Note: all zines here are originals I have acquired over many years of zine-collecting and exchanging. I generally have one copy of each, and I am distributing them in order to share them with others rather than become another hoarder. All zines are for trade or give-away.
Abolition of Work
Classic Anarchist zine by Bob Black, available here and one I’ll be re-running as demand goes. “No one should ever work. Work is the source of nearly all the misery in the world“. Well Bob, there’s a few things I’d put before work, such as the poverty that paid work can overcome, but as he persuasively argues, most work is tedious and pointless and with the right social rearrangement, few of us would have to work full-time. Fascinating argument and fine justification for the idle life.
Adventures in Menstruation #5 – December 09 – A5 b/w
American zine about periods and feminism. Interesting zine for women and men, and valuable if people are going to talk about menstruation in a meaningful way and develop a critical and popular discourse on this ting (but what’s wrong with saying “she’s got the painters in, or on the blob, etc, aside from it being entirely crude?). Getting people talking is a start, and politicising the next step.
As Above, So Below – Issue 15 – A4 b/w magazine
An excellently written send-up of new age and occult writings (although you have to be very much in on the joke, as otherwise a lot of this doesn’t make sense. Who knew that unhealthy youthful obsessions would end up being useful for something aside from distancing the progress of your ego?). Hilarious spoof adverts and witty parodies of a past-life in Egypt, bonkers conspiracy theories and a new age cash-in TV schedule.
At Sea With Sexists
A quick guide to dealing with sexists by alex brew 09 – a practical guide which mainly features canny answers to common sexist arguments, such as the lack of women artists, that women have ‘asked for it’ when going home with a man and so on. Might definitely be of interest to any females who are a bit stumped and full of rage when they hear some vile rubbish. I found it a useful read myself, and whilst having read a fair bit of feminist texts in the past, found it refreshing how day-to-day situations were detailed and immediate responses. A practical tool.
Cute A5 zine with not a lot in it, nice illustration that conveys all in all the follies and joys of youth. Nice in that sense, like listening to pop hits produced when you were about the age of 11. A very sweet and cool zine and wonderfully put together.
Batch 25 presents Stories from the House of Approval
One of the best zines I have ever come across. One of, if not the best short stories zine I have had the wonder of coming across. A collection of dark tales: one about a champion pisser who has to retire after discovering a love of peanuts; another follows the gruesome effects of 21st century cinema, where DNA-splicing transforms actors into horses, woodland creatures and monsters; tale about apathy following an alien invasion, all mixed in with excellent graphics and comics. So bloody good!
Beat Motel #9
A mega-zine, densely packed with good writing on procreating, sperm donating, pretty fair zine reviews, album reviews, a piece on Elton John’s ‘Saturday Night’s Alright (For Fighting) that had me spluttering tea out of my nostrils. Excellent stuff, so good it’s only fault is it’s a bit too long and the font a little small, but then pot, kettle and black comes to mind…
Blind Grave Robber by Garret Schuelke.
Poetry chapbook by this young American poet. I hope you know that I love poets. I really do. But this is a fine example of where ordinary prose is somehow sculpted into poetry by a liberal bashing of the return key. As prose it is curious enough, little notes here and there on Benazir Bhutto, bullying, old maps, famous dead guys drinking liquor and a good poem on number. All in all a great read and a promising chapbook – look this feller up for more information.
Canhotos – b/w little zine
Entirely in Portuguese, and traded with a lovely Brazilian woman who also gave me a fistful of postcards. Nice mixture of photos, drawings and text, but little more than curio if like me, you have no Portuguese! Intriguing nonetheless.
CIA makes Science-fiction unexciting – #1 The Assassination of Martin Luther King JR
Little American zine that investigates the cover-ups of the FBI, Cointelpro and the CIA during and after the assassination of Luther King. Of real interest to people interested in the history of the black civil rights movement, though relies heavily on biased sources and presents a marginal conspiracy theorist-type view. Don’t mean to be dismissive of this, this kind of historicism is really valuable, and this points another directions for radical small independent publications to follow.
