SF Zine Fest talks with Corina Dross

In three sentences, tell us what your work is about.

I'm always aware of what's missing--what are my friends and I suffering from the lack of? I try to fill that gap, sometimes in oblique ways. The results vary from deeply personal to political, from satiric to sincere, but they are all some sort of problem-solving.

How did you first find out about zines? What inspired you to make your own zines?

I can't even remember the first zine I saw! I came of age in the punk rock subculture of Chicago in the early 90's and then later in Philadelphia, where it was just understood that we were producing our own media for each other. I love that zines still exist, despite how easy it is now to reach more people online. There's a different kind of experience we have when we hold something in our hands and take some time with it. I'm a fan of the tactile pleasures of reading. I started to make zines around the same time as I was learning basic DIY carpentry and bike repair--I was just better at writing and drawing so I stuck with them. 

What do you do when you’re not creating?

Keeping mind and body together in some way. Since I moved to the Northwest last year I've been exploring the wilderness, getting over being a city kid. I'm involved in a few radical publishing collectives, and one of my day jobs is giving astrology readings and teaching astrology. I'm pretty interested in the power of what happens on the margins of society, whether that's in a social group that's been disenfranchised or in a system of thought that's been discredited by the dominant ideology.

What is an unexpected benefit that you’ve experienced from reading/ making zines?

There are a few zines that saved my life, literally. The zine "Entropy" helped me understand my chronic illness from a new perspective--this was after many years of pursuing Western and alternative medicine--and pointed me toward my recovery. Cindy Crabb's zine "Doris" has helped me heal from early trauma. And what's great is in the zine community, you can generally reach out and connect with the people who have inspired you. Our commonality can sometimes blossom into real friendship. 

How would you advise first timers on making their first zines?

Be honest and take risks. Don't be afraid of getting into some dark or confusing territory. Get some critique from your friends and spend some time editing it--but give yourself a deadline to finish it! I need an external deadline to motivate me, otherwise I would dawdle and tinker with something indefinitely. In fact, I'm procrastinating on a writing project right now by answering these questions.

What are you working on for this year’s SF Zine Fest?

I'll be distroing artwork and zines, including a new zine I just wrote in honor of a small dog, called "The Tiny Tyrant of our Hearts." It's a deceptively cute story, centered around anxiety and grief. I'll also be bringing a range of zines about the politics of relationships, anti-capitalism, and care work--as well as prints, notecards, decks of cards, and patches. This is my first time tabling at the SF Zine Fest and I'm looking forward to it!

Volunteer Orientations coming up this week!

Hi everyone! Just to remind you that if you are interested in volunteering at SFZF this year, there are 2 volunteer orientations coming up this week:

Wed 16th July - 7pm - Cafe La Boheme (24th and Mission, SF)
Sun 20th JUly - 1pm - Awaken Cafe (15th and Broadway, Oakland)

Come and meet other volunteers and find out more about the events coming up and how to help out!

Hope to see you there!

Looking for awesome volunteers at SFZF 2014!

Pins by Modern Girl Blitz on Etsy

Pins by Modern Girl Blitz on Etsy

It’s that time of year again! The tables have sold out, the organizers are busy planning it all out and we are looking for volunteers to hold it down at the San Francisco Zine Fest 2014!

Over the weekend of August 30 and 31st at the County Fair Building in Golden Gate Park, San Francisco Zine Fest will be bringing you all the zinesters, workshops and panels you can handle and we need your help. If you love a bit of organization, chatting to people and making things run smoothly then we would love to hear from you! Our invaluable volunteers help visitors and vendors at our info booth, run our zine library, help set up and break down the Zine Fest, as well as help us to promote all the amazing events happening over that weekend, and much much more!

If you would like to come and hang out with a community of people who love zines, drawing, making, DIY and generally being awesome, then email us through the contact page with the subject line ‘Volunteer.’  We will be hosting two volunteer orientations in July where you can meet the SFZF crew and fellow volunteers, as well as hear about all the perks of being a SFZF volunteer, so stay tuned for more details. 

SFZF 2014 Exhibitor Registration is OPEN

Photo credit: Cindy Maram | Dig In Magazine

Photo credit: Cindy Maram | Dig In Magazine

We're thrilled to announce that exhibitor registration has opened for SF Zine Fest 2014! The show will be Labor Day weekend, August 30th and August 31st at the SF County Fair Building in Golden Gate Park.  

