It behooves mentioning that ZYZZYVA, the literary journal of West Coast writers and artists, is celebrating its 25th Anniversary. Under the auspices of its editor, Howard Junker, the journal does the noble work of providing folks on the far side of America with the chance of appearing in a class outfit that is not, unlike almost every other West Coast journal, under the sway of pseudo-literary, pseudo-celebrity editorship.
Junker prides himself on finding previously unpublished writers, and as such the 25th Anniversary issue, just out now, is an overview of writers whose first fiction appeared in ZYZZYVA. This includes actual luminaries like F.X. Toole and Haruki Murakami. It also includes me.
One’s best bet is probably getting an issue directly from ZYZZYVA. You will also find it in better (and not so better) bookstores. But, really, good people everywhere would do right to and subscribe to ZYZZYVA. It’s worth it.
I happened to be in town for the dramatization by actors of several of the pieces included in the issue. A few days before the event, Howard Junker suggested that I prepare five minutes to read. Somehow these five minutes exploded into a pre-game warm up, reading for thirty mad minutes in the Koret Auditorium at the San Francisco Public Library. Given that the piece is not one which lends itself easily to oratory, and given that I hadn’t looked at the material I was reading, it went about as well as possible. I was thrust into total delirium.
Union Square in 1905, looking towards 33 & 31 Union Square West. The block remains much unchanged. I lived in 31 for about a year, before leaving under a black cloud. SF writer Thomas M. Disch lived on the top floor– about a year ago, he killed himself in the building. 33 Union Square was the home of Andy Warhol’s second Factory. Also where Valerie Solanis shot him.
Well, well, looks as though I am running par for the course in my persistent inability to update my blog and/or complete a series of posts. I do have a final post from the Comic Con about 3/4ths written. I may post it later, but for the time being, I thought it might be useful to digitally host the Powerpoint from my presentation at the Comic Arts Conference 2009. It’s a slide presentation, so caveat emptor: you aren’t gonna get anything like nuance. But still. Also, the file is huge. So save-as.
Here it is, Introducing the New Teen Swinger: Romance Comics in the Summer of Love:
Incidentally, all good people should go here and download the amazing pamphlet that fellow Romance Comics presenter Jacque Nodell brought with her to the confernece. Highly recommended. (As is her blog, Sequential Crush.)
Drudge in Hollywood
On Steve Ditko
From Sunset Blvd
Welcome to Kurdistan