Sunday, 25 August 2013

Review: Alternative Press Fair 2013

This is a guest post by the lovely Fliss, creator of SW Zines - thank you!
SW Zines felt so privileged to be part of the Alternative Press Fair this year! I have been attending over the years, and had previously applied for a stall, so it was wonderful to be afforded such a chance this year.

No Dark Places was lovingly organised and set in The Albert community centre in Queens Park, north west London, which was a new area to head to for a zine event. 

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These photos make it seem like it was a rainy day, but I remember sunniness. I was delighted to see vegetables growing on the site. Grow vegetables everywhere, in every possible style and space for all, I say!
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No Dark Places also incorporated a day of live music. I had no idea till we got to The Albert that a band I really love, Capitol K, were playing. They are electronica ace. We knew we'd be too exhausted from early rise, hauling heavy goods, and a day of talking and selling, etc, to stick around for the live music, sadly (comment about it, if you saw Capitol K, please do). Maybe if we didn't work so much so hard all week and if we lived much more local. We did catch a couple of sets, though, more on that later...
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SW Zines' stall, after set up. Wish you could also see the pretty woodland themed decoration (pretty paper and real pine cones) underneath the zines - my photos are never my best on these days, so caught up in nerves and fretting and such!
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I had brought along a bunch of woodland creature themed stuff, in aid of the badgers and against the badger cull. Had dates worked out differently (the stall application was put in months ago - but I would never cancel this anyway), I would have been at the protest in central London this day, but I did a small bit by making a special mini zine and putting word out. Here are some of the books and posters I had brought along to decorate the wall behind us:
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I decided to re-appropriate the sketch of a badger by Yan of the band British Sea Power for a t-shirt for the day, too - with added badges bought at the zine fair! (book and pint!).
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Library themed zines I had printed up especially, on request, for Holly of Cool Schmool zines.
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On arrival at Alternative Press Fair:
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We were sat in between two inspiring female artists. Here is Alex Brady's stall, her speciality is lino-cut prints. I bought a mini zine of her work (as pictured in the middle).
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Also next to us was http://www.etsy.com/shop/worriedeyes with her wonderful paintings, sketches, biro drawings, postcards, stickers. I'm afraid I chatted to her so much I forgot to photograph her stall! I bough a beautiful postcard, and we did an exchange of our work too.

Now things get blurry, especially as so much time has passed (apologies again, this blog took such a long time to get written, so much has happened and taken over and I just am not able to blog as instantly as I once might've). So, here are lots of photos of various stalls from the day. If I don't name/identify you, please be forgiving and don't take it personally, and hopefully you'll appreciate what a whirlwind these events can be - before, during, and after! Next time I will make more notes, try to be better organised - please just email me with any web links to add, or if you'd like a mention, etc! I did go out from behind our own stall to talk to people, look at their work with care/interest, buy loads and load of stuff, though! I always make a point of doing this - if you're not interested in what else is out there, part of the point and so much community is lost.

Photo overload, I hope you don't mind! So many pretty things around at this year's Alternative Press Fair!
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There were events going on throughout the day. I think Jimi Gherkin ran this one. The only bummer about running a zine stall is missing out on the events 'cos you can't leave your table too long!
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There was a letter-press machine (woah!):
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Plates for creating postcards:
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There was a notebook doing the rounds, to be compiled into an on-the-day zine - theme was things you want to learn:
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Swimming pool rock! (yeah!)
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Award for prettiest zine stall/wares this day goes to Princesa Pirata distro from Bristol!
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Princesa Pirate became my new spot of heaven. This distro's remit of: feminism, mental health, sexuality/relationships, anarchism/radical politics, and the most beautiful array of crafts such as the above immensely colourful postcards and patches, is all just so perfect and mood-boosting and life-affirming. Instantly spent double figures here. The distro owner had travelled from Bristol to be here, and I loved the old suitcase simply opened out to display things, pulled along on a bike trailer then by train. A distro so inspiring, makes me want to be back in Bristol again! It's such an ace place for art/artists/alternative thinking.
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There was also a table of free zines on this day, and there was a spot of zine swapping, and selling to distros, all very positive.

The organisers were champion in their work, and I look forward to any further things they organise/create/do! - Here's to Rose Nordin and Amneet Johal, and everyone involved in the hard work of putting it on, plus the zine makers and zine readers who made this event too. Here's to next year's!

www.alternativepress.org.uk

Sunday, 18 August 2013

Zine News Round-Up: 18/08/13

photo by Emma Hedgehog - thanks!

Long time, no news post!   This is a pretty jam-packed one, hopefully everyone will find something to their tastes in here today.  Remember to keep sending me your news!

