Going into this class knowing that I would have to be involved in an actual activist project was a little intimidating. I had all sorts of preconceived ideas about what really counted as activism. It was overwhelming, and I felt like I would never have the time or resources to be a “real” activist. However, I soon realized this didn’t have to be true. Making even the smallest difference counts. It all counts.
After exploring what resources were available to me and what I felt most comfortable with, I decided on making a zine for my activist project. Zines have been hugely educational and inspirational for me over the years, so I was really excited to work on this. While I was brainstorming ideas for a topic to write about, I did run into some difficulties. It seemed like everything had already been done. Like I mention in my zine, I considered making a intro-guide to feminism, but many people are already somewhat familiar with feminist ideas and issues. Beyond that, though, conversations surrounding feminism tend to become more exclusive, which is how I came up with a topic. The zine I made is the first issue in what will become a series of issues on topics that have, unfortunately, mostly been reserved for academic settings. I think accessibility is important. I want this zine to be for everyone. Because it was made for this class (Studies in Feminist Activism), the first issue explores a few notable feminist activists and some of their accomplishments.
I’m really happy with the way my project turned out. I’m excited that it’s something I can continue to work on even after this class is over. The only major problem I ran into, after the initial brainstorming, was time. I really wanted the zine to be longer, but I just couldn’t make it happen with the timeframe and my other work. Also, due to lack of planning, I wasn’t able to distribute it as widely as I had initially hoped. When I work on future issues, reaching out and finding more ways to distribute the zines will be a main focus. Overall, though, I think the project was a success and has definitely acted as catalyst for more ideas and continued activist projects.
Tips For Future Zinesters:
- Brainstorm – It’s much easier to start working once you have some clearer ideas on which direction you’d like to go.
- Plan Ahead – Creating and putting together multiple pages and working with two-sided copying can be a little confusing sometimes, so drawing a map or layout of your zine before you start can be really helpful.
- Utilize Your Resources – You’ll probably want lots of people to read your zine, which means you’ll need to make lots of copies. Talk to someone who has access to free printing and copying, like a professor in your department.
Here is a really helpful How To video
If you’d like a hardcopy of my zine, you can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or check out the pdf here.