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So, technically I ordered some zines last night [like a nerd, I did my homework in advance]. They are as follows:

Kent Ross zines:  Photomill 2 [for friends], Photomill 3, Dictionary of Difficult Words Issues 1 & 2, and Trying: Poems About Disability and Effort

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Awkward Ladies Club zines:  Never Finish Grad School – a personal zine [zinefest edition], and 2 awkward ladies pins [1 for me and 1 for a friend]

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Pioneers Press:  The Do-It-Yourself Guide to Fighting the Big Motherfucking Sad, WhatsTheirName, and Read Once & Destroy [backup copies]

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I realize that I’m ambivalent about the 24 Hour Zine Thing. Zine ideas kept popping into my head today and somehow I was supposed to feel like I couldn’t make a 24 hour zine about anything I had thought about even for a second prior to the 24 hour zine challenge since the verbiage on the site is all Well, you CAAAAAANNN think about a general theme in advance I guess and like make your zine and we’ll roll our eyes and give you a button even though you’re not as awesome as everyone else who is REAAAALLLYY ACTUALLY DOING the challenge. I mean – it’s someone else’s thing that they created and more power to them, but I guess I just am not motivated to make a shitty zine just because of an arbitrary time constraint just to be judged by someone depending on whether or not they feel that I followed their rules closely enough. Plus, I never got a pin last year for participating and that’s just a positive-reinforcement fail. So…we’ll see how I feel about this tomorrow. If I don’t do the challenge, I’ll just plan on a general zine-centric project day. For all of you doing the challenge, I hope it’s everything you want it to be.

Soooo…yesterday I read another zine. I Know You Know My Heart #1 by Kneeotni McNett (aka Neo?) which I got from Ms. Valerie Park Distro. This zine had me hooked as soon as I opened it. It is hand printed [I'm biased - I love handwriting/printing] clearly and neatly with big capital letter headings breaking up the paragraphs. There are also some mysterious photos that I can’t really make out at all, but in a way it kind of adds to the vibe of the zine. These are really well crafted little stories about the author’s personal experiences growing up knowing that the world was probably going to end at any second. Also, more stories of biological family, chosen friends, travels, and one big toe. Instead of just reading like unedited diary entries, these words feel purposeful and engaging and really provoke a feeling of intimacy.

I enjoyed the quirky spellings of some of the words. Often people tend to judge others who spell things “incorrectly” as being unintelligent [I will be doing at least one zine about this in the future], but the author clearly has hard-earned wisdom and and an amazing ability to spin a yarn, dark and frayed though it may be at times. The long term impact of paranoia and fear in these pages is harrowing, but when I finished reading, I felt a sense of hopefulness. Not a sunshiny wide-smiley fuzzy wuzzy hope; rather a feeling of reaching the shore and being able to relax after being held under water forever. I really hope that there will be more issues to come. In the meantime, there is http://iknowyouknowmyheart.wordpress.com/.