Xerography Debt #3
Table of Contents
Introduction to the Interviews by Androo Robinson Page
Xerography Debt is a Leeking Inc., publication. It is scheduled to
appear 3 times a year. Issues are $2. Send cash, zines, and correspondence to:
Davida Gypsy Breier PO Box 347, Glen Arm, MD 21057 USA
Copyright June 2000
Note about the online version: Androo Robinson's interviews with Bobby Tran Dale, Jesse Reklaw, Madison Clell, and Jenny and Serena Makofsky are excellent and well-worth reading. They wouldn't have been legible in a scanned format, so if you want to read those you are going to have to order a paper copy. Also, Bobby Tran Dale's back cover comic is hysterical.
"The walk toward the po box is always significant, I never know what
to expect, yet always hope for a full box. putting the key in the lock I can
usually tell if I've gotten anything even before opening. There's a certain
feeling to the door when envelopes and magazines are pushed up against it from
within. It's very pavlovian, I begin salivating the moment I walk through the
post office doors. If my senses are right and the box is full, I receive my
daily fix and drive off giddy. If they're wrong and it is empty (or worse yet,
a single record label postcard informing me of some shitty band playing in
Missoula, which usually arrives post performance anyway), my head hangs low and
I drive or bike off feeling blue and desperate. A junkie without a fix is a
junkie in need."
Randy - SPAGHETTI DINNER AND DANCING #14
If this is your first issue of XEROGRAPHY DEBT this should clarify things: Xerography Debt is a review zine for zine readers by zine writers. It is a hybrid of review zine and personal zine. XEROGRAPHY DEBT has its own freestyle approach. It is all about communication, so each reviewer has used the format or style most comfortable to him or her. Also, each reviewer "owns" the zine in a completely communal, non-possessive sense. We are individual artists and writers coming together to collaborate and help keep zineland flourishing. It is a communal experience from start to finish. I would like to thank Tracy, Dave, and for helping me staple and fold the last issue. To further promote this effort to connect readers and writer/artists, Tom Hendricks of MUSEA has agreed to host Xerography Debt on his website: (http://musea.digitalchainsaw.com). It will be available for free online (some artwork will only be available in print) or paper copies can be ordered through me.
Something I have grudgingly come to realize is that there is no way I can review everything that I receive. I will do the best I can. I am but one overworked person. I had about 100 zines in my "possible review" pile and could only squeeze in about 30. Do your part by ordering a few zines from the many reviewed here and if you self-publish please consider including a few reviews in your zine.
I have to admit to one major pet peeve - people who send zines without a note or even form letter. I have no clue if they want to trade (and if so for which of my zines) or reviewed. Thus, I have a new policy - any new zine (ie, someone that I haven't before corresponded or traded with) that comes in without a note is cast into the "do not review" pile. Harsh? Probably, but oddly most of those zines are usually crap anyway. How hard is it to scrawl "for possible review?" or even just "review?" If you don't have the time to write a 5 word note, I'm sorry, but I don't have the time to review your zine.
If you are interested in reviewing for Xerography Debt, please contact me by mail or e-mail for some rather vague, but supposedly helpful guidelines. All you need to do is write five reviews that will excite people to send money, stamps, or a trade. I hope to have #4 done around September, so the deadline for reviewers is August 15th, 2000.
"Mail is the oil that greases the gears of life."
DGB Penn Station 3/15/00 4:45pm
In the Mailbox
From Kate Haas (MIRANDA)
I have recently mastered the fine art of reading while breastfeeding, and Xerography Debt was one of the first publications I used my new skill on.
Fred Argoff - 1800 Ocean Parkway (#B-12), Brooklyn, NY 11223-3037
Patrick Tandy - PO Box 11064, Baltimore, MD 21212
Here's a catch-22: I had to work an additional job to pay for the printing and mailing of this issue. While it meant I could publish this issue, it cut into the time I actually had to work on it. I don't want to take ads, so if you would like to help sponsor Xerography DEBT with a few stamps or cash, please feel free to do so. Also let me know if you wish to remain anonymous. XEROGRAPHY DEBT sponsors are:
Tracy, Dave, and Marc
5 ZINES I LIKE THAT I HAVEN'T SEEN MENTIONED IN XEROGRAPHY DEBT YET
OK, I guess I'm not exactly going to win the award for most clever review theme, am I? I spent a long time trying to think of a clever theme but it didn't work out. I felt bad enough having to limit this list to only 5 zines, trying to choose 5 in one specific category was nearly impossible. For example, I considered doing a list of five zines with animals in the title but then I thought about all the great zines that don't have animals in the title. It just didn't seem fair to do anything so specific that anyone could be excluded. The only zines I excluded were ones that have already been in XD because... well they've already been in here. I want to write about zines that haven't been in here yet because just because I felt like it. I don't need any better reason than that, do I? Damn skippy I don't. So lets end this rambling and move on to the reviews.
KING- CAT COMICS AND STORIES
The first zine I ever read was King Cat #50 and my reaction was...well, I was less than enthusiastic. I thought the artwork was horrible, the stories were all pretty boring and nothing really happened and overall I was pretty underwhelmed by the whole thing. Well folks, I'm happy to say that in the 3 or 4 years since I first saw this comic I've done a complete 180. Now I can't figure out why I didn't like this comic in the first place. Yes the art is pretty simple, but it's quite beautiful at the same time and fits perfectly with the stories he's telling. And hey, I haven't even mentioned the stories which are the real strength of this comic. A lot of them are about being in touch with nature, a lot of them are about Zen Buddhism, all of them (or at least most of them) are wonderful and if I even try to describe them they'll come out sounding a lot stupider than they really are. This is a great zine. One of the best. Current issue #56
Spit and a Half
c/o John Porcellino
PO Box 881
Elgin, IL 60121
SHOUTING AT THE POSTMAN
One thing this zine has going for it that very few other zines have is variety. One issue will be nothing but art by Ken and his friends, the next issue will be all about the frustrations of moving into a new home and a very odd and funny Thanksgiving spent with friends which also teaches you a very important lesson - you should always spend the holidays with your family - of course they'll drive you insane but at least you have an idea of how you'll be driven insane. Spend it with friends and you can't be quite sure what the Hell you're getting into. At any rate, you can never be quite sure what to expect from a new issue of this zine but whatever you get will be damned entertaining and well written (unless it's one of the art issues, in which case there won't be a whole lot of writing. The writing that is there will be well written but you're supposed to be focusing on the art [which is always very interesting to look at by the way] not the well written descriptions of the art) and all it'll cost you is a stamp. A stamp! C'mon, you can't beat that price.
