Sunday, May 27, 2012

Scranton Zine Festival

Scranton Zine Festival

Following my meeting with my writing group (The Northeastern Pennsylvania Writers' Collective, which does not have a blog...yet) yesterday, a few of us hiked a few blocks to grab a late lunch. Along the way, one of our company brought up the matter of Zine Fest, and wondered if I might know when it was. I didn't, and had only been vaguely aware that such a thing was going on. In fact, I had almost forgotten about zines entirely since my college years, until a conversation with blogger, zine publisher and enthusiast Erin Delaney a few years ago reminded me of their existence.

I'm lookin' behind us now, across the count of time, down the long hall, into history back...

Imagine a time before the Internet. Before blogs, and podcasts, and tweets, and YouTube, and Facebook, Before iPods. Before cell phones, at least cell phones small enough to put in a pocket, and cheap enough for everybody to own. Back when photographs were taken on chemical emulsions, and having fifty-seven channels on TV seemed like a lot.

In such an environment, how would you share your opinions, your ideas, your brilliance, and your creativity with the world? One answer, for those with the right combination of talent and resourcefulness, was - and continues to be - the zine.

"But what is a zine?" you might ask. Well the good folks at the Scranton Zine Festival have anticipated your question, and answered it here:

I remember reading zines in my college days, usually ones I picked up at a second-hand bookstore downtown. (I believe it was the Scranton branch of "Mostly Books.") I haven't run across any in the years since, and thought that perhaps the labor-intensive act of creating a zine had passed away in favor of the relatively low-effort act of updating a blog. But as Erin reminded me, zines do still exist - and there's enough interest locally to result in the Scranton Zine Festival.

And almost as if they were trying to make a point about the relationship between zines and blogs - the Scranton Zine Festival has a blog!

Scranton Zine Festival

The Scranton Zine Festival is Saturday, June 9 at the New Visions Studio & Gallery, 201 Vine Street, Scranton. (For a quick image of the place, see here; for the New Visions blog, go here; and for the New Visions Website, go here.)

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