What is fandom?
There are many different ideas about what fandom ‘is’, but according to my own experience, fandom is a group or community of fans who engage in discourse about a subject of common interest. The fan experience is what comprises a fandom, and what drives fan work and celebration.
What are you looking for?
Articles on any subject related to fandom, including fandom meta discussions. (e.g. the ‘right’ way to tag on AO3, your opinion on how creators and fans interact, an analysis of racism in a certain fandom)
Narrative Stories! I want to know how fandom has impacted you, personally. Did you meet your SO through fandom? Your best friend? Did you meet a creator at a con that changed your life? Why do you write fanfiction?
Interviews, reviews, and critiques. Have you spoken with an author about fandom? Or a fanfiction author about fandom? Do you have something to say about the way that a piece of media has treated its fans? Maybe you’ve reviewed all the cons in your area and have an opinion on the best ones?
Art and Comics: While we are not accepting fanart, we are accepting and encouraging fandom artists to write comics about the fan experience, fanfiction, fanart, talking to your fandom friends vs. non-fandom friends, how reviews make you feel, how characters make you feel, etc.
I want to contribute! What do I do?
You can contact In Praise through ask, or through email, email@example.com. Submissions will only be accepted through email. If you have a question or a pitch, you can contact me to chat about it. We’re looking for about 20-30 submissions, but if we receive more we will consider two volumes or a very large book. I cannot offer any payment, but all participants will receive a free digital copy of the zine. If this changes either through the success of a kickstarter or the patronage of a larger organization, we will let you know!
All written pieces should be 200-2000 words long. If you are submitting a larger piece, with references or a deep critical analysis, I will consider pieces up to 4500 words. If this is the case, I would recommend you send a pitch or abstract before spending a significant amount of time on the piece.
The zine will be published in trade size, 6”x9”, so please make sure any art submissions include a .125” bleed around the edges. You can submit up to five pages of comics. This will be a color run, but please use minimal or spot color.
You will be able to determine how you will be credited, by username, full name, alias, etc.
Will this zine be available to purchase?
Yes! We plan on creating a kickstarter to back the publication and gauge interest in additional installments. There will be both digital and physical copies available to purchase.
When’s the deadline?
The deadline for submissions is July 31st!
Proof I Exist 22: International Zine Month
International Zine Month is July, which means it’s coming up fast!
Proof I Exist 22 is about International Zine Month 2015 and the love of all things zine. If you’re not familiar, IZM has an ‘activity a day’ list created by Alex Wrekk (http://www.stolensharpierevolution.org/international-zine-month/) to go along with it, and Billy made a zine to document his progress.
You all know I’m always going to read a zine about zines, and adding in the perzine side of things is like hitting the zine jackpot for me. Talk about enjoyable and inspiring. As Billy himself says, this is a zine nerd’s zine, and I am all over that.
As much as I like that Billy made an IZM zine, I like that he didn’t make a zine of the prompts alone. He includes things like the zines he writes, the story of his first zine, and other things mixed in with the prompts. It makes the zine-y goodness that much better – plus I really enjoyed reading Billy’s story about his very first zine.
Aesthetically this zine is a bit different with the half-fold running vertically instead of horizontally. I found it interesting how one small choice could make it seem to different.
A fun sneaky little surprise in this zine is the mini-zine you find tucked inside. Have I mentioned that Billy called this a zine nerd’s zine? Because he’s not only embraced that but takes it to all kinds of fun levels.
As you may have guessed at this point, I love this zine and would love to see many more people celebrate International Zine Month in the same way.
Thought For The Day: The Body Image Issue is a series of black and white photos featuring short thoughts on beauty and body written on various body parts (save for the last page, which is a drawing).
By their nature, mini zines are often quick reads. While this one is no exception, it’s a quick read that I have enjoyed several times over.
There’s something about this zine that really captured me and had me going back over the pages. Body image can be a sensitive and complicated issue, and this zine approached it with both vulnerability and humour. (Knees are weird.)
I love that the body thoughts are actually written on skin. What may have been a simple decision at the start had made all the images somehow more intimate. The words have more of an impact on me than they would have typed or written out on paper.
I really enjoyed this zine and hope that there are more ‘thought for the day’ zines in this series. Though honestly, a series of more of the same would be most welcome, too.