If you are interested in registering as an exhibitor, please visit the Registration page. There you will find further instructions for submitting your exhibitor application and paying your registration fees. Both items must be completed in order to reserve a table.

We encourage all exhibitors to register early! A few reasons why include….

1. After July 15th, 2014 the price for tables goes up for late registrants

2. Exhibitor registration closes on August 1st, 2014. 

3. Exhibitor spots are confirmed as they come in, and we are expecting another year full of artists and vendors. If all tables are reserved before the exhibitor registration deadline of August 1st, 2014 then additional applicants will be placed on a waiting list and contacted if a spot becomes available.  

4. Any special requests will be honored (if possible) in the order received.  So if you need any special arrangements (e.g. power outlets, desire to be near/far from a wall, etc.) it’s a smart move to let us know ahead of time.

Once we receive your application and payment you will receive a confirmation message.

Thank you all for your interest. Keep checking our website for updates about the show, and great info on the zine + DIY community. See ya at the fest!

Exhibitor Registration Opens This Week!

Hey folks,
In anticipation of this year's SF Zine Fest we want to give our friends, fans, and community members a heads up in regards to exhibitor registration. We’ve made a couple of overall changes to speed along the registration process!
Online registration for this year’s SFZF opens this Thursday, May 15th, 2014 at 12pm PST. There will be a Registration page here on the site where you can submit your exhibitor information and registration fees. Both items must be completed at the time of registration. Zinesters and vendors are encouraged to sign up early in order to guarantee a table space – we anticipate that all of our tables will fill this year.
Important dates and details:
-- May 15th, 2014 – July 15th, 2014: registration opens for SFZF
• 3ft Half table - $50
• 6ft Full table - $100
-- July 16th, 2014 – August 1st, 2014: late registration opens for SFZF
• 3ft Half table - $65
• 6ft Full table - $140
Exhibitor registration closes on August 1st, 2014; registration is on a first come, first serve basis. If all exhibitor spaces are claimed before August 1st, 2014, pending applications will be placed on a waiting list. Applicants will be notified if a space becomes available.
Registration fees must be paid within 48 hours of submitting your exhibitor form in order to receive an exhibitor space.
Questions can be sent to our SFZF Contact Page. We're looking forward to seeing both long-time friends and new faces this year. With your support this year’s SFZF is sure to be a DIY success! 

-SFZF Team

SF Zine Fest 2014 Announced - Save the Date!


We are proud to announce the thirteenth annual San Francisco Zine Fest will be held on Saturday, August 30th and Sunday, August 31st 2014. The event will once again be hosted at the San Francisco County Fair Building (1199 9th Ave and Lincoln Way), in beautiful Golden Gate Park.

As always, the San Francisco Zine Fest will be a FREE event for attendees!

Exhibitor registration will open in April; we will be releasing further details for registration dates in the coming weeks. For more info on SF Zine Fest, visit ourwebsite, find us on Facebook, and follow us on Twitter.

We're looking forward to another great year of familiar faces and new friends. See you this fall.

-SFZF Team

Bay Area Ladyfest is this weekend!

Aaah feminism. The word itself causes a million debates, has a million different meanings and ways to define and redefine itself. It’s Kim Katrin Cosby, it’s Audre Lorde, it’s shaving and not shaving, Grace Jones and Poly Styrene, CeCe McDonald, selfies, Hollaback, fighting the wage gap, fighting to claim autonomy over our bodies, it’s creating platforms for all women to be visible and voice their experiences.* That last one is what lies at the heart of feminism for me personally, and what drew me to Ladyfest. The importance of safe spaces that prioritize marginalized experiences, whilst supporting women’s talents and creativity, is a key part of the global Ladyfest ethos, and here in the Bay Area you get a whole weekend of DIY workshops, shows, speakers and vendors doing just that! 

Bay Area Ladyfest 2013 kicked off with a movie night at Oddball Cinema last night and continues across the weekend in both San Francisco and Oakland locations. I chatted to two of the organizers, Rebecca Crump and D'Arcy Bertrand, to find out more about Ladyfest and what goes into putting it on. 

(* if some of those names up there are unfamiliar, go check them out!)

For anyone not familiar with Ladyfest, could you tell us a bit about its history and how/when Ladyfest Bay Area came about?

