The META-COMICS ISSUE will include comics and essays ABOUT comics and sequential art. You certainly DO NOT have to be an artist to contribute – essays are very much welcome and encouraged!
Some potential ideas:
+ The creative process of drawing comics: Where do your ideas come from? Why do you draw comics?
+ Comics-related disasters: From the cat knocking over the ink bottle to basement floods that resulted in floating longboxes.
+ __ broke my heart: As a comics reader, the most soul-crushing, genre-destroying, why-the-hell-am-I-still-reading this storylines you’ve endured in mainstream comics. Why did you stop reading some titles?
+ Creative space: Where do you draw? What rituals do you perform? (E.g., Lynda Barry always begins a drawing session by writing out the alphabet a few times with a brush and ink.)
+ Reading comics: Are there comics that left you so emotionally wrecked that you’re scared to read them again? Flipside: are there books you have to re-read every year?
+ Collecting comics: Are you a Wednesday regular? Did your mom throw out your collection when you went to college? Have you ever sold off parts of your collection for rent, food, or more comics?
+ Comics and relationships: Friendships and romances found or lost over comics.
+ Memories of stores past and present: Good and bad stories from the comic shop. Did/do you work in a comic shop?
+ Inspirations: Artists, teachers, storytellers?
+ Tangentially related ideas: Terrible, little-seen comic book movie/TV adaptations. Tales from actual comic book conventions.
+ Previously self-published comics (either print or web) are welcome if they relate to the topic.
Comic artists: Final art size should reduce to around 4.5 x 7.5 inches. Four pages maximum (but if it’s really good, this can be negotiated). B&W only. Send art as 300dpi TIF files if grayscale scans, 600dpi TIF if bitmap scans. Also, once entries are in, I may be looking for small illustrations to accompany some of the essays.
Writers: Between 400-1200 words is acceptable. If you need to go longer, please do. If the writing is good enough, people will want to read it to the end. I'll let you know if a piece is simply too huge, rambling, unwieldy, or needs editing. Send essays as OpenOffice, MS Word, or plain text files, or paste the text into an e-mail.
Contributors will receive a copy of the final project.
Due date and where to submit: First deadline is JANUARY 7, 2011*. Submit your entries to email@example.com . If you want to mail them, send them to: A.j. Michel, PO Box 877, Lansdowne, PA 19050.
* Due date subject to extension if needed, as it usually is.
SYNDICATE PRODUCT is a (largely) compilation-based zine, formerly titled LOW HUG* (1998-2004), published A.j. Michel. SP has published compilation issues on throwing things away (#11), pack ratting (#12), record store memories (#12), television (#13), and cleaning (#15).
Contributors (both comic artists and writers ) use personal stories relating to the issue’s topic. For example, in the television issue, there weren’t stories on “how Lost is the greatest show ever”, but instead essays about breaking and buying new television sets, and early television addiction. The cleaning issue was not about “keeping house”, but about the heartbreak of clearing out a family member’s house after death, and disinfecting Lego blocks after they were unspeakably fouled. If SYNDICATE PRODUCT were a radio show, it would be a micro-This American Life with staples.
The Syndicate Product Covert HQ Blog – which covers much more than the zine and published much more frequently – is at http://www.syndicateproduct.com/. Browse the catalog on Etsy, at syndprod.etsy.com. You can reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
* (Fun fact: The name was changed to SYNDICATE PRODUCT in 2005 after LOW HUG was mislabeled as a sex zine too many times. Fun fact #2: There are new challenges with this name, because “syndicate” is often used as a verb, as in “to syndicate product” (i.e., content). Final fun fact: SYNDICATE PRODUCT was the original name of K-Tel Records, and the inspiration for the zine’s name.)
Who and What We Are
Xerography Debt is a review zine for zine readers by zine writers (and readers). It is a hybrid of review zine and personal zine (the ancestor to many blogs). The paper version has been around since 1999. This blog thing is are attempt to bridge the gap between Web 2.0 and Paper 1.0. Print is not dead, but it is becoming more pixelated.