Here’s a weird thing about zines, I get most of mine when I go to zine fests, and that means I sort of get them in bulk at any given time. It’s pretty common that I’ll get a huge zine stack and then, I hate to admit this, the zines stay in that stack for months because it feels overwhelming - with the exception of my favorites and my friends zines.
This sounds like an awful thing to admit, but it’s the shameful truth. I’m sure I have some incredible zines sitting in my collection that I’m totally unaware of.
With that said, the zines I tend to recommend are the ones my friends make, because they’re the ones I readily devour.
Here are some off the top of my head. This is by no means a definitive list of favorites - just some I’ve really enjoyed lately:
Secret Bully & Habits of Being by Cynthia Schemmer
(creative non-fiction about nature, grief and a sense of place)
(SIDE NOTE: Cynthia is also the zine editor for the website The Le Sigh. That’s a great place to keep up with new stuff coming out: http://www.thelesigh.com)
Tongueswell by Jen Twigg
(personal anecdotes and self-reflection, written by a feminist football enthusiast, member of the Ambulars, Trekkie)
Dig Deep by Heather Colby
(perzine at its best written by a librarian and Chicago Zine Fest organizer)
An introduction to Eating Your Heart Out by Laura Reeve (flash fiction in the style of magical realism.)
Let It Sink by Jim Joyce
(winding quick-paced, creative non-fiction)
Tazewell’s Favorite Eccentric by Sarah Rose
(very personal perzines about various times in the author’s life)
Blackout #3 by Tara Jay
(very personal perzine about trauma and memory)
Also currently reading the Truckface anthologies (in book format, but originally appeared as issues of a zine of the same name.) Good punchy creative non-fiction about LB’s life in Chicago as a public school teacher.
As You Were
(punk comic anthologies - comics on a theme, written by punks)
Liz Prince - I Swallowed The Key to my Heart
(order it and also receive the preview zine for her new book, Tomboy, coming out in September!)
Emilja Frances - Ship of Fools
Jenna Brager - Sassyfras Circus
Alec Longstreth - Phase 7
Corinne Mucha - Get Over It