The Triumph Of Our Tired Eyes #1

The Triumph Of Our Tired Eyes #1 / $1.00

This is the zine that I completed as artist-in-residence at the Roberts Street Social Centre in Halifax, Nova Scotia. It’s a quarter-size perzine, mostly typewritten, with a few handwritten phrases and sparse cut-and-paste details. I’ve written about accepting loneliness as an inevitability and staying sober in a world that seems to want me drunk or dead. Excerpt: “The heaviness on my chest, the fluttering in my tummy… they are always going to be there. It is time to stop searching for the remedy and to finally accept them as a part of me. I want to embrace my sadness without letting it keep me in bed for days on end. And if my anxiety keeps me locked in my apartment, I’d like to invite someone else over.”

It is currently available for $1.00 + postage via Fight Boredom Distro, and will soon be in stock at Vampire Sushi (UK) and Stranger Danger (US). I accept Paypal and well-concealed cash (just click How To Order).

Read in a safe place, take care, and write me a letter. ♥

Fight Boredom Distro Is Up & Running Again!

After several weeks spent on the East Coast, I’m finally home and getting back to Real Life. I’ve just updated the website and added Broke Ass #3 – #4, Imaginary Windows #5, Photomill #2, Playing Victim #5, and Unicornzine to the catalogue, as well as the two zines that I created during my zine residency in Halifax, Nova Scotia – The Triumph Of Our Tired Eyes (a perzine about lonely times and radical sobriety) and a bilingual mini-zine called Kurt Cobain Was A Feminist / Kurt Cobain Était Féministe. I’ve also started carrying cassette tapes! I’ve got the Force Quit / Fail Better split tape in stock, Glitterbomb by Eekum Seekum, and Settings by noisy Chicago duo The Ovens. Get in touch if you’d like to have your own cassette available in the distro.

Restocks include Pourquoi Je Suis Féministe, Pinch Kid #1, All The Best Cowboys Have Daddy Issues, Sassyfrass Circus #6 – #7, Reimagining Queer Community and Not Queer As In Radical But Lesbian As In Fuck You.

You can place orders online anytime (just click How To Order for more details), and if you’re in Montréal, please come see me at Queer Between The Covers, the annual queer bookfair (Facebook event here). It’s taking place this Saturday, August 18th at Centre St-Pierre (1212 rue Panet) from 11am – 6pm. ‘Til then!

On Hiatus Until Mid-August

Hey friends, hey zinesters, hey readers! Fight Boredom Distro is going on hiatus while I visit the East Coast. Please don’t order zines from me, as I won’t be able to mail ‘em out ’til mid-August anyway.

If you’re in Halifax, come visit me at the Roberts Street Social Centre. For the last two weeks of July, I’ll be living in their shed and making a zine (and hopefully eating pizza and swimming in the ocean and exploring the city, if you’ll join me).

You can also catch me tabling at the zine fair at Sappyfest in Sackville, New Brunswick on Saturday, August 4th from 12-5 pm, upstairs at the Royal Canadian Legion. I’m traveling with a backpack full of zines, come empty it so I can refill it with new ones.

All orders placed by Monday, July 16th have now been shipped. Phone and internet access will be limited, so please don’t get in touch unless it’s necessary.

P.S. Sappyfest is gonna rule. Silver Mt. Zion and Julie Doiron and Canailles and BA Johnston and so much more, yes please.

Halifax, I’m Coming To See You! (You Too, Sappyfest).

The rumours are true, I am one of this year’s lucky participants in the zine residency at the Roberts Street Social Centre in Halifax, Nova Scotia. For the last two weeks of July, I’ll be living in a shed and making a zine (and hopefully eating pizza and swimming in the ocean and exploring the city, if you’ll join me).

I wanna bring zines to you! If you’d like to order zines and avoid postage costs, just send me a list of what you’d like. I’ll let you know the total and you can pay me in person and we can drink tea together and it’ll be lovely.

As well, I’ll be tabling at the zine fair at Sappyfest in Sackville, New Brunswick (Saturday, August 4th, 12-5 pm, upstairs at the Royal Canadian Legion). Because I’m traveling with a backpack and not much else, I’ll only have a select few titles available. Your best bet if you’re on the East Coast is to pre-order – you’re guaranteed to get the zines you want, and you’ll be helpin’ out a broke zinester.


