsday Clock, which is a chronicle from the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists of how close we have come and how close we are to nuclear annihilation. Love and Beauty #1 includes “words to yearn by” with brief or extended quotes, philosophies, conversational fragments related to love, beauty, and the angst of relationships. Here’s one gem: “Immature love says I love you because I need you. Mature love says I need you because I love you.” The centerpiece of The Cultural Aether #5 includes lyrics to It’s a Beautiful Day’s song “Time Is”, surrounded by gorgeous clock and hourglass graphics. Each page is a journey unto itself.
Send some love & cash to:
The Cultural Aether
Monday, April 21, 2014
The folks at Hand Job Zine sent me a wonderful note along with this issue of their lit-zine. It reads in part: "We are a UK zine on our fourth issue, and like to keep the righting very British so there may be a few dubious slang words in there for you. You seem to share our love for the printed word though, which is the main reason for sending this. We need to keep it alive instead of reading on migraine inducing machines."
Amen to that. Hand Job Zine is definitely keeping the tradition of underground lit zines alive and well. There's poetry, art, short fiction, and too much cool stuff to mention in this issue - made with real sweat and tears by real hands and real people. I love the anarchic feel that is captured in these pages. No gods, no masters. No shit. Hand Job is the kind of zine that stops talking about freedom and revolution and actually does something.
For more info try:
Monday, April 14, 2014
The zine community is celebrating two decades & ten issues of Les Carnets de Rastapopoulos. This edition features articles, collages and sketches from the past ten editions and is a joy to explore cover to cover. Les Carnets de Rastapopoulos is delightfully old-school, typed on a typewriter, images cut by hand, everything pasted up and mailed via the postal service. Issue # 10 is bilingual (French & Anglais) and delves into cool Czech pop music 45s, a primer on Rockall, literally a rock in the Atlantic Ocean, and a description of other remote islands. That article alone had me intrigued by geography - I love obscure and forgotten places. Les Carnets de Rastapopoulos is wondrous in every sense of the word. Here's looking forward to the next ten issues!
Les Carnets de Rastapopoulos is FREE upon request - I suggest sending some $ for postage, zines, postcards, a letter, etc. to:
2-7 Larch Street
Tuesday, April 1, 2014
This cool mini-zine by Celia Perez has disappeared from etsy since I purchased it so I'm not sure where to find a copy. Library Ghosts is a complete delight, celebrating the magical wonders found in libraries that have mostly passed into history. Celia also includes a piece of microfilm and a card from a card catalog with this zine! I love libraries so ... I wish I had 100 copies of this to give to my friends.
Sunday, March 30, 2014
Show Me The Money #39
Contrary to conventional wisdom, I love judging a book (or a zine) by its cover. The cover of Show Me the Money #9 had me smiling from ear to ear. The cover itself, with messages in artful fonts writing against pink card stock, should be made into a poster. It reads, in part:
Anarchy is NOT chaos
Anarchy is NOT lawlessness
Anarchy IS based upon the principle of SELF-OWNERSHIP.
Anarchists are PEACEFUL people who reject initiated aggression against anyone WITHOUT EXCEPTION.
According to the mainstream media, anarchists are Molotov cocktail throwing terrorists. WRONG.
Tony Hunnicutt reports the news that mainstream media does not want you to hear. It’s not just that they are being lazy, or are too busy covering Miley Cyrus’ latest bout of optional clothing syndrome. Nope – they truly do NOT want you to know why the postal service is failing, that 30 million bees have been found dead in Canada, that the majority of rivers in the United States can not support aquatic life, how many jobs were lost and where, or what the Federal Reserve is up to in terms of economic manipulation. Zines like this are indispensible because you can’t make this shit up, and corporate controlled media won’t bring it to your attention.
It’s a sad day in zinedom. This is Dale’s last paper issue of Opuntia. Due to postal increases and other reasons, Dale (who has been a major supporter of the papernet) is taking Opuntia online-only via efanzines.com. Opuntia has been published since 1991 on paper only and has been a consistently excellent source of information and book reviews covering numerous scholarly and science fiction topics. This is a huge loss and I’m at a loss for words. I REFUSE to take my zines online where they are at the whim of isp providers and easy digital manipulation or deletion. Dale – don’t do it! Stay with us out here on the postal plains & fight the good fight.
