Bar-room sermons in prose & verse

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The 5th quarterly edition of Cafe Reader – a smart Kiwi take on the classic, handcrafted, limited-edition ’zine format – has hit the streets of Godzone, featuring polished professional essays, bar-room sermons, and “the poet’s fleeting sentiment captured in both word and snapshot”. Rock’n’roll – especially Kiwi R&R – is a recurring theme.

Cafe Reader is a project driven by Jim Wilson, owner of national poster outfit Phantom Billstickers.

Since 2013, 4000 copies have been mailed quarterly to the Phantom list in New Zealand and 6000 distributed in cafes, bars, record shops, bookstores, malls and other venues nationwide; 1000+ copies are sent overseas to ‘zine shops in the USA and to an international mailing list of subscribers. M+AD’s copies usually come from the Ponsonby Snooker Centre underneath the Food Hall on Ponsonby Rd.

Each issue of the Cafe Reader features 12-14 NZ authors (all beautifully illustrated) and Wilson & Co do their best to include one or two international authors as well. “In the volumes we print short stories, poems and editorial that doesn’t quite fit inside the lines of traditional literary mags,” Wilson says.

“The Cafe Reader is about allowing a few more Kiwis to express themselves. The magazine is free, we encourage picking the ‘zine up from the venues they are found in and sharing them with friends and spreading the word.”

The March edition features short, clever essays and poems from Rick Bryant, Mike Chunn, Charley Gray, Paul Stephenson, Sacha Rangasamy, Jim Wilson, Michael O’Leary, Patricia Greig, Roland McKellar, Harvey Molloy, Kelly Ana Morey, and Cliff Fell.

Cafe Reader does accept paid ads – contact 0800 742 686 or

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