CIA nights #various
Hilarious a4 sheet zine, not sure where I found this. Read about “I was a member of a free sex commune“, how to tell if you’ve got STDs and a snippet on the kids by Nicholas Cage. Top banana. Actually I’ve discovered a whole pile of these picked up from various zine-trades – pay or trade for about 8 of these seriously naughty zine-sheets.
Clipper Guts #5 – b/w zine folded up from one A3 sheet
Fine zine salad from Canterbury that covers a mix of music reviews, rants, notes about life and little autobiographical pieces. Joe covers a lot of my favourite things – Billy Childish, Young Marble Giants, Lupen Crook, as well as some hilarious advice for frustrated lovers with Beatles facts. Curiously there’s a photo of chavs here and a diss of Wetherspoons – the connotation may be obvious but look you Corona-sipping bumbaclarts, Wetherspoons serve alright food and drink, which is an alright better than the overpriced dreariness of most places. The octogenarian company are from a generation that still flexed its manners, which is fine with me, and I find the historical surroundings tasteful. But as I was saying, search ‘Chavs’ on Google Images and one of the first photos that comes up contains a younger version of one of my zines’ most regular contributers. I won’t name him, I don’t think he even knows. I don’t know if this is something I should be retelling with either pride or shame, but next time you read our mawkish maudline doggerel, consider the type of white working class youth behind it (no not me, I’m as bourgeois as they come), and stick your prejudices up yer arse.
Cognitive Chaos, An itty bitty zine – by Christine Stoddard –
Tiny zine of a folded up A4 sheet, too narrow to be uploaded accurately. A fair zine with pieces tucked in on what to do when bored, a short story, and a snotty diagnosis of Walmart syndrome, the physical ailments including dilated pupils, greasy hair and eyebags popular with overworked proletarians, reminiscent of the harsh but hilarious People Of Walmart website. A cool little zine and I look forward to coming across similar in the future.
The Coming Insurrection by The Invisible Committee
Cover comes from a fine version by the excellent artist and fixer behind Dead Trees and Dye, Peter Willis (look him up) I picked up elsewhere, but I have this and will distribute according to demand. The most interesting Anarchist text since Hardt and Negri’s Empire or Crimethinc’s ‘Days of War’ I’d say, and a juicy bit of revolutionary socialism from France. An indispensable Anarchist work – look it up if you’ve not heard of it yet.
Constipated Rhythms, Sketchy flaps and other various assortings
As immature and daft and rude and thoroughly jokes as the award-winning title suggests. An excellent comic zine, a more studenty version of the Viz. Mostly drawings with some text. Top hat.
Contents May Vary #2
Like Seripop, a more academic zine put out by artists from a gallery context. This zine focuses on the design, using the A5 b/w medium well to make a point – good illustration and art, along with an excellent if unreadable piece that requires a magnifying glass unless you can squint sinister like myself. A handsome and dynamically-dashed up production.
Dan Lester Mysteries by Dan Lester & Oliver Lambden
Excellent murder mystery comic, featuring a burger-guzzling studenty detective with a talking cat. Funny stuff and a brilliantly-drawn bulky A5 comic. Highly recommended for any comic-makers out there.
Electric Sheep – a deviant view of cinema – Summer 09
Top cult film magazine which covers ‘offbeat’ film, in this issue themed around the ‘Substitute’. Academic level stuff and mainly interesting and understandable to film students, but excellent pieces on the robot in contemporary sci-fi, Takeshi Kitano, black and white identity in Van Peebles, an interview with Mark Caro and a good round-up of weird new DVDs.
El lenguaje no verbal – b/w A5 Spanish comic
Excellent zine that looks like it’s been done by a hyperactive infant on a sunday afternoon. Limited run of 15. Seriously cool and quirky mind, esepcially if you like collecting curious and fascinating objects from around the globe. Not sure where I found this.
Exploding The Myth #1 – A5 b/w zine by Kira
A mixture of personal reflective writing, rants on the queer scene, evangelical Christians and sexuality, alongside some interesting pieces about compasses and the pretty subject of love. A good ol zine with a wordsearch too, and a great first zine.