Bri & The Fight Boredom Zine Residency

It’s hard to believe it’s been nearly three weeks since Bri returned home to Cleveland, Ohio. She was the first-ever Fight Boredom zine resident and I kinda just want her to come live with me forever. The first day of the residency was basically a dream date – we shared cupcakes, drank sodas by the canal, went on a trip to the post office, dyed our hair together, and indulged in some girl-talk late into the night. The kind of friendship we have, I can’t even explain it. She was one of the first people that I became close to when I started making zines, and we’ve been pen pals for something like eight years now. Even though it’s extremely rare that we see each other in person, we’re still the kinda pals that can finish each other’s sentences. So you can just imagine what it’s like when we get together – the huggin’ and gigglin’ and silliness. And we’re not afraid to cry together, either.

It took us a few days to really get going on things. All we wanted to do was hangout hangout hangout forever. Together, we tidied up the Tulip Farm and picked up an old desk from Claire, which now sits in the living room (aka the residency bedroom) with a typewriter on top. We talked about zines and capitalism and riot grrrl and misandry and punk shows and relationships and Tumblr and all that important stuff. We hung out at the canal a lot (you can seriously find me there most days) and were just really happy to be together. Then we’d realize it’s the end of the day and oh shit we better work on our zines.

Bri’s first poutine! And the accompanying Lactaid.

Showin’ off the new zine.

Motor City Kitty #19 – available for $2.00 via Fight Boredom Distro.

This is the first-ever zine to be created as part of the Fight Boredom Zine Residency. Bri spent two weeks with me in Montréal, where she wrote on the themes of family, grief, and loss. This issue begins with a piece on taking a not-so-guilty pleasure in listening to My Chemical Romance (more specifically, the concept album The Black Parade, whose songs are centered on themes of death and afterlife), which leads into more heavy musings on the death of her father. I’m not gonna lie, I got a little misty-eyed the first time I read it. Bri writes on losing her father at thirteen years old, and the realization that from here on out, she will have lived more of her life without him than with him. She writes of childhood weekends spent in Detroit, where her father’s drug addiction was hidden from her only until she’d threatened to move away from her mother in Cleveland. Typewritten family histories accompanied by photographs, and a closing piece on bein’ a lady at a certain punk venue in the city, which I also wrote about here. This is everything that I want out of a perzine, and I’m not just saying that because Bri is my bestie.

What a babe!

Amber Dearest, all dressed up for the picnic!

On June 21st, we held a launch party for Bri’s new zine – the Summer Bummer Twee Picnic & Reading. We’d been writing about nothing but total downers and decided to make something cute and fun out of it. It was definitely the most hectic day of the residency – we were still folding and stapling zines five minutes before the event was meant to start! And it was the hottest day ever and we’d been baking cookies and cupcakes for hours and it was just totally silly. The Tulip Farm was basically an oven. But we got our things together, packed a picnic and headed down the street to the park. There were already a few people gathered on benches and lounging in the grass. We chose a nice spot under a tree and everyone joined us and sat in a circle.

I agreed to read first, but I was really nervous and kept putting it off. I hadn’t yet decided what to read. In keeping with the theme, I was gonna read about a total bummer of a breakup (see Culture Slut #25), but upon re-reading, I realized there was no way I could say any of that aloud. I would cry for sure. Instead, I read about med studies, and then I read a piece en français, which actually wasn’t written by me but for me. A rejection letter, which I’d previously written about here. I will one day include it in a zine. I’ve been thinking about crushes and vulnerability and feminist oversharing and that kinda junk and it was kinda fun to put myself in such a weird position. Vulnerability on so many levels. I was essentially reading a letter outlining the reasons someone had rejected me as a partner, and I was doing it in a second language that I am not (yet) perfect at. It was awkward and adventurous.

Claire read next, from Unicornzine (which I will totally distro the moment it gets photocopied again). I was already in love with the zine, but hearing those words out loud was so much more powerful. Anxious queers forever.

Finally, it was Bri’s turn. I’d already read the rough draft of Motor City Kitty and let’s be honest, it made me cry a tiny bit. I wondered how she’d react to reading it aloud. I knew it would be difficult. I tried to send encouraging vibes her way and was probably just smiling like a total dork. She read, and we listened intently. More and more people showed up throughout the reading. The circle got bigger. By the time she looked up, there were nearly fifty people gathered in the park. We stuck around for an hour or two, talkin’ to friends and strangers, givin’ away zines, and encouraging everyone to come dance with us at Squalor later on.

Tulip Farm babes.

The next day, we borrowed my cousin’s van, filled it up with punks, and headed to Toronto for the anarchist bookfair. There were a few minor disasters, but I’ve chosen to remember the free coffee, tasty food, and awesome hangs. And check out our sweet ride below!

The Vanagon.

A message for all the dudes.

