Alt-Zine

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Summer is finally here, thank the good Goddess, and summer events in Jerusalem are right around the corner. The ones that I love most are Slutwalk, LGBT Pride, and the annual Artists’ Fair at the Sultan’s Pool. I don’t always attend them, but I still try my best because having a life outside of my mother-of-a-toddler one is necessary for my sanity and emotional wellbeing.

Before they announced the final dates for Slutwalk and Pride, I knew that most of the time, Slutwalk takes place around the end of May, and Pride sometime around early August. As it turns out this year, Slutwalk is happening on May 24, but Pride will be a couple of weeks later on June 6. This gave me an idea for a zine that I could write in July during International Zine Month.

I already have a postcard collection I call Alternative Jerusalem, so why not have a zine to go along with that? If I can, in fact, make it to these two events and take a few pictures and write some stuff about my experience, it would be nice to add it to a new issue of my zine.

The Artists’ Fair is always around August, so adding it to said zine will not work if I plan to write it in July. And I’m not even sure I’ll want to go. I almost never do if neither Aviv Geffen nor Hayehudim are on the bill. I made the mistake of going once to see Barry Sacharof and wanted to kill myself the whole night, as his entire musical set was made so disgustingly Middle Eastern that it made my ears bleed. But if I find out that Aviv Geffen or Hayehudim are planning to make an appearance at the Fair, I will definitely consider going, and maybe I’ll put off the release of the zine in order to add a segment about the show too.

And if Ka wills it and my husband and I make it to Sunday Metal Night at Blaze Bar between now and then, a segment about that is also in order.

Yes, that will be one awesome Alternative Jerusalemite Summer and one awesome kickass zine to go along with it!

Peace, love and fuck yeah summer!!!


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As the Pages Burn

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I’m kind of craving zine-production again. I say “kind of” because I’m not sure I’m entirely there yet. I haven’t made one since January and decided to take a few months off to avoid burning out. That’s because last year, I made a few zines and mini zines and set my productivity mode to “crazy high”. I felt I needed to do that after not having produced anything for the couple of years before that when I was pregnant then taking care of my baby.

So this is how it went:
1) Me in 2007 to 2014: producing zines.
2) Me in 2015: getting married, going on honeymoon, producing lots of zines and attending the Boston Zine Fest.
3) Me in 2016: getting pregnant and losing all inspiration whatsoever. Not producing zines.
4) Me in 2017: taking care of baby girl, desperately trying to produce zines, and finally publishing one (with extreme difficulty) in October.
5) Me in 2018: taking care of a toddler, but free enough to go all out – went to Slutwalk, went to Pride, participated in International Zine Month and ZineWriMo, organized art mornings and crafternoons, produced three full-length zines and several minis.

When I released the latest zine I made, January 2019, I felt the initial signs of impending burnout. My head hurt every time I picked up my pen, and anything I put down on paper was stupid and devoid of any value. I complained in this blog that this is due to me being tired as fuck. But it was more than that. I was pushing my zinestering abilities to the edge and I don’t think I had it in me to admit it to myself. Until now. I pushed it and almost fell headlong into the abyss of zine-burnout.

So I decided to put the pen back down and put all my zine ammo in storage until I feel ok again. Meanwhile, I engaged in other creative things.

First, I made myself a bullet journal. I had it printed in March and I love the hell out of it! It’s so convenient and well-designed! I love having space to plan my day/week/month ahead of time, and keep track of all the achievements and positive points as I go along. It gives me a chance to get shit done and also an incentive to keep going. I also use it as a sort of diary. If I suddenly feel the urge to write longhand, I have a whole page to do it on.

Then, I went on a crazy creative spree planning out my daughter’s potty training party. Even if it didn’t work out at the end, I enjoyed all the creative stuff I managed to do. I painted, and drew, and cut, and pasted, and wrapped, and folded for a whole month.

I didn’t participate in the Mini-Zine March challenge because I didn’t feel ready yet. But I think I’m slowly getting there. By International Zine Month in July, I hope to be back in full-fledged zinestering frenzy mode and revel in zine magic. I ought to start stocking up on magazine clippings and flyers.

