I love reviewing zines. There is a huge volume of self published work sitting in independent bookstores and inventory piles in basements, waiting to be read and adored. I hope that by writing reviews and interviewing zine writers, artists, distributors and publishers I can demystify this world for new fans. However, while the number of outlets that review zines is growing, seeking reviews isn’t quite built into DIY culture. We want you to feel comfortable reaching out to WWAC—and other outlets!—because reviews aren’t just for mainstream publishing anymore.
Zinesters, this one’s for you.
Step One: Soliciting a Review
Most outlets have either a general email you can send pitches to, or a form on their website. Look for pages with titles such as, “About Us,” “Join Us,” “Contributors,” or, in our case, “Pitch Us” to find the site’s preferred method of contact. To solicit a review from WWAC, email firstname.lastname@example.org, and please provide a summary of your zine along with the information listed below!
Step Two: Tell Us About Yourself
As we all know, DIY and independent publishing is a different animal from mainstream publishing. Many zinesters distribute their own work through an online store or through physical book- and zine- stores. Some work with distros like Stranger Danger or Brown Recluse. Occasionally, zinesters publish under one name and have a separate name for their personal distro so that they can keep their individually-created work separate from collaborations or anthologies. Please let us know how you’re doing distribution and which conventions or expos you’ll be selling your stuff at, so that we can tell readers how to get their hands on your super rad creations.
Step Three: Send Us Some Pictures
Those of you who make comic zines are used to having hi-res images of your stuff around, but reviews of prose and nonfiction zines also include images. Send or link us to a high quality image of the zine’s cover and, if possible, a couple additional images that you and/or your collaborators would like featured with the article. If the back cover is cool, send an image of that too. Including images up front can speed the publication of a review, and we really appreciate it!
Step Four: Recommend Other Zines!
One of the things I love about the zine community is how supportive creators are. However, if you are outside of that community, it can be difficult to hear about all the amazing self-published works coming out of the DIY world. Tell us about your friends’ new amazing distro, your cousin’s zine series about fighting street harassment, your significant other’s upcoming anthology of goofy cat drawings, and anything else that you think WWAC will love and want to review!
The world of zines and comics is vast, and for many, reviews are how we navigate it. Let us help you get your beautiful, precious creations on the map by soliciting reviews!