Sunday, March 2, 2014
Cheer the Eff Up #6
5.5 X 8.5 / 58 pages / $3
This iteration of Cheer the Eff Up opens with Jonas’ truthful, emotional soul searching spilling onto the page in the aftermath of his wife’s miscarriage. Rarely do I read writing that is this raw – with all of the impact of pain and its implications – revealed in a zine. Cheer the Eff Up is also about hope and healing. About a quarter of the way through the focus shifts to Jonas’ complicated history with his friends and their inevitable drifting apart. Supposedly this is the final zine in this series. I highly recommended reading each one.
Monday, February 10, 2014
Oh yes, Shawn is back with the fifth installment of Bad Day at the Plastic Mines, this time illuminating Abstract Dictation, a new concrete language / experimental artform using ipads & other technology. It seems computers try to translate your words into print, and in the conversion process some interesting things happen. Add more than one voice to the mix and you have scrambled sentences for breakfast.
This one-page/doublesided/folded zine is always fascinating to read and shows what can be created with a piece of paper, something to say, and some ink.
Thursday, January 23, 2014
Learn more about Dreams of Donuts at heatherwreckage.blogspot.com
Friday, January 17, 2014
This is the first digital / online zine that I have reviewed, and I don’t intend to make a habit of it! Note to digitalheads: TRY PAPER. It rocks.
Another article explores a 1962 Canadian film board documentary about Paul Anka. From my limited exposure to CFB films, I’d watch just about anything they produced from that era.
There is some daft poetry in this issue, but if overlooked,
#11 is a solid and illuminating read. Dairy River
Thursday, January 16, 2014
Echoes of the Past #106
Full size / 30 pages / $16.99 for four issues
How reassuring it is to find a magazine like Echoes of the Past being published on paper in 2014! Echoes of the Past is essentially a doo-wop music fanzine, celebrating vocal group pop and r&b from the 1950’s and early 1960’s. Issue #6 includes interviews with members of The Kids, Golden Bells, Paul Evans, David White, and more. Most of these musicians hail from
New Jersey or Pennsylvania and had
local followings in their communities. Echoes From the Past delves into
discographies, the stories behind the recordings, and the obscure careers of
musicians that could have been more well-known. This zine is a treasure for
vinyl 45 aficionados and those who enjoy learning about bands and music before
the monstrous commercialist industry of our current culture emerged.
Thursday, January 9, 2014
The Blue Suitcase #1
half letter / 24 pages / $3
available from microcosm publishing
If I were writing this review in a bygone era, I might open with a line similar to this: “the young Mr. Carlough has triumphed again upon the printed page, sharing a gripping tale of a forgotten man’s curious ephemera.”
In a bygone era, there was no Facebook, no Google, no internet search engines. People’s lives were chronicled in vanishing footsteps and private moments – scrawls left on scraps of paper, battered notebooks, postcards, notations penciled in the margins of books. The life and thoughts of Antonio San Martino Carbayo are a mystery with only a few dusty fragments to sift through for clues. Mr. Carlough has preserved these fragments gleaned from the deceased Mr. Carbayo’s apartment within a blue suitcase which has sat like a beckoning, deranged intruder in his apartment for several years. The Blue Suitcase is a title worthy of an Edward Gorey anomaly, and indeed there are dark meanderings of the mind contained within.
I won’t give up the circumstances surrounding – or contents within - the blue suitcase. For those details, please read this fascinating zine / chapbook. Mr. Carlough promises three more volumes as he delves methodically into Mr. Carbayo’s notes, writings, and bizarre preoccupations (hypnotizing women for sex is just one of them!). I’m looking forward to reading his insights.
Sunday, January 5, 2014
Receiving two editions of Bad Day at the Plastic Mines in the mail helps make a bleak day a good mail day.
