Issue No.2 {Nobody Wants To Be A Sucker} is Ready to Read

6 Sep

Dove&Snake Issue No.2 Cover

Issue No.2 is finally available. We waited for Keegan Rider’s Whata Cafe art show on September 3 to release it because Keegan agreed to make 15 copies into special editions, and also to let me set up shop at Caffe Luce for the evening. Last night was great. We sold a few zines (some folks even showed up specifically to pick up Dove&Snake No.2), hung out with John and Andrew of Reflective Collective (and the RC wives, Emily and Sara), drank some coffee, listened to shoegaze, heard a couple of girls read poetry*, and didn’t clear out before we heard a little guitar-backed hip hop.

It was the first time we sold copies of D&S at a public event, and even folks who didn’t buy a copy saw the sign (or the shirts) or leafed through a copy of either No.1 or No.2. We’d like to thank Keegan for letting us be a part of his exhibit.

We’d also like to thank these fine contributors for letting their work be a part of Dove&Snake:

John Weatherford, card designer: I** mentioned to John that a face card design involving a dove and a snake would be great for a cover. About a week later, he emailed me the design on the front of Issue No.2. That was that. No more questions about what would be on the front of the second issue. Thanks, John, for taking a quick kernel of an idea and turning it into our first color cover.

Andrea Anduaga, snake enthusiast: The first piece in the zine is an interview I did with a former coworker of mine. She likes snakes. A lot. She even brought a couple to work one day. That was the first day I held a snake. When you hold a snake, you can feel it’s muscles flexing. Snakes feel strong. That day was also the last day that Andrea brought her snakes to work. See, many of us thought it was oh so cool to see a snake at our place of employment. However, a couple of ladies across the hall did not share our views on the experience. I heard that there was a threat of a formal complaint, and Andrea was told not to bring them back***.

That got me thinking about how often people asked me if the name of the zine, Dove&Snake, referred to good and evil. It does not, and Issue No.2 seemed like a good place to address the fact that many people think snakes=evil due to various cultural connotations, but not in the D&S context. Andrea agreed to do the interview as a person who approves of and generally enjoys snakes, and for that we thank her.

Kaia Chesney, missionary: Okay, Kaia is not always a missionary, but in the context of the journals she wrote in Kenya, he was. She spent a couple of months in Africa working in a school and seeing first hand what happens when the church looks healthy on the outside, but is dysfunctional on the inside. When you read through them, you’ll see her fall in love with the experience, discover more than she expected, and have to make difficult decisions that will effect people in that community after she leaves them. Africa is kind of the cool kid’s cause of the moment, but Kaia’s journals stay away from reveling in the idea of going far far away to help those less fortunate and instead confront the reality that help is not an easy thing to give. We’d like to thank Kaia for letting us publish the journals from a difficult time in her life.

Matthew Helmke, storyteller: Matthew lived in Morocco for seven years. While he was there, he collected accounts of the supernatural from people he met. These were not legends or myths. They were personal accounts told as truth. When he returned to the US, he compiled those accounts into a book called Nowhere Else to Turn. Then he self-published that tome.

That was Matthew’s second foray into self-publishing****, and it happened soon after he moved to Tucson and crossed paths with Dove&Snake. Issue No.2 was in the works at the time, and it fit well with the theme of suckerhood. The stories in Matthew’s book (I got a peek at the pre-publication manuscript, so I’ve read most of them already) are told from the perspective of people who believe 100% in the events they are relating, events that include buried talismans influencing soccer matches and genies that can be offended or even married. Some may label Matthew’s narrators suckers for going so far as to believe such supernatural things are true, but Matthew’s narrators may look at those people as fools who have been suckered into believing there are no supernatural forces in the world. We thank Matthew for allowing one of those narrators to tell his story in the pages of D&S.

Alisa Wilhelm, playwright: If you know Alisa, you’re probably thinking that “artist” or “graphic designer” is a much better description of what she does. However, the piece that appears in Issue No.2 is a snippet of real-world dialogue between two friends set down in dramatic form. It first appeared on Alisa’s blog (which is a wonderful little miscellany that is undergoing a transition and does not contain all her archives at the moment; we will let you know when her entries are up once more*****), and we immediately asked if it could fill a page in our second issue.

That’s right. It’s only a page long. That doesn’t stop it from being interesting and enlightening, so we’d extend our gratitude to Alisa for letting her blog entry move into print form.

You, reader: I’m not being trite here. I am not being general either. I’m actually thanking you for allowing me to publish my own work. The last piece in Issue No.2 is a short-short story that I wrote for a special edition of Issue No.1.

I know it’s my zine and all, but my goal is to function as editor and fill the pages with others’ stories and words. I’m not aiming at publishing my own work. In this case, I liked the story and thought it fit into the theme of suckerhood in a way the other pieces did not address. It’s a man reflecting back on a specific moment of being a boy and realizing how valuable that moment is to him out of all the moments of his entire adult life. He’s not being suckered into thinking it’s not important.

I do also want to thank you for reading the zine, paying attention to the blog, commenting on our Facebook page, wearing the t-shirts, writing for upcoming issues, and supporting this literary adventure. I think Issue No.2 is a step forward for D&S (not just because it’s the next issue, but in terms of momentum and progress and vision and all that idealistic kind of thought) and it’s largely because people keep supporting it. Thank you.

If you want a copy of Issue No.2, you can email us at We can work out the details of bringing you a copy and exchanging it for money. The Reflective Collective Editions and the Keegan Rider Editions are both $3. We also have some untouched (as of yet, but you could make them special later) editions that we’ll let go for $2. We’ll have photos of the special editions up soon, and we’ll post the items on our Etsy shop soon, as well.

*From The White Rabbit, another local zine. We’ll try and see about doing something on the blog about that project.

**That’s me (Scott Appleman), specifically. The “we” on the blog is sometimes just me, but not always. It’s always Dove&Snake, though. The “I”, however: just me.

***Nicely, but still. The ladies work in a room whose only entry points are a locked door and large window meant to facilitate communication between the ladies and those who require their services, but also to keep them separate. Those snakes were not a threat. And they weren’t poisonous, either.

****His first foray was Humor and Moroccan Culture. That book is now in the national library of Morocco, and not because Matthew gave them one, either.

*****Or you can check back periodically yourself:


One Response to “Issue No.2 {Nobody Wants To Be A Sucker} is Ready to Read”


  1. Matthew Helmke (dot) Net » Blog Archive » Dove & Snake, issue 2 {Nobody Wants to be a Sucker} - 06.09.09

    […] from my most recent self-published, Creative Commons licensed book Nowhere Else to Turn in their most recent edition. Give them a click, check out the zine, and tell ‘em Matthew sent you. Share and […]

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