Zine Review: Eldritch Yourself

Eldritch Yourself
Meeni Levi

Eldritch Yourself is an A5 full colour zine of art and poems.

As I’ve mentioned in the past, poetry often flied right over my head. I’m afraid this zine is not an exception to that. But, for what it’s worth, here are my thoughts:

Despite the poetry being a little beyond my grasp, I did like Meeni’s use of ‘imagery’ words and phrases. Mirrors and falling into rabbit holes, for instance, are easy (for me) to imagine and gave me something to play with in my mind.

‘Eldritch’ means ‘weird and sinister or ghostly,’ which put an interesting spin onto the poetry and the zine itself. I can’t help but feel like the entirety of the zine is meant to make you feel uneasy (in a good, horror movie viewing kind of way). There’s the combination of bright colours and darker images conjured by the words. The cover art is a splatter with what could be argued is a ‘scribbling out’ using ink.

Even the use of the word ‘eldritch’ seemingly as a verb rather than an adjective throws things a little. (Or does that only inspire weird feelings in editor types?)

Thinking about all of that, it’s quite clear to me that this zine is as much a collection of art and poetry as it is a piece of art in and of itself.

Aesthetically, this zine is great with plenty of colours and thick enough paper so there isn’t bleed through or shadowing distracting from what’s on the next page. It’s a combination of mediums from handwriting on torn up pieces of paper for the table of contents to things written in what is either lipstick or rough crayon.

The binding is great with green thread woven in and out of the spine.

I liked looking through this zine and liked the strong image words, but I think, as a whole, it may have been a little lost on me. If you are poetry and/or art inclined, I think you’ll enjoy checking it out.


Zine Review: Ang Pangalawang Pagtatapat The Second Confessions

Ang Pangalawang Pagtatapat The Second Confessions
Siomai Charlene / notyourleo

Ang Pangalawang Pagtatapat The Second Confessions is a black and white A5 perzine about the creation of the first ‘Confesstions’, writing, finding your voice, and more.

Confessions wasn’t meant to have a sequel. Nor was it supposed to turn into a semi-perzine.

With a beginning like that, I’m immediately intrigued.

While reading this zine, I found myself comparing it a lot to water. First in the way that Charlene writes about the first Confessions in that it seemed to dictate its own path despite Charlene’s intentions.

From there, the writing flows easily around bends and over rocks from one topic to another. I started out being interested in the thoughts and feelings of a fellow zinemaker, to learning what life is like for Charlene as a Filipino in Canada, and on to feeling inspired when the topic shifted to their thoughts and feelings on the state of politics in the Philippines.

In carrying along with the water metaphor – there are times when you see a shiny gem and want to stop to examine it further, but you are still carried along anyway. I didn’t feel like I was missing out, but I did want to write a letter and ask about things like that time Charlene got suspended in school for starting an underground newspaper.

What started as writing about zines and self-expression wanders through many topics with ease, ending on a manifesto-like call to action for Filipinos. Beautiful.

Ang Pangalawang Pagtatapat The Second Confessions is an interesting, unique read that I think everyone from perzine enthusiasts to political zinesters to Filipino zinesers could enjoy.

Sharing is Caring: Help Print Q!C#5: Sadvertising!

Hello, zine friends!

I have a short and sweet note for you today in the form of a fellow zinester asking for help in printing their latest zine in time to launch it at Festival of the Photocopier.

Wolfram is the talent behind the cover for Paper Currency:

So if you have a moment, check out the YouCaring page for Queer Content’s ‘Sadvertising’.

This perzine is a collection of short stories, photos, and poems recounting my time in foster care, as well as… other personal stuff. It’s ready to print now! I just need financial help to get it printed and ready to launch at FotP18.

Last year I was doing it rough, but with your support I got myself down to Melbourne for Festival of the Photocopier. Thank you! This year I can afford my own flights and don’t mind scrimping on a few things to survive the trip. What I can’t afford, however, is getting my latest zine printed and ready to launch at this year’s festival.

A $350 goal helps me do just that, but I won’t ask for this without offering something in return.
– Donations over $10 will be offered a copy of Sadvertising, along with my eternal thanks.
– Donations over $50 will be offered a copy of every zine I’ve made to date (Q!C#1-5, NBP, and BadBirbs#1).

I plan to launch this zine at Sticky Institute during Festival of the Photocopier 2018, with copies being made available at the fair day for $10. We’ll also be hosting a visit to the Australian Lesbian and Gay Archives’s zine collection, which holds independent publications from as far back as the 1980s. Please contact me if you’re interested in teaming up for a joint event.

Copies will then be made available to purchase for $10 from Sticky Institute and Junky Comics, and to read at State Library of Victoria (Melbourne), The Australian Cultural Library (Ipswich), Copy & Destroy Zine Library (Brisbane), and the soon-to-open Outer Space Zine Hub (Brisbane). Please contact me if you manage a public zine library and would like a copy for your collection.

