Sunday, 24 May 2009

North East Zine Culture

I was giving out zines at the 'Defiance Ohio' gig in Durham yesterday, and was really pleased when people said 'ooh I have that one already but I'll take that one' etc.. It seems people really do go to the star & shadow from all over the North East & I am feeling really optimistic that we have a pretty thriving zine & DIY culture up here.
Microcosm Publishing had a stall and there were lots of zines etc.. for sale from America. Strange place Durham, though (the Pink Panther's favourite city). Posh student enclaves around the Cathedral making it feel all quiet and medieval. And I walked right past the venue and back onto the river. I figured if I didn't find it then I would just kip in the woods there - it was warm enough to imagine it. As it was, the gig was found and packed and afterwards there were 10 of us on the platform waiting for the delayed train back to Newcastle, with mandolins and singing and flutes and harmonica and drunk couples clapping & dancing to the tunes.
I went up into my loft before the gig to dig out the last box of my 'Secret History Zine', and I'm down to my last few of all but the 'Abraham' zine. A space is appearing, to fill...

Today I've been reading my latest local small press comics and I'll do a review of some of them this week. & don't forget this Friday the anthology launch at the star & shadow...

Text of a Flyer I handed out at the weekend:

Let’s Make Zines Together in Newcastle!

Let’s Build a
D-I-Y Community!

Zine Boxes in the Star & Shadow Cinema Regularly Topped-Up By Mysterious Strangers Like You

Paper Jam Comics-Drawing Collective Launch Their Latest Anthology on Friday 27th May at the Star & Shadow, and draw together every two weeks at the Travelling Man Comics Shop on Clayton St.

‘Wor Diary’ Collective Local History Making: an open project that makes a very low-tech participatory diary each year

There’s too many band and collectives putting out songs, putting on gigs & making craft to mention here. (one I haven’t met yet is at
But did you know there are some people learning how to bind their own notebooks this Sunday in Fenham?

It’s one of the offshoots of the DIY-Aye! Festival that took place last weekend (again in the TOTALLY volunteer-run & DIY Star & Shadow Cinema). Maybe you were there. What shall we do next? Learn Greek by interpreting anarchist graffiti? Learn Religion by reading only the expurgated bits of the Bible? Write a collective story? Start a cartoon & pass it on & on around the Toon until it’s 5000 pages long? Start a shared newsletter or blog for DIY zine-related things?
Let me know,

And I would love to swap zines or postcards if you send them to:
42 Curtis Rd

1 comment:

  1. I should mention that Trev has part-inspired me to be more open about my name & address, which I used to be shy of using, cos he opens himself to all the come-back he might get from his pamphlets & politics. Maybe after prison, things hold less fear...

    (But I still don't want the kids I teach to find me out)