Current issue #38
each issue is only one stamp or trade and I'm pretty sure that if you send more stamps you'll get more issues (But don't quote me on that)
Ken B Miller
PO Box 101
Newtown PA 18940-0101
FUNK ON THE BURNER #7
First of all, this zine has one of the coolest covers I've ever seen. The cover has a full color photo of some poor bastard's chest who apparently underwent some sort of heart surgery. At first I thought it was a corpse who just had an autopsy but then I realized that if it was a corpse the wound would not heal and leave a gruesome scar. I'll tell you what though, the dude on this cover is in desperate need of a tan. This zine is worth getting just so you can see the cover. And as a bonus it's a pretty damn good read. Now if you're someone who only enjoys zines with fancy layouts and lots of pictures then this is not the zine for you. Outside of the cover there are no pictures and the layout is simple and readable but the writing is where this zine shines with funny articles such as 'Why Not to Date a Drug Dealer," "Dating Tips for Horny Boys" and more thoughtful articles such as "A Devaluation of Self." All in all this is a very entertaining zine. Its a bit on the short side (10 full sized pages) but I'd rather have a short well written zine than a zine that's loaded with poorly written articles just because the editor felt that they needed to fill space. A very good zine. And damn is that cover cool.
current issue #7
$2 or trade
PO Box 1515
Portland, OR 97207
CAT BUTT IN YOUR FACE #3 This is a zine that quite frankly I
wasn't expecting to enjoy as much as I did. At first glance it looked like
every article was about heavy metal and since I'm not much of a metal head
(those kids with that crazy music...Perry Como- now that was music) I wasn't
expecting much. But then I actually read it and I was very pleasantly
surprised. While most of the articles are in some way related to metal music
don't let that scare you away because the metal-ness of it all, while it's
always part of the story, it never becomes the story. My favorite pieces in
this zine were "My Very First Metal Show" and an account of what it's like
being a metal head in Catholic school (and surprisingly it's not the horror
story you might think it would be) and I also reality enjoyed the live show
reviews which are more about what happened at the show than the show itself
which is a good move because in general there's nothing I find more annoying
than reading show reviews of bands you've never heard of and would have no
interest in even if you had heard of them. But Shoshannah does the near
impossible by making these reviews interesting and one of the zine's
highlights. While I could've done the metal album reviews and some of the more
pure metal stuff overall it's a fun read and recommended.
current issue #3
PO Box 470263
San Francisco, CA 94147-0263
Last and certainly not least comes this beautiful zine. I'm at something of a loss for words here. This issue is basically about Emily's prescription drug addiction and features cheery topics such as addiction in general, suicidal thoughts, a visit to the "nuthouse," withdrawal from drugs, and finally coming to terms with the fact that she is an addict. If all this sounds depressing...well maybe it is to a certain degree but it never becomes hopeless. You never reach the point where you just want to throw it in it trash because it's so depressing. Maybe the thing that saves from becoming over the top depressing in the fact that Emily is such a great writer and is so good at explaining what happened and why she feels it happened and she's just great at explaining her emotions and what she was going through at the time. Just an amazing, brave, honest zine that I can't recommend to you highly enough.
current issue #18
trade city (your zine or anything you make)
PO Box 124
Willington CT 06279
Do you know something? After my batch of reviews in the previous XEROGRAPHY DEBT, I actually got letters from several of you guys. And since letters are pretty much the elixir of life to zine editors, I figured I'd do it again. If you send me a zine hoping I'd review it and you don't see it here, hang out a while, willya? I wound up with a backlog, and as long as Davida keeps doing the zines (and wants my reviews), I'll get around to them, eventually. Oh yes, and one other thing. Since I'd like to continue receiving mail, please note my new address, effective whenever you are reading these words: 1800 Ocean Parkway (#B-12), Brooklyn, NY 11223-3037. And now to paraphrase something my Mom used to say when I was a little kid, less talk, more zine reviews.
On a fairly regular basis (and this goes double for whenever I ask
someone if they'll be interested to write something for either of my own
zines), I hear people complain that they can't write. Maybe they don't know
when to use a given word, and they'll be embarrassed if someone they know sees
their work in print. Well, here's a nifty little zine that will help.
GRAMMAR Q & A is exactly what the title suggests. People write in
with questions, and editor Alden Scott Crow and his contributing editors
respond with easy-to-understand explanations. For instance, in issue #20
earlier this year explained the differences between could, would, and should.
You read this zine for a while, and you realize that language isn't the stuff
of nightmares -- it's fun. And before you know it, you'll be slingin' some
pretty vigorous grammar yourself! You don't even have to crack open your
checkbook to subscribe: one year's worth of the zine goes for five first class
Alden Scott Crow
PO Box 445
Clements, CA 95227
Have you noticed that there are some crazy things going on in the world?
You have? Hey, that's good; it means you're not living under a rock. The only
way to get from one day to the next (preserving your sanity, I mean) safely is
to have a sense of humor. And that's why you need a zine like CULTURE
FREAK. At first glance, it looks awfully serious -- sort of like one of
those "fact sheets" put out by a major corporation when they have to cover up
for something they've done. But then you see that, factual through it may be,
it's really parodying the insanity rampant around the world. Scattered
throughout each issue are "ads" for products that don't exist -- at least, they
won't until some weirdo marketing person dreams them up! If I have a problem
with this zine, it's that you never really know when the next issue is coming
out (that's an idiosyncrasy of mine; I do zines like clockwork. Ask Davida,
she'll tell you! [ed. It's true. You can count on Fred's zine clock more than
the lunar calendar.]) That bit of complaining aside, you really ought to stuff
$3 in an envelope and send for the next issue. Just don't read it while
drinking soda -- it's such a terrible feeling to have carbonated liquid
shooting out of your nose.