Each issue of Bad Day at the Plastic Mines is a colorful sheet of paper folded in thirds and limited to 100 copies. Issue #3 involves a songstory of Roxy Music's "Mother of Pearl". Issue #4 chronicles Shawn's early morning observations at a diner. Shawn manages to capture the feelings, sighs, and sounds into a narrative snapshot of a series of small moments. Plus there is a teaser of information on Abstract Dictation, which seems like a high-tech dadaist found poetry technique. Shawn says there will be more about Abstract Dictation in the next issue & I'm looking forward. For more info contact Shawn at KillmarkPub@gmail.com
Thursday, January 2, 2014
Quickening Zine Issue 1
Digest / 32 pages
$3 + $2 shipping to
Canada / $3 international
A good percentage of the zines I receive for review brim with negativity and angst. Quickening Zine is refreshingly positive, optimistic, and heart centered. We are spiritual beings having a human experience, yet our current culture seems to ignore spiritual dimensions of life in favor of shallow, narcissistic imagery and messages.
Heidi’s zine reflects her personal journey. She writes about her vocational path and how she became a healer. One essay focuses on self loving and sexuality, and another on bringing financial prosperity into your life. Heidi explores grief and dying and what she would like for a remembrance ceremony, and there’s even info about roller derby. Quickening #1 is a beautiful zine in every sense, infused with energy and spirit.
Monday, December 30, 2013
I originally read Chris Bird's parable The Sea Books in Whistle Zine #2. Here the story is contained within a stand-alone mini zine with dark pen & ink illustrations. Nothing detracts from the central mystery of this story - a surreal time and space where books wash ashore, changing the lives of people in a seaside village forever. Captivating prose.
A Little Zine Called Love is a mini zine from Fall 2012. It visually tells the story of hoe Annie changes the downward spiral of negativity into love with some balloons and zines. I like that National Public Radio plays a central role in this narrative. Exquisite, with a much needed moral.
A lot of heart & creativity goes into these projects. I'm not sure where to obtain either of these zines. Check online at www.lunablueartcollective.com
Sunday, December 22, 2013
Basic Paper Airplane #7
Joshua James Amberson
32 pages / ¼ size
Every issue I've read of Basic Paper Airplane feels like a cause for celebration. Each has its unique thread, its own story to tell. Joshua is such a friendly guide into his thoughts and world, its like reading a letter from a far-away friend.
I am alternately suspicious of and yet admire people who seem to have their lives “figured out.” Of course, we need to be aware of and comfortable with our true natures, our core selves. Yet we are always evolving, maturing, growing, changing. That’s the adventure of life. Basic Paper Airplane #7 explores not having it all figured out, and that’s just fine.
Joshua tells stories of trying to create art, making zines as a kid, reading a sixth grade essay in front of an audience, and more. Basic Paper Airplane flows like a stream of consciousness. Dive in.
Thursday, December 19, 2013
Paper and Ink Volume One:
Broken Hearts and Broken Bottles
Martin Appleby’s introductory notes to Paper and Ink were music to my ears. He talks about his love for paper zines and wanting to create a physical publication in an age when e-books are outselling traditional books. Martin writes “Maybe the printed word is doomed and I am fighting a losing battle, but maybe … just maybe there are still some people out there that will appreciate good old fashioned words, on paper, printed in ink.” Indeed, Martin, some of us are still out here on the edge of the papernet, sharpening pencils, dipping fountain pens into inkwells, applying postage stamps to real letters. There is hope. There is more than hope.
Martin has assembled an impressive group of creative writers in Paper and Ink Volume One, all thematically weaving narratives of loss and heartache. The zine’s opening piece, a punk romance by Chris Eng, is well written but the characters have cloudy intentions, spending one last night together before parting ways. William James lifts the quality bar a notch with his poem titled “Kids Like Us Will Be Alone Forever” & the zine hits its emotional stride with a brief but powerful poem by Martin. Anthony Macina’s The Breeze is an intense and beautifully realized short fiction. Then … the issue is over, all too brief.
The debut of Paper and Ink holds much promise and shows Martin’s strength in choreographing the zine’s literary dance. I’m looking forward to issue two and hopefully, beyond. On paper.
