Friday, April 17, 2020

What Wred's Reading: Fanzines: The DIY Revolution by Teal Triggs

I get cited in this book, so, of course, I like it.  This is yet another reread since all the bookstores and libraries are still closed (there's always mail order, but my ebook reading is currently satisfying my appetite for new material, so for print, it's been the rereading that I was planning on doing anyway).  This book is mainly an exhibit of zine covers.  For that alone, it's a fun read.  It also has chapters that discuss the history of zines.  They tend to be U.K.centric, which makes sense since that's where Triggs lives.  It came out ten years after the mainstream zine book boom, and seeing as those books didn't sell well, I doubt this did either, so it might end up being the last mass market book on zines.  Some scholars will no doubt write about zines in the future, but that'll be probably about it, as the heyday of zines has passed.  This book clearly was intended for the coffeetable, and it does indeed look great.  At one point, it probably was on my coffeetable.  From what I gather online from reviews, it looks like many readers were upset at Triggs because there were no articles reprinted from zines, except incidentally in the photos, but that's not what the book is.  People were also mad that she didn't ask for permissions before taking pictures of the zines, but it's basically someone taking pictures of their zine collection, so it falls into the fair use doctrine of copyrighted materials in the USA at least.  Triggs is a graphic design professor, so it makes sense that she is more interested in the visual aesthetics of zines than the actual content.  So, if you take this book as what it is and not as what it is not, you'll like it.  It's like having a zine collection in one handy package.  For old zinesters, it's definitely a trip down Memory Lane.  There are quite a few zines in here that I read.

If you want to read the content of a zine, then check out my novel, The Pornographic Flabbergasted Emus, which was originally published as a zine.

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