Foolish heartbeat – small b/w perzine from American girl. It’s nicely put together and in itself is inspiring enough to emulate – why don’t we all write perzines? Great little zine.
Gute Luft magazine #1
This brief A5 b/w zine may not to be everyone’s tastes, but it’s a good effort for a first zine. I liked the writing on music and the robin hood estate in Poplar, typically defending Brutalist architecture. However the clue’s in the name, and although I love literary modernism I have to challenge its architectural equivalents, which only made their inhabitants feel isolated and unsafe. This is a good example of art school zines which feature more design than writing, and I’d love to see the next issue.
Guy Debord is really dead
Political pamphlet pushed out by Stewart Home, with a harsh, obsessive and generally daft criticism of the Situationist International and Guy Debord (or The Bore, or Deboredom as he’s variously called). Worth a read if you’re interested in this area, but the criticism is often superficial and unconstructive.
Happy birthday Douglas – b/w little comic
Another one filled with daft childish drawings like el lenguaje no verbal, though there is a sinister challenge and interrogation of childhood and innocence nestled somewhere beneath the amateurish pencil drawings. See if you can find it. A strange one.
I Dream of Real Life
b/w A5 English comic anthology of 6 artists, and a funny and darkly brilliant introduction to the small comic zine medium. Themed around autobiography, different styles of drawing and story-telling compete for poignant heavy-hearted laughter. Picked this up at the little comics stall in Camden that was there a few years ago.
In or Out zine
bulky A5 b/w zine from America. Punky feminist perzine, complete with recipes, poems, personal writing and band interviews. Excellent stuff!
Kino Bambino #5
b/w A4 zine sheet on the cinema, although a little outdated the writing is more on themes than particular films out at the time. There’s pieces on the Scala, Lars Von Trier, as well as reviews ripping up Transformers 2 and Public Enemies. A stimulating read. I’ll chuck this in with Electric Sheep or make an offer.
LA Aint No Great Place To Be
A West Coast tour diary – USA that is, not Weston Supermare! Handwriting is fine for one or two pages, but a whole zine of it does get a little hard to read, and others I shared this too agreed. Excellent travel writing nonetheless, so if you like travel writing or have been or are planning a road trip then check this out.
‘Crustie’ zine if you will, about squatting a forest in Belgium. A surprisingly good read and one of the best designed political zines I’ve come across. A good model for zine design.
Lost and Fun #4
DIY-heavy b/w A5 zine with plenty of collages and illustration, making this a good read for the easily distracted. An interview with the person behind Capture The Flag in London, not sure whatever happened with that, and a note from their teacher telling them off for laziness! I picked up this zine for free – if you would like it free, just contact me.
The first in this excellent perzine series. We’re promised the art of frog spanking but instead we get a level of dreamy prose only old Bernardo Soares or Virginia Woolf on a good day might equal. I love her style of writing, and the pieces on the agony of working and difficult relationships are compelling. This zine is like discovering a secret. I’ve read this enough times and I’m offering out to you.
A little b/w perzine and still one of my favourite zines. Simply stated, it’s about life and unemployment and not knowing what exactly you should be doing, contrasted with intriguing autobiographical anecdotes from early life, getting in touch with her separated dad, discovering she has hypoglycaemia and a bit about Riot Grrl. A worthy read.
Middle Boop zine
Well-produced A5 b/w zine which features mainly strong illustration and design, as well as a piece on the film Control about Ian Curtis. Promising stuff from a talented design duo.
Well-liked long-running zine from Brighton. I recognise the real skill and flair for drawing and description, but my opinion is I’ve always found it a little too twee, righteous and inflated. I don’t feel like I’m reading the work of someone who’s been compelled to write – it’s a more easy-going mix of comics and recipes and political action and a section on what the author’s friends hate. This is popular zine, and when I’ve gone to zine fairs I’ve struggled to work out my position to this cuisine, but my writing is entirely different to this, which is not to say this is bad, but just that we all express ourselves differently, and write from different perspectives and energies. This is a great zine though, one of the most versatile out there and a great introduction to zines in general. But for me, writing must be convulsive or it should not be at all.
Interested? Check out the Contact page. I have generally just one copy of each zine.