PO Box 1186
New York, NY 10276
Suppose you really feel strongly about something. Wouldn't it be great
if there was a way for you to share your passion with the rest of the world?
Well, God bless America, because there is a way you can. It's a zine yclept
PASSIONS. Actually, its subtitle proclaims it to be a "Cooperative Press
Association." In plain English, this means that you join up, contribute your
scribblings, and they get printed in the next issue right along with everyone
else's. You also share the costs of production and postage, all of which works
out wonderfully if you'd rather not produce your own zine by yourself. And
since everyone has something they're passionate about, well, why wouldn't you
consider something like this? (It happens to be a great read, too. One of the
contributing members writes about cartoons; I find that fascinating!) You can
inquire about joining the association, or check the latest issue out via the
sample route, which means that you should send $3.50 to:
2140 Erma Drive
East Meadow, NY 11554-1120
I should say right here that SUITABLE 4 FRAMIN' gives much of its
emphasis to graffiti, and I've never been a major fan of that endeavor.
However, the intricate lettering graffitists are capable of producing amazes me
to no end. Maybe that's because my artistic abilities extend only to pathetic
stick figures. Editor Raju Singh collects examples of graffiti from around the
world (everyone wants to show off their stuff!) and the more I see of it, the
more artistically disadvantaged I feel. There's also reviews of flix -- kung fu
and hip-hop tend to predominate -- and the occasional political rant. You're
invited to reply to these, but Raju doesn't want to hear from you unless you
know what you're talkin' about. That sounds fair to me. There wasn't a price on
the cover of the last issue, but I think $3 will land you a copy, cash insisted
upon. Tell Raju you heard the news from me.
PO Box 12686
Berkeley, CA 94712-2686
Willona has hit a balance between two very difficult subjects: the punk scene worldwide, and political awareness at home. What's more, she does both without getting preachy or too obscure. Her love of both these subjects radiates off the page and you can't help but be impressed. In issue 5, she embarks on her biggest project to date, making contact with punks from France to Guatemala to Indonesia, interviewing them on their local scene and learning their languages in order to read their zines. If that ain't commitment to DIY and building community, I don't know what is.
($2 USA, $3 world. #5, fullpage newsprint about 60 pages.)
PO Box 7804
Washington DC 20044-7804
MARVEL ZOMBIE SOCIETY APA
An apa is like a zine round robin - every month sends in copies of their zine, the central mailer collates them, and sends them back to everyone. It started for people obsessed with Marvel comics - duh, but has expanded out into comics in general (mostly mainstream and anime, at the minute, but it changes), movies, wicca, and general mayhem. The effort people put into these zines is amazing, and you can never guess what people are obsessed with. Confession time: I've been a member of this, on and off, for five years now, and I can personally attest to how addictive it is. It's a regular little community. And, you can set up your account for only $5.
($3 sample, usually AT LEAST 150 pages)
Houston TX 77083
The name means 'slug-a-bed' in German. Isy lives in an anarchist collective on the south coast of England and draws amazing slice-of-life comics about her roommates, hitchhiking to demos, the Spanish Revolution, and her cat. She has a really great sense of humor, which makes her stories very accessible whether you agree with her anarchism or not - although anti-Nazism is a topic on which everyone can agree! In the collected issue, she writes a heartfelt piece about being German-Korean and being out of place in both cultures. Get 'em both, for god's sake, she's really wonderful. Don't be skimpy when you send her money, either - postage is three times as expensive over here.
($1 + 1 IRC for issue 5, $1 + 3 IRCs for issues 1-4 collected. Halfsize, #5 about 20 pages, collected much thicker)
c/o Box B
Public House Bookshop
21 Little Preston Street
Brighton BN1 2HQ, England.
What Andi and Lisa do is rip pop culture to shreds, pointing out all those little things in daily life that bug you so much and then explain why. Why must Buffy have perfect hair, makeup and nails while kicking vampire butt? What is "Ally McBeal" trying to say about single women? Why are naked women so prevalent in advertising? Whose porn is it anyway? They also interview women like Ariel Schrag (teenage cartoonist) in every issue to examine their position as artists and promote their work. This is my favorite magazine. Please, please, please, please, please buy a copy or even subscribe - because we women are goddamn worth it.
($5 for one, 4 for $12)
Bitch: Feminist Response to Pop Culture
2765 16th Street
San Francisco CA 94103
Kirsty's thick little zine might be the most all-inclusive of anyone's personal zines I have ever laid eyes on. Each issue has pro-vegetarian, pro-marijuana, pro-DIY articles, many recipes and information on coffee brewing and drink mixing, political opinions, and comics. Her artwork is scattered throughout and I was extremely impressed as to how quickly her drawing improved once she started art school - issue 7 in particular has some gorgeous cityscapes. I hope she's continuing with this, because if she's this good while in college who knows where she'll go? An all-around impressive zine - you'll like it, I promise.
(7 issues, #7 winter 99)
1720 Baseline Rd.
Nepean, ON K2C 0B9
Paul Lucas has an obsession with products. Not just what you see on the shelves in the supermarket, but the obscure, why-were-they-ever-created type of toy or drink or canned food that, when brought into the public eye, make you say, "What the hell?" reviewed in his zine are such marvels as pondaeggi (canned bug larva, a Korean snack), ketchup and clam favored chips, body glue, lawn make-up (a green spray paint), and reindeer paté. He also explores ad copy to the last detail, including his often hilarious attempts to contact the company's PR people and get some answers about their confusion packaging phrases. All this plus record reviews (which never seem to be about the music). One of the few zines that is as smart as it is funny.
