Microcosm Publishing

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[[Image:microcosm.gif|frame|Microcosm Publishing logo]]
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'''Microcosm Publishing''' is an independent publisher and distributor based in Portland, Oregon.
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'''Microcosm Publishing''' is an independent publisher and distributor based out of [[Portland]], OR and [[Bloomington]], IN that distributes [[Zine|zine]]s, books, [[Pamphleteer|pamphlet]]s, stickers, 1" buttons, canvas patches, posters, t-shirts, films, and more. The focus is on publishing zines and books in the hopes that it will add credibility to zine writers and their ethics. Titles attempt to teach self-empowerment to disenfranchised people and to nurture their creative side.  
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They publish and distribute [[Zine|zines]], books, pamphlets, stickers, buttons, patches, t-shirts, posters, videos, and more. According to their mission statement, their titles attempt to teach self-empowerment to disenfranchised people and to nurture their creative side. Current staff includes [[Jeff Hayes]], [[Lauren Hage]], [[Tim Wheeler]], [[Erik Spellmeyer]], [[Meggyn Pomerleau]], and [[Joe_Biel|Joe Biel]].
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== History ==
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===History===
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Beginning in 1996 with only Joe Biel doing part time mail order out of a bedroom in Cleveland, Ohio, Microcosm moved to Portland, OR, in 1999. Microcosm is heralded in the zine community as an entity that, for better or worse, has brought zines into a larger consciousness in the new millennium, after former mainstream interest has largely subsided. They are responsible for the trend of zine/book hybrid aesthetics and zines that have fancier covers or design aesthetics such as multiple color screenprints, letterpress, or offset printing. There is a particular focus towards images and artwork celebrating bicycles and radical politics. Many of the items offered are not available easily elsewhere on the web or otherwise.
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Microcosm Publishing began in 1996 when self-described "hippie pretending to be post-punk" [[Joe Biel]] started the distro and then-record-label as a part-time mailorder out of his bedroom in Cleveland, Ohio. Since then, many Microcosm employees have come and gone, including [[Brainscan]] editor [[Alex Wrekk]], who occasionally helped out for four years before being hired in 2003. She left in 2006, due to personal reasons. The operation has grown significantly over the years and, as of March of 2007, moved its mailorder operation to Bloomington, Indiana. In September 2008, they opened a Portland store at 833 SE Main #107.  
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Incorporating the tactics of early punk record labels and a DIY approach, Microcosm uses guerrilla styled tactics for promoting their titles unlike most publishers of equal size. They rarely purchase advertising, and rely more heavily on the people who appreciate their craft independently passing out their catalogs in their respective towns.  
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There is a particular focus towards images and artwork celebrating bicycles, [[DIY|DIY ethics]], and radical politics. Many of the items offered are not available easily elsewhere on the web or otherwise.
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In September 2008, Microcosm opened a new retail store in southeast Portland There was a noticeable shift in the type of reading material offered, since most stock is "hurts" and "remainders" sold at half retail price or less. In January 2014 the store grew for a fourth time and moved into a new building in North Portland at 2752 N Williams Ave, a few blocks from its former location at Liberty Hall.
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Microcosm is heralded in the zine community as an entity that, for better or worse, has brought zines into a larger consciousness in the new millennium, after former mainstream interest has largely subsided. They are also responsible for many of the recent zine/book hybrid aesthetics and zines that have fancier covers or design aesthetics such as multiple color screenprints, letterpress, or offset printing.
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Starting in 2006, before the majority of warehousing was handled by Independent Publisher's Group, Microcosm set out on an ongoing quest to find affordable warehousing for the volume of publishing it was doing inside inner-Portland. Unable to do so, it opened a mailorder and warehouse location in Bloomington, IN in March of 2007. But due to complications of managing across state lines, this location was closed in July of 2011 and a new distro/mailorder location replaced it in Lansing, Kansas. One month later, Lansing staffer Jessie Duquette (aka "Jessie Duke"), an employee since 2006, became co-owner of Microcosm with plans of taking over all operations and ownership. Having cold feet about the financial risks, instead, in August 2012 the organization split into two separate businesses: one that focused primarily on zine distribution, run by Jessie Duke in rural Kansas and Microcosm Publishing, which focused on the book publishing operation, run by Joe Biel in Oregon.
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Incorporating the tactics of early [[punk]] record labels and a very DIY approach, Microcosm uses tactics that are more guerilla styled for promoting their titles than most publishers of equal size. They rarely purchase advertising, and rely more heavily on the people who appreciate their craft independently passing out their catalogs in their respective towns.
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Today, Microcosm Publishing is focusing more intensively on the publishing aspects of the operation, specifically on titles around gender, punk music, self-empowerment, and DIY.  
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Microcosm is sometimes equated as the "Wal Mart of Zines" due to the vast selection and customer service that it offers. Due to Wal Mart's poor human rights record and complete inability to build a decent public image for themselves - Microcosm would probably be more accurately called "The Target of Zines", although a few former employees have no problem with the Wal Mart association.
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Now operating more like a traditional publisher than ever, Microcosm is distributed to the book trade by Independent Publisher's Group in Chicago and uses U.S.-based union printers and environmentally-friendly papers. Unlike the publishing mainstream which is comprised of around 25% of women authors, around 50% of Microcosm authors are women and receive the same contract and pay as male authors.
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Microcosm offered custom buttons as a service from 1998-2006. Custom stickers were also offered from 2001-2006. Custom patches and t-shirt printing was also offered briefly in 2002-2003.
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==External links==
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*[http://www.microcosmpublishing.com Official Site]
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Microcosm Publishing was formerly a record label, and released records by Flotation Walls, Bedford, Organic, Cripple Kid, The Unknown, The Roswells, Little Dipper, Rock, Star.
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[[Category:Distro]][[Category:Small Press Publisher]][[Category:Publisher]][[Category:Active Distros]]
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Currently Microcosm has picked up it's largest publishing schedule ever - managing about a dozen publishing projects at any given time - including rebirthing the 2007 Zine Yearbook.
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Decisions at Microcosm are made as a group by current staffing employees. Current staff includes Adam Gnade, Matt Gauck, Jessie Duke, E Chris Lynch, Sparky Taylor, Steven Stothard, Nate Beaty, and Joe Biel.
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== Projects ==
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* [[Chainbreaker]] Bike Book
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* [[I Hate This Part of Texas]] / [[Keep Loving, Keep Fighting]]
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* [[Mostly True]]: The Story of Bozo Texino
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* [[$100 & A T-Shirt]]
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* [[Making Stuff & Doing Things]]
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* [[On Subbing]]
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* [[Stolen Sharpie Revolution]]
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* [[Flow Chronicles]]
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* [[The CIA Makes Science Fiction Unexciting]]
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* [[Brainscan]] #19 and 20
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* [[Things are Meaning Less]]
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* [[Xtra Tuf]] #5
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* [[Coffeeshop Crushes]]
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* [[Homeland Insecurity]]
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* [[Invincible Summer]] Anthology
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* [[My Brain Hurts]] #1-5 Collection
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* [[Distance Makes The Heart Grow Sick]]
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* [[The Constant Rider]] Omnibus (Second Edition)
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* [[DIY Screenprinting]]
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* [[Bipedal, By Pedal]]
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* [[Snakepit|Snakepit 2: My Life in a Jugular Vein]]
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* [[Secret Files of Cap'n Sissy]]
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* [[I Hate This Part of Texas]]
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* [[Dreamwhip]] #14
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* [[Doris]] Anthology 1991-2001, #23
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* [[Support]]
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* [[Cantankerous]] Titles & Obscure Ephemera, Vol 1 DVD
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* [[Green Zine]] #14
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* [[Indestructible]]
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* [[Best of Intentions]]
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* [[You Can Work Any 100 Hours Per Week You Want (In Your Underwear!!)]]
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* [[Applicant]]
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* [[Please Don't Feed the Bears]]
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* [[Sounds of Your Name]]
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* [[Hot Damn & Hell Yeah]]/[[Dirty South]]
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* [[Journalsong]]
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* [[The Zinester's Guide to Portland]]
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== External Link ==
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[http://www.microcosmpublishing.com Microcosm Publishing website]
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[[Category:Distro]][[Category:Small Press Publisher]] [[Category:Active Distros]]
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Current revision

