Here are some moments from our first tabling and panel experience as invited guests at L.A. Zine Fest on February 17, 2013:
1. When we arrived at the Ukrainian Cultural Center and were impressed with the space
2. L.A. collaborator Chula Doula posing with flowers before assisting us with POCZP tabling needs (Thanks, Pati!)
Pati Garcia is a Certified Sexological bodyworker/Somatic Sex Educator, self-identifies as genderqueer/fluid two spirit of Peruvian-Mexican descent, loves to dig feet in the earth and throw love into the cosmos. Pati holds space for life unraveling and unwinding as a birth doula. Pati follows only the spirit led path and refuses to compromise pleasure for any reason at all. Radical feminist doula bodyworker, workshop facilitator. Wanna see your cervix?? Ask her how.
3. When Cristy C. Road, Suzy X, Chula Doula and Mariam Bastani all tabled together at the same time <3
Osa Atoe (Shotgun Seamstress) isn’t in this shot because she was reading during the Mend My Dress Press panel. Tomas Moniz (Rad Dad) was tabling elsewhere but joined us for the POCZP minutes after this photo was taken. POCZP founder Daniela was taking photos with her weird camera, which she will be replacing (sorry for the fuzz y’all).
Here is what Tomas had to say about his first experience collaborating with POCZP at an event:
Two and half hours is pushing it for a bad Hollywood movie; so when I realized the POC Zine Project workshop at this year’s L.A. Zine Fest lasted that long and the crowed remained attentive, invested, engaged throughout all six presentations, I was shocked. But this fact demonstrates exactly how vital and important the event was!
I’ve attend and participated in many readings, but this one was special; this one was with people who have inspired me for years, Cristy C. Road and Mariam from MRR, as well as people who’s work is some of the best stuff out there today, Suzy X’s Malcriada and Osa Atoe’s Shotgun Seamstress; I also got the chance to thank the founder of the POC Zine Project organizer, Daniela, for keeping alive some of the zines that inspired me as I entered my own critical consciousness and keeping these important resources available for those who come after us.
4. Getting to know our tabling neighbors, such as Thi Bui and her son (who is also an artist!)
Thi Bui was born in Saigon, raised in California and schooled in New York. She teaches high school and has a little boy and a husband. She have been hard at work, writing and drawing a graphic novel called THE BEST WE COULD DO. It is a 15-chapter immigration epic about her parents, their place in history, and her search for her place in her family.
5. When Mariam and other folks from Maximumrocknroll joined the POCZP table with more issues featuring punks and activists of color
POCZP founder Daniela Capistrano (L) and Mariam Bastani (R)
Maximumrocknroll is a widely distributed monthly fanzine dedicated to supporting the underground punk rock scene. MRR’s 25-year plus history and large, obsessed all-volunteer staff has made its punk rock coverage the most consistently up-to-date and reliable around. Subscribe here or purchase individual issues here.
Quese IMC had this to say immediately after the event:
I had a really good time. I enjoyed myself. Was good for me to see a different perspective and meet some cool people. Look forward to hearing from you and definitely keep me updated what you have in mind for the tour…
We are in the process of figuring out how Quese IMC can join us during the 2013 Race Riot! Tour to help share information about #IdleNoMore actions in the Canada, U.S., and around the world. Stay tuned for updates …
7. When our panel at the Moth Theatre quickly became over capacity, and we had to scramble to find additional seating/make space (all great problems to have!)
Osa Atoe reading at L.A. Zine Fest
Suzy X reading at L.A. Zine Fest (C) while Osa (L) and Mariam (R) observe
This was Suzy’s second time reading as part of a POCZP event. Osa’s commentary afterward? “Suzy is hilarious.” We agree! Check out her latest zine, Malcriada. Suzy will also be joining us next month for Chicago Zine Fest, woo! <3
Here is what Suzy had to say about her time with POCZP at L.A. Zine Fest:
I was so honored to join the POC Zine Project last week at LA Zinefest! Our panel on Sunday afternoon brought up a lot of feelings for me, as the new girl in a scene of bad-ass POC in zines. It’s really mind-blowing how long it took for someone to finally initiate a project like this, a project that centers the voices of people of color in DIY publishing. I discussed my experience— a baby feminist living in a conservative household in the South, without access to any zines, much less zines by POC, until I attended college. And after hearing all these wonderful folks speak, I felt terribly late to the party, because they had been going at it for years! And doing a damn good job of it, too.
I’m incredibly thankful for the initiative Daniela has taken in bringing us all together. But in going forward, I think a conversation should happen in which we discuss access to those who don’t belong to punk scenes or those who don’t live in urban or densely-populated areas. This project was started to shed light on the history of POC in zines; but I am interested in working on ways to make this history available and accessible to more people. This could mean partnering up with existing distros or starting one by and for POC! Whatever works you know? And I’m excited to continue these conversations during the zine tour in Fall 2013.
