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Revising your work for use in a zine? And art? (a newbie asks some litzine questions)

Hi, everyone! I'm new to this site and the zine making community in general! I haven't even made a zine yet, though I've thought a lot about what to include. I had a question that may be sort of newbie-ish: do you revise your literary pieces at all before using them in zines or do you just write and whatever happens use that? Or is it mainly, just write and work on it until you're happy?

Also, I've been thinking about what to include in my first zine (which will have personal essays and poetry/flash fiction), but I'm coming up short with ideas for visuals. I'm not much of an artist or a photographer, so I'm wondering what others who like to write but can't draw do.


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i've done both. in the past i have planned my zines a lot, re-writing and planning all the artwork. usually i create content specifically for my zines (some have been illustrated poems and some have been perzines - zines with observations and drawings related to my life). one zine was entirely one story i wrote about an experience on a train that i had originally written for a memoir workshop i was taking. i revised it a bit, but kept it mostly intact.

 recently i've been working on more observations/thoughts on my life, but this time i'm not planning anything, just writing as it comes and when i'm in the mood. i'm finding the experience to be extremely refreshing! it makes zines feel more like an outlet, rather than a sporadic endeavor (usually i work intensely on a zine a week or two before a zine fest). i think i'm going to continue in this vein for awhile.

also, if you're not much of an illustrator, you can ask someone else to collaborate and add visuals. you can cut out images from super-old books and magazines and use those. there are also lots of books with copyright-free images that you can photocopy and cut out: check out Dover Publications. they make different books based on pictorial groupings, such as instruments, food, or pictures of women. honestly, i'd suggest simply purchasing/reading more zines and getting ideas from other people. this site is a great place to discover new ones, and Etsy has a huge array now too. (that's where i sell mine).

good luck!

Thanks for the response! Yeah, I feel like a planner when it comes to doing things, but I also feel like planning is making me stress more than I should. I have some stories from a creative writing workshop I took last semester that I am thinking of re-doing or revising, but I also want to write a personal essay and it feels like it would be less genuine if I spent a lot of time editing it.

But definitely thanks for the thoughts. And I'm definitely trying to read more zines and get more ideas :) there's not much of a zine scene around where I live, so mostly I've been looking on the Internet.



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