The Legacy of K/S in Zines

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Title: Legacy of K/S in Zines
Creator: Jenna Sinclair (the first six), Carolyn Spencer (the seventh section)
Date(s): July 2007
Medium: print, CD
Fandom: Star Trek: TOS
Topic: slash, K/S, Zine Fandom, Star Trek: TOS
External Links:
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The Legacy of K/S in Zines is a multi-part article/essay/fanwork in the issues of Legacy.

All but the last section was written by Jenna Sinclair. The last section was written by Carolyn Spencer.

Each part is written in a different fictional or non-fictional style and includes a brief description of each zine published that year. A list of those zines is included in the end.

The Parts

  • 1986: It Was a Very Good Year by Jenna Sinclair
  • 1987: It's Snowing Zines by Jenna Sinclair
  • 1988: Fetish and a Lot More by Jenna Sinclair
  • 1989: I'm Always in the Mood by Jenna Sinclair
  • 1990: Years Since "Alternative" and Still Going Strong by Jenna Sinclair
  • 1991-1995: Publisher by Publisher by Jenna Sinclair
  • 1996-2005: Now and Forever by Carolyn Spencer

1986

An excerpt:
Mary stood on the sidewalk in front of a candy store, with her nose pressed against the glass, trying to get as close to the tempting treats displayed as she could. In her hand was just...a nickel. Well, all right, it was a blank check. But which candy to buy? Well, okay, it wasn’t actually candy she was looking at, because Mary was a fully-grown adult female human, and she was interested in, um, a bit more than chocolate. She wanted Kirk and Spock. In compromising positions if at all possible. But the year was 1986, and there were so many K/S zines in the window that she was getting a little cross-eyed looking at the dizzying display of male pulchritude: boy, did the K/S artists know how to draw or what? Thirty-six zines coming out in 1986 alone! Wow!

1987

An excerpt: 
The postal carrier trudged from the house with the Santa Claus on its roof, across the snowy lawn, and up to the door of the Star Trek lady. That’s how he thought of her, ever since she had confided to him that the packages he delivered to her door, usually a few times a month, contained stories about the Star Trek characters. He surely had been busy delivering to her this year.

Harry liked Angie. He thought she was a little bit strange, it’s true, because what was a grown woman doing reading made-up stories about some guys on a television show? It was 1987, after all, and that show had been on a long time ago. Twenty-one years ago, Angie had told him proudly.

He pushed the bell and heard it clamoring inside the house. A minute later and footsteps sounded, and finally Angie—Mrs. McClanahan—opened the door. Like usual, she had a big smile on her face. She must really like these books he was delivering.

1988

The article is in the form of a hypothetical phone conversation between "Donna" and "Angie," two fans who discuss the zines of 1988. While many zines are mentioned, the focus is on Fetish.

An excerpt:
Angie: Hello?
Donna: Hi, it’s me. Okay, has Fetish come in the mail yet? Have you read it?
Angie: Oh, my goodness, I sure have.
Donna: What do you think?
Angie: I’m not sure. There were parts I liked....
Donna: Parts you liked? You didn’t go nuts over the whole story?
Angie: Well, yeah, but.... Listen, Donna, Kirk is only sixteen in Fetish.
Donna: Through part of it. Maybe half of it?
Angie: The whole section where Spock and McCoy go back in time to the Earth, to when Kirk is a cadet at the Academy.
Donna: Right. He’s sixteen then, a first year Academy student.
Angie: And to have him and Spock consummate a love affair when he’s that age, I—
Donna: Now wait a minute. They didn’t exactly consummate it. It’s very clear there isn’t any penetration. You know, just hands and mouths. I think that’s okay.
Angie: I felt sorry for Spock. He was so confused.
Donna: Yeah, I thought the author did a great job of showing how much Spock wanted Kirk in his own time, how he was in love with his captain, and then when Spock and McCoy go back in time, how seeing Kirk as a teenager…

1989

This part was written in the form of a letter. The first paragraph is an example of the underground element of many K/Sers and this fandom.

An excerpt:
Hi! I bet you didn’t think you’d hear from me so soon, did you? I just spent these last few days before the New Year sorting through the two bookcases in my bedroom closet, the one where I told you I keep all my K/S zines, away from the kids? They never go in there, and neither does Stephen, so I feel safe with my K/S there. Anyway, I took all the zines that had been piling up on the floor for the past year, 1989, and finally got them sorted and put up on the shelves with the other zines. I used to have the zines in alphabetical order, but now I’ve decided to order them according to year.