160 St. John's Place
Brooklyn, NY 11217
I don't know if I would call this a perzine, but it contains rambling thoughts on a multitude of random topics that enter the lives of Adam and his friends and family - and boy, these kids are funny. Adam in particular writes in such a way that you can almost imagine him in a room of people, telling a story while everyone around him cracks up the whole time. Highlights of this issue: Reviews of Movies I Haven't Seen, photos of a bunch of dorks dressed up at an anime convention, and a back and forth rap war on the topic of meat. Reviews, interviews, and rants round out this phat package. I was laughing outloud in parts. Vol 4, #15 goth and cartoon issue
PO Box 3437
Long Island City, NY 11103
I'M JOHNNY AND I DON'T GIVE A FUCK #3
Andy collected these stories from his life and wrote them out by hand - yes, you can actually read it - and you get the sense that some people's lives have been given to them for them to make tales out of, to pass along their experiences so that others can live in their shoes for a few hours. Each issue seems only to focus on a few months of his life, which amazes me not only cause the zine's so compact and, in a way, like a novella, but just that so much goes on. Travel, mischief, girlfriends, escape from the cops. The Canadian Aaron Cometbus.
1850 Commercial Dr.
Vancouver, BC V5N 4A0
This has got to be my all-time favorite women's magazine around. I'm still considering it a zine (even though in NYC you can buy it at newsstands) because it runs no ads and is independently published, but the quality is strictly professional. You will throw away every Cosmo and Glamour after reading something this read. One issue is all about money and investing (when was the last time your women's mag covered this?); one is about the power if girlfriends. This is a strong, well-written, politically aware mag devoted to enlightening and connecting women as hip, thoughtful, strong smart beings and not as the painted clotheshorses "the man" wants us to be. Order one; you'll see what I mean.
PO Box 319
New York, NY 10023
My last issue of SCOUT took entirely too long to finish. After I was done, I sent away for a bunch of new zines. After my recent stagnation, these zines inspired me to get off my can and get cracking on a new issue. So I guess you could say that these are five zines that inspired me in one way or another.
KING-CAT COMICS AND STORIES After I received John Porcellino's
most recent issue (# 56), I loved it so much that I instantly sent for some
more. #56 is entirely one comic of a coming of age story.
My favorite so far is #55, which is a collection of various shorter autobiographical comics. Subjects include encounters with possums, owls, and getting an eyelash trapped in his eye. I think what I like the most about them is their calming simplicity.
I was amazed to find out that he's been doing this zine for ten years. I certainly hope that I can do a zine that good for that long.
$2.00/8.5" x 5.5"/28 pages
P.O. Box 881
Elgin IL 60121
Patrick Lee sent me a copy of issue #9 out of the clear blue sky. I love getting zines as a surprise. I had read one of his previous issues, so this was a nice treat for me. The title of this issue is "Bearing the Wait," and it's a collection of short autobiographical comics. My favorite was "Can You Identify the 5 Types of Comics-Convention Geeks." Even though I've never been to a convention, this make me laugh out loud at its homage to Matt Groening. Plus, Pat takes one of Davida's journal entries and puts pictures with it. I guess what I like best about TIME'S UP is Pat's ability to sum up a complex story in only one page.
$2.00/8.5" x 5.5"/28 pages
Patrick J. Lee
280 N. Florence Street
Burbank CA 91505-3618
NOT MY SMALL DIARY
The fact that I am in this zine somehow seems to ruin my credibility, but here goes. Delaine rocks my world! Not only is she the fabulous collector of Atari and Pez dispensers (a girl after my own heart), she produces her comics MY SMALL DIARY, and also publishes the work of others artists IN NOT MY SMALL DIARY. For those of you who haven't seen NMSD, this time around (issue #7) it features work by thirty-six artists, each chronicling one day in their life. It's sheer genius and truly a bargain at only $1.00. Delaine is fantastically friendly and sums up all that is right in the zine world.
$1.00/8.5" x 5.5"/60 pages
1248 22nd St. S. C-2
Birmingham AL 35205
This is a wonderful per-zine by Bunnigrrrl. #9 is the first issue I've seen, and it knocked my socks off. Bunnigrrrl writes about socialism, the earthquakes in her California home, environmental issues, and highlights of her favorite spots in her hometown. I especially loved her one page comic about her experience with yoga. Very amusing. WISHBONE is intelligent without being intellectual. It's honest without being whiney. And there is a great mix of serious and fun articles. Never before have I seen Socialist rants and facts about bunny rabbits in the same zine. But somehow she pulls it off. An excellent read.
$2.00/8.5" x 5.5"/40
32158 Camino Capistrano, A.
San Juan Capistrano, CA 92675
I wish OBLIVION had been around when I was in high school. I wrapped my paws around issue #9 and it made me remember how much I hated certain aspects of high school. This issue includes stories about the constitutional rights of nonverbal peaceful demonstration in the form of black armbands, AOL parental control settings, and yet another story about the post-Columbine hysteria. Also includes some news stories from across the nation. I remember how angry I was in high school, and I can only imagine how much worse it is now. There will always be wigged-out power-tripping high school teachers, but there will always be a group of angry teens giving them hell, as the way it should be. OBLIVION is a mighty fine zine, even if you're not so full of angst anymore. The price is free, but send a buck or two to support the cause.
Free (postage)/7" x 8.5"/24
P.O. Box 95227
Seattle, WA 98145-2227
By Cali Ruchala
A few months ago, a message came through the ZAMIR internet mailing list that Attack, an alternative culture collective in Zagreb, Croatia, was looking for donations to stock the library at their brand new "autonomous culture factory."
This got me thinking (and you know how dangerous that can be). I have a shitload of zines that I've picked clean, and from the general chatter among other zinesters, it would appear that the "yearly purge" is a pretty common phenomenon. What would happen if we, instead of giving old zines away slowly, packing them into closets with cosmic, interdimentional landfills, or (horrors) even throwing them away, sent them off to places like Attack that are trying to foster independent, DIY culture.
As [Delusions of Grandeur #7] went to press, feelers sent out to other projects in the Balkins had yet to be answered. No kidding - after the interview with Manazin!, I turned up ever rock to try to disprove his claim that there was no real small press in the Balkins. Though it's still too early to say for certain, I think he's made his point.
It sounded easy enough. And if anyone can pull it off, I probably could [ed.- I agree]. Remember that feeling of zine at first sight: the thought of, "Big fucking deal, I could do this"? Then, pausing for a moment, and having the kind of epiphany that occurs when after hours of laborious thought you finally realize the obvious? The idea is to replicate that feeling (and, hopefully, that reaction) among people whose chance of seeing a zine in passing is close to nil.
