What is a Zine? And Why is it Not Called a Booklet or Magazine?

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This little collage article is especially for my HUSBAND and my DAUGHTER (7) who continually question why I say “zine” instead of “book” or “magazine.”
I’ve tried repeatedly to explain it to them (but maybe I need your help?).
They of course seem to have been born BEFORE and AFTER the girl “grrl” zine boom that I was so affected by.
They don’t seem to like the word.
They act as though I made the word up.
I didn’t.
We both know that.

A Brief Definition of Each

  • BOOK – a written or printed work consisting of pages glued or sewn together along one side and bound in covers. The Old English word originally meant any written document.
  • MAGAZINE – a periodical publication containing articles and illustrations, typically covering a particular subject or area of interest.
  • PAMPHLET – a small booklet or leaflet containing information or arguments about a single subject.
  • ZINE – most commonly a small-circulation self-published work of original or appropriated texts and images, usually reproduced via photocopier. Usually zines are the product of a single person, or of a very small group.

Could these words be interchangeable?
Sure.
I can buy a chicken by searching for chickens on Craigslist.
However if I want to buy a rooster specifically, I will have a hell of a time finding one by searching “chicken.”
So while you might say a zine is a type of book or magazine, it is categorized as a zine.
A word I did not make up to be cute.
To be fair, I make up a lot of words.
Generally speaking, these words are used to communicate my aesthetic appreciation for our animals.
So yes, they could also be referred to as forms of baby talk.
(I’m sure you understand.)

As Issuu says:

Let’s start off by defining magazines. Magazines are a print or digital periodical publication featuring a collection of content. Typically, magazines tend to have one specific focus across all of their issues –– fashion magazines focus centrally on fashion, food magazines on food, etc. Magazines have been around since the 1600s and have taken many forms: free or paid; weekly, monthly or quarterly; digital or print.

So if “zine” is short for “magazine,” are they in fact just shorter magazines? Upon first glance, one would likely say yes. But there is much more — and much less — that defines a zine.

Historically, zines have been self-published as pamphlets or leaflets as early as the 1700s. They were circulated independently by socially-marginalized groups to give voice to their opinions and beliefs. Over time this developed into an array of other topics, with the first “boom” of zines starting in the 1930s. Known as “fanzines” and “perzines,” these were started by fans of science fiction magazines who self-published zines about both science fiction and the connected fandoms behind them.

Zines boomed again in the 1970s during the rise of punk subculture, and by the 1980s the concept of zines as an art form emerged. This was heightened by “Factsheet Five,” a publication that reviewed any zine sent to it, which created a network of “zinesters.” In the 1990s came “girl zines,” originating from the riot grrrl movement. These have carried over prominently into present day zine culture.

Zines boomed again in the 1970s during the rise of punk subculture, and by the 1980s the concept of zines as an art form emerged. This was heightened by “Factsheet Five,” a publication that reviewed any zine sent to it, which created a network of “zinesters.” In the 1990s came “girl zines,” originating from the riot grrrl movement. These have carried over prominently into present day zine culture.

The New York Times explains why the internet didn’t kill zines:

Millions, maybe hundreds of millions, of posts are published to social-media sites each day. And yet somehow, it can feel impossible to engage with new ideas, even as our compulsive inability to stop scrolling exposes us to an unending stream of new content. Yes, you can catch tweetstorms on Twitter, watch someone’s life unfold on Instagram, do deep dives into hashtags on Tumblr or watch video diaries on YouTube that explore diverse perspectives, but the clutter of everything else happening at the same time online can make it difficult to really digest and absorb the perspective being offered.

Which might be part of the reason zines never disappeared — and are even available in abundance in 2017.

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So Little Time, So Many Things to Create

David has been working in the studio a lot lately.. he has a couple shows coming up and some other art events. So I’ve been working up in my half on making a complete mess. As I said in the last video, I’m doing wedding decor so the studio is not video-ready. It looks instead like someone took a big, pastel puke in the middle of my floor. Really though with all of the glitter, ribbons, pompoms and flowers… it was only a matter of time. I’m making just about everything in the wedding and although it will be pretty minimal, the items I make will be pop surrealism crafty cute~ pastel rainbow = my favorite thing forever.

pastel rainbow wedding

I’ll also be using a lot of these pastel kawaii materials (I got bulk goodies because I found so many great deals on things I LOVE) to make some goodies for the shop but that will probably come around after the wedding is over, maybe not but probably! The shop will be getting a revamp next year due to our new tshirt printer and products getting finalized~

On that notion I also started doing some sketches again in spare time that wasn’t spent crafting. I had painted an entire painting of an alien scene when David left a canvas he didn’t need on my craft table.. and the only thing I liked about it was the HANDS. How often do illustrators feel that way? I’m not sure.. but it’s not common for me. So I wondered why I don’t sketch anymore and how much more fulfilling it would be if I sketched a bunch of my ideas out prior to sketching on a canvas. Like I used to do. So I’ve been doing little sketches of my moods displayed on a cartoon-y girl. I also pulled one into illustrator after David asked why I’m not doing them in Illustrator. Something about the actual sketching (besides the mobility of it) is providing some sort of therapy for me in my late-night busy brain, tired body situations. If I like any enough in the future I might make some prints of them, not sure yet!

night sketching

thinking girl sketch

whatever sanrio pop kawaii bow

deer fawn girl sketch

whatever girl

And I’ve been doing dolly crocheting again while waiting for things like appointments or meetings to start..

kawaii kokeshi crochet

What have you been working on?

