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Zine Library: About Zines

Zines at the Douglas College Library, Zine resources and distros for zinesters,

Broken Pencil

Broken Pencil Library Subscription!

The Library subscribes to Broken Pencil in 2 databases Broken pencil has useful Zine reviews.  

Zine Awards!

Broken Pencil Magazine is excited to announce that the most creative and cutting-edge zine creators with the Broken Pencil Zine Awards 2020!  Canada’s magazine of zine culture and the independent arts will be announcing the winners from all over the world to the finest underground publications in a variety of categories.  More information is on the Broken Pencil Website. 


Zine (zeen): independent, self published work often created by a single person.

Zinester: An individual who creates zines.

Perzine: Short for personal zine. A zine that discusses personal thoughts, experiences, and everyday events.

Zine Distro Short for Zine distribution. Distros are placed that distribute zines. Many individuals run Distros out of their homes, mailing zines out to those who order them. Some independent book stores carry zines as well.


A Zine (zeen) is a self-published, small press or homemade publication similar to a pamphlet. Zines often address specialized topics from an independent, controversial or alternative viewpoint. They can be a collection of random personal thoughts or expertly made political treatise.

Due to the independent nature of Zines they are not scholarly, or peer reviewed nor are they controlled by mainstream media or the editorial process of the publishing industry. These publications break from conventional format and are often photocopied, folded and stapled. Zines can be visually inspiring and artistic and offer personal, passionate and unedited viewpoints.

View a Short History of Zines

Streaming video about the Northwest Zine scene

$100 and a T-Shirt: A Documentary About Zines in the Northwest (128 min)

An original documentary by Joe Biel, illuminates the world of self-publishing and serves as a cultural analysis of what makes the thriving sub-culture of zinesters tick. Biel interviews about 70 zine makers, ex-zine makers, and readers from the northwest—all quirky and artistic young people who produce hand-crafted magazines which run the gamut from artistically ornate polemics to minimalist whimsical rants. They discuss the impetus to create zines, their genesis, self-publishing history, intricacies of the zine community, resources available for zine makers, and the genre's future.


Are you unclear about the difference between a Zine and a Blog? Check the article by Jenna Freedman to help you distinguish between the two.

Zines Are Not Blogs: A Not Unbiased Analysis/Jenna Freedman