To save on shipping, I'll be acting as the central repository (and no, this isn't a thinly-veiled scheme to get more zines: anyone who corresponds with me knows that I already get more shit in the mail than I know what to do with). This is going to be a long-term project, but hopefully we can get a box out every month. Interested? Email or send 'em on to Cali Ruchala, 100 E. Walton #31H, Chicago, IL 60611, or you can reach Attack directly at Attack, Vukovarska 237 c/2, 1000 Zagreb, Croatia.
Davida Gypsy Breier
I tried to review zines I hadn't reviewed before, or zines that weren't already reviewed by someone else in this issue. These were primarily zines I received from January to the beginning of May.
Picks for the issue:
Boys Who Wear Glasses
The Contessa's Tome
Delusions of Grandeur
Except In Dreams
Guinea Pig Zero
I'm Johnny and I Don't Give a Fuck
Red Hanky Panky
The Urban Pantheist
(This symbol * indicates a pick.)
I liked the black and white photograph on black construction paper cover. Ailecia is living in Kansas now, and working at a photo store. This issue shows the flux going on in Ailecia's life and the questioning that the early 20's seem to generate. She dated women in college, but is now dating men and dealing with the confusion involved. She also shares her questions about being adopted.
Current issue #7 (Dec 1999)
PO Box 297
Lawrence, KS 66044
* BOYS WHO WEAR GLASSES
Fragments and Marginalia, part II
This is one of those zines I've gushed over repeatedly. I sincerely hope Mark decides to keep publishing BWWG, even if it is an annual event. It is personal and intimate in ways I can never be with words. Mark's writing and personality are so appealing, that I always feel guilty for not getting up to Philadelphia to see him and his boyfriend Donny. His zine takes you into his life, the problems, dreams, and pleasures and it is an interesting place to go. I also love the inclusion of his margin drawings. Highly recommended as always.
Current issue #6
PO Box 411
Swarthmore, PA 19081
A Loud and Continuous Uproar of Hundreds of Human Voices
This is an ambitious project, one that I hope succeeds. Jen Angel and Jason Kucsma have teamed up to create a bi-monthly magazine with the kinds of articles usually only found in zines and other underground press. The premiere issue included a first person account of the WTO protests in Seattle, hiking the Appalachian Trail, an interview with Howard Zinn, Internet privacy, and much, much more. Issue #2 continues two articles begun in the first - one on experiencing pregnancy and the other on graffitti artists. There are pieces on "HMO Horrors," non-monogamy, women in hip hop, and over 20 other articles. This is a lengthy read with few ads. I particularly like that they are soliciting writers and artists from within the zine community AND they are paying them. # 3 should be out in June.
Current issue #2 (Apr/May 2000)
Jen Angel and Jason Kucsma
PO Box 1225
Bowling Green, OH 43402
* CONTESSA'S TOME
DB Pedlar (SKUNK'S LIFE) has started a second zine that is an educational blend of historical fact and fun-filled fiction. Issue #2 centers around Victoria Woodhull, the first woman to run for president. Victoria was also a psychic medium and healer, rumored prostitute, suffragette, business woman, and free love advocate. She was in jail for publishing obscenity on election day. DB frames his historical fact, with a cast of fictional characters.
Current issue #2 (Feb 2000)
25727 Cherry Hill Rd.
Cambridge Springs, PA 16403
* DELUSIONS OF GRANDEUR
I am often so impressed by Cali's life and writing, that I am inspired to push myself just a little harder.
Cali reports first hand on "Adonai, Life, death and traffic in the siege of Armenia, 1993." His descriptions of the darkness made me want to reach for my lamp, just to know it still worked. His piece "Bastards" is enough to make you weep in sorrow and rage at the world. From there Cali takes you into his sex life, which is to be read to be believed. I found myself laughing out loud, which is quit a turnabout from his previous article. "Then, one night, she allowed it to happen. It was a history making night, because for the first time in my life I fell asleep with a new, unforeseen question on my lips: 'That's it?'" It gets even funnier from there. Also in the issue: an interview with Danilo Ljubovic, publisher of Manazin!; Milan Kilibarda's experiences with Doctors Without Boarders; "Behind the Burlap Curtain" takes us into Minsk, Byelorussia; Christopher Szabo remembers his uncle, a forgotten victim of the Soviet concentration camps. This zine is a phenomenal blend of political, social, historical, international, personal, and humorous writing. Always recommended.
Current issue #7 (March 2000)
100 E. Walton #31H
Chicago, IL 60611
#27 offers another mix of poems and Donny's journal entries and letters.
May 23, 1982: Dear reader, you will be happy to learn that I did not kill myself; I've taken up smoking instead.
This issue is harder to penetrate than usual, but worth the attempt. The journal entries jump around from the early 80's through to the present illuminating a religious theme.
"I don't want to feel like a fake, so I don't talk much about spirituality with the people around me. But this Dwan is the essence of what I've been trying to do, to throw a net over all the things in my mind and my past and tangle them together with you out there, and beyond you with the larger world -- and even beyond that. But like other queer (or thinking) people, I'm horrified at the traditional methods of keeping people together - the layers of "wisdom", scholarship, language, common sense, common knowledge, bureaucracy, law, religion, violence, and culture - the restrictions, all the encrustations that have built up on our lives."
#28 offers more of his exquisitely edited poets, in both Spanish and English. $2/free to prisoners
Current issue #28 (March 2000)
PO Box 411
Swarthmore, PA 19081
* EXCEPT IN DREAMS
Patrick has quite a talent for telling stories. After reading EXCEPT IN DREAMS I would forget which of the stories I had read and which he told me in person. His writing voice is that clear and inflective. He has gathered here several letters detailing his experiences trying to get his '83 Oldsmobile fixed and through inspection, sneaking into a movie theater, scenes from Shop Rite, and getting a haircut in a town filled with Navy personnel. He has a way with words that is distinctly his own. I only wish he would write more because I am a selfish reader that way. Highly recommended.