The Zine Collector Podcast (And Video!)

Hello, zine friends!

Last week I announced my intentions to start a podcast, and this week, I finally made a little something! It’s a hello rather than a full episode, but I’ve already learned a few things to take into the first proper episode of the podcast.

I’ve been really nervous about the video side of things, but I decided to give it a go anyway. (I reserve the right to decide video isn’t for me later on, hahaha.) So here it is!

If you are looking forward to a podcast rather than videos, you can listen to it on The Zine Collector

(Sorry, I can’t seem to embed they’re audio player – yet.)

My head is still spinning a bit with the ‘am I really doing this?’ feelings, but this was a good little step into things. I am really excited to connect with people in a new way, though, as I’ve been enjoying podcasts and videos for ages.

So there we are! I’m going to work on getting the audio onto other platforms as well, so I’ll announce those as they pop up.

Thank you all for the encouragement you’ve given me and for soothing my doubts (which repeatedly rear up) through the whole process. Here’s to a good episode one to come soon!

Happy Mail Monday: Postcard Edition

Hello, zine friends! Happy Monday. 🙂

We’re really in it now, good ol 2018. We’ve already navigated a few ups and downs with turning resolutions into realities. Figuring out where the best 30 minutes is for writing and perhaps solidifying plans for future projects. (Future zines? 🙂 )

I am feeling anxious (as usual) but excited about things. Having a planner to keep me organised certainly helps on both counts. But you know what helps my anxieties and worries?

Happy Mail!

Oh, segues.

Postcards! Allysha Webber has been so generous in ‘inviting me along’ on her adventures in the US by sending me postcards. It’s fun seeing the world through postcards and doubly fun reading Allysha’s thoughts on where she is.

If you can’t travel, find friends who do. ^_^ Haha.

Many thanks to Allysha.

PS. If anyone has suggestions for how to store postcards in a way where I can see both front and back, let me know. I wish there were trading card-like pages but for postcards instead.

That’s me for today, friends. There is a lot happening in the background for big things to come soon – I promise!

Call for Submissions: All In Your Head Issue 8: To The Bone

[Image Description: drawing of a skeleton arching their back and tilting head backward. Text reads: call for submissions. Issue #8: To The Bone”]

Call for Submissions!

All in Your Head is a queer/feminist traditional cut-and-paste style zine with a focus on LGBTQIA neurodivergent and disabled activists, zinesters, artists, and authors, sponsored by GlitterWurst Zine Distro. Our zine operates on the following *principles:

1.) social inequality and injustice exists [racism, classism, ableism, heterosexism, cissexism to name a few];
2.) disability, neurodiversity can be understood as a viable form of human difference that intersects with/is shaped by systems of dominance;
3.) claims that there is a “normal” bodymind can have damaging and harmful effects (physically/emotionally/spiritually) and are partly shaped by current social/cultural values and white western colonial histories;
4.) neuroqueer and disabled people must navigate cultural taboos, move among complex institutions and systems of care and negotiate conflicting ideas of “wellness/illness,“ “silence/disclosure,” “visibility/invisibility;” “dis/ability” and more
5.) most importantly, our stories matter. (*this list is by no means exhaustive)

We are seeking submissions for issue #8 of All in Your Head: TO THE BONE: OUR QUEER CRIP BODIES, OURSELVES. We accept many kinds of submissions including but not limited to: essays, short stories, poems, personal narratives, manifestos, rants, drawings, doodles, illustrations, photography, collage, book or movie reviews (related to the theme), song lyrics, playlists, short plays/monologues and more! We resist the notion that there is such as thing as a “good writer/good artist” and seek to dismantle, critique, and challenge that “good writing/good art” means from a queer, disabled, neurodivergent perspective.

Some possible topics for TO THE BONE may include:
-Reclaiming and living in our bodies which exist at the intersections of gender, sexuality, race, class, disability, size, and a multitude of other differences.
-Visceral knowing, alternative modes of thinking, perceiving, feeling via a queer crip, neuroqueer bodymind.
-Queer disabled engagements with artistic or spiritual bodily movement and practice such as: dance, yoga, theater, slam poetry, film, singing (and others!).
-Critiques of and engagements with the notion of “transcending disability.”
-Explorations of the mindbody split trough the lens of disability.
-Analyses of disability, passing, and embodiment.
-The rhetoric of “loss” and disabled embodiment (i.e.: “sight loss,” “loss of limbs”).
-Queer disability, pleasure, body erotics.

*Deadline: February 28th, 2018
*Send submission and bio to: allinyourheadzine@gmail.com
*Please limit your submissions to approximately 1500 words and/or send high quality images of your artwork/photography. *We enthusiastically welcome and prioritize submissions by queer, trans, and disabled IPOC.

All contributors will receive a free copy in the mail!