I love ZINES: How to Make, Browse and Buy Zines

zines

What are ZINES?

Zines are small-circulation, usually self-published, publications that come in many shapes and sizes. And I love them. All shapes and sizes of them.

Why do I love zines?

I wrote this article long ago but I looked it up just today and it had NOTHING of substance so I’m rewriting it. You see, when I started Miseducated as a blog it was my version of a zine because I had ignored the blog movement for so long. I kept my site solely an artistic and nonsensical web site, self-made with hand-coded CSS and HTML. After I started having odd dreams about starting a zine shop (like some hippie record store with lots of incense, shag rugs and pouffes to sit on around tons of zines to read/buy) with my wares on display, I decided this was my brain asking sub-contiously to be involved online again. To be involved in making instead digital zine-like articles with collage art via blogging.

A lot of our OLD beginning articles are like that: a page out of a zine just pasted on here with a few words. This article was one of those. I was a woman of few words and a ton of time to create personal and purposeless art back then. I did little more at home than sit around in my psychedelic robe drinking tea and smoking while playing my ye-ye collection and collaging nonsense together for this blog. I had no kids and no motivation to do much else.

My job made me feel like a monkey in a factory so I did whatever I appreciated at home. My home was a 2-story 60s lounge pad and when I didn’t have a few friends over I was entranced by my world of pop culture archaeology carefully collected from others like me as well as thrift stores. I am not that girl anymore but I’d be lying is I didn’t admit that sometimes I do miss her. I’d certainly like to ask her advice on a few things I’ve been planning and making. She was too sad and too lonely though. Too much of a downer to relate to anymore.

In case you can’t tell by now, I have a major soft spot for zines. I have a cherished a big collection of them organized in my studio (they almost got ruined with our last big rain because I had them out by the open window!). I’ve collected such an array of them that I’m going to start showing some of them via you tube videos so you can view/read out-of-print zines along with me. I even have zines from Japan because I collected them while I lived there.

Zine Methods

Generally zines that arrive in my mailbox are copied onto white or colored paper using the cut and paste method. This is similar to scrap-booking, each page is created using printed/written text and graphics or photos and then copied and reproduced using a copy machine (it’s a plus to work somewhere with a xerox). Although today many zines just use a few sheets of printer paper and are cut and stapled in home offices. There are some (fancy) zines who use color printing and there even are a few creators who still hand write and illustrate each and every zine. <3 In fact, I even made a PDF of an old zine I used to print because the color printing became too expensive to charge for the zine and in my opinion selling ads for zines is a big no-no. Nothing can bias a special, unique, self-made zine quicker than ads for companies who are simply paying you to be included.

Drool-Worthy Zines

Create Your Own

Want to create your own mini-zine? There are a few patterns to try out floating around online. You can make your first one easy on yourself (sometimes the paper layouts when putting together advanced zines can be mind-blowingly confusing at first as I found when I used to print Tulip). If you need some help or inspiration (or contributions) for your zine LET ME KNOW. I’m a strong believer in supporting small-press.

8 Page Zine

makeazinezine
Learn to make a zine by printing out this template onto 8.5 x 11 paper and making it into a DIY zine thanks to Dogooder Comics~

24 Page Zine

24-page-zine-assembly

Featured Zine-Friendly Links

  • LA Zine Fest
  • We Make Zines – a rad zine community
  • 24 Hour Zine Thing
  • Zine World
  • Light Gasp – San Francisco zine/underground press distro
  • Cafe Royal – UK zine/underground press distro
  • Microcosm Publishing – independent publisher
  • Stolen Sharpie Revolution
  • Zine Wiki
  • Gluestick: Indianapolis’ Zines & Small Publishing Advocate
  • Irvington Vinyl & Books – zine events and shop in Indianapolis
  • Chicago Zine Fest
  • Miseducated Once a Website, Now a Blog

    Hey there! Do you feel like an alien in this new and strange world? If you are a previous visitor of Miseducated.net and you’re not sure where to start — we’ve simply changed into a webzine and community with more interactive rainbowlicious content, just for you! New things are always on the way for you to enjoy~

    Miseducated (previous to now) had been a personal website since 1996. Exuding color and a childlike personality as well as view of the world around (wonderland, if you will). In the mid-late 90s tons of these same websites dominated the underground web. Inspired by Japanese personal pages, they popped up like mushrooms in dew. They actually do exist nestled away in their mushroom forest.. you can find a few within the links here! If you’d like to have your website linked here or would like to communicate about ‘old skool bizness’, here you go!

    miseducated.net

    In Memory of…

    Other personal pages you might remember from the late 90s: Rainbowlicious 😮 , Pixi’s Cotton Candy Thrill, Itty Bitty Kitty Trailer, Love Revolution, Luna*C, Diana’s Divine Designs