Thursday, November 15, 2007

Are we toying with fate? Not really, just trying to get it all right before it's given to you, The Whirligigzine's readers. To the left is a view of an early version of the print cover that will be seen in bookshops and in online stores soon.

And so the mistake doesn't come back to plague her in some form or another, our poet Ms. Drehmer's name is spelled "Aleathia", not the way it appears on the illustrated test cover.

Do I worry that The Whirligigzine might not find an audience? Not really, even though it may not be underground enough for the hardcore undergrounders or "literary" enough for the university/quarterly crowd. So who does that leave? Everyone else -- the majority who enjoy good stories well-told and poetry with heart and soul. (But I do know that it has at least one story that is bizarre enough for the Bizarro readers and anyway, one would never mistake The Whirligigzine as a mainstream publication.)

This is not the Whirligig of an earlier day. Means of publishing have changed and there is no good reason to stick to the raw kitchen table look of that day. The original Whirligig served its time well and its style set it apart from the crowd. But there are now accessible and inexpensive ways to produce a fairly slick product that still is full of authentic voices and future looking writing, based in the traditional, yet of a newness that makes readers sit up and take notice.

Zines are now very different things from what they were -- even traditionalists from the golden days of the nineties are producing zines with slick covers and (gasp!) ISBNs -- and those who will criticize The Whirligigzine for its form are missing the point.

And as for the slight change in name, from The Whirligig to The Whirligigzine: let it remind those who may have forgotten, and inform those who never knew, where this litmag came from. And how it carries on in the tradition of the zine world: with unbroken DIY spirit and without fear or concern about the "big boys" of publishing.