Bri took the Greyhound home from Toronto and since then we pretty much send each other messages every day to say, “I miss you!” and “Why don’t we live in the same city?” We have a theme song now. She is an absolute doll and I love her.

Best friends forever, for real.

♥ Summer Bummer Twee Picnic & Reading with Bri of Motor City Kitty! ♥

This is the first zine launch party held in conjunction with the Fight Boredom Zine Residency! Celebrating the release of issue #19 of US-based perzine Motor City Kitty.

When: Thursday June 21st at 6pm.
Where: Parc Georges-Étienne Cartier in St-Henri (along Notre-Dame, between Délinelle and Beaudoin)*

Moscow Cat Picnic, image via:

Bowties, babydoll dresses, dancin’ shoes and pigtails. Don your most adorable attire for the Summer Bummer Twee Picnic & Reading. Shed a few tears in yr waterproof mascara, because we’ll be reading about summer bummers: grief, loss, guilty pleasures, misandry, catcallin’ and more. But don’t be afraid to tell us about your summertime adventures and sappy romances. It’s a twee picnic, after all! Featuring readings by:

Bri of Motor City Kitty (Cleveland, OH)
Amber Dearest of Culture Slut and Fight Boredom Distro (Montréal)
Claire Evans of Unicornzine (Montréal)
More TBA – Anyone is welcome to read at this event, be it from your own zine, your favourite zine, or your embarrassing journals.

Bri of Motor City Kitty, hangin’ at the canal.

Snacks and refreshments will be available, and if you’re lucky, we’ll bring temporary tattoos and the Fight Boredom Distro catalogue.

Why the dancing shoes? Because we’ll be heading over to the dance party at Squalor afterward!

*If it rains, you can find us havin’ an indoor picnic at the Ste-Émilie Skillshare (Located at 3942 rue Ste-Émilie, on the second floor).

Reading Zines & Marching In The Streets

I guess it’s been a little over twenty-four hours since I wrote this and I’ve gotten a lot done. I spent the morning responding to all the emails and messages that I’ve been procrastinating on (I seriously really hate corresponding with people online, you don’t even know, just send me a letter), weighing zines and scanning covers, restocking and ordering new zines, getting in touch with everyone who applied for the Fight Boredom Zine Residency (this year’s participants have been announced here), reading zines, and writing descriptions. Anyone who thinks that running a distro is a piece of cake has obviously never done so. It’s a lot of work, but it makes me really happy.

I took a break in the evening to meet up with a friend for a local casserole. I brought a metal spoon and a small tin that one would bake banana bread in (this is what I think of every time I see it), and she brought a spoon and a small mixing bowl, which made the most delightful sound. We made music, just the two of us, as we walked along St-Ambroise until we found a crowd of about fifty people doing the same thing. I recognize a lot of the people who are out every night, even if I don’t know their names. We all smile and nod and chant: « La loi spéciale! On s’en câlisse! » (We don’t give a damn about the special law). There is always some asshole who tries to run us down with their car… tonight there were a few. I took pleasure in blocking traffic and dancing for the angry drivers. Mostly it’s sweet times, though. Marching through the streets with friends, strangers, and the few family members who also live in this city.

It’s one o’clock in the morning and I’ll probably read zines for a bit before going to sleep. The news section of this site has been updated to reflect new titles in the catalogue, as well as a list of places I’ll be tabling at over the next few months. New titles include Doris #29, Echo! Echo! #9, Everybody Moon Jump #11-12, Leaving Room For The Im/possibility Of Unicorns, Show & Tell #9, and FIT: A zine about sports, fatness, feminism & disability, as well as Anarchist Bookfair Bingo prints, pictured below (made by missvoltairine).

Play a game with your friends, or hang it on your bedroom wall!

These prints are only a dollar each!

Did I tell you about how wonderful the Montréal Anarchist Bookfair was? Such a whirlwind of zines and coffee, hangin’ with friends and talkin’ with random punks and seeing the same familiar faces that I see every year. Some highlights include meeting a reader who drove here from Vermont, meeting someone from the anarchist bookstore who’s starting a rad mental health collective and wants to translate Maranda‘s zines to French, selling out of copies of Betrayal: A Critical Analysis of Rape Culture In Anarchist Subcultures (I promise I’ll have more soon), deciding to distro cassette tapes, meeting the person who does Flat Broke MTL, seeing a bunch of awesome bands at Death Church and Squalor, biking up to Il Motore for a dance party… the whole weekend was all kinds of overwhelming, but mostly in a good way. And in a few more weeks, I’ll be at the Toronto Anarchist Bookfair! Lemme know if you wanna house a couple of zinester gals June 22nd – 24th. À la prochaine!