Confessions of a Former Zine Slut

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Title: Confessions of a Former Zine Slut
Creator: sockii
Date(s): early to mid-2000s?
Medium: online
External Links: Confessions of a Former Zine Slut from Sockii Press;WebCite </ref>
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Confessions of a Former Zine Slut is an early 2000s essay by sockii.


Since I discovered fan fiction I've been buying zines. I was fortunate with my first few purchases in that they were beautiful examples of everything a zine should be. Perfect English, well formatted, exquisite characterization and stories so good I wanted to cry when I reached the end of the zine. In the past few years though more and more zines have failed to meet those standards, going from simply acceptable to outright abysmal and as a result of the decline in quality across the fandoms, I've since stopped purchasing zines.

Of course fan fiction, like everything else in life, is subject to individual tastes and regardless of how much a zine rocked my world and changed my life, it's probably not going to butter everyone's muffins. However, there are some things that are universal and everyone should expect to see these in a zine they purchase: correct English and punctuation; very few to no typos; a format that isn't hard on the eyes and good characterization (even if it's an AU zine) to name some of the most important. Things like pretty artwork are nice, but a zine doesn't have to contain that to be excellent. It's all about the fiction, after all.

The zines listed here probably won't be for everyone, but I wanted to share what I thought were the bests zines in fandom along with some of the worst as a fair warning. I'll cover the technical side of things and touch a little on the stories in general, but not individually when it comes to anthology zines.


"The Best Zines Ever Published"

A list and description of five zines.

"Average to Mediocre"

A list and description of about fifteen zines.

"Most zines in the past fell under this category. The technical writing was either pretty good or passable, the layout was if not wonderful, then at least not an eyesore and most of the stories were readable with only a few bad apples in the bunch. For the most part you'd be better off waiting for all of these stories to be published online, but there are one or two that might be worth the money. The following are a few examples of what I'd call "decent" zines."

"The horror! The horror! Or, the Worst Zines in Fandom"

A list and description of four zines.

"I was disappointed in the increasingly average quality of the zines I'd been purchasing, so around 2003 I cut my zine consumption down greatly. Unfortunately, the last few zines I purchased fell into this category, and that put the nail in the coffin of my zine addiction.

To make it into this category, a zine has to be truly abysmal. I'll tolerate a few typos or bad formatting if a story is good, but if the plot is paper thin, the characters horribly OOC and the writing dreadful, then not even brilliant technical aspects or the most beautiful artwork in the world can save it. That's when I stick the zines here."