Saturday, December 14, 2013
Ghosts I Have Seen by Violet Tweedale
East End Days
Design: Joseph Carlough
Illustrations: Alyssa San Valentine
I believe this is the second volume of Violet Tweedale’s memoire that Joseph and collaborators have reproduced from the original book which was published in 1919 (the year my parents were born!).
Ghosts I Have Seen is a gorgeously produced chapbook. Violet Tweedale discusses religion and spirituality, Madame Blavatsky, and curious phenomena within these pages. She approached life with an open mind and audacious spirit, and chronicled her experiences via flourishes of nimble prose. Though San Valentine’s childlike artwork seems oddly incongruent juxtaposed with the substance of Tweedale’s writing, I highly recommend this chapbook.
Monday, December 9, 2013
Red Kitty Issue One
The whimsical, colorful cover of this zine enticed me to investigate further. In the 1990s I published two literary journals / magazines / whatever you wish to call them, yet fiction, poetry and creative writing have been relegated to the back pages of my reading list in the past few years. I decided to take a chance on Red Kitty – probably because it is bound with red thread. This issue features some simplistic yet effective artwork and accessible, well crafted writing. I was pleased to see the inclusion of John Grey who I published back in the day. Red Kitty Issue One is a solid debut effort.
Thursday, December 5, 2013
Decades of Confusion Feed the Insect #66
The creator of this zine surely had a different childhood than mine! Justin Duerr chronicles the first 15 years of his life in this full-sized, surreal, Dadaist memoir. Justin’s unique visual and narrative style draw readers into his early life story in absorbing tales of haunted closets, mysterious art, fantails, shortwave number stations, dubbing cassettes, cake decorating and more as he grows into an adolescent. Decades of Confusion Feed the Insect #66 is unparalleled and wondrous, and I am grateful that Justin is sharing his journey with us.
Monday, December 2, 2013
The Maudlin Sound 1 & 2
20 pages / quarter size
Here are two beautiful chapbooks printed on quality paper featuring snippets of narrative by E. Blake from
At first the brief bursts of prose seem random but soon start to take shape and
flow. Blake’s use of language is both sparse and poetic, minimalist in the best
sense: painting sketches and scenes, internal emotions and external space, with
an economy of words. Some of these vignettes are interconnected, some seem to
stand alone, all seem to leave a thought or image dangling like an unfinished
conversation - dreamlike in some passages, vivid in others, wrapped in the
absence of a ticking clock, the spinning of a turntable, or the slow descent of
Tuesday, November 26, 2013
What qualifies me to review feminist zines? I'm solidly male, after all. Perhaps the Women's Studies class I took in college. Or maybe just being human.
Habits of Being Issue One focuses on a women's intentional community and the people who live there. It is comprised of oral history interviews with three women and two thematically related narratives. My copy came with pages collated out of sequence which made for much back & forth page turning. Oral history is my favorite technique for exploring our biographies, culture, and evolution. Habits of Being is an absorbing read and is available coupled with an audio cd of the interviews on etsy.
Thursday, November 21, 2013
Its not everyday that you receive a record that is complete in its beauty – sleeve art, red vinyl, postcards, stickers and even lyrics included! This release from Bears (Craig Ramsey and Charlie McArthur) features four melodic indie pop songs for the holidays. These tunes are introspective and real – pondering where we go for the holidays, who do we see, what do we do. Lyrically, these songs explore the longing that comes with the winter season – a time to face our fears, a longing for connection, a yearning for magic from childhood to still be true. Timeless sentiments for the moment of now.
Sunday, November 17, 2013
Real Fake Clouds
Field Guide and Audio Companion
Edition of 150
Bodies of Water
Field Guide and Audio Companion
Edition of 150
$5 cash each from
Lemon O Books
P.O. Box 11872
P.O. Box 11872
Real Fake Clouds is a gorgeous chapbook of impressionistic photography flowing around a cloud / air theme. Some of these images seem like windows into an imagined sky, one far above the clouds, a world of crystalline shivers touching the outer atmosphere. The accompanying cd includes two tracks: one by Druome that conjures up images of dissonant thunderstorms, and a lengthy, airy piece by Daniel Menche that brings you into the space around and between raindrops and wind.
