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Whatcha Mean, What's a Zine?
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Whatcha Mean, What's a Zine?

3.74  ·  Rating details ·  478 Ratings  ·  52 Reviews
A zine is a handmade magazine or mini-comic about anything you can imagine: favorite bands, personal stories, subcultures, or collections. They contain diary entries, rants, interviews, and stories. They can be by one person or many, found in stores, traded at comic conventions, exchanged with friends, or given away for free. Zines are not a new idea: they’ve been around f ...more
Paperback, 112 pages
Published June 26th 2006 by HMH Books for Young Readers (first published 2006)
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Nov 04, 2008 rated it did not like it
Recommends it for: only the youngest & most sheltered of aspiring zinesters
Shelves: read-in-2007
in retrospect, i'm amazed that i had such high hopes for this book. not that my hopes were especially stratospheric, but that i had hopes at all is really kind of sad. i should have known from experience that books about zines are pretty much always a complete letdown, they miss the point, they contain ridiculous quantities of misinformation, & they seek to commercialize & trivialize a part of my life that is huge, important, & personal. i need to just stop reading books about zines. ...more
Jul 10, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: crafts, non-fiction
I realize I am quite late to the party, but I am now in love with zines! I want to read them, make them, and give them away. I was prompted to start reading this book because I decided to change up the final project in a class I am teaching, so instead of annotated bibliographies -- zines! This book inspired me to not only learn how to make and teach the art of zines but also to brainstorm what zine projects I could still undertake this summer as fun side projects. Great instructions and ideas. ...more
Leiah Jansen
Apr 01, 2017 rated it liked it
Approachable little intro to zines. Makes the whole process seem like fun!
Marta Boksenbaum
Mar 13, 2012 rated it it was ok
Shelves: teen-lit
I couldn't get into this book. As a linear reader, I found this book extremely hard to read and it was obvious to me that I wouldn't much enjoy reading zines either. However, for a reader who likes unraveling each page full of handwriting and drawings that do not necessarily tell one cohesive story. I'm sure many readers would find this book informative and fun. I did like that it was written in the format of the genre it was describing, and includes very specific instructions on the constructio ...more
Feb 24, 2016 rated it it was amazing
An amazing resource / motivation for starting a zine. Suggestions are given for zine topics, printing and binding techniques, and distribution. Wish there was a little more in terms of online resources (but I also recognize that it may be a conscious choice to leave this out).

This book is in my library's Juvenile nonfiction section, but it is more targeted toward adults. (All language is appropriate for children, but the details/depth of some topics, including copying and binding, might be too c
lucy  black
Apr 11, 2013 rated it it was ok
Shelves: non-fic
I found this pretty try hard and too hip. It's also really patronising and too comics focused. I'm looking for a good book on zine making and the zine scene for my 73yr old dad who wants to make a simple zine of his poetry, this isn't it.
Dec 08, 2017 rated it really liked it
A well-written (and illustrated) book on creating zines. Answers a lot of question, using a comic-book (or zine) format. Different ideas are fully explored and explained. The back of the book shows different folds, stitches, and stapling ideas to create your zine.
Best part of the book is the encouragement to create your own work in ways that satisfy you, without worrying what everyone else is doing. Very supportive of creativity.
May 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This book is an inspiring, comprehensive and seriously chill overview of making zines. I absolutely loved it.

It's a very visually stimulating book. As a person with attention issues I worried I wouldn't be able to absorb the content very well with all that was going on but it was fine.

Highly recommend it.
May 28, 2018 rated it did not like it
More like, whatcha mean, how do you read this friggin book?
I understand what a Zine is. I understand the appeal. It's not until the end of the book that they explain how to actually make it. The other pages, while featuring all things zine, was quite literally, all over the place.
Heather Layne
Jun 12, 2018 rated it really liked it
Fun to read, and it was cool to see a million different art styles. At first, all the text being from a typewriter or handwritten was a little annoying, but I got used to it. I would love to make a bunch of zines now! But I don’t know what my subject(s) would be. Lots of cool ideas here, through!
Jessica Maybury
Feb 04, 2018 rated it really liked it
Beautiful book full of great illustrations and ideas.
Apr 12, 2018 rated it liked it
Some of the pages were way too visually cluttered for me. Tips about production were valuable. I liked the suggestions for subject matter, too.
Sep 19, 2017 rated it liked it
A nice little book for a kid who is interesting in expressing themselves. Very basic, appropriate for any age.
Danni Green
Dec 31, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I made my first zine a couple weeks ago and realized that if I wanted to make any more zines (which I do!) it would probably be a good idea to read up on how to do it! This book was a great introduction, full of useful tips and inspiring ideas. I loved the overall feel of the book and the different styles of each contributor. I am excited to make some more zines!
Cindy Benabderrahman
Apr 03, 2009 rated it did not like it
Recommends it for: people who get on my nerves asking me how to get their poetry published
In this book, someone hoping to learn the basics of zine-making can find lots of information. There are pages and pages artfully crafted with a vintage typewriter and lots of pens and markers by more than 20 contributors that presume to inform young zinesters. There is a section on the 200 year history of zines, another section about how to make your own zine. There are lists of ideas for young people who can't think of their own ideas. There are suggestions on how to use the copy machine
Jul 08, 2008 rated it really liked it
I've been volunteering for the Girls Rock Camp Austin. The girls have been rocking AND rolling. It's been fantastic. One of my favorite things about camp is that the girls are exposed to a variety of workshops. My friend's Jess B. & Jessica Champion (the jessicas) created and ran the zine workshop. Today was Jess B.'s day and I helped her out and oh man it was so much fun! It was only an hour so we ran through a super fast "what's a zine" "why make a zine" "how to make a zine" then let the g ...more
This is a great book for anyone looking to make a zine. It also has some good general advice, like writing prompts, for others who want to make something for the world to see! The book made zine-making sound so fun that I am kind of considering making one at some point, but I've got so much on my plate already, I don't think I'll ever get around to it.