Suzy X was delighted to find out after sending this recap that POCZP has been engaging in this conversation with folks for years. POCZP’s first zine partner, SlushPilePress, is located in a remote area of Eugene, Oregon (no longer operating) and our present zine distro partner is Brown Recluse Zine Distro. We also support zine partners who aren’t a part of our touring.
Our poverty zine partner Carey Fuller is based in Kent, WA, which is also an undeserved area. Our Legacy Series initiative (ongoing) is all about making independent publications by POC from decades past accessible. We don’t organize to center punk experiences, although we do have some collaborators who ID as punk. We have a lot going on <3.
COMMUNITY: If you are located in the midwest and/or rural areas without much support for independent publishers, email firstname.lastname@example.org we can discuss ways to partner. <3
Just one section of our over capacity audience - it was so great to meet many of the attendees afterward!
Cristy C. Road reading at L.A. Zine Fest
8. Reconnecting with POCZP West Coast collaborators like Liz Mayorga
Chula Doula (L) and Liz Mayorga (R) at dinner after L.A. Zine Fest
Liz is a writer / illustrator from Southeast LA. She grew up watching old, Black and White, Mexican films and selling burritos with her family. The films were her inspiration. The tacos and burritos paid for college. She used to work with teenagers, and they taught her what it means to be brave. Their energy and fearlessness inspired her to write and draw for herself, but she ends up creating for them too.
Liz is now an MFA Writing Student at CCA, where she writes both fiction and nonfiction, milks the Illustration department for all they’re worth, and experiences an existential crisis every day. Despite the hard work and many sleepless nights, she is extremely grateful to read, write, and draw. She thanks you for your support.
Liz is helping us with tour fundraiser events on the West Coast between now and October. If you’re interested in supporting POCZP West Coast initiatives, send us a message: email@example.com.
9. Helping more folks discover zines by people of color
We met so many rad people at L.A. Zine Fest and will be reaching out to everyone who signed our mailing list in the coming weeks. <3
10. Meeting (in person!) & collaborating with more inspiring zinesters of color like Tomas Moniz
Tomas Moniz (L) and Suzy X (R) at the POC Zine Project table at L.A. Zine Fest on February 17, 2013
Tomas Moniz is the founder, editor, and a writer for the award winning zine Rad Dad. Looking for radical parenting community, he created Rad Dad to provide the space for parents (particularly fathers) to share, commiserate and plan with each other, and to support each other in challenging patriarchy one diaper at a time. As China Martens has said, “Tomas has been the most vocal voice within zines, trying to start and keep a discussion within this aspect of radical politics and parenthood.” His writing has been included in many zines about parenting as well as in the books My Mother Wears Combat Boots and Don’t Leave Your Friends Behind.
This event marks the first time Tomas participated in a POCZP panel. We’re looking forward to connecting with him at Chicago Zine Fest next month and discussing ongoing collaborations!
A HUGE thank you to L.A. Zine Fest organizers Meredith Wallace and Rhea Tepplim for all their help, as well as to everyone who volunteered at the fest. <3
Our panel was recorded and we are in the process of tracking down video so we can share it with you all.
COMMUNITY: Did we meet you in person at L.A. Zine Fest? Tell us about your experience exploring our tabling area or what you thought about our panel discussion. Submit your thoughts here or email firstname.lastname@example.org (all voices welcome, including white folks <3).
We’ll update this recap with more reactions and photos from POCZP members and L.A. Zine Fest attendees in the coming days.
Itoro recently read all six issues of Shotgun Seamstress in a row. Here is what she learned from them:
It’s hard to speak to everything the Shotgun Seamstress zine collection taught me. It really does give you everything: interviews, stories, being queer, black, punk, female, broke, weird, loving music, knowing your history, loving yourself…it draws from a lot of sources and that right there sums up this history of the punk scene and the Black experience: We pull from everywhere and we survive and thrive too.
That’s my biggest lesson, but here are five more just for good measure:
1. WE need our people
Reading Shotgun Seamstress opened my eyes to our need for each other’s affirmation, community and understanding while trying to do the impossible: live in the margins. It’s important that when we find each other, we do what we can to build community and lift each other up, usually we’re the only black face in the white crowd. Many of the punk rockers, artists, drag queens, musicians, made that clear in Shotgun Seamstress. From how white the punk scene is, specifically, and how black folks are constantly pushed to the margins, it’s important for us, as Audre Lorde so eloquently puts it, “to practice how to be tender with one another.” I was shocked and awed to see the type of love and gentleness Shotgun Seamstress had to the multiplicity of voices it brought in.
