Newly Arrived

So my mailbox had a number of things inside of it today. As usual, the post seems to be a dumping ground for unwanted mail. Normally, I receive a series of bank statements and, other non-descript letters with the cellophane windows.

Today I received two letters addressed to the Portrait Gallery. Not addressed to the Portrait Gallery with my post box number on it, but something like:

Important Person’s Name Here
National Portrait Gallery
Portrait Gallery Address

Weirdness prevails I suppose. But I also received two parcels. First of all is this:

I meant to announce this earlier, but I was on the road in Melbourne with my family. And an internet connection was not reliable either.

Long story short, Bizoo was a zine that started up in my hometown. It was born out of a vacuum of youth culture and lack of a music and arts scene in that town. It ran for five years and then shut its doors forever. Of course six years on now, the long awaited, somewhat highly anticipated final issue is here. It’s about the same dimensions as the original zine, but is damned thick and contains the best (and possibly worst) stories the zine offered in it’s half-decade span.

I spent a couple of months helping out with the editing, giving feedback and the general opinion of the outsider. It was fun actually reading a stack of other people’s work and helped improve the way I write.

There are two final and very important facts about this book. Firstly, the Bizoo comittee decided to make the book carbon neutral, so the paper its printed on is recycled and didn’t add to pollution/global warming/azathoth’s growing power. Secondly, the book is free. When Dr Jerm mentioned this to me months ago, it made me pull a double-take. The pages aren’t numbered, but it feels around in the 96-120 page range. And its free. The Bizoo crew are planning a tour to launch the book around the country. You can get more details from them here

Also almost forgot to mention: the coverart is by Sam McKenzie. Big fan of his stuff.

Next item is this

The SVK Comic. I’m still not entirely sure what SVK stands for (though I remember something like “So Very Kafka”), but its a Warren Ellis, D’Isreali comic, which is nice to see them together. Last time I remember those two on the same front page was Lazarus Churchyard. And that’s something I’m still jealous of my brother owning and not me.

Anyway, there is one important thing about this comic. Each issue came bagged with a little UV torch. The reason was this: the comic has two printed layer on each page. One is that which you see with your eyes. The other is printing in an ink that is revealed by shining the UV torch at it. It reveal the underlying thoughts and motives behind the characters, along with, I imagine, the invisible “data noise” which is become thicker as we drive towards denser wireless coverage. The torches were designed by BERG

Either way, both look like exciting reads.

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