SlowTrain

This is a zine that collects works “created by, depicting or pertaining to women.” Although I unfortunately happen to be a guy, I got a sex change for the purposes of reviewing this, and I expect the authors to return the favour after I release my own zine, tentatively titled NO GIRLZ ALLOWED!

PRINTED IN STA… sorry. Printed in stark, messy type on manila paper, it’s pure zinepunk anti-design. This “(almost)” issue (?) is dominated by the imagery-charged but somewhat uneven first story, Meagan Jeanette’s “Dead Bird or Mexico.” Written confidently and sassily, it doesn’t always maintain quite the right tone: “I could tell she was mysterious because she was obviously pretty but quiet at the same time. That doesn’t really happen. That means she’s mysterious, an enigma, a paradox or something.” You’re pulling some literary punches there, Meagan.

Then there’s a short story called “Rhonda” that actually comes with its own disclaimer! It is a gruesomely descriptive piece about a woman masturbating with her own menses. To complete the jarring effect to the reader, this is followed by a dispassionate essay about third-world women farmers and how they–and biodiversity–are being harmed by “patriarchal agribusiness practices.” It comes across as a somewhat incomplete humanities essay tossed in there at the last minute. One of the in-text references reads “insert, here.”

This sort of thing may or may not appeal to you. And even though I’m now a woman, I have to say, it didn’t. In fact, I would like my penis back. Immediately. (Mike Drach)

litzine, volume one, issue (almost) one, $1, slowtrain@gmail.com, myspace.com/ slowtrain_mag

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