Get to Know Your Zinester: Yonsei Press

Who: Yonsei Press

What would you like people to know about your zines?
Yonsei Press is an independent publishing project, created by Annie Soga, that publishes and distributes zines and other printed matter.

The overarching themes of YP’s publications are history and storytelling, with particular interest paid to narratives that have yet to be told in the zine community. This begins with stories of the Japanese American experience, as well as those of the Japanese diaspora at large.

YP strives to create and support projects that are of high craft and deep content, producing thoroughly researched, visually-conscious works. Printing in limited editions allows for a dynamic and continuously growing catalog representing a multitude of ideas, aesthetics, and authors.

The very first (and brand new!) publication by YP will be debuting at LAZF. It is the first issue in a planned series called Extraordinary Nikkei, which are short illustrated biographies about lesser known figures in the history of the Japanese diaspora. Issue #1 chronicles the life of Wendy Yoshimura, an artist and activist involved in the student movement of the early 1970s, and who eventually became an accomplice of kidnapped San Francisco heiress Patty Hearst.

Tell us about a zine maker or zine that has had an impact on you.
I absolutely adore fellow LAZF exhibitors MOUNT ZINE, hailing from Tokyo. They are a distro, and by tabling at zine fests in the US, they’ve given American audiences unique access to the incredible self-publishing work happening in Japan right now. You don’t need to read Japanese to appreciate how beautiful these zines are, as they’ve curated a thoughtful collection of creative, artistic works. I always end up buying the most at LAZF from their table, and I’m excited to see them again this year!

What are you looking forward to at L.A. Zine Fest 2019?
I’ve tabled at LAZF before, but this is my new press’s debut year! I’m looking forward to the reception it gets, and to sharing more about this new project with everyone.

Make sure to check out Yonsei Press’s table at L.A. Zine Fest 2019 on Sunday, May 26th at Helms Bakery in Culver City!

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