Made By Hand, Made With Heart

A reason for me to go visit Floating World sometime soon: David Brothers has a zine of his fiction available there. I’ve been thinking a lot about zines and zine culture recently – I often train a lot of my wanting to be a writer to being zine-culture-adjacent back when I was in art school, and have found myself thinking about digital books as modern zines and what to do with that over the last few days – and found David writing about the experience of physically putting the zines together to be weirdly nostalgic:

At this point, I’ve got the cover, I’ve got the guts, I’ve got a stapler, and I’ve got no idea how long it’s going to take to put this thing together. Luckily, I’d been slacking on watching TV, so I just caught up on Louie, Black Dynamite, and Children’s Hospital while I folded. 25 doesn’t sound like a lot, but boy does it feel like a lot of work when you’re in the middle of it and half done.

For the degree show part of my bachelors’ degree, I made up 100 copies of five different booklets of me writing and illustrating stories (I wrote and illustrated a bunch throughout the final year of that course, and then picked five to mass produce for the final show, with the idea of selling them for… crap, I can’t remember how much. Cheap, anyway); I remember having to trim and staple all of the books over a couple of nights as the show approached, with everything lying on the floor of my bedroom and me staring at it all as the night went on and my deadline-driven insanity only got worse.

One day, I should see if I have any of those booklets left. I know I brought a bunch with me when I moved to the US a decade ago, but I’ve moved around a lot since, and have lost a lot of stuff across that time.