PO Box 963
Havre de Grace, MD 21078
FANGIRL *for your inner geek*
For fangirls, by fangirls. Its an idea who's time has been long over due. I admit it, I am a geek. I watch Buffy and Babylon 5, and have a Xena calendar next to my desk. I've been watching and reading science fiction and fantasy since I was a wee girl. FANGIRL offers a nice compilation of articles from the love of Buffy to an interview with Kristanna Loken from "Mortal Kombat: Conquest." Christopher Visser explains his struggles to combat the Seven of Nine Syndrome. Thick and fulfilling zine for fangirls and boys.
PO Box 9353
Oakland, CA 94613
FARM PULP MAGAZINE
[A Whole New Ballgame]
I really should have written this review right after I read the zine. FARM PULP is visually and mentally stimulating. After reading the issue I can only marvel at the complexity in the wording and layout, as all the pieces seem random, yet the weave together so intricately. The irregular page sizes and topics take on a Seurat-like quality from a distance. I know this doesn't really explain anything about the actual issue, but I think you need to see it for yourself to understand. Needless to say, I greatly enjoyed reading it.
Current issue #38 (Apr/May 2000)
PO Box 2151
Seattle, WA 98111
FUNK ON THE BURNER
The articles are short, but the content is strong. She explains her early perceptions of sex, and growing up with parents who never showed physical affection. She offers reviews of nine condoms and "The Secret Life of Marie Martin," a list of things she does regularly. "Dating Tips for Horny Boys," includes "Cologne is not an acceptable substitute for deodorant and regular bathing." A per-zine that gives you a good glimpse of the writer.
Current issue #7
PO Box 1515
Portland, OR 97207
* GUINEA PIG ZERO
A Journal for Human Research Subjects
I am completely hooked on this zine. I bought a couple copies at Atomic Books and returned and bought the rest of the back issues. When I saw #7 was out I didn't have the patience to write Robert for it and bought a copy right away.
Robert is an excellent researcher, editor, and writer. Articles he has printed include the history of medical research subjects, visiting a leper colony, medical mistakes and cover-up, research unit report cards, bioethics, the CIA's LSD experiments, radioactive oatmeal, informed consent, and the needless deaths of so many research subjects.He also shows the international use of POWs, conscience objectors, soldiers, and prisoners in medical experiments from Nazi Germany to Manchuria to The Gulf War.
If you sell yourself to science or are thinking about it, this is required reading. Everybody else get a copy because you should know what your doctors, scientists, and governments are up to.
$3 (#1-6) $5 (#7)
Current issue #7 (January 2000)
PO Box 42531
Philadelphia, PA 19101
* I'M JOHNNY AND I DON'T GIVE A FUCK
When I opened the package and saw this book (it is 220 pages), I was thrilled. I had loved #3, but was unprepared for #4. Andy further proves my belief that some of the best writers of our generation are writing for themselves and for us, not major publishers. I'M JOHNNY AND I DON'T GIVE A FUCK #4 is an original homage to Kurt Vonnegut and Tom Robbins. By the end I was no longer certain of what was truth and what was fiction. I read it cover to cover in one day because I wanted to know what happened to Andy and his band on tour, but also what happened the supposedly fictional Henry O'Merin.
"'...Our leak from the fuel supply has positioned itself perpendicular to the offending tailpipe. The results, I fear, could be fatal.'
No blowing up the van wasn't an option. I put away the butter knife, the ballpeen hammer. I sat back and resigned myself to alternating between adhering and that violently removing strips of duct tape to and from sensitive parts of my person. In short, I had given up." (Pages 77-8)
"I couldn't concentrate. Would he soon pull a buck knife from his boot and commence the massacre? Or perhaps he'd use those mind powers of his to turn us against each other. 'Good luck buddy,' I said to myself, 'We're the punks. We are so much about unity!'
At the height of my paranoia he said, 'Stop up here.'
Fuck. Here it comes...I stopped the van, ready for the fight of my life. The drifter grabbed his bag and hopped out, 'Thanks.' And he walked away.
What?! That's all? No fight? No knife? No slaughter, no mind control, no nothing?? The fever was playing tricks with me. I needed a nap." (Pages 95-96)
Current issue #4
PO Box 21533
1850 Commercial Dr.
V5N 4A0 Canada
MR. PEEBODY'S SOILED TROUSERS AND OTHER DELIGHTS
Jay's gone home to Massachusetts. His previous issues seemed to display the newness of his life in CA, but with this issue we see he has settled back into a world he knows well. He mother is driving him mad and he has to deal with all the crap associated with owning his own business (a record store). Yet he finds time for some zine love. She has moved from CA to join him in MA and if you want more details than that, send the man some cash. He also includes some nice, long zine reviews.
Current issue #Scituate (Jan 2000)
PO Box 22
West Townsend, MA 01474
REJECTED BAND NAMES Sex with George
Jerianne gets personal in this issue. The previous issue glossed over her trip to Scotland, but this time she explains what really happened. She is dealing with the age-old zine problem of what is too personal and private? She decides to overcome her fears and give the full story. Edward explains "The Problem with America." The biblical ramifications of Digital Angel. David Crockett gives his views on body image and self-worth. A very solid per-zine.
Current issue #4 (April 2000)
PO Box 13838
Berkeley, CA 94712
SPAGHETTI DINNER AND DANCING
Randy's personal account of volunteering with The Buffalo Field Campaign gives a very realistic feel for activism, fellow activists, and the extent that people will go to both save and kill an animal. He spends a few days trying to help.
"Every hour we took turns skiing out into the park to check on the buffalo. I took my share of turns, mostly to get warm, but also to avoid my companions. I had stopped trying to talk to either of them, sick of being ignored, and spent most of my time listening and asking a few questions. Nobody asked me anything. The trips into the park were beautiful, the snow was so intense and the quiet so deep...I didn't see any buffalo in the field, this was both good and bad, good in that they were away from the armed agents and bad in that they were up to their necks in the snow with no food."
Also in the issue, Randy pays tribute to fanzines that inspired him and that he enjoys. Well-written examination of life.