Microcosm Publishing is an independent publisher and distributor based in Portland, Oregon.

They publish and distribute zines, books, pamphlets, stickers, buttons, patches, t-shirts, posters, videos, and more. According to their mission statement, their titles attempt to teach self-empowerment to disenfranchised people and to nurture their creative side. Current staff includes Jeff Hayes, Lauren Hage, Tim Wheeler, Erik Spellmeyer, Meggyn Pomerleau, and Joe Biel.

History

Beginning in 1996 with only Joe Biel doing part time mail order out of a bedroom in Cleveland, Ohio, Microcosm moved to Portland, OR, in 1999. Microcosm is heralded in the zine community as an entity that, for better or worse, has brought zines into a larger consciousness in the new millennium, after former mainstream interest has largely subsided. They are responsible for the trend of zine/book hybrid aesthetics and zines that have fancier covers or design aesthetics such as multiple color screenprints, letterpress, or offset printing. There is a particular focus towards images and artwork celebrating bicycles and radical politics. Many of the items offered are not available easily elsewhere on the web or otherwise.

Incorporating the tactics of early punk record labels and a DIY approach, Microcosm uses guerrilla styled tactics for promoting their titles unlike most publishers of equal size. They rarely purchase advertising, and rely more heavily on the people who appreciate their craft independently passing out their catalogs in their respective towns.

In September 2008, Microcosm opened a new retail store in southeast Portland There was a noticeable shift in the type of reading material offered, since most stock is "hurts" and "remainders" sold at half retail price or less. In January 2014 the store grew for a fourth time and moved into a new building in North Portland at 2752 N Williams Ave, a few blocks from its former location at Liberty Hall.

Starting in 2006, before the majority of warehousing was handled by Independent Publisher's Group, Microcosm set out on an ongoing quest to find affordable warehousing for the volume of publishing it was doing inside inner-Portland. Unable to do so, it opened a mailorder and warehouse location in Bloomington, IN in March of 2007. But due to complications of managing across state lines, this location was closed in July of 2011 and a new distro/mailorder location replaced it in Lansing, Kansas. One month later, Lansing staffer Jessie Duquette (aka "Jessie Duke"), an employee since 2006, became co-owner of Microcosm with plans of taking over all operations and ownership. Having cold feet about the financial risks, instead, in August 2012 the organization split into two separate businesses: one that focused primarily on zine distribution, run by Jessie Duke in rural Kansas and Microcosm Publishing, which focused on the book publishing operation, run by Joe Biel in Oregon.

Today, Microcosm Publishing is focusing more intensively on the publishing aspects of the operation, specifically on titles around gender, punk music, self-empowerment, and DIY.

Now operating more like a traditional publisher than ever, Microcosm is distributed to the book trade by Independent Publisher's Group in Chicago and uses U.S.-based union printers and environmentally-friendly papers. Unlike the publishing mainstream which is comprised of around 25% of women authors, around 50% of Microcosm authors are women and receive the same contract and pay as male authors.

External links

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