Who and What We Are

Xerography Debt is a review zine for zine readers by zine writers (and readers). It is a hybrid of review zine and personal zine (the ancestor to many blogs). The paper version has been around since 1999. This blog thing is are attempt to bridge the gap between Web 2.0 and Paper 1.0. Print is not dead, but it is becoming more pixelated.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Yes I Am Trying To Play Catch-Up!

I'm totally behind on my reviews. Let me see if I can catch up a little here. I've been reading but not writing, so...

First up is Below Noon #2 by Angie P. It's a small little zine but it packs a pretty good wallop of atuo-bio and introspective work. #3 came out at the end of May, but it was #2 which appeared in my mailbox. It's sex-positive and queer-friendly, in three parts: a "blah blah blah" introduction (her words, not mine), a long middle piece called "The Libido Process: Growing Up Horny in Rural America" and, finally, "pluck it out & put it down: brain samples (plus excerpts from wherever)." The last part is some excepts from letters, postcards, other random writing, and quotations; though they're disjointed and don't fit, they're kind of captivating in their brevity. The introduction stakes out the focus and organization of this & future issues of Below Noon: "experimental story-telling" with "2 main sections: one with somewhat structured stories...and another section that's more improv." I like this idea.

Overall, the writing's very direct and clear and I enjoyed reading it, though it almost felt a little rushed in places. "The Libido Process" is basically a coming-out story in five parts, and it moved quickly; not so spare as a reciting of facts and dates but not as full as a meditation on coming out and thinking about that experience. Still, overall, a solid read: interesting, precise, worth your time. I'm interested to see what #3 includes...

Below Noon
c/o Angie P
P.O. Box 42123
Portland, OR 97242
angie97202 [at] gmail.com
$2 USD, trades OK, 1/4 page size, 48 (?) pages

Self-described as "a quirky, original perzine with artistic, imaginative DIY information," Mamacita #1 is kind of about a writer's way back into doing zines, from musings on long-armed staplers, but it also includes some writing about identity, about gender, without "trying to find myself by writing endless introspective paragraphs for strangers to read." There's also some crafting tips thrown in, on stretching canvas, and a story about learning to cook. Mamacita #1
is what one of my housemates might call a hot mess; there's a lot going on here from someone who's worked in zines before (and, visually, this issue looks very much in the cut & paste style of many zines: you can imagine the X-acto knife and the gluesticks in the composition process). It reads like a first issue, where someone's finding his or her way with a new project, which is always kind of exciting. It holds promise. I'm very interested to see where it goes.

Mamacita #1: Giving Up The Post
c/o Fay
P.O. Box 127
Medina, OH 44258-0127
surflei [at] yahoo.com
$2 US/CAN/MEX/$3 world, "stamps accepted, postage pre-paid"
trades maybe, 1/2 legal, 24 p (not including cover)

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