November 7, 2010

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Striking Distance No. 1

Written by Chris Laudry
Self-Published

This is my first time reading a zine by Mr. Laundry, though I understand he's written others before. Striking Distance is a new start for him, echoing the theme of zines he likes but with a more personal touch.

The zine itself contains four short stories, none of which relate to each other but all of which tell about a personal time in Laudry's life. The first is about forming and unforming bands, many of which never saw anything beyond a few basement tapes that didn't survive the next incarnation. Mixed in with little snippets of life from a time that's no longer, you can just catch a hint of longing for that old time--and maybe a few of the tapes.

Sometimes we remember small pieces of a memory, and nothing else. That's the way things go in The Beach, Ladry's second story. All we catch is a glimpse at a larger picture.

Disasters shows that even a non-fiction story can be told in a creative way. Using non-linear time, we hear the story of a very bad biking accident and reflections on Laudry's life. The timing of the accident is even more striking. It makes for some difficult reading, as any accident surely would, but the slow-motion nature of the structure freezes the moment in time. I thought this was done amazingly well and makes this a high point of the zine.

A one-page tale of death closes things out. Like The Beach, it's more of a snippet than a complete accounting. Laudry said he pared down in some cases to just the moments that stick. This is one of those times.

I found Striking Distance to be an engaging and quick read and definitely worth picking up for those who like to read anything that's in the style of a slice of life. I don't know if this zine is distroed anywhere, but you can contact Mr. Laudry from this zine announcement.