We Make Zines

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I have a website (www.catherineelms.co.uk) which is dedicated to my music - I've recorded a 5-track EP which is for sale on the website, and I'll be recording an album this summer. On the website there's also a gallery, a page for gig information, etc. It's all very plain and functional.

Recently I've been considering selling my zines on the website too, and putting a link there to my blog, just to make the website more interesting and personal. I've also found someone who is going to make the actual layout of the website more interesting, so that'll be good.

I like the idea of a personal website which is devoted to the author's artistic pursuits, especially www.deformative.net and Clementine Cannibal's site. It's awesome that these women show that their creativity is multi-faceted, and I find that quite inspiring.

My main concern is the quality of my zines versus the quality of my music. My music is of a decent quality (regardless of whether you think the songs are well-written) because I recorded them with decent equipment, and with great musicians helping out. I'm also hoping to do some gigs in the summer, so I'll be a "proper" local musician in my town putting a lot of effort into my music and promotion. My zines, however, have had more mixed reviews... I'm a better musician than I am a zinester, so maybe it's not a good idea.

I don't know. I'll be putting up recent issues because I've made a bigger effort with them and I'm happier with the quality (so #4 onwards), and I definitely won't be doing it for a few months anyway, because I want to have more than 2 up there. But I'm not sure if I should bother at all. Because if someone visits my site with the intention of buying the CD for £3, and sees a zine up there for 80p, then it's very likely that they'll throw that in with their order as well. And I don't know if my average zines will put people off, or will make me seem like less of a serious musician? Not that I think I'm any sort of amazing musician on the rise (I'm really not), just that if the zines aren't very good, does that make me less of a credible artist ("she might be able to write songs, but she can't write prose for shit")? Or what if people think that putting zines up there is a way of making people feel guilty/gaining attention, because some of the writing in my zines is so negative?

So what do you think? Should I bite the bullet and do it anyway, or should I wait until I'm certain that my zines are a decent quality before I put them up (so, say, in about 2 years' time)? Has anyone else done this? What was it like?

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I don't know if I can give an opinion seeing as I've only read one of your zines and heard none of your music, but here's what I think- your zines ARE good. That being said, I'm not sure you should put them up with your music. Maybe it's just the one I read, but you wrote at times very negatively about your music and I'm not sure if that would turn people off, or... what. It's hard to say. But your zines ARE good, I need to state that. You should be more positive about yourself :)

p.s. my trade is finaaaally in the mail for you. sorry for the wait!
Aww, thank you all. :)



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