We Want You!

Posted: June 28, 2011 in Uncategorized

We’ve all heard Mark Twain’s quote “everybody complains about the weather but nobody ever does anything about it.” It’s hot, it’s cold, it’s raining, it’s snowing and there isn’t shit you can do about it. Changing the weather’s absurd. Nothing we can do about that shit. The same thing can be said in a less funny manner about politics. We always complain about political systems while sitting back and letting politicians walk all over our civil liberties. We live in a society now where people getting their fundamental human rights is something to party about. We can affect change with votes, petitions, sharing and writing articles exposing the weakness of politicians we hate. We can do something about that, but we still feel mostly powerless.

And as common as these complaints about politics are, complaints about our culture, about the artistic hierarchy and the crap people put out nowadays are even more ubiquitous. People get tired of the same thing until they stop reading, or get tired of the lack of selection at the bookstore and then complain that there is nothing for them to read. Or they think that publishers are so obsessed with money that they’ll never put out anything innovative. There’s an antidote to that. I’m not saying that Bizarro is the be all and end all of contemporary literature, but I am saying that it’s got a lot of things right. Authors are selected by Bizarro presses because they have something wild and unique to say and the presses have confidence in their conviction that wild and unique can sell because people are fed up with the same old thing. All that complaining that’s been done, it’s clear they are.

Regardless of who you are, you have the power to affect cultural change. You have the power to take your ten dollars and go on Amazon instead of to the movie theater (or whatever seedy, weird places you’ve been going, I don’t wanna hear about it) and lay down ten dollars on something from a smaller press, something quirky and special, a secret that you get to the bottom of. And then you have the power to go on Amazon and share your opinion on this book, making others a little more a little less likely to take the gamble on it.

The Bizarro community is doing something to augment that freedom, to encourage you to use it and to reward you for standing up for small press literature you believe in. The Bizarro Brigade is an elite corps of Bizarro fans who earn points for writing reviews or for promoting Bizarro. This points can be used to get free books or other cool stuff.  This is not just an open acknowledgement that Bizarro authors and publishers care about the opinions of Bizarro fans, but that we understand that without them, Bizarro could not be. Read weird stuff. Stand up for weirdness. Get more weird stuff. Your culture is in your hands. email bizarrobrigade@gmail.com to join up. You can go HERE for more specifics.

Bizarro Brigade insignia. Designed by Andrew Goldfarb, it will adorn stickers, shirts and possibly more in the future and is available for any Brigade member to use at their discretion.

In other news, you can also help change popular culture via Kickstarter. Kickstarter gives artists a chance to execute projects they otherwise couldn’t with the help of donations. One of these projects is a film by splatpunk legend, Bizarro ally, Fungasm press founder, anthologist extraordinaire John Skipp. You might have heard about this via Neil Gaiman’s Twitter, if you haven’t, think about the fact that Neil Gaiman has been Tweeting about this project. It’s called Rose and it’s a zombie puppet musical, a postapocalyptic rock operatic romp. This is so weird and so much fun that you’re going to really wanna see it happen. This is a chance to put money behind the kind of movie you want to see, to own a piece of pop culture and to stop complaining and improve things. But don’t take my word for it SEE FOR YOURSELF.


So, you’re not powerless. You can make a difference. If Bizarro’s not your bag, think about the small horror, the small fantasy, the small everything presses, the record labels nobody’s heard of and what your ten bucks and your review and your support and your tweets and your Facebook statuses can do for them.


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