Bodies of Water is equally visually intriguing. Slowly absorbing the images and music, one might find themselves diving and surfacing within liquid dreams. And the sky makes a reappearance, completing the cycle of water / cloud / rain / water. The two tracks on the Bodies of Water cd by Frippenino feel infused and informed by water, the womb, and ambient melodies that trickle just beyond our hearing.
Both of these zines are works of art, labors of love, and wondrous to hold in one’s hand and gaze as the accompanying audio washes over one’s awareness. A sensory delight.
Monday, November 11, 2013
Once in a while, a zine arrives that is breathtaking in its concept and design. This special issue of Manual Dexterity is a work of art unto itself - there are numerous mini zines enclosed with band interviews and graphic arts in various creative formats, a cd of gorgeous music by Monarques, and more. There's no hesitation on recommending this issue of Manual Dexterity - the price and package are generous - simply order and enjoy.
This message brought to you by a mostly anti capitalist.
Saturday, November 9, 2013
It's fundraising time again here at the auld cottage industry! And the holidays are almost upon us! I'm living with reduced income so the holidays are looking bleak, especially in the zine printing department. Thanks to the generosity of prior grab-bag supporters I was able to print Paper Radio Reader 2014 and issue two of Social Studies. Coming up next is a metamorphosis of Turntable Operator. That's all I'll say for now!
Between now and my birthday, December 14, 2013 I am offering grab bags full of my perzines, Paper Radio, Night Train to Mundo Fine, Turntable Operator & other creative projects PLUS a zine or three of other folks zines from my zine archive / collection.
$15 cash or PayPal (marked as a gift) to
email@example.com will support my continued zine publishing efforts and will get a package
off in the mail to you as soon as I can get to the post office.
Wishing you many blessings.
Thursday, November 7, 2013
32 pages / digest / $1 or trade
This issue of Mishap is titled “Mistakes Were Made”. Ryan delves into his childhood adventures and misadventures, teasing personal history from memory onto the page. Ryan’s writing is literate, lyrical and expressive and pulls you into the scene almost immediately. His description of chasing after the family dog as a young child, and the emotional implications of that incident, is breathtaking. I also loved his account of lessons learned from participating in civic “democracy” and how that process can be a smokescreen for imposed rule. In a chapter titled Monster Club, Ryan writes “The normal is celebrated and enforced everyday, while the odd things are relegated to one day a year, or a movie, or a protest. It is however the normal that is wrong, as you can see by looking at where normalcy has got society”. Amen.
The second half of Mishap #32 lost me thematically – mostly because it centers around skateboarding and punk music and sports, which are not my forte. Still, it’s a solid zine and highly recommended by ye olde DJ zine reviewer.
Wednesday, November 6, 2013
Do you set goals and intentions for yourself? While I'm unemployed, getting motivated and getting things done is more essential than ever. I've started writing a blog about setting and accomplishing intentions and I'd be grateful for feedback and encouragement. www.intentionsfortheweek.blogspot.com
If One Minute Zine Reviews is a helpful blog to you, please share with others. I am assessing whether to continue with One Minute Zine Reviews in 2014 or work on other creative projects instead. I would like to increase readership, the number of blog followers and comments. Self promotion is something that doesn't come naturally to me! So please repost reviews, link away, tweet & facebook, and let's reach out to zine readers and non zine readers alike to celebrate the world of print!
Also, if you get a few moments please listen to some of my new radio shows titled "Paper Radio".
I'm open to suggestions for topics to cover in future editions. http://radio4all.net/index.php/contributor/4825
Thank you & wishing you many blessings.
~ DJ Frederick
Monday, November 4, 2013
Davida Gypsy Breier
22 pages /digest / $2
I am always looking for resources to help with the age-old dilemma of how to explain to people: what is a zine? Davida’s Meta Zine is possibly the clearest, most concise guide to zines I've read thusfar. Opening with a thoughtful passage by Al Burian on Why Write, Davida’s zine introduces the world of zines in a natural flow. She tackles with grace the koan “What is a Zine” (I imagine Zen masters asking this of their novitiates). A brilliant essay follows titled “The Revolution Will Not Be Televised, It Is Being Published”. Part Two of Meta Zines delves into the process of making a zine which such clarity that anyone who reads this will be able to create their own vision if they so desire.
