Sunday, November 14, 2010


James N. Dawson
POB 292
Malden, WA 99149-0292
I wrote to James a few months back noting that he was from Malden, a tiny farming community just southwest of here, and traded zines with him. He sent me a nice long letter back and a small stack of his zines. The zines are full-size and look to be written on an old typewriter. They have a distinctive analogue style to them that harkens back to a lost era of the underground press. In Zap!omania James spends a significant amount of time hashing out his feelings about the internet vs. print communication forums. As a self-proclaimed “POB mail-junkie” he laments the pre-internet days where print was the only way to roll. I miss those days too. Pterodactyl is his APA fanzine about movies, books, music, horror, indie, and retro. He re-prints many of the letters that people have sent to him and responds accordingly. I really like these zines and appreciate his dedication and passion to the craft of self-publishing. There’s an aesthetic to holding these zines in your hand, the way they look, and the content inside that really appeals to me. It gives me hope that guys like James will be around for a long time keeping this format, and the conversation behind it, around.

SCAM: the first four issues

SCAM: the first four issues
222 S. Rogers st.
Bloomington, In
This is a unique review for me in that I haven’t finished reading this yet. I might be done sometime around March 2215. This book is huge and packed with all kinds of visually stimulating and profoundly interesting stuff. The handwritten parts are very sloppy, uneven, and hard to read but this isn’t necessarily a bad thing, it just takes time to get through a page, especially when it’s full-size. The stories are full of colorful characters and situations, scams, and insight into the inner-workings of highly motivated societal critics and guerrilla street protesters. Arguably, Scam might just be the best punk zine ever created, at least in its entirety. If you are into anarchy, squatting, free punk shows, scamming all corporate and corrupt entities, graffiti, drinking copious amounts of cheap beer, and leaving pianos on hiking trails, well then look no further, your manifesto has arrived.