We Make Zines

a place for zinesters - writers and readers

Soooo ... I have the green light tentatively to start making a plan for a sustainable queer zine library at the William Way Community Center in Philadelphia. But to make sure it's sustainable and that I am well prepared to take this project on with all of the energy and sustainable resources it deserves, I'd like to ask a few questions. 

 

Thanks in advance!

 

 

How did you decide to start a library? How did it evolve? 

How much space did you start with, and how did/do you handle expansion as your library evolves? 

How did you go about getting submissions? 

What kind of budget did you start with?

How do you store and display your collection? Are you a lending library? 

What (prefereably free or cheap) software do you use for cataloging?

 

Views: 81

Replies to This Discussion

Hi Sarah! I've never started a zine library, but I did volunteer at ZAPP in Seattle for a while & I am a librarian who lives in Philly. I'm interested in the possibility of helping out with this project if you need/want it! In terms of cataloging, I've heard of people using librarything.com. It's $10-25 for an organizational membership.
That's a really good suggestion. I will definitely mention that to my center organizer to see if they can swing it.Thank you, so much.  

andreajean said:
Hi Sarah! I've never started a zine library, but I did volunteer at ZAPP in Seattle for a while & I am a librarian who lives in Philly. I'm interested in the possibility of helping out with this project if you need/want it! In terms of cataloging, I've heard of people using librarything.com. It's $10-25 for an organizational membership.

Check out this discussion from a few months ago.....My reply follows the link here.... :) Good Luck! You can always contact me personally with any questions about how we're doin our thing!

lvzinelibrary@gmx.com

-Jeff

Las Vegas Zine Librarian

http://wemakezines.ning.com/forum/topics/so-whos-familiar-with-running

 

"here's a synopsis on how i started the Las Vegas zine library in July of 2010. :)

If others have done it so can you!

-Assess your community! Is there already a zine library? Can you combine your resources with someone else? Do you live in a place where it seems like no one knows what a zine is? Be ready to dish out the knowledge you have with people regarding zines all the time! You are becoming a zine ambassador of sorts! Workshops are great ways to educate and get people involved.
-Look online and find out where zine libraries are being promoted and posted....a little research goes a long way
-contact zine related websites and ESPECIALLY other Zine libraries!!!! I Can't tell you how helpful these people are in answering questions and telling their stories! It's great! It's a welcoming supportive bunch from my phone calls, and email correspondence (not to mention quick!).
-decide what you're going to carry. there are specialized zine libraries and general archives.
-LVZL started with what i already had, about 40 poetry chap books and 20 zines I'd acquired over time(small is good at first! It grew quicker than I ever thought it would, so don;t fret over the size of the collection)
-make a list of possible places interested...cafes, galleries, public library...(or you could rent space, but i think it's more important to get support from your community first before you start paying rent somewhere!)
-I got in touch with owner of a new coffeehouse/gallery downtown, gave them the rundown of what a zine library (and a zine) is. They had some unused space they were willing to donate (knowing where you fit in in an already occupied space is good).
-i figured out how the space would be used and through a series of emails and finally face to face meetings (insert sketches here) that explained the layout to the owner, I was given the go ahead.
-I went ahead and spent a hundred dollars on an order from microcosm, to fill out the collection a bit. I got a DIY pack they offered and a random pack as well. I tried to get a good mix of stuff. A hundred dollars added about 70 more zines.
-How will you store the zines? i decided to put all the zines in the polyvinyl bags with cardboard backings (found at comic shop. They have 'magazine size' which helped with larger zines)
-Decide on things such as: will people be able to check zines out? what kind of labeling will be best? What kind of signage/decoration will be best.....you get the idea. (the look is not as important as getting the zines up, the look will transform over time and fall into place. I mention this because I found myself obsessing over details which i had to let go to get the library up and running.)
-I went into excell and catalouged what i had by name publisher and genre.
-put the zines on the shelf!
-set up a free blog(www.lvzinelibrary.blogspot.com) & set up an email account
-started promoting with fliers and web contacts.
-put out a 'drop box' so people can leave their work (and they will). The Po Box is great to have for mail (and it will come).....it just grows from there!

since July the library has expanded from that initial 60 zines to 400+ !
DIY!!!! In the flesh!!!
Please contact me (JEFF) with any questions at lvzinelibrary@gmx.com
hope this helped!

-LVZL"

Thanks Jeff. I have space mapped out, and Philly doesn't have an existing zine library, so I think I'm set in that department. I'm mostly figuring out the technicalities right now. Thanks so much for answering my questions. I'll keep you posted!

Las Vegas Zine Library said:

Check out this discussion from a few months ago.....My reply follows the link here.... :) Good Luck! You can always contact me personally with any questions about how we're doin our thing!

lvzinelibrary@gmx.com

-Jeff

Las Vegas Zine Librarian

http://wemakezines.ning.com/forum/topics/so-whos-familiar-with-running

 

"here's a synopsis on how i started the Las Vegas zine library in July of 2010. :)

If others have done it so can you!

