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.

Monday, February 22, 2010

In My Mailbox 2-22-10

Well, I'm still alive, keep going to my PO Box regularly, and keep posting these reports. I must be on some cool government lists by now, right?

This week, we found the following things in our PO Box:

- Worst Future Ever! #2 ($1/trade, JD, POB 340971, Columbus OH 43234; worstfutureever.blogspot.com) The theme of issue #2 is the go-go 1990s, with a review of films, TV shows, books, and cultural movements, all packed into 15 digest-sized pages. A dollar for 15pp of thoughts. You simply cannot go wrong.

- Smile, Hon, You're In Flagrante ($5, adults only, WP Tandy, c/o Eight Stone Press, PO Box 11064, Baltimore, MD 21212; www.eightstonepress.com) This a fine, thick zine that's been going strong for a long, long time. I give this an award for best title in a while, frankly. And I think more long-running zines should do sex-themed issues.

- Blog Love Omega Glee (no price listed, Fred Wright, 4414 Baintree Road, University Heights, OH 44118; http://wredfright.blogspot.com) Props to a "blog book", although this feels more like a promotional mailing than a zine proper. Hell, if I'd posted an entire novel to a blog I'd be seeking ways to get folks to pay attention too! And B.L.O.G definitely deserves some attention.

- Zine World #28 ($4 US, $5 CAN, PO Box 330156, Murfressboro, TN 37133; www.undergroundpress.org) Yahoo, Zine World lives! Me love long time zine review zines, baby, and TIS is reviewed in here too, which just makes me love it more!

That's the highlights. I got some stamps, some letters from prisoners, and a few disturbing things I've buried in the backyard, but those are only discussed in person over beers.

L
J

--
Blog - http://www.jeffreysomers.com/blather/
The Inner Swine - http://www.innerswine.com

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

More Reviews from Anne - Poiesis and The Ken Chronicles

POIESIS NUMBER THREE
quarter size, $4 (plus $2 shipping for US, $3 shipping for non-US), 64pp
and
SOME MISPLACED JOAN OF ARC
by leah angstman
quarter-size, $5 (plus $2 shipping for US, $3 shipping for non-US), 64pp
both available from
Alternating Current
PO Box 398058
Cambridge, MA 02139
alt.current@gmail.com, http://www.alt-current.com/

I have a love-hate relationship with poetry zines; if they're done well, I
love them. For me this means not only reading well-written poetry, but
also that the chapbook or zine in question has crisp composition, where
the layout doesn't overshadow the writing. Both of these chapbooks are
published by Propaganda Press, which is "the not-for-profit small press
portion of the Alternating Current Arts Co-op that works hard to make sure
writers have an outlet for inexpensive publishing and distributing."
(Awesome, no?) They're pretty objects; full-color covers, clean layouts,
and I've never seen something come through Alternating Current that didn't
have these same high production values. POESIS is an anthology with more
than 50 different authors included, whereas SOME MISPLACED JOAN OF ARC is
all leah angstman's work. I found both compelling, for different reasons,
though I tend to go for single-author chapbooks a little more. Angstman's
work never disappoints me; her language is vivid-always-and crisp, whether
she's outlining extended airport delays with "standby passes / turning to
dust / in our pockets" or pride literally going before a fall in "bangs
are than on which the world hangs." The anthology feels like an anthology;
it's hard to have a feeling of cohesion in such a large assortment of
authors, but at the same time, there's going to be something in there for
everyone. Both are worth checking out if you like poetry chapbooks.

THE KEN CHRONICLES #14
Digest size, $2 ("postpaid, a fair trade, or a letter of comment.")
Ken Bausert,
2140 Erma Drive,
East Meadow, NY 11554-1120;
passscribe@aol.com; http://thekenbausertchronicles.blogspot.com/
Okay, if you haven't been hipped to this zine by now, here's how Ken
himself describes the new issue: "the usual mix of home-related madness,
some local travel photos, a trip to my nostalgic museum, and a dose of
philosophy for a change." I missed the bee story from issue #13, but
apparently crickets have taken their place and invaded.it's a perzine,
obviously, all about Ken, but it's well-written and kind of hip. There's
something captivating about it (in some ways it reminds me of Fred
Argoff's BROOKLYN!, actually, the new issue of which I just received and
have not yet finished reading.). You'll like TKC, I think, especially if
you're into perzines with a little bit of nostalgia (who else goes looking
for a VCR these days.?).