Current issue #14 (Dec 1999)
PO Box 2536
Missoula, MT 59806
TO CURSE OR NOT TO CURSE
The Great f#@X*! Profanity Debate
Alden Scott Crow (GRAMMAR Q & A) and Jøsh Saitz (NEGATIVE CAPABILITY) decided to get together and talk about cussin'. They offer up an interesting discussion, one that makes you think about where you stand, and what you say while standing there. Jøsh sees profanity as merely more adjectives to choose from, while Scott prefers to refrain from swearing. It is an interesting debate about language and society. It made me think about my decisions to omit or include profanity in my writing and speech.
$2 or stamps
Alden Scott Crow
PO Box 445
Clements, CA 95227
* THE URBAN PANTHEIST
This is the kind of zine I would love to do if I wasn't already doing three. THE URBAN PANTHEIST is a personal zine about loving nature while living in the city." He takes a loving look at pigeons, sparrows, starlings, rats, seagulls, and centipedes, all maligned city creatures. He also talks about his bike trailer, eating bugs, and what happened to his old zine DON'T SHOOT! IT'S ONLY COMICS. Nature nerds will love this. Highly recommended.
Current issue #1
140A Harvard Ave. #308
Allston, MA 02134
YOU SAY TOMATO
I was charmed from the get go with this new zine. June is "a thritysomething immigrant dyke. I grew up in the north of England, but I've lived in the states for about 14 years. I also spent two years in Spain, which gave me a taste for Spanish movies. As the name suggest, I write quite a bit about the differences between life in my homeland and my new land." #2 is a survey-based TV issue. We all claim we don't watch television, yet we all have something to say about it. She would have automatically gotten a good review just for mentioning EastEnders in both of her issues, but in addition to that her issues are quite personable and fun. I look forward to seeing more from June.
Current issue #2 (April 2000)
4756 U. Vill. Pl. NE
Seattle, WA 98105
Rejected Band Names presents...
THE ALTERNATIVE PRESS EXPO REVIEW SPECTACLE
Jerianne, who writes REJECTED BAND NAMES and reviews for A READER'S GUIDE TO THE UNDERGROUND PRESS, compiled this listing of zines she picked up at the Alternative Press Expo in February. There are over 40 zines reviewed.
PO Box 13838
Berkeley, CA 94712
QUEER ZINE EXPLOSION
This is a long list of small press resources, zines, books, music, videos, and more for and/or by the Queer community.
2 33¢ stamps/IRCs/$1 overseas
Current issue #17 (August 1999)
PO Box 590488
San Francisco, CA 94159
Like a thick zine phonebook. Thousands of zines listed. #3 has a long article on zine libraries.
Current issue #3
PO Box 5467
Evanston, IL 60204
ZINEHEAD reviews review zines, letting you know where to send your zines or where to find some new reviews. He also has a list of international comic anthologies and distributors.
PO Box 2061
R3C 3R4 Canadas
Lovely Zines from the UK
Note: Many of the zines listed gladly accept US currency.
* RED HANKY PANKY
Rachael's got a great style and wicked sense of humor. In this split issue, along with HORMONE FRENZY, her auto-bio comics show her flying, searching for the perfect bra, talking about sex, viagra, depression, dreams, and that grubby lederhosen turn her on (at least they did once). In "Stuff porn has taught me" we learn that "sexy ladies have mohawk pubes" and "When taking photos of the wife you need patterned wallpaper behind her." Guest artists include Jason Barker (PEAR SHAPED BOY) and Ruth Muffmonster (MUFF MONSTERS ON PROZAC). Rachael does some lovely art and you should send her lots of cash and toys (especially toys and robots).
Current issue #7
7 The Old School Buildings
St. Clement's Yard
London SE22 9HP
This issue is split with RED HANKY PANKY (see above). Mark's issue is more text based, but still includes some comix. He salutes "Queer Action Heroine: Brigitte Lin." She is a Hong Kong superstar that had played many gender-bending characters. "Coppertone," allows you to witness using fake tan lotion as lube, so you don't have to. "The Shadowy Twilight World of Heterosexuality," is a look at the straight bar dating scene and a melodramatic HIV scare from a co-worker. We also learn that Mark and Rachael both like to fondle Irish zinesters.
Current issue #3.5
12 Oakdale Ct.
London N19 3NT
Martin is not only a fount of EastEnders trivia and maker of risotto, but he also publishes FLIMSY. This issue is a continuous monologue with our hero, "a slow-moving, dull-witted, atomic-powered man monster." The concerns of such a monster might surprise you, "Flimsy watched a very bad-tempered Martina Hingis lose to Steffo Graf in the finals of the French Open. Hingis hair is funny looking." There is something strangely appealing about a monster with such plebian concerns.
Current issue #3 (August 1999)
8 Evenwood Close
London SW15 2DA
Articles, Strips, & No Make-Up Tips
GIRLFRENZY has a wide variety of subjects, styles, and ideas, all by women. Erica gave me copies of issues 4 and 6 when I met her in January, but the Millennial issue, which is a thicker, bound version, is the latest issue.
Erica does a fantastic job editing together diverse topics and styles, while promoting the efforts of women artists and writers. Artists included in the issues Rachael House, Lee Kennedy, Charlotte Cooper, Roberta Gregory, and Mary Fleener.
She is also interested in submissions -- both strips and articles for the GIRLFRENZY bumper book of riotous fun -- on general themes, but she is particularly interested in those with a more political (in the most general sense of the word) stance.
I know you can get GIRLFRENZY MILLENNIAL from Atomic Books (see page 36) in the US for $12. Back issues of 6,5 and 4 are available for 4 dollars each including postage. I believe they are about £2 in the UK.
Current issue Millennial
www.GirlFrenzy.net (coming soon)
PEAR SHAPED BOY
I met Jason my first night in London and was greatly amused by his stories. I was happy to see his first zine in my mailbox a few weeks ago. Jason has the honor of being the only F to M transsexual that I know publishing a comic about the experience. He explains the problems of the change with humor, such as pronouns, opening jars, throwing a ball like a girl, and watching The Waltons without crying.
I especially enjoyed the personal comics in the issue. Also in the issue, a comic from Charlotte Cooper wanting to join a biker gain and not finding it tough enough. I'm already looking forward to issue #2.
£1/$2 or a swap
Current issue #1 (April 2000)
40 Marie Lloydhouse
Spirit Summoning Stories
This comic and CD were edited by Marc Baines. The art and cd are both excellent and worth seeking out of you can find them. Marc said they might be available at See Hear in NYC. If I can find a source I'll provide and update and longer review in the next issue.
