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Zines Biggest Fan

For my birthday Ruth got me the "Biggest Fan" zine collection, from the new zine shop in Manchester.

It's a brill collection, great range of personal through to arty UK zines, generally pretty nicely balanced (nothing at the extreme end of personal, and nothing at the posh end of arty).

I always wonder about the zine world, how much of it do I actually know? Does everyone know each other, or are there completely separate little islands of zineness? I was at the London Zine Symposium recently and saw so much cool stuff, but as far as I know it had no overlap with this stuff, and generally there's a slight difference in the tone-of-voice of it. Hard to put my finger on.

Anyway in this Machester-flavoured zine collection some of my faves were: Doyle, a mixture of cartoon doodles and rap lyrics scrawled on spare bits of paper; When I get a low shit resembling hand I go all in anyway which has some inspirational sketches about everyday life and things you like; and 28 Days In The USA which is the best travel zine ever - it's got some random photocopies of American sweet wrappers, some sketches of the author's legs, sketches of the weird stuff you see in the USA (like a freeway sign "Drive Thru / 10 pc dark / $8.99"). This disparate set of things might not sound like much when I describe it that way, but together it tells a story so convincingly - it reminded me totally of being in America and being confronted by the alienness and familiarity of it, the weird isolation that you get imposed if you don't have a car, etc. The zine is by Laura Skilbeck so check her stuff out.

Of course there are a couple of zines in the 25 that I'm not so keen on, but overall it's a fab collection, props to whoever put it together!

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