Peace, love and let the motherfucker burn

Moonless Night

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To end January on a brilliant note, the new PMS Perzine is now out! Purple Moon Spawn is the new name of my zine, but it’s still the same zine, so the issue numbers continue where they left off. This is issue 15.

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It’s 32 pages of a bunch of different things. It includes a stream of consciousness piece, a short fiction story, a look back at 2018 and plans for 2019, discussions about the moon and the stars and all the wonderful celestial unfathomables that be, and more.

Writing this zine came with a degree of difficulty. I think the most difficult zine I wrote to date is Ima Badass. But this difficulty was different.

Ima Badass was emotionally difficult because of the sensitive subject matter – being a mother while being an artivist and a zinester and finding a healthy and manageable balance between the two.

Issue 15 of PMS Perzine was physically difficult. Working the morning shifts, followed by a bunch of appointments and errands during the afternoons, house chores and childcare in the evenings, and short nights cut even shorter by the time it takes me to fall asleep – all these elements made for a very tired badass. This past Tuesday, I complained to my husband about how “this day just doesn’t want to end!”

Being tired out of my wits is not a good state to be zinestering. Inspiration is impossible to come by, ideas about what kind of elements to include in the zine quickly run dry, and many things I tried to write or create ended up in the wastebasket because they sucked. The 32 pages I did manage to add were the ones that I found to be the best ones out of the many others I tried.

I fell into the trap that people keep talking about – how we measure our worth by our productivity. I never measured myself according to what I create, but I think this past month proved otherwise. I pushed myself to near-exhaustion, trying to cram a bunch of activities, plans, chores and errands into a short amount of time, so much so that the very activity that I’m supposed to enjoy (making a zine) became a chore in itself!

I hate this feeling.

And so, as a method of self-care, I decided to space it out a little. One thing per month. Next month, I’ll be focussing on my Canadian passport application. This contributes to the amount of stress in my life to a point where I’m losing all my hair. I ought to charge the Canadian government for my hair extensions, for real!

The month after that… I don’t know. I’ll see when I get there.

But I am not making any (full-length) zines until the right time comes, most likely International Zine Month, when I can thoroughly enjoy it as I did with my other zines.

I consider this “Purple Moon” spawned. Off to the dark side I move.

Peace, love and set the snooze for 14 hours

 


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To Hell with Procrastination

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I’m very happy with my progress with my new year’s resolutions. I already got the new bag that I’ve been meaning to get. I also got a cool patch to sew on it (I’ll ask my mom to do it though because she has a sewing machine whereas I have two myotonized hands).

Today, I made a new patch for my Etsy shop. And here it is!

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And, miracle of miracles, I’m actually done with my Canadian passport application. I have an appointment at the embassy in a couple of weeks and I hope to get this out of the way as fast and as swiftly as I can (provided they don’t send me back to Jerusalem empty-handed because of documents I may be missing, which will probably happen because Murphy’s Law is my mortal enemy). I don’t want to spend one more minute with this headache than I have to. Ugh!

For the past week, I’ve also spent most of my time covering my dining room table and my work station with tiny confetti-size pieces of paper while working on the new issue of my zine. A nice little pattern of black, purple and white, as well as star stickers and washi tape stuck all over the place became my new tablecloth/desk, and all is right in my universe.

I also wrote a final piece for the zine and drew my mascot, Twigz, for the last page. I’ll uncover the cover in due time, but for now, I can honestly say it’s definitely in my top three favorite zine covers.

Once the layout is done, I hope to have it printed and ready before the end of the month. That means hauling ass, which I shall do now.

Peace, love and praise the zine mess

 


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Zinester Beats Winter

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I feel pretty damn happy with myself today! A rare occurrence on a day where the sky is so gray, it’s practically black.

