Morton Grove Public Library: The Zine Project: Short Creative Works by and for Middle School Students
I hope you have now been able to visit our newly renovated Youth Services Department, located on the lower level of the library. You will notice that we have a new space for the college, which is just to the right as you get off the elevator. Here you’ll find college readings, study tables, board games, a TV and comfy chairs, and finally, The Zine Project.
What is a fanzine?
So what is a fanzine? Zines (pronounced “zeens”) are self-published mini-works in magazine form that can be about anything. They often use a mixture of pictures and words to tell a story or communicate an idea.
Some fanzines will teach you something new, while others will tell a personal story. They can make you laugh or make you cry, they can be fiction or non-fiction. It all depends on who is creating the zine.
And for The Zine Project at our library, we ask you to be the creator! You will see that on our zine board currently we only have sample copies. However, our goal is to ultimately only display zines created by local college students.
What should my zine be about?
So where do you find ideas for content? Graphic Novels are a great source of ideas, and we have a new Graphic Novels section in the College space for you to browse.
Also consider your own personal preferences and experiences:
- When you read, what genres do you gravitate towards?
- What are the people, places and things that you enjoy learning?
- What has happened to you in your life that you think others will relate to or want them to know?
Either way, we want your voice to be heard!
How to make a fanzine?
But how do you go from a blank sheet of paper to a finished zine? You can find guidelines and instructions for folding your zine next to the zine display in the college space (or download them here). There we also have paper, pencils, pens and colored pencils to use in library to make your room as beautiful and complete as possible.
You can also follow the instructions and create your zine with the materials you have at home. Please see our samples on the zine board for inspiration. You don’t have to think of yourself as an artist or a writer to write a zine. Everyone is welcome to participate!
Things to keep in mind
We have a few rules and guidelines that we ask you to follow, and otherwise what you do is up to you:
- Include your name or a pen name on the zine.
- You can give us your contact details, but please do not put them directly on your zine.
- Your zine should look good printed on a copier. This means the lines should be dark and your work should stay within the margin of the copy.
- Submit only completed zines – feel free to take your time to make it appear finished. Make sure to fold your zine according to the directions given.
- Only submit works that you feel comfortable reading by other people.
- Keep in mind that Youth Services materials are intended for grade 8 and younger students.
- Please return your finished zines to the Youth Services Office. We ask that you limit your submissions to two zines per month.
- The zines will be selected for viewing by librarians. We will keep all originals on file for you to retrieve if you wish to retrieve them.
We can’t wait to see what you create!
Natalie Roche is the Youth Services Librarian at the Morton Grove Public Library.
This press release was produced by Morton Grove Public Library. The opinions expressed here are those of the author.