Tuesday, July 01, 2014

Day One: Make a top ten list of reasons you love zines!

1. No limits - you can be as creative as ya wanna, there are no boundries...if you can think of it, you  can do it. Zines come in many different sizes & can be about any topic you so desire. Wanna add something extra & special just for your zine? Do it. Sew a patch onto the cover...write it all out in your own blood...there are no boundries.

2. Now, we said there were no boundries when it comes to zines...but, here's one thing I really love about zines - there are boundries. Like, no hate lit of any kind is to be tolerated. No racism, sexism, ageism, classism...nothing discriminatory in any way. Bigots are not welcome at the zine party...no dice, Hoss. 

3. Zinesters are weird. We're kinda kooks, & that's okay. The vagabonds of the art & literary underground, we wait for no one to publish or show our work, we do it ourselves. We're a passionate folk & passion breeds eccentricities. One would be hard-pressed to think of a normie in the group of artists & writers I've met at zine events over the years. We come from all cultures, all countries, all tribes & all movements & can all love on each other 'cause we all love the same thing. You gotta be weird to persue zines 'cause they're hard work & all love. & for some reason, a lot of people don't understand them. Like they don't understand us.

4. That special feeling of pride & accomplishment when you've delivered your egg baby, when you can smell the toner in the air, hear the whizzing of the copier fizzle out & feel the warmth of the pages, a zine of your own making just being birthed, being printed, copied, reproduced for the masses. & the ensuing instant gratification of finishing your egg baby & giving it away, seeing the faces of those with the honor of receiving it fresh off the shitty copier, of seeing the smiles. It's heady, it's dizzying, it's magick.

5. Zinesters don't have bosses...there's nobody cracking the whip telling you to get your zine finished. & on that same note, there is nobody to tell you what you can or cannot do with your zine. A zine can be written in one day, or toiled over - tirelessly editing each & every word until your zine is everything you imagined it could be. So, if you don't get your zine done, it's nobody's damn fault but your own...& if your zine explodes onto the scene, a force not to be tangled with, the glory is all yours yours yours. Live it up, you hip fucker...you motherfucking earned it!

6. Making friends & influencing people. Since we're all a li'l weird, & all are obsessed with the same passion, it's pretty easy to find people you're gonna fall in platonic love with. Or in love love (see: Zine Crush). To find people just as enthusiastic about this crazy, misunderstood medium is like the bee's motherfucking knees - fireworks literally explode in the shape of hearts as you find these like-minded weirdos & simply "click." & then you start to see your own creative influence on others, just as you take from this zine or take from that zine. It's all an incestuous process of pushing the limits. & doing it with love. A love for the medium, a love for creation, a love for each other. 

7. This one is kind of a pro & a con: anyone can make a zine. The accessibility of this amazine artform is open to all who take the task upon themselves & put in the work. So, you end up with all kinds of zines...crazy grand schemes to shitty li'l zines, the quality of work runs the rainbow'd gamut of cool. But what you may consider crap, another will find something that they can deeply relate to...

8. Simply: the work. The process. The cutting of little images with your colorful (& deadly sharp!) craft scissors. The always having a purple glue stick on you at all times & whipping it out when a page number falls off the master at the copiers or sitting on your bed gluing those little just-cut-out images onto a collage of words & photos. Cutting out every line to a poem & purposefully leaving them a li'l askew on the page after the glue dries. The typing, the writing, the illustration, the layout. Especially the layout. Finding the perfect image for the cover. Pasting down the master copy. The menial work of laying out zine pages with scissors & gluesticks in hand is totes a meditation of epic creative energy swirling, finding root, taking hold. 

9. Speaking of colorful craft scissors & purple glue sticks: the deep love of office supplies. From colored staples to the weight of the paper, invitation or social envelopes, the feel of a powerful long arm stapler in your grip. It just doesn't get much better than that. Know a zinester & need a gift idea? Fuck the gift card to Walmart - give 'em the gift of Staples or Office Depot! 'Cause those aisles upon aisles of glittering rad shit is Valhalla & beckons like the elixir of the gods. Sharpies, & astrobrites & toner cartridges, oh my!

10. One word: community. As long as you're not an asshole, the zine scene can be extremely welcoming & supportive. There's a familial touch to the camaraderie. We're all misunderstood in some way. There's always a wing to be taken under. There's always a coffee cup waiting for you, another project to contribute to. Tons of zine nerds make comp zines - it's a party. & when two clicksters can't get enough of each other, there're split zines...collaborations a go go is the name of the game. So let's get together & feel all right...

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