2. Our struggles affirm one another
THE WOMEN OF COLOR IN PUNK CONFERENCE organized by Osa Atoe was talked about in the zine series as an affirming experience for women of color and a place of knowledge on a personal, political and historical level. It gave a space to share and think about how women of color could carry the torch forward and make life easier for young punksters participating in zine culture.
3. Don’t you yuck my yum
Stop commodifying my shit and learn your gotdamn herstory mofo!—Who are you to tell me what punk is? What a black punk is? What I should look like or sound like? Who are you to buy my shit, sell my shit, exploit my shit, silence my shit and then tell ME what to do!
One of the points that Shotgun Seamstress addresses is the African roots of punk and the importance of knowing that we stand in a long line of black peoples who made most of the music that we hear what it is. Let’s remember where things come from:
“Yes, rock and roll and almost the entire American pop pantheon comes from the blood sweat, and tears of sharecroppers, slaves and disenfranchised people.” — Chris Sutton
4. DO NOT leave any of yourself out of the equation
It all counts and all parts of ourselves need to be in our analysis and knowledge of our conditions. The fearlessness that the many voices had in Shotgun Seamstress in reclaiming the weird, the awkward, the queer, the difference in ourselves has to be a part of our liberation processes. Especially when looking at how to address our experiences, the personal is political and we should always question a scene-movement that expects us to leave an aspect of ourselves (that they don’t want to swallow) at the door.
5. Be an Ally not a Disappointment
Not gonna spend too much energy on this point, but a recurring issue that was highlighted throughout Shotgun Seamstress was the need for more allies, specifically white allies to “not talk that talk, if you ain’t gonna walk that.” Disappointment when we fail each other in this way does not even begin to cover it.
Some more key truths that I took away can be found below.
Life calls for resourcefulness, especially when you are on the margins…
Black punksters might be “obscure” but they have always been here…
Be courageous enough to break the silence…
If you don’t love yourself, how the hell you gonna love someone else?…
Rock on, stay strong…
What were your take aways? What resonated most with you?
Join the conversation and if you haven’t read the Shotgun Seamstress zine collection, please do and add your thoughts.
ABOUT SHOTGUN SEAMSTRESS
The final issue of Shotgun Seamstress zine was completed in the fall of 2011. Now, all six issues are compiled in a book that was published by Mend My Dress Press.
The first issue of Shotgun Seamstress came out in August of 2006. Read issue #1 for free here:
ABOUT ITORO UDOFIA
Itoro is the first dedicated intern for the POC Zine Project’s Legacy Series. Itoro’s excited to support POCZP because ”it is a collective that uplifts and cares about what people of color have to say and acknowledges what they have always said.” Learn more about her here.
'What I learned from …' is a new feature that you will find on POCZP’s digital platforms. POCZP will share zine analysis by and for POC to affirm our experiences and interpretation of independently created POC publications. We are starting a dialog.
POCZP Interns can contribute (learn about our internship program here) to this ongoing feature, as well as ANYONE who is interested in reading POC zines and reflecting on them. The only requirement is that you must identify as a person of color.
Email email@example.com if you would like to write the next 'What I learned from …' edition. Put “What I learned from …’ ” in the subject line and include the following in the email body:
1) The zine, or series of zines, you want to read and review
2) Indicate if you already have access to the zine/s or need assistance accessing them
3) Include links to three writing samples, or submit three new writing samples (zine reviews or book reviews)
That’s it! <3
Last year’s inaugural tour was amazing but that was just the beginning. 14 cities last year = 12 more cities this year <3
Dates may shift slightly before October and we are still accepting invites from academic and community spaces, collectives, orgs and individuals. If you haven’t contacted us already, please do: firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you look at this list and think “Why the heck do they keep missing the full Midwest?” Don’t trip, chocolate chip. The 2015 NATIONAL Zinester Conference is going down in YOUR house! Yeah! Midwest all the way! And we’ll be bringing in FIVE international zinesters/activists to share their work! Yeah, buddy! If you want to help, reach out!
Thoughts become things. Be intentional with your thoughts.
2013 TOUR DETAILS: What we know so far
Native/Indigenous solidarity will be a core component of this tour. If you’re actively involved in local efforts in your city, please reach out. We want you to speak at our events & help you distribute your printed zines/materials nationwide. We hope our small platform helps to make a difference.
We will be doing TWO events in each city, just like last year's tour. There will be an academic event at a participating university in the daytime and one DIY/community show in the evening. The academic events will be free and open to the public, while the evening DIY shows will be a sliding scale cover. NO ONE TURNED AWAY FOR LACK OF FUNDS <3
The DIY show covers pay for our gas and food, so give what