My trouble with this book is I kept reading it and thinking, I prefer my blog and my physical sketchbooks. The book addresses the zine-versus-blo
Ahmad Nizamuddin
Apr 22, 2012 rated it it was amazing
A book all about zine making and it's in a very fun way, the most fun I got so far. The layout is all either type-written look or hand-written look. The two authors started the book writing about how they got into zine-making and stated that they make this book that they wished they'd find when they first started their mini-comics. What's a zine? Why zine? History of zines? Materials exploration? What to write about? How to do an interview? How to do reviews? Possible zine formats? Experimenting ...more
Salah satu buku di koleksi perpus art & craft yang paling aku suka: Cara membuat zine, media yang di awal tahun 1990 banyak beredar di Bandung dan dibuat oleh komunitas. Dengan gaya manual: tulisan di buku ini menggunakan gaya tulisan tangan dan mesin ketik, juga layout kolase, buku sangat terasa menampilkan semangat zine sebagai media komunitas yang mandiri.

Penulisnya bener-bener memaparkan dari A sampai Z serba-serbi membuat zine. Dari mulai sejarahnya, semangatnya dan sampai ke hal teknis
Sue Smith
Mar 29, 2012 rated it really liked it
This is a great resource book for anyone who's interested in trying their hand at making their own zine. It definitely covers all the basics anyways and has lots of testimonials from lots of great people who have blazed the trails ahead of everyone else. I really liked the advice on folding so you know exactly where each page will be.

Excellent reference pages at the back for where to send your zines to sell, but if you're Canadian you'll have to find another source. Some mention of one or two sp
Printable Tire
Embarrassing title aside, this book is awesome. I wished it existed when I was in high school. I can't figure out the book's demographic audience- it seems to be geared toward high schoolers, and indeed I found it in the young adult section of the public library, yet at least 50% of the stuff in here I don't think even I have the technical know-how to do, let alone the average high-schooler. But that's just good motivation to try it, I guess, and everything is explained in a pretty simple and en ...more
Aug 16, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: creativity
As a complete novice, I really enjoyed this book. If you are already into zines, I can see how it might not be great -- it lays out instructions for making a zine, which seems counter to the independent, trial-and-error spirit of the zine world. I did pick up some good tips from the book, but it's main value for me was just that it was creatively inspiring, and I really enjoyed the insights and visual contributions of various zine and mini-comic creators. Also, I now have a crush on Anders Nilse ...more
Jan 06, 2008 rated it really liked it
This book jumped out at me on a YA display end at the library when I was going to pick up King Dork. I thought that it was going to be a super cheesy, but it turned out to have really practical advice and a bunch of cool people giving input like Eric Nakamura (Giant Robot), Debbie Stoller (Bust), Bwana Spoons, and Salee Oh. If you ever wanna make a zine, I will happily be yr partner.
I like Esther Pearl Watson, but I'll stick to her comics.
This should be called Watcha Mean, What's a Mini-Comic?
The layout is so chaotic I felt like I was developing ADD just trying to read this book. Decent resource for young beginners (especially those interested in mini-comics), but I'm not a young beginner, so...
Apr 08, 2008 rated it did not like it
Shelves: ya-info
Are kids still into zines? I think adults who want to think they're cool want kids to be into zines, when really they're more into the electronic stuff. I probably wouldn't recommend this book unless the reader was really asking for this kind of content or had some kind of project to do (there's a good how-to section).
May 31, 2007 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: DIYers, Zinesters, Radical non-bathing types
I love this book. By far it's my favorite of the "how-to" zine books. It feel like a zine and again, I love how accessible it feels. I am so big into things being accessible for everyone. I hate snotty shit. I like the idea that a girl in bumfuck nowhere can pick up this book and start making zines and changing people's lives.
Jun 13, 2007 rated it liked it
Shelves: zines
Really great information about the technical side of zines. If you know a lot about zines already, though, you're not going to hear anything new.
I really love Watson's "Unlovable" comic and was maybe expecting something more like that. That's my fault.
Really great for teens and those unfamiliar with zines.
Jun 24, 2013 rated it liked it
This book is definitely helpful for anyone looking for more information about making a zine. It focuses on comic scenes and the layout can make it a bit difficult to follow. I'm not upset I purchased it but if I had to buy it again I would probably go with a different choice.
Jan 02, 2014 rated it really liked it
Anecdotes, practical tips (production, distribution, etc.), and resource links/addresses. All done up in layout derived from hand-made publications! (The layout bit slowed me down in reading while making it more fun by forcing me to experience a little of what is discussed within the book.)
May 08, 2010 rated it liked it
Not a bad book albeit not very inspiring. More about the technical side of putting together a zine rather than about how to create the content. For more:
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“Zines are not a new idea. They have been around under different names (ChapBooks, Pamphlets, Flyers). People with independent ideas have been getting their word out since there were printing presses.” 1 likes
“The most common kind of zine is the personal zine, created by individuals reflecting on their everyday lives-confessional, sometimes mundane, containing even scandalous writings.” 1 likes
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