Saturday, June 27, 2009

Finishing My Zine

I haven't uploaded the images yet. I'm still working out some stuff.

Yesterday I woke up around 9 and made my way into the city. I used legal size for my zine so I ran into some small minor problems. For you non-Americans, there are only 3 sizes you can photocopy in, and legal size is the least used size. There’s letter (8.5"x11"), there's legal (8.5"x14"), and then there's tabloid or ledger (11"x17"), which is twice the size of letter. Letter is about the size of A4 (8.3"x11.7"), Tabloid/Ledger is slightly larger than A3 (11.7"x16.3"), and I don't think there's a comparable size for legal.

The photocopy place near our studio has 3c copies, but legal copies it's 6c (which isn't that bad, cause they gave me a 1c discount, which is still cheaper than Kinko’s and anywhere else). Sometimes I think of buying a copier machine, but I seriously only make a zine once a year. Another problem with having a machine like that is that first you need a place for it, and second you all of a sudden become the best friend of everyone who would want to use your machine. Another thing is, that I'm not a zinester; I'm just some dude who wants to make something. And if I wanted to make larger quantities I could easily just find a book publisher and self publish something like 2000 at like 75c or something. But then I have to somehow get rid of 2000 units of something. Which is really hard, and sometimes it's weird selling something you're kind of over but you still have up for sale cause you just have a bunch of it. But yeah. I really do just like the act of drawing, xeroxing, collating, stapling, and yeah.

I'm sorry I get on tangents a lot. 5c a copy wasn't my problem. My problem was that there's no such thing as legal size cardstock. And they didn't have it there. And they didn't have 11"x17" in cardstock either. So I ran 100 copies of a cover in legal, and went back to the studio to collate and staple. After I made one, I realised I would really like to find a cardstock of some sort to use as a cover cause just plain paper at 60 lb, just wasn't cutting it. Michelle told me of Kelly's Paper down on 10th and Howard, so I got back on the T and made my way there. They didn't have legal in cardstock but I found it in 11"x17". I'm already sizing down my zine, so an extra trim isn't that big of a deal.

My zine is 6.5"x8.5", which is just legal with an inch trimmed off. I kind of just wanted to make a zine that didn't really fit into the standard sizes you see, like 4.25'x5.5' which is just letter in fours, 8.5"x5.5', which is letter in half, or 7.5"x8.5" which is legal in half and is a bit too square-ish. I know this probably doesn't bother anyone else but yeah. I kind of like it when people make that extra trim.

I haven't gotten around to uploading images and putting it on my web store. I have to first figure out how I'm going to ship them and sell them. Of if I want to contact people to sell them or just sell them on my own. When I did my book I kind of wished I took my time in figuring out how I wanted to sell and distribute them. Like I just put them up online, and then I didn't have the right envelopes to ship them, and I needed poly bags for them, and then I made a sticker to go with them but I didn't put the order in until a month after their release so some people didn't get stickers.

Another thing is that I didn't know if I should sign them for people buying from my website. I don't know. I don't know if that's what people want, or if I'm just defiling a book. I don't know. I seriously just try not to assume what people want or don't want.

Then I had problems with shipping my books cause my shipping prices were based on cost instead of weight. I could ship domestically a book for about $3, but through media mail, but if someone bought something else, it's illegal to ship something media mail that's not, even a letter, or a print, which is what I was usually shipping with them. But my main problem was international orders, which to ship that book which sells for $20, was like about $11 to Europe and $13 to Australia. But to ship a print which is like $30-$50 it's like $5 or $6 dollars to ship, so I took small hits on shipping. I mean, it really didn't matter cause I was stoked on people buying my book, but I like it when things run on order, and I like having a balanced sheet. I had 250 books to get rid of, and that's why I was into giving Tiny Showcase my last 100 for their release.

I've been thinking about whether or not to republish the book, which we might right before the holiday season, but yeah. It feels like it's a finished project. That and it's really hard dealing with bookstores. Pretty much everyone I dealt with was pretty awesome. I did some on consignment and they're slowing coming in, and I sold some books wholesale and there were some awesome folks to deal with, Like the New Museum and Here in Bristol. Then there were places like, Nucleus in LA, which hasn't paid me yet, despite me sending them an invoice and e-mailing them politely once every two weeks. I mean it's like only $80 so yeah. Alhambra sucks, and those guys are assholes.

But yeah. Today I ordered 7"x9" stay flat mailers from ULine. I got a box of 100 for $50.40 after shipping. I even went with the fancy self-sealing tabs, even though those still make me antsy and I feel like putting packaging tape on them anyway. On Uline you can also make your own custom packaging tape. I've been kind of tempted to make an order.

I'm contemplating getting a poly bag for them, but yeah. If you're wonder where to get those, it's clearbags.com.

Oh, yeah. I'm sure this is all totally interesting, and it's funny blogging about a zine without putting pictures up.

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