100th Zine Review Celebration Awards: All You Need is Zine Love

100th Review Awards

“I know what I can do,” I thought. “How about a zine awards thingy?”

This may or may not have been fuelled by Australia’s Logies and the zine world’s Golden Stapler Awards.

As it turns out, the fun part was dumping out all of my zines onto my bed and sifting through them, remembering all the goodness. The hard part was organising them and trying to sort out which one is best in any given category. You know how much I adore zines, and I hadn’t thought of that before I started. Still, I thought it would be nice to highlight zines and their makers because recognition and acknowledgement are beautiful things.

Things to remember:

1. My apologies for the less than stellar photos. Some are old, some are new. I am looking at trying to get some sort of set up so I can take consistently good photos.
2. All this is completely out of my own head and on the fly. It’s meant to be a bit of fun.
3. Obviously various zines fit into more than one category. How they were sorted is all on me.
4. Keep in mind these are limited to the 100 zines I’ve reviewed. You can find the whole list: Zine Review Index
5. Picking out the ‘best’ stinks. I love them all!

Here we go!

4b5

Best Binding: Beer and Longing

Meg O'Shea Zine

I went back and forth on including this as a category, but it’s all a part of the art. Zines aren’t just about one thing, so it’s fair to point out things like amazing binding.

Best Zine With No Words: Plague

Plague

This is one of my earliest reviews, hence the less than awesome picture. A screenwriting class years later would help me to appreciate this zine and telling a story without words even more.

Best Mini-Zine: Shakespeare’s Lovers (All of them. I refuse to choose just one.)

Shakespeare’s Lovers: Macbeth, Shakespeare’s Lovers: Twelfth Night

IMG_20151218_191015Shakespeare's Lovers - Twelfth NightBest Comic: You Don’t Know Me, Bus Driver Blues

I know what you’re thinking, but I couldn’t pick just one. You Don’t Know Me has such power behind the words, and Bus Driver Blues has a message I think we all need reminding of.

Plus, of course, they both have fantastic art!

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Bus Driver Blues Zine

Best Series: Pieces

Pieces 1Pieces 5

Pieces #1 On Writing, Reading & Growing Up, Pieces #2 On Girls & Wondering, Pieces #3 On Writing, Drinking & Demons, Pieces #4 On Lucid Dreaming, Pieces #5 On Change

No big surprise here, I imagine. There is a lot to be said for writing with an open heart and letting yourself show vulnerability.

Best Mental Health Zine: SAD

Sensitive Adult Daily

This was SUCH a hard category. Wow. In the end, I chose SAD/Sensitive Adult Daily because it accomplished so much in so little space in a way that was fun and memorable.

Best Mail Zine: Photocopy Press #2

Photocopy Press 2

I had more mail zines than I realised! Happy discovery. In the end, Photocopy Press won out because of the energy, ideas, and variety behind it. I really wish the series would have continued.

Best Fiction Zine: Mini-Moss Log/Dognapped

Mini Moss DognappedMini Moss Log

This is another category that was a tough one with a lot of great examples. I must say, though, that the way these stories tied together when I wasn’t expecting it whatsoever. Love it.

Best Perzine: The Third Biannual Mildly Informative Booklet Depicting Graphical Representations of General Occurrences and Observations

2015-10-08 20.00.48

What can I say? An expression of life using graphs and charts? All the love.

Funniest Zine: Instructions for surviving the ZOMBIE APOCALYPSE: In rhyming couplets

Zombie Apocalypse Couplets

Do I need to explain this one? Other than, ‘it gets even better on the inside’?

Best Anonymous/Secret/Confessions Zine: Zine Crush 3

20160114_160524

There was so much to this zine, a variety I didn’t expect in the content, and it reminded me of why I love ‘confessionals’ and the like.

Best List Zine: Summer Goals List

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From the paper to the printing to the fact that it’s a zine of lists…

Best Tongue-in-Cheek Zine: How to Talk to Your Cat About Abstinence

How to Talk to Your Cat About Abstinence

Another one I’m not sure I need to explain beyond the review itself. This zine lived up to all the hype.

Best Overall: Every Morning

Every Morning Zine

I was so-so about picking a ‘best overall’ and giving the wrong impression, but there is a zine I keep coming back to when it comes to making me all kinds of happy on multiple levels. You can check out the review if you’d like to know exactly why. For this, I will say that time has not diminished my love for this zine.

***

Congratulations to all the fun zine people, for whatever these celebratory awards are worth. ^_^

Thank you to everyone who has sent me zines, responded to my reviews of zines, and who has otherwise supported me. This site makes me happy, but having people actually read it is fantastic. I hope that I’ve introduced you all to new/different zines and that I will be able to continue to do so.

Best wishes always,

Nyx

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Zine Review: Beer and Longing

Meg O'Shea Zine

Beer and Longing
Meg O’Shea
Pleaseusethisbag.tumblr.com

This is another lovely zine from Festival of the Photocopier. (I’ve mixed up my zines so much that I am actually happy when I remember where I got something.) This is another one of those zines that I bought because the front looked awesome. Nearly bought for only that reason, I mean. I did have a look inside to find that the quality of the outside was carried into the inside – but I’ll get to all that in a moment.

Beer and Longing is a comic about homesickness. Simply put, anyway. More than that, it’s about being a dual citizen, growing up in dramatically different places, being pulled in different directions and not being sure if either one is the right one for you.

Of course, a little of that might be my bias speaking, having grown up in one country in one hemisphere and then moving to the other side of the world.

The story is as simple or as complex as you want it to be, and the art reflects that in a way. Meg has an art style I enjoy that is detailed but not to the point of taking away or distracting from what is happening in the story. I was pleasantly surprised at the writing in this. There is a lyrical quality to it that leaves me hoping that Meg writes more stories.

The materials used and the way this zine was put together is gorgeous. I don’t see a lot of zines where the creators choose to sew the binding like I do. But Meg took this to a whole new level. No simple saddle stitch for Meg! Meg went with a Japanese four-hole binding that I have only ever seen in person a few times – and I’ve never seen it done on a zine. The beautiful thing is that it’s so appropriate to the zine itself. The Japanese stitching, the circle print on the cover which is reminiscent of the Japanese flag, the tiny Japanese type within that circle… Of course, all relating to the setting of the comic.

I absolutely adore it when creators carry themes like that in such subtle ways.

And I can’t go past mentioning that the cover and interior paper is quite nice, too.

This is a lovely zine, through and through. The whole thing just makes me want to be careful with it and treat it well so I can enjoy it for years to come.