a place for zinesters - writers and readers
I've just done 75 because
a) this is my first zine and I don't know what I'm doing
b) there are a few places that I wanted to stock it so I have printed 10 copies for each of them, plus a few for interested friends, plus a few for trade, plus about 25 in my back pocket for selling on etsy and just in case I bump into anyone who wants to trade.
I have to pay for my copying and the price comes down after a certain amount so it all makes a kind of sense eventually.
The first 5 or 6 issues of my zine were really badly written and laid out, my friends and I just had no idea what we were doing. So I just stopped selling back issues of those. The punk zine archive guy asked permission to scan them in and I said yes, but kinda cringed at people looking at them again. Oh well, I'm sure it's the same way for most zinesters. No one does a killer first issue, save for maybe Jim Goad with Answer Me. I wonder what the first issue of Cometbus was like...You answered your own question here about zines being sold out. Imagine ten years going by or more. Imagine how much a person's perspective, ideas, and personality changes in THAT time; even in adulthood. There's undoubtedly many things printed in my zines that are still circulating that I would have done differently now.
I never understood the idea of zines being "sold out" because I figured "well, why can't you just print up more?"
I would like to openly challenge anyone doing zine runs of 10-30 issues to double their next print run. You're going to so much work to create your zine, and to provide your own unique voice and perspective in the world of publishing--which let's face it gets more and more consolidated every day--that it's a crying shame that your zine doesn't reach more people. Even a few dozen more people. Try printing more issues, sending more out for review, and growing your audience and reach. Make an impact with your DIY publishing venture, even if it's small. Gawd knows the world needs more independent voices.