-Assess your community! Is there already a zine library? Can you combine your resources with someone else? Do you live in a place where it seems like no one knows what a zine is? Be ready to dish out the knowledge you have with people regarding zines all the time! You are becoming a zine ambassador of sorts! Workshops are great ways to educate and get people involved.
-Look online and find out where zine libraries are being promoted and posted....a little research goes a long way
-contact zine related websites and ESPECIALLY other Zine libraries!!!! I Can't tell you how helpful these people are in answering questions and telling their stories! It's great! It's a welcoming supportive bunch from my phone calls, and email correspondence (not to mention quick!).
-decide what you're going to carry. there are specialized zine libraries and general archives.
-LVZL started with what i already had, about 40 poetry chap books and 20 zines I'd acquired over time(small is good at first! It grew quicker than I ever thought it would, so don;t fret over the size of the collection)
-make a list of possible places interested...cafes, galleries, public library...(or you could rent space, but i think it's more important to get support from your community first before you start paying rent somewhere!)
-I got in touch with owner of a new coffeehouse/gallery downtown, gave them the rundown of what a zine library (and a zine) is. They had some unused space they were willing to donate (knowing where you fit in in an already occupied space is good).
-i figured out how the space would be used and through a series of emails and finally face to face meetings (insert sketches here) that explained the layout to the owner, I was given the go ahead.
-I went ahead and spent a hundred dollars on an order from microcosm, to fill out the collection a bit. I got a DIY pack they offered and a random pack as well. I tried to get a good mix of stuff. A hundred dollars added about 70 more zines.
-How will you store the zines? i decided to put all the zines in the polyvinyl bags with cardboard backings (found at comic shop. They have 'magazine size' which helped with larger zines)
-Decide on things such as: will people be able to check zines out? what kind of labeling will be best? What kind of signage/decoration will be best.....you get the idea. (the look is not as important as getting the zines up, the look will transform over time and fall into place. I mention this because I found myself obsessing over details which i had to let go to get the library up and running.)
-I went into excell and catalouged what i had by name publisher and genre.
-put the zines on the shelf!
-set up a free blog(www.lvzinelibrary.blogspot.com) & set up an email account
-started promoting with fliers and web contacts.
-put out a 'drop box' so people can leave their work (and they will). The Po Box is great to have for mail (and it will come).....it just grows from there!

since July the library has expanded from that initial 60 zines to 400+ !
DIY!!!! In the flesh!!!
Please contact me (JEFF) with any questions at lvzinelibrary@gmx.com
hope this helped!

-LVZL"

hey there!

 

i started the hamilton zine library in 2007  with maybe 150 titles and it started out as a  big sandwhich board with little compartments for zines that i dragged into a cafe space two days a week, until they decided to give me a permanent space in the cafe. since then we got jumbled around with that cafe and i have decided to move everything to a space on U of G campus. i don't like the idea of being on campus but its free and a pretty rad space, my goal with the zine library was to have it in a public space and not pay rent.

i started the library because my personal collection was getting pretty big and i felt pretty selfish keeping it al to myself.

started with no money still have no money, but this month i plan on applying for a grant to re catalog the collection (over 900 titles now!) so i can pay myself for all the work i do. it's labor of love but love don't pay the rent!

i collect zines myself so i would just donate zines that i picked up to the library, on the blog i list an address that folks can send stuff to, i also solicit at bookfairs and zine fairs asking for free zines for the zine library. i write reviews for a few review zines so i get stuff that way too. i find the challenge is finding a wide array of subject, i always pick up stuff that interests me giving a skewed collection.

 

we are a lending library, we are in a space that has a more traditional library so they use computer catalog and library software to keep all the lending straight, i haven't learned how to use it but will soon! i think the program is free or pretty cheap i'll let you know!

i have gone though many ways of display, ending with droppy zines and lost pages.... i have decided to use the method i saw at anchor archive, they use magazine holders on shelves.

hope that helps

link to the zine library now: arrow archive

Here are some hints and tips of advice that people have given me or that I've discovered along the way: Please feel free to add or share. 

  • Run zine workshops as part of library programs. Make sure you get 3 photocopies to keep of each zine created by particpants. One copy for your ephemera collection (and aquittal if your project is funded through a grant), one to add to the library collection and one spare to use as you will (perhaps start a zine trade). 
  • Have the collection as reference only - sadly if you lend out zines for peeps to take home they often don't come back in one piece (or at all).
  • Keep a catalogue of the zines (if you're not doing so all ready) and try to categorise them into areas so people can find what they're interested in easier, I keep mine in the topics of: Creative writing/ poetry, Art, How to Guides, Journalist,  Anarchist and collaborations.
  • To encourage a local zine scene - keep a list of contacts of locals interested in zines, run regular meetings for people to make, swap and share.

Has anyone here heard of Little Free Libraries?  check out littlefreelibrary.org  They look like big birdhouses and you put one on a post in your front yard and put books in it for people to take, give, trade, whatever.  They're popping up around here like hotcakes and I want to make one just for zines!! 

I am thinking of creating a indiegogo campaign to get money to start one, since it costs $250 to get one and I don't trust my carpentry skills to make one, even though they give you the plans for a basic one on the website.

Has anyone tried this? Any suggestions?

RSS

Groups

Want to advertise here?

Ist preference given to distros and zines. Rates and details are here. Limited space. Very Low Cost!

Please Support Our Sponsors

Anatomic Air Press

Sweet Candy Distro

Con Artist Collective

Ker-bloom! Letterpress Zine

 

© 2014   Created by Krissy PonyBoy Press.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service