Though Tai Chi Thursday didn’t happen because I woke up with excruciating cramps, I decided to finish up on the mini zine I started yesterday about fighting winter blues. Here’s a picture of the finished product. I shot this photo in the office today while our central heating didn’t help me with my icy fingers, and I had to work with my gloves on.

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One of the tips I give is to create anything at all. “Creation beats destruction,” I write. And as is pretty obvious by my mood today, creating this zine made me super happy, and winter skies didn’t stand a chance.

This pretty mini is now off to the press and then, on Zine-Making Monday, after I write the final piece for my PMS Perzine, I’ll go to the post office to send a bunch of zines including this one.

Peace, love and victory is mine!

 

 


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War on Winter Mini-Zine

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My activity for today was to create a mini zine. So I spent my day at the office making a mini zine with tips for fighting winter blues because seriously that’s what I’m trying to do and it’s becoming pretty fucking difficult when we have a combination of crazy winds, hail, rain, snow and thunderstorms in the forecast.

Yes, shit.

As my luck would have it, I ran out of glue, so my mini zine is all in pieces which is why I can’t share it with you at the moment. But this is the cover I will be using:

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It’s a computer collage I made a few years back as the cover for the freedom issue of Af magazine. I didn’t think I’d ever get a chance to use it for one of my own zines, but yes, I’m using it for my new mini zine.

I think the zine as a whole came out rather nicely. I’m especially proud of myself because instead of using computer graphics and Google Image searches, I drew my own stuff! My lack of talent at drawing was not so bad, if I do say so myself, and my attempt was successful. So hell yay!!

Peace, love and dear winter, prepare to meet your doom!

Feelin’ the Zine Love

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As a lonely Israeli zinester, surrounded by people who know nothing of zines, who have no interest in them and don’t even know how to properly pronounce the word “zine”, coming across some zinester love is rare for me. And if I do come across it, I cherish it and never never take it for granted.

So today, I felt the zine love coming from all the way across the ocean, namely from Australia, by the amazing zine queen Nyx and Sea Green Zines, who featured the zines I sent her in her Happy Mail Monday video podcast! Aside from this totally kicking ass in and of itself, Nyx included also a segment about Nina (Echo Publishing) and her artwork, postcards and a mini-zine in that same video.

Being named in this podcast, along with other such incredible zine makers suddenly made me feel not so alone. And being part of this community is what makes it all worthwhile. It’s exactly what I felt during the Boston Zine Fest I attended in 2015. People of different backgrounds and identities, united in a common love for the craft, in an event and a setting with nothing but mutual respect, love, appreciation, inspiration, encouragement, trading and sharing zines, comments, experiences and positive feedback. This is what I felt during the zine fest, and what I felt again watching this video.

There is nothing better than that. It simply made my day, and my week.

This Thursday is Tai Chi Thursday. During the meditation part, there is the “appreciation stage” during which you need to think of two good things that happened to you in the last few days. I can totally see myself focussing on this zine love as one of the majorly good things.

The second good thing I will think about is that I finally bought a new bag! At first, I was thinking of getting something that would be fitting for a zinester travel bag, where I can pack all my zines tools for making zines on the go. But then I thought a bit more about it, and it didn’t seem appropriate for me right now, considering my life and also the country where I live. I mean, there is no way I could pack a pair of scissors in my bag. This is Israel we’re talking about. There are security personnel in every hole and a pair of scissors is a weapon. Plus, I don’t really travel anywhere anymore. And even if I did, I also wouldn’t pack a pair of scissors as it would be confiscated.

So instead, I decided to get a purse where I could fit all my most important stuff – wallet, mobile phone, work keys, home keys, ID, journal, pen, lunch (for work), charger, chapstick (never leave home without it), checkbook, my most recent reading material (a zine or a Stephen King book) and a pack of gum.

I was looking for a very specific bag: black, made of hemp, with a lot of compartments, and I found it at the mall. It’s the first thing I got to cross off my list of resolutions! I also ordered an Amon Amarth patch to sew on the top flap of the bag. It’s gonna look badass. I’m so happy and excited about it!

Peace, love and zine magic forever!

 


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