We Make Zines

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Zines For Troops! Donations Needed!




You know how when you’re stressed out, it can help to relax with some good reading material? Imagine you’re a military member in a danger zone, or even just a tightly-regulated environment. Or what if you were an injured service person in a veterans' hospital? That’s tense! Wouldn’t it be nice to read some zines in your free time?

Of course it would! So join with me! ZINES FOR TROOPS! is a way for the zine community to connect with members of the United States military. You could send zines that:

*Share what life is like in your part of the U.S. (or any other country)

*Represent thoughts you think might not be discussed a lot in the military

*Help someone relax with humor or interesting ideas

*Let the people defending your freedoms know what freedom means to you

*You can donate just about any zine! Just follow the guidelines below.

And you know what’s cool? When you donate, I’ll commemorate your act of kindness—and your zine title if you'd like—in an Honor Roll on We Make Zines! PLUS--I'll send you two nifty custom 1" buttons!

UPDATE #1, 5/20/13: After a grand showing of zinester generosity at the Riverside DIY Print Fest (65 donations!) and a bunch of mail contributions, Zines for Troops! is ready to send zines to its first recipients! Keep those donations coming! People are digging the buttons you get when you donate!

TEN-HUT! Let’s get those troops some zines.



Kari Tervo


POB 7831

Beverly Hills, CA 90212





*Materials must be in good condition. No materials with loose, brittle, or missing pages (i.e., staple your zines), stains, or water damage.

*No racist materials.

*No pornographic materials (i.e., generally to kinda safe for work).

*Operation Paperback (the donation organization) prohibits “unsolicited religious materials.”


Why are you doing a volunteer project for the military? What’s your military background?

I’ve never been involved with the military. I’ve worked at a few Veterans’ Administration hospitals and enjoyed interacting with veterans, with their many and varied life experiences. Whatever one’s political views, military members are, above all, human beings with the same fundamental needs we all have. My primary goal in providing zines for troops is to alleviate boredom and contribute to satisfying leisure time. It wouldn’t hurt if sending zines increased understanding among U.S. and other world citizens.

What if I don't have a zine? Can I still participate?

Yes! You can make a donation of ANY size to the above address, or PayPal it to shardsofglassinyoureye@gmail.com. All monetary donations not specified as postage will go to purchase zines to send to troops. Many zines cost around $2, so just a couple of bucks could put a smile on someone's face.

What kinds of zines can I send?

Just about anything! Just see Donation Guidelines, above, first. You don’t even have to send your own zine. You can send some of your secondhand zine collection (in good condition).

How many zines can I send? How many copies of each issue can I send?

Send one to three copies of each issue. Or, throw together a grab bag of your zine collection.

Also, this is a great way for distros, zine libraries, and exhibitions that are ending their runs to make sure their collection is heading to a good home! 

How often will you be sending zines to troops?

Each shipment will have at least 20 zines, so however long it takes to collect 20 per shipment.


How do I donate to your postage costs?

How nice of you to ask! You can PayPal a postage donation to shardsofglassinyoureye@gmail.com or include it with your donation. I suggest donating 25 cents per zine.


Is my donation tax deductible? 

Yes. Please request a receipt if you want one. But I’m the collector/sender, not the non-profit organization. Because your zine is technically sent through the auspices of Operation Paperback, you’ll have to check with them for their tax deduction guidelines (operationpaperback.org). Operation Paperback is a registered 501(c)(3) non-profit organization (Pennsylvania EIN 41-2209836).


How do I know where my zine will end up?

You don’t! But there’s a good chance your work will go to a fascinating part of the planet! It's also possible that an injured veteran in a VA hospital will get the chance to appreciate your work. I’ll be sending your zine to an address specified by Operation Paperback. They’ve sent reading materials to locales from Afghanistan to Uzbekistan, from Hungary to Honduras. And who wouldn’t want their zine in the hands of a sailor in the Mediterranean Sea Fleet?


ZINES FOR TROOPS! uses the donation infrastructure Operation Paperback provides, adheres to its guidelines, and shares its mission of providing cost-free reading materials to U.S. military members.



Kari Tervo


POB 7831

Beverly Hills, CA 90212





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Comment by Kari Tervo on June 19, 2013 at 12:31am

This comment is from James Dawson on 6/15/13, and I responded on his page. It was originally posted on a different post but thought it had a better home here.

Comment by James N. Dawson on Saturday

I certainly wouldn't want to begrudge anybody in the military enjoying my zines, but I do have a few reservations about sending mine.  I'm not saying an absolute "no", but I just feel the need to share some conerns.

I wouldn't necessarily say I'm a "pacificist" in the usual sense (though I abhor violence and am a Buddhist), but a war in general and especially maybe the wars and "peace actions" of the last couple decades are of very dubious value to say the least.  It looks to me like the "solution" is hugely worse than the problem.

I don't have anything personal against "the troops", nor am I particularly judgemental about the choice they feel they had to take in joining the military, but I'm not into pieties and slogans.  What exactly does it mean "to suppport *our* troops"?  Is it just a sugar-coated, toned-down version of "Remember our boys on the Malabar front!"   (By the way, my leanings are very egoist and I haven't a shred of patriotism or nationalism in me.)  Again, nothing personal against "the troops".  I wish them well, and hope the come home with as little damage as possible.

Finally, I'm leery of my zines, even the less political ones, getting into the hands of the higher echelons of the military.  I'm sure they'd be inclined to dismiss the "radical" rants a bunch of teens and twenty-somethings, but may see some genuine threat in the powerful insights of this middle-aged malcontent...and alert our great leader Obama of the need "to investigate".

Again, I'm not saying, "no", just inviting a little perspective.  What are the dangers in sending *some* zines to "the troops".  Will any find their way under the scrutiny of the National Security Agency?

But, hey, some apparachick could be reading this right now, and maybe I've already got a file "this thick" anyway.  Maybe it's pointless worrying about it and I ought to just provide a little entertainment to some poor soldier.  (But it's still a spooky decision...)  

Comment by Kari Tervo on May 26, 2013 at 5:59pm

Sarah--Not yet! There may be a Canadian equivalent to Operation Paperback, which is what I'm running this project under.

Comment by Sarah E. Hoffman on May 26, 2013 at 5:04pm

Is there a Canadian equivalent?

Comment by lauramarie on May 13, 2013 at 8:43am

Will send zines soon--probably today.  Thanks again for asking and for doing this helpful project.


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