Friday, October 21, 2016

Rockford Outsider Poetry Publisher Zombie Logic Turns Twenty

Twenty years ago in October I founded Zombie Logic Press. Mainly I did so to publish my second book, Detached Retinas. I was soon to be working in the restaurant business and didn't have many intentions of publishing much more anytime soon.

And I didn't. 

But as far as I know I was the first person to use the term Zombie Logic or apply it to a going concern such as a literary press. 

Now, after twenty years of being continuously in business I edit The Rock River Literary Series, which promotes writers from Rockford, Illinois, and edit two literary journals, Zombie Logic Review and Outsider Poetry. 

Zombie Logic Press

For the last decade now I have been doing so from Downtown Rockford. When I settled in this building on the Holmes Block almost no one else was running a business Downtown anymore. A few restaurants on Block Five, but that was about it. The citizens were terrified to come Downtown. 

Eventually a coffee shop opened up. But still the historic building decayed and rotted. The roof collapsed on the Midway Theater, and the privileged white class stayed away in droves. If they ever did talk about Downtown it was in a negative way. 

I liked it here, though, back then. I remember going for walks late at night through virtually deserted streets. I liked the buildings that local vultures had been squatting on for a couple of decades as they turned to dust. I never once was accosted or even approached by anyone despite the hue and cry by smug East Siders that if you go Downtown you will get mugged. It was safe here.

Until they moved in. The very East Siders who had criticized Downtown for decades. Suddenly it didn't feel as safe anymore. But not for the reasons they said.

Because of them. 

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