The magic message is that only you can start the revolution. Unplug the television and let your creative self dance.
Wednesday, October 30, 2013
8 Track Mind #102
available from Antiquated Future
Russ Forster curates what I feel to be one of the most important zines currently in production. 8 Track Mind digs into analog culture with essays about the disparity between digital and analog platforms and how each is experienced. There is more than waxing nostalgia for tape and vinyl at work here – these essays brim with a personal, yet social examination of our relationship with music, content, and format. Some of the contents include: Romancing the Record by Jake Whitener, Cassette Revival by Tim Hinely, The Unity of Time and Space by Lucien Williams, a special mini zine insert titled Surfing the Digital Divide on Fourth-Wave Format Nostalgia and much more. All of the writing in this issue is engaging, mindful, substantial. If you are going to read only one zine this year – make it 8 Track Mind.
Here's a new audio project for radio that I'm trying out. This is the first show, an introduction. Please give it a listen & let me know what you think!
As of 10/4/2013 four stations are airing Paper Radio. There's a list and links here on the blog. Thank you!
As of 10/4/2013 four stations are airing Paper Radio. There's a list and links here on the blog. Thank you!
Tuesday, October 29, 2013
The Radical Uprise 032
Full disclosure: Ye olde DJ has an article included in this zine.
The heart & soul of Dusty Paperbacks comes right in the middle of this quarter-sized zine: an essay by Shulie B titled The Importance of the Written Word which delves into the author’s relationship with physical books with clarity and succinct expression. Shulie B’s words resonate with me and articulate concepts that I've been struggling to put down on paper for months. We touch, smell, taste, see, feel and imagine differently with a book in our hands vs. an electronic reader. The experience is literally more organic. A sacred path leads us from bookshop or library back to publisher back to printer back to author and connects us in ways that are difficult to express but that are qualitatively different than a connection with a cold white screen. .
Shulie B’s narrative is unfortunately the only piece that I personally connected with in this zine (apart from my own). When it comes to the topic of love for literature and dusty books we need dozens, hundreds of voices singing from the page. A stack of zines proclaiming that books are not dead. Sometimes less is more but with a topic this compelling, more is more. I wish there had been more substance in this zine.
Friday, October 25, 2013
Dream Whip No. 14
By Bill Brown
available from Microcosm Publishing
Bill Brown is an astute journalist. There are stretches of Dream Whip No. 14 where I could not put this book down – Bill’s trip to
aboard a freighter is one of them. Another passage where Bill and a friend
visit the ill-fated Biosphere 2 is hysterical. Trains, travels, and keen observations intersect with brilliant writing (and legible handwriting). There is so much substance to absorb within this edition of Dream Whip that I wish it had been restructured into several
Tuesday, October 22, 2013
And every one of those words rang true
And glowed like burning coal
- Bob Dylan, Tangled Up in Blue
Piltdown Lad 8.5
The Cult of Teddy Ruxpin
For the first dozen pages of The Cult of Teddy Ruxpin I thought I was reading a word-for-word account of my adolescence. My parents were Christians and I remember attending numerous “revival” meetings – the shouting preachers, hellfire and damnation, Jesus as the only bridge to salvation, the call to be born again, the magnetic tug of the crowd as people leave their seats to push up front and be blessed, the ceaseless persuasion to conform, the mesmerizing speaking in tongues, the baptism of fire.
Through his writing, Kelly captures the mixed emotions of adolescence, the mixed motivations, feelings, and thoughts that besiege us in the spaces between childhood and adulthood. The Cult of Teddy Ruxpin is a story of rebellion and personal evolution. Like most of Kelly’s zines, this was a “read straight through” session – cliché as it sounds, I literally could not put this zine down until I was finished reading. Then I started at the beginning again.