Last night I went to the release party at Floating World Comics for this book, D.I.Y. Magic, by Anthony Alvarado. The book, as a project, began as a series of articles for the now-defunct (but fucking legendary!) Arthur Magazine. I was way into Arthur Magazine back when I was skipping classes at the University of Idaho. Arthur blew me away by 1.) being free 2.) having a column where Thurston Moore reviewed noise records, and 3.) having these articles on the multifaceted metapharmacospiritualist and Occult underground. The latter was actually of huge importance to me, but I did find it interesting.
Flash forward a few years (I graduated?), and shortly after I meet Anthony he tells me he's been writing articles for Arthur Magazine (I'm like, "there's still an Arthur Magazine?" he sez, "yeah, online"). That was probably one of my first important small world moments.
So anyway, Arthur is gone again, but Anthony continued writing these really interesting articles on magic, and not so much "Magick," as "magic" in quotes. Articles on "magic," in quotes because the magicians include people like neo-Luddite philosopher John Zerzan. So, yes, this book is a sort of philosophical re-contextualization of magic as ways of being. We think that's cool.
I don't think when Anthony asked me for an interview for the book I was thinking about this history of his writing (and I really knew nothing of the book itself). He asked to interview me about the idea of the flaneur, and I actually thought I was resisting his questioning by talking about aura when he asked me about walking. Reverse psychology? I played right into your hands, Anton...
Two things really excite me about this book that might not be a given. One is that it is not a book by and for poets in any way, and my component is no exception to that. The circle of poetry and poetry readers is way too small for all that I love it, and it is really exciting to think that all these comics people and neo-Luddite people and Magickshuns might enter I a dialogue with me that would never happen otherwise, especially at something like a poetry reading.
The other thing is that I'm in a book with Ron Rege Jr! (Mom! I'm in a book with Ron Rege Jr!) Okay, neither you nor my Mom knows who Ron Rege Jr is, probably (yet), but Rachel Hays does, and... what else is amazing about this book is that each chapter is illustrated by one or more amazing illustrators, many from the world of underground and experimental comics: Aiden Koch, Patrick Murphy, Dunja Jankovich, Ian MacEwan, and about 15 others- it's incredible, beautiful stuff. It's many different worlds come together-it's MAGIC.