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Det_Morkettall
Metalhead

Joined: Wed Dec 29, 2010 12:02 am
Posts: 610
Location: Canada
PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2013 12:48 am 
 

I have recently begun toying with the idea of making an underground fanzine, but having only read really a few fanzines in my life, I'd like to know a couple basic things first, and I'd like to discuss the topic of fanzines in general.

Do you collect fanzines?
If so, how many do you have?
What, if any, genres are dominant in your fanzine collection?
What makes a good fanzine?
What makes for a unique reading experience?

I've been wondering about doing this recently, and so I wanted to discuss this with all of you to get your opinions, seeing as this is the largest heavy metal-centered website on the interwebs.

PS: Ways to promote a fanzine?
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Ozenrol
Metalhead

Joined: Sun May 04, 2008 11:17 pm
Posts: 474
Location: Mesa, AZ
PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2013 2:10 am 
 

Ironically I was considering this when I was walking to work today.

The best content, regardless of your focused genre, are exclusive interviews, whether they be with bands, labels, promoters, or whatever. In this day and age if you're putting out a printed zine in a physical format it's all about exclusivity and having content that warrants a purchase. Personally I prefer a physical format over digital, and I'd warrant a good amount of people feel the same, but even so there's a vast amount of interviews, reviews, etc that can be found online. Therefore, reviews should pertain to releases out on physical format exclusively (vinyl, tape, etc), and you shouldn't "preview" content for the sake of making sales (I hate to say it, but as with most avenues you need to be able to reimburse your expenses and make back some dough to fund future output). I guess just be logical about what it is you're printing.

To promote a fanzine, post on forums, be friendly, be willing to take feedback whether it's constructive or not. Speaking from experience, people who take blunt criticism in stride are more likely to gain an audience. Contact distros, labels, etc, offer to interview their artists or them directly on the way they handle their business. And then send them a couple promo copies and ask if they'd like to stock it.

Reviews in a zine are pretty much out of fad so to speak, since most anyone can look up a release on MA or RYM or whatever, the primary focus for zines in this day and age that want to make sales should be articles and interviews.

But that's just my two cents.


Good luck with your endeavor.

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OneRodeToAsaBay
The Doll With the Hideous Spirit

Joined: Sun Mar 16, 2008 5:49 pm
Posts: 2078
PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2013 7:00 pm 
 

Ozenrol's advice is pretty spot on--focusing on exclusive interviews and opinion articles would be your best bet and most of the best zines I've ever read have been like that. You might also want to include guest contributions from notable people in your local scene or within your genre of interest. I've also seen some entertaining reprints of old/legendary interviews from long out-of-print zines that have been included with permission from the original interviewers.

I have a handful of fanzines myself but not that many that are strictly metal-related. I guess most metalheads have moved to blogs for this sort of content. Would definitely be keen on more metal-focused zines though.

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ogmetal
Veteran of the Psychic Wars

Joined: Fri Jul 02, 2004 9:22 pm
Posts: 3968
PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2013 8:01 pm 
 

OneRodeToAsaBay wrote:

I have a handful of fanzines myself but not that many that are strictly metal-related. I guess most metalheads have moved to blogs for this sort of content. Would definitely be keen on more metal-focused zines though.


You aren't looking in the right places. There are DOZENS of fanzines now that are metal related. In fact, much more than say ten years ago.
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OneRodeToAsaBay
The Doll With the Hideous Spirit

Joined: Sun Mar 16, 2008 5:49 pm
Posts: 2078
PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2013 9:18 pm 
 

I don't doubt that but most of what I've come across has been about genres I'm not super into or has focused on bands I don't care about. Probably worth a closer look, though.

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