Rebecca - LadyFest drew inspiration from the RiotGrrl movement of the 90s, I associate it with strong feminist politics, and a punk and DIY ethic. LadyFest took these politics a step further by being trans-inclusive. I believe it all began in 2000 in Olympia, with performers like Cat Power, Sleater-Kinney and The Gossip leading the way.  I had the pleasure of performing at one of the first LadyFest Bay Area festivals in the early 2000s and it was such an amazing, liberating experience for me. I knew that I wanted to be a part of it again.

D'Arcy - Ladyfest is a feminist festival that supports the lgbt community and celebrates doing so by enjoying art, cinema, poetry, music, and many other things. Ladyfest is about respect and is inclusive of people who are not lgbt.

There are so many amazing womyn in the Bay Area doing their thing: how do you choose the bands, workshops, speakers and vendors? (is there a specific theme for example?)

Rebecca - We are pretty explicit about our festival being Feminist with a capital F. This is not Lilith Fair, Feminist is not a bad word. We basically put the word out and then as a collective, we pour over the submissions and vote on them. This year we hoped to have lots of Queers and POC represented.

D'Arcy - It is indeed a challenge choosing because it is impossible to pick a favorite. For me I chose artists and vendors that compliment one another with what they had to offer.

How do you choose the organizations (Charlotte Maxwell Complimentary Clinic in Oakland, and St James Infirmary in San Francisco) that Ladyfest Bay Area gives the proceeds to?

Rebecca - We look for organizations that are feminist, that aren’t as well known in the community.  Places that could really use the extra boost.

D'Arcy - Democracy! We vote!

What are the challenges of putting a Ladyfest on?

Rebecca - We have a shoestring, DIY budget, so getting venues is always a bit tough.

D'Arcy - Picking favorites? Lol. Really making time was hard for me in the planning of Ladyfest. It takes many months to prepare but is well worth it.

I saw this question posed to the organizers of Ladyfest Philly and I liked it so much that I’m going to ask you the same thing - Ladyfest Bay Area is clearly about more than just gender and feminism, taking more of an intersectional approach to creating an anti-oppressive space. Can you explain why that has been important in organizing the fest?

Rebecca - We want everyone to feel at home at LadyFest. While we are specifically celebrating artists and performers that are gender minorities, just like Feminism, LadyFest is not just for cis or trans women. LadyFest is for ALL of us in our diversity of gender expressions to enjoy. 

D'Arcy -This is only a hard question for me because it seems so clear to me that people need to be at least respectful of one another. There is a long history of oppression towards women and it still continues today. It doesn't persist AS much today because we have created space to not be oppressed. This is us doing our part to keep that beautiful strength alive!

And lastly, individually, is there anything you’re particularly looking forward to out of all the events happening this week?

Rebecca - I am really looking forward to hearing Julia Serrano speak.  And the radical workshops will also be a highlight: Kids Liberation Workshop, Lady Shred Session By SF Skate Like A Girl, Healing Our Queer Spirits- Healing Circle, Responsible Queer Curation. So much goodness to be had!

D'Arcy - Partying and accomplishing much more.


For more information on Bay Area Ladyfest and the fantastic line-up of events, click here. Check them on Facebook as well, and if you're attending on Saturday, come say hi to me (Sarah) at the ‘How Are Your Insides?’ table  (I'll be selling my zines there. Look for a neon cover that says ‘My Family’s Vaginas.’ I’m all about subtlety).


Thank You for making SFZF 2013 Awesome!

Dear SFZF Community,

We just wanted to take a moment to say THANK YOU for participating, volunteering, and attending this year's San Francisco Zine Fest. We have a strong team of organizers, but SFZF would be nothing without you. It's always impressive to see all of the talented exhibitors' work. It's fun to hang out with such a warm and tight group of creators. You all make it worth the effort that goes into organizing this event. Here's a sample of the creativity fostered over the SFZF weekend, and a sample of what makes this community the very best: 

A special thanks to Chigbarg (of the Double Elvis Ghost Library) for creating this Bingo masterpiece. And a big shout out to our featured artists Justin Hall, Roman Muradov, Sophia Foster Dimino, our guest readers, and our wonderful volunteers. 

A special thanks to Chigbarg (of the Double Elvis Ghost Library) for creating this Bingo masterpiece. And a big shout out to our featured artists Justin Hall, Roman Muradov, Sophia Foster Dimino, our guest readers, and our wonderful volunteers.