July 2nd – Zine Rewind! Re-read your favorite zines and remind yourself why you love them.
I think the last time I was very active in the zine community, was when Kate Berwanger published The Radical Uprise #30: Write More Letters (April 2013). She wrote prose and praise about the tangibility and art form that is the handwritten letter, while giving tips and providing information about envelope and weight requirements provided by the United States Postal Service. At the end of the zine, we were treated to reader submissions on the topic, which was a nice touch.
In July of 2013, Kate published The Radical Uprise #31: Takes One To Get One. This was a follow-up to her previous issue, stating that she started to receive more mail because of it. She then continued to mention the benefits of the handwritten letter and how it connects us in a way that glowing screens cannot. She also divulges the secret to receiving letters, which was written in plain sight. This issue also had reader submissions advocating for good old-fashioned snail mail. It was a call to action. These zines are well written and are packaged in the most decorative of envelopes!
I was inspired, invigorated, even. I remembered having Pen Pals back in the mid-to-late 1990’s, and I wanted to explore that again. So, I asked my friends and subscribers on YouTube if they were interested and a couple have responded, and I still write to one of them today. As I was re-reading these zines, a folded letter fell out of Takes One To Get One. It was from Kate thanking me for my interest in the letter-writing zines and continued to write about her adventures around town, while responding to the letter I had sent her. It was a candid and intimate (not in a sexual way) piece of interaction that we got to share.
I’m going to write to my Pen Pal this week, but first I will extend an invitation to anyone who is interested in being Pen Pals. Kindly deliver to: Stephen J. Lazotte PO Box 383 Manchester, NH 03105 USA. I’ll see you at the mailbox!
Again, many thanks to Alex Wrekk for pioneering International Zine Month, and thanks to Kate for being a radical-but-not-so-radical voice in the zine community. The Papernet thrives!
Tomorrow/Today (July 3rd) I will not blog because I’m using the day to make my 24 Hour Zine Thing! See you on the other side haha!
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