And lastly the people responsible for this issue:
Remember to write and thank them!
PED XING COMICS
If I ever become capable of convincing humanity of a few previously undiscovered, essential facts of life, one of the first things I'll say is "Appreciate Androo's art!!"
His most recent efforts are FRANKENSTEIN'S HORSES: A TWENTY-FOUR HOUR COMIC and BANJO GIRLS. The 24 hour comic is just that, a comic written and drawn over a 24 hour period. It is another of his bittersweet stories that will leave you wanting to hug a wooden horse.
BANJO GIRLS is a compliation of well, banjo girls as drawn by Androo, Snake, Mike Tolento, Sean Bieri, Suzanne Baumann, Pam Bliss, Joe Chiapetta, Rachel Hartman, Matt Feazell, Madision Clell, and Sean Granton. Some are charming and some will jump off the page and kick your ass.
Send a stamp for a catalog.
2000 NE 42nd Ave. #302
Portland, OR 97213
FISH WITH LEGS
Many of you may be aware of Eric's name because he seems to turn up in letter columns all over the place. His trademark rambling letters are entertaining, and in some respects, his zine FISH WITH LEGS is an extension of his letters. He is working out some of his confusion about life within the pages of his zine. In issue #3 he explains his fears about trying to be writer, confesses to being a 23 year-old virgin, getting glasses, learning to play the guitar, and more. He gives little tidbits about himself throughout the zine, giving you a feel for Eric's life and personality. I enjoy watching his writing progress.
Current issue #3
224 Moraine St.
Brockton, MA 02301
BROOKLYN! & WATCH THE CLOSING DOORS
Darling of the zine scene, Fred had been a supportive contributor of many of my projects. His commitment to self-publishing and promoting other zines is quite commendable.
One of the reasons I enjoy Fred's zines, is that they are symbols of obsessions that most of the rest of the world would take for granted (or even avoid given half a chance). WATCH THE CLOSING DOORS is devoted to subways. If you spend anytime on public transportation, either you've resigned yourself to deal with it or find yourself growing morbidly fascinated by the subculture. Fred offers New York's train systems through his eyes, ears, and camera. He also solicits articles from straphangers around the world. He includes the history, the local characters, and the swaying clickity-clack.
Fred's other zine, BROOKLYN!, takes you into that famous borough from the ease of your home. Many of the articles are historical in nature, somehow tying everything that happens on the planet back to Brooklyn. Also noted are encounters with locals and disoriented tourists. Fred will also teach you to talk like a native. There is more Brooklyn here that you can shake a stickball bat at.
Quarterly issues are $2 each
Current issues Brooklyn! #28
Watch the Closing Doors #10
1800 Ocean Pkwy. #B-12
Brooklyn, NY 11223
CHOOSE YOUR OWN ADVENTURE IN PORTLAND, ME
Sarah has taken those old staples of childhood, the choose-your-own-adventure novels, and adapted one to fit life in Portland, Maine. Sarah also publishes ROADSIDE.
PO Box 4789
Portland, OR 04112
Sarah Manvel used to be able to count. Then she got a liberal arts education at three different universities and now thinks four is five. Well, only when she has moved to London and is bad at answering her mail.
*she formerly published VIRAGO and EDNA'S EDIBLES
The most recent issue of SCOUT is the New York City issue. Scout and her husband Zip headed to NYC for a week.
Her first night there she went to the Bowlmor. "The pins were day glow colors: bright blue, pink, green, and yellow. Everyone around us bowled excellently while we all sucked. If the bowling alleys in Sarasota played Violent Femmes, I might find myself going more often. Then I became painfully aware of how much Sarasota sucks."
She spends the rest of the week going to museums, watching the Yankees play, shopping, taking in as much of the city as she could. She also offers a comic version of parts of the trip. Her book, website, and zine reviews all have to do with NYC as well.
Current issue #3
PO Box 48522
Sarasota, FL 34230
Bobby Tran Dale
Bobby deserves better than a cajoling editor who asked him for artwork just a few weeks before this went to print. I can't urge you enough to send this man $4 (and an age statement) for his science-fantastic HOMOEROTICON.
Bobby Tran Dale
Davida Gypsy Breier
Oh yeah, I almost forgot - I do three zines (this one, LEEKING INK, and THE GLOVEBOX CHRONICLES). They are $2 each.
Davida Gypsy Breier
PO Box 11064
Baltimore, MD 21212
Some Good Places to Get Zines
1806 Maryland Ave.
Baltimore, MD 21201
1854 W. North Ave.
Chicago, IL 60622
PO Box 55462
Atlanta, GA 30308
Libby Lambert Donovan
PO Box 11
San Mateo, CA 94401
Contact information for the Lovely Interviewees
Bobby Tran Dale publishes Homoeroticon. Issues are $4 pp (enclose an age statement). His website, with all sorts of comics and pictures of him dressed up as Prince is at: www.homoeroticon.com. Write him at:
Bobby Tran Dale
Jesse Reklaw is no longer publishing Concave Up, but is in the middle of publishing a compilation of Slow Wave, his dream comic strip. He also has several other publications available and is creating little collage booklets. Check his website for publications and two cool fonts to download: www.nonDairy.com. Write him at:
PO Box 200206
New Haven, CT 06520
Jenny and Serena Makofsky are the lovely ladies behind Have you seen the dog lately? You can order a copy for $1 or 3 stamps from:
Jenny, Serena, and Megan
465 38th St.
Oakland, CA 94609
Madison Clell's Cuckoo is available for $3 pp. She also has a new website at: www.cuckoocomic.com. Write her at:
2000 NE 42nd Ave. #302
Portland, OR 97213
If you are reviewed, remember that the reviewers are doing this out of a
sense of community and a love for zines. None of us are getting paid. A quick
thank you goes a long way to motivate us to keep trudging along. I can't
guarantee I'll review everything I receive, but I'll do what I can. If you
would like to send a zine (with a note!) for review direct it to: Davida Gypsy
Breier, PO Box 963, Havre de Grace, MD 21078