This year I attended the 13th Annual Portland Zine Symposium with two other LA Zine Fest organizers in tow, Rhea and Simon. I saw so many old friends, made some new ones, and of course, bought some excellent zines! We were seated next to fellow Angeleno, Donna Letterese, who we knew from when she tabled the first year at LA Zine Fest! I took that as a good omen for the weekend, and I was right!
With two days featuring more than 150 tablers and numerous workshops, there was a lot to see and do at PZS. I always get pumped when Amber Dearest is tabling at an event, because it’s a great way for me to stock up on zines from her distro, Fight Boredom, without having to pay the shipping from Montreal. It was great to see Maranda Elizabeth (Telegram zine) and Neelybat Chestnut (Mend My Dress Press). They both tabled and held a workshop at LAZF 2013.
One of the more exciting moments I had during the Zine Symposium was running across an old favorite, Arts & Crafts Revolution. I used to run a zine distro many years ago in high school and distributed that zine! I picked up a DIY zine about book binding and a copy of Terri’s perzine, Only Hooligans Write on Desks, which was a really engaging and informative zine about mental health and the welfare system. Unfortunately I can’t find these zines available for purchase online, which goes to show how important it is to attend zine fests!
One of the highlights of the whole weekend was getting together with a bunch of zine (and zine-related) event organizers from across the country to talk about the highs and lows of organizing, share tips and tricks and collaborate. We got together with organizers from ABQ (Albuquerque) Zine Fest, Milwaukee Zine Fest, Zinefest Houston, Austin Zine Fest, Portland Zine Symposium and more, and had some really great discussions. Anyone up for a southwest zine fest tour?
Thanks so much to all the organizers, volunteers and tablers of the Portland Zine Symposium for such an awesome time!