Cath x

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1.    New Releases
2.    Upcoming Events
3.    Submission Calls
4.    Distro News
5.    A.O.B.
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1.    New Releases

MH/self-care/body positivity zine Tragic Boffin #6 is out now! Buy a copy at etsy.
The 12th issue of feminist perzine Here. In My Head. was released last month – details on buying and trading here.
Hedgehog in the Fog #5 was released last month. Buy or trade by contacting the author at hedgehogemma @ gmail.com
Human Bean Zines have released 3 new zines: Feeling Alone #2, and Milk & Apples #1 and #2, all of which discuss living with mental health issues. Deets: http://www.etsy.com/people/humanbeanzines
The author of Necronomicon fanzine has published his first perzine, titled ‘Pissy Paws’. Buy or trade a copy by contacting the author at honestrabbit @ hotmail.com
Gravity #1: Learning to balance through recovery, is out now! http://www.etsy.com/shop/shapeofourhearts
The first issue of litzine Hand Job was published this month – get yours at http://handjobzine.wordpress.com.
An autobiographical comic zine titled ‘Beany: A Short History’ is available to buy here: http://www.hickathriftpublishing.co.uk/beaneyashorthistory.html. Also available for your kindle!
Art zine ‘Knots’, a “light hearted look at complicated relationships”, is out now. Available to buy or trade at http://www.etsy.com/shop/softskeletons
Music fanzine ‘This Is Not A Serious Music Publication’ can be purchased, along with Sammy’s other cool zines, on etsy: http://www.etsy.com/shop/sammyborras

2.    Upcoming Events

Bristol Comic and Zine Fair: 05 October at The Station, Bristol, 12pm. http://bristolcomicandzinefair.wordpress.com/
London Queer Zine Fest: 01 December, details TBC! RSVP here: https://www.facebook.com/events/160624710775600/?ref=ts&fref=ts
SW Zines Presents A Christmas Zine Social: 07 December at Housmans Radical Book Shop, Kings Cross, 7pm.  Deets: http://swzinecollective.weebly.com/events.html
Print Matters: A Fanzine and Self-Publishing Workshop: 25 October at Studio 74, London, 10am.  http://studio74workshop.tumblr.com/printmatters
Norwich DIY & Zine Fair: 14 September at The Birdcage, 11am. http://norwichdiyzinefair.tumblr.com/

3.    Submission Calls

A new zine dealing with death & loss is looking for submissions. We'd like to put a workbook-type zine together, with strategies for & articles on grieving and dealing with death. Get in touch at ipsumATriseupDOTnet.
DUPE is calling for submissions for its third publication: “THE DARK ISSUE" due for release in Winter 2013.We are looking for original and creative material in the form of photography, illustration, collage, writing, poetry, reviews, interviews etc. The work must respond to the theme but it can be interpreted as literally or abstractly as you like.  More details at http://wearedupe.tumblr.com/post/55868960304/call-for-submissions-issue-3-the-dark-issue
Poor Lass, a zine about working-class women, is looking for submissions for its third issue!  Details here: https://www.facebook.com/PoorLassZine 
Sonorus: Feminist Perspectives on Harry Potter has extended its deadline to 27th August 2013.  More info at http://sonoruszine.wordpress.com./


4.    Distro News

New zines up at feminist/queer distro www.vampiresushi.co.uk!
New zines and other bits at http://marchingstars.co.uk/!

5.    A.O.B.

I enjoyed this article, and thought some of you might too – on the etiquette of replying to penpal letters: http://16sparrows.typepad.com/letterwritersalliance/2013/07/postal-queries-unreturned-mail.html
Check out this great podcast by British zine queen Chella Quint on zines and self-publishing! http://www.tatp.org/blog/?p=5799


Sunday, 4 August 2013

International Zine Month: JUST FOR FUN WEEK (week 5)


Well, we're at the end of International Zine Month, and it's been a blast. Thank you all for playing along, I hope you've enjoyed too! Here is the final week's round-up:

JUST FOR FUN WEEK

28 - Cook with a recipe from a zine or cook zine!
Ok, confession time - I had every intention of doing this, but didn't get round to it in the end, mostly due to post-work tiredness.  FAIL.

29- Post a photo online of you with your zine or your zine collection.
Here's me with my new zine!



30 - Read some zines! Lay in bed and read zines all day if you can!
Agh, another big fat fail.  I should have cleared the afternoon and just stayed in bed reading zines, but instead I made plans and spent my afternoon/evening doing boring adult chores and such. Sigh.

31 - Log into WeMakeZines and write about your experience or write about it on your own blog.
Done and done!

Extra credit - Read a zine every day









Review of IZM 2013

It was lots of fun, especially tweeting every day about the challenges, and sharing other people's experiences online.  However, with retrospect pledging to do all 31 was very ambitious, and only could've been accomplished if I'd actually spent some time planning ahead what I was going to do, and making time for the challenges on the days needed (e.g. day 30).  Perhaps next year I'll just pick a few to do.

Reading a zine a day was such a rewarding challenge!  I don't make as much time for reading zines as I should, as I often get bogged down by doing "more important things" like work stuff and writing for this blog. IZM definitely reminded me why I love reading zines, and from now on I'm going to make an effort to read them more often.  Here are all the zines I read during the month:



I'm going to write a short review of each one over the weekend, so keep your eyes open for that! - changed my mind about this, am too busy and run down right now, sowwy :(

If you missed it, you can read my review of each week here:

 - Week 1: I Love Zines Week

 - Week 2: Postal Appreciation Week

 - Week 3: Zine Distribution Week

 - Week 4: Zine Library and Education Week