S e p t e m b e r   2 0 0 1

We got mail!

Who in the world is GZO Jones?

Dear Editor,

I've been following your little publication lately. It's good stuff; maybe not as meaty as the underground newspapers we used to make in what is now called the "Beat" era (we never called it that), but good stuff nonetheless. The attention to art is especially good. It's hard to get good reporting of a non-verbal medium, at least without sounding pretentious.

But I didn't write you to lavish praise upon the magazine in general. There is one of your guest writers, one Jess Gulbranson, whom I feel deserves serious praise. Now, I know Jess as much as one can know someone through correspondence, and I feel it is my duty as friend and mentor to send some recognition his way. You know that his e-mail address is gzojones@. Did you ever wonder who GZO Jones is?

It's me.

Jess tells me he has been using my name as his nom de plume since high school. He claims that he thought I was dead; a reasonable assumption in the early 90s, and I don't fault him the theft of my name. After all, I wasn't using it.

After some unpleasantness in late October 1991, I left the East Coast and fled to Brazil, where I now reside in the capital city, Brasilia. I gave up writing at that point. As my career has always been somewhat sub rosa, there wasn't any clamor for new Jones material, which freed up my spare time
for practicing Portuguese and indulging my vices. In January of 1999 I was diagnosed with colon cancer and underwent all manner of treatments, to no avail. My last resort was a shamanistic cure involving psychoactive mushrooms. My cancer was arrested, but unfortunately I had a reaction that
sent me into a 16-month coma.

I'm back.

I discovered that Jess had started to make his presence felt in various places on the Internet. The first stories that I read were his post-apocalyptic Wasteland tales. Brilliant. They read like Dashiell Hammett, with the feel of Mad Max. I was inspired enough to start writing again.

Of course, I needed my name back.

I wrote Jess and asked him to pick another. His one condition was that I grant an interview, and maybe do a collaboration. Fine. He went ahead and gave me the e-mail address, and took a new one for himself. He's also helping me set up a Web page on the Brazilian net. It's not much to look at yet, but I'm sure I have something up my sleeve.

Anyway, my mission was to praise Jess, so here goes: "Mel" is genius. It's even great translated to Portuguese. No one does cliffhangers anymore, and this one should go on forever. Treat that boy right. He's going to be big some day.

Well, enough of the ramblings of an old man. Perhaps I'll send you a story or some poetry for your NW Drizzle. I'd be pleased as punch to see my name up there. It's a far cry from the mimeographed copies of "Saddlebags" that made their way from Bleecker Street to Deux Magots and back again in '58, but that's just fine ...

GZO Jones
Brasilia, BR

E-mail us your correspondence at editor@nwdrizzle.com, or check out some of our favorite letters in the mail bag archives.

site design / management / host: ae
© 2001-2006 nwdrizzle.com / all rights reserved.