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Review from Anne: Absent Cause

ABSENT CAUSE #3 (Oct 2009)-"death, dying, undeath"
By redguard
half-size, 72 pp with color cover  and 60 pg supplement/ $4 US $4 Can/Mex
$5 world trades OK
PO Box 1658
New York, NY 10276
redguard@gmail.com, redguard.etsy.com

I really enjoyed reading ABSENT CAUSE #3; the zine's billed as being about
"underground cultures, hidden histories, feminist and queer sexualities,
body image, chosen families and radical politics; vampirism, the gothic,
horror and the macabre; surviving abuse, coping with mental
illness/dangerous gifts, self-harm and suicide." (And sometimes all in one
issue!). I think I saw an early issue of this zine back in 2008 that felt
kind of like first issues do: interesting, a little messy, still finding
its way.  #3's an impressive way from that; in three issues, it seems like
its really found some footing.

Absent Cause remains an anthology with a wide range of contributors. #3 is
organized around the theme "death, dying, undeath" and  explains pretty
nicely why there's a literary supplement: When the call for submissions
went out, a great deal of poetry and fiction pieces were submitted.
"Absent Cause isn't a lit zine, and I have no desire to make it one"
writes redguard in the introduction. So instead of simply abandoning the
work, the literary supplement was published.

It leads to an interesting division. As you might expect with poetry and
fiction about death, plus a few full-color pictures (one of which is super
-NSFW), the literary supplement is kind of dark and some of it is sort of
disturbing, and you might want to approach with caution if you have
particular triggers. AC #3, however, didn't seem to have that same
sensibility or feel to it, even though a fair piece of it has to do with
corporeality and illness, featuring striking interviews with Leslie
Feinberg (who I knew) and Pussy Power (who I didn't and was really excited
to read about!), along with very good, compelling poetry and prose by a
variety of authors.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

In My Mailbox 2-2-10

So, my PO Box continues to be a source of wonder and hilarity, not to mention the occasional crumpled dollar bills. Yahoo for crumpled dollar bills. It amazes me that I got a PO Box in 2001 (about six years after starting my zine; for the first six years I actually did everything from my own mailing address, until the dead rats and death threats started filtering in) and I still have it, and I'm still getting cool shit in the mail there every week. not as much as I used to, but then I'm so lazy about making connections and staying in touch with people, that's not surprising.

(Side Note: Am I the only one in the universe who routinely discards envelopes? I can't tell you how many times I bring home a bunch of POB mail, throw away envelopes after opening and organizing, and then days later when I go to write these little posts there is absolutely no contact info in the zine itself. It drives me nuts. But maybe I'm a monster who does everything wrong.)

Anyways, this week:

GET WELL ($3 / trades preferred, Chris Estey, 5247 15th Avenue NE #301, Seattle WA 98105; chrisestey172@gmail.com). A nifty-looking zine with stories, reviews, some artwork, and a nice overall look and feel.

THE KEN CHRONICLES #14 ($2, Ken Bausert, 2140 Erma Drive, East Meadow, NY 11554-1120; passscribe@aol.com) Another issue of Ken's extremely per perzine, always done in a simple, crisp layout with a lot of words and pictures. HUrrah for Ken!

XEROGRAPHY DEBT #26 (Microcosm Publishing, 833 SE Main St. #108, Portland, OR 97214; www.leekinginc.com). I am, of course, both a columnist in this zine and the subject of frequent reviews within its pages, so I therefore declare this to be the greatest zine not published by Jeff Somers, ever. AVAST!

That's it. The rest of my loot was in the form of checks from distros, letters from prisoners, and junk mail from various people who think I am a real legitimate business (I once got a small biz credit card app for Oinking Sow, Inc, and I was tempted).

Stagger on,

J

--
Blog - http://www.jeffreysomers.com/blather/
The Inner Swine - http://www.innerswine.com