A few things that have happened recently got me thinking about reviews of all sorts and the nature of criticism on the internet. When you’re looking at a thing, be it a zine, a book, a piece of art, or even a meal, it’s all too easy to forget that there is a person or are people behind that creation. Especially when what you see – often day in and day out – are variations on the base concept.
It’s also so much easier to be negative on the internet.
When I first started reviewing zines, I knew that I didn’t want to put up any zine review that was pure criticism. If I disliked a zine more than I liked it, then I simply wouldn’t review it. There were and are plenty of other places to get that sort of feedback on your work.
That’s not my criticism of those places, by the way. I think there’s a place for them, and they certainly have audiences. All I wanted for my reviews was to accept faults and preferences while still celebrating that someone actually made the effort to create something.
Google defines a manifesto as ‘a public declaration of policy and aims’. I take it to mean ‘this is where I stand, and this is what I promise’.
I’ve had an ‘About & Frequently Asked Questions’ page (https://seagreenzines.com/about-faq/) up for a while now that covers basic things like what kinds of zines I review and whether I review digital zines. However, I wanted to create something that stands more as a statement rather than an answer to a question.
As much as this manifesto is a promise to you, it’s also a promise and a reminder to myself. I never want to forget that people make the zines I review. People with hearts and feelings. People who, whether they realise it or not, trust me to review zines in an honest and respectful way. If there comes a point where I can’t see the zine makers for the zines (poor way to say it, but let’s roll with it), I want to be able to come back to this and remind myself where I stand.
Nyx’s Reviewer Manifesto
I will not review it if I don’t like it.
I see no reason for me to post about a zine if I have nothing nice to say about it. I will point out things I don’t like in zines, but if I don’t have positives to balance it out, it’s not happening.
I will be honest about my tastes and strengths.
I’ve probably mentioned my lack of knowledge regarding poetry enough to last everyone a lifetime, but it is the easiest example. If you’re not sure if it’s my ‘thing’, you can always ask. I will tell you the truth, even if it means some happy mail doesn’t get sent to my post box.
I will not lie for the sake of money or ego.
This presumes that I have enough standing to even entertain these things, which is hilarious at the moment but worth stating nonetheless. I will note circumstances (production, price, so on and so forth) but refuse to be swayed or pressured into anything other than what I honestly feel about a zine.
I will always try to view zines beyond the scope of my own experiences.
As much are reviews are my opinions, I understand that my tastes are not in agreement with everyone. In this, I will always try to acknowledge others whom I think will enjoy a zine even if I did not.
I will not post pictures of the inside of a zine without permission.
Zines and the internet have not always been on the best terms – and with good reason. Copyright and ownership can be a tricky subject in the zine community, and the concept of permission is not something that is always respected.
Occasionally I will share pictures of the inside to show off some art or an element I truly loved. You can always be assured that I have asked and been granted permission to share these pictures. It doesn’t matter if your zine is a single piece of paper folded in half or if it takes me three months to hear back on whether I’ve been granted permission; I will get permission or I won’t put up the picture. There are no other options.
I will always, no matter the type of zine or content held within, appreciate someone who takes the time and the postage to send me a zine.
Postage costs are difficult if not impossible to manage, and sending your zine out to a stranger can be both expensive and nerve wrecking. I remember this each and every time I open my post box.
I will never review a zine if the creator has asked me not to.
If a zine creator has asked me not to review a zine in advance (for example, if we did a trade), I will not put up a review.
I have two new zines up for sale in my Etsy shop!
‘Don’t Call Me Cupcake: 2017’ is the seventh of a perzine series about my life. In this zine, I write about deciding not to write zines on a schedule, how my cat has used up most of his nine lives over the past few months, dealing with anxiety and mania at the same time, share the first chapter of my fourth novel, and more.
(PDF version coming soon)
The F Word is a zine about my favourite expletive and is an expanded version of an essay I wrote for one of my professional editing courses. (Top marks, if you are curious.) While it does poke fun at swearing, it also examines the history, versatility, and other factors that makes f*** a swear word for the ages.
Who has amazing handwriting? My friend LogPoes does! This picture doesn’t give you a good enough view, and I apologise for that.
Anyway, these beautiful zines landed in my post box this past week. It’s a special sort of pleasure to see the finished result of a project a friend has been talking about. I celebrate in spirit with friends who accomplish their goals. 🙂
A big thanks and big hugs to LogPoes!
That’s me for now. Busy, busy, busy times ahead – including the new stomping ground for We Make Zines and prepping for International Zine Month!
I hope you have a wonderful week ahead!