I’m inspired! There’s no way I could do all that organizing without reading a little.... I’ve got this little stool that I keep in my closet, to help me reach the higher shelves, but I kept stopping and sitting down on it, instead, with a zine spread open on my lap.... So I’m in the mood to discuss K/S zines! Maybe someday we can talk on the phone about this, or even—my loveliest daydream—even meet face to face at a convention. Maybe Shore Leave, which you’ve told me is where so many of the K/S fans meet each other. I’d love to meet you in person! But that just won’t be possible until I get up the courage to tell Stephen exactly what kind of Star Trek zines I’ve been reading the last several years..... I am pretty sure he still thinks it’s the adventures of the captain and his trusty first officer. The fact that captain and first officer are madly in love with each other and they are having all sorts of other kinds of adventures—including sex—hasn’t crossed his mind, I’m sure.

So, no phone calls that might be incriminating, just a letter for me, I’m afraid.

1990

This section was non-fiction and autobiographical.

An excerpt:
Everything changed for me in 1990. I was thirty-seven years old. I’d been very happily married for many years and had young children. I was happy with my life, my family...and I was a closet Star Trek fan.

Note, not a K/S fan. No, not yet. I had heard about K/S back in 1978, with the publication of Thrust, but since then I’d stayed out of fandom. Which didn’t mean I didn’t think about fandom. Or Kirk and Spock. Or that incredibly intriguing idea of Kirk and Spock being lovers.... So in 1990, through a series of outrageous coincidences that no one would believe but are really true anyway, I found myself with the first few K/S zines being mailed to my door. To say that I fell into the concept hook, line, and sinker would not be an exaggeration. For the rest of the year, I don’t believe I read anything else but K/S, which I spent a load of money on. I know I helped my kids with their homework, wiped their noses when they had colds, and lovingly put them to sleep each night...but I don’t remember doing any of it! It’s a good thing I wasn’t hit by a truck while crossing the street, because I probably crossed that street thinking about the various ways Kirk and Spock could make love. I was a total basket case, though nobody knew it. But any K/S fan would know what I was going through. They would nod wisely and say, “I’ve been there. There’s nothing like that first flush of K/S love.”

I came on board at a very good time; 1990 was a good year for zines. Let me tell you about some of them.

1991-1995

This section was written in a very straightforward manner, listing zines by publisher and years, discussing trends and individual stories.

An excerpt:
During the years from 1991 to 1995, one hundred and twenty-one K/S zines were published. This is an approximate figure, because sometimes it’s a little difficult to know how to categorize a zine. I mean, is “Thief” by DVS a zine even though it was published as a stand-alone long story? And what about Off the Wall 1 and Too, and Twilight Trek 2, all of which have mixed gen and K/S offerings, but are published by a K/S publisher? So, take these figures with a grain of salt. But as an old boyfriend of mine used to say, “It’s close enough for government work.” Of those one hundred and twenty-one zines, the majority of them were published by editors/publishers/presses that had lots of experience in presenting K/S to fans. Here’s the breakdown…

1996-2005

This part of the article is written by Carolyn Spencer. She provides a detailed run-down and description of the zines from this time-period and discusses the effect of the internet on K/S fiction and its availability and content.

As the ‘90s progressed and more and more people acquired personal computers, the internet opened lines of communication never before conceived. Not only did it become easier than ever before to physically tell a story, it became far simpler to share that story with others. Along with the anonymity the internet brought, there also came a lowering of inhibition. And virtually immediate feedback. Send a chapter out on the ether, and by the next day response flowed back. Of course, here again K/S made its lasting impact. People who had never before been exposed to this remarkable relationship between Kirk and Spock suddenly discovered a whole new universe to play in. In a fandom remarkably devoid of constraints, even those very few canonical aspects can be ignored by the uninitiated. Freedom has always been the name of the game. In 1997, Kathy Resch introduced many in the print world of zines to what was becoming a veritable explosion of K/S on the web. In T’hy’la 18, she printed a story by a young writer that had set the internet world of K/S on its ear. “Turning Point” by Killashandra explored a possible reason for Spock’s escape to Vulcan after the first five-year mission. Told with great skill and heart-wringing emotion, the story had been vastly popular on the internet, but virtually unknown to readers who mainly were exposed to only print zines. Other web authors soon followed suit by allowing their work to be published in zines, and print zine readers started to examine what was available on the web. The exchange worked in the other direction as well. As communication between the two groups improved, web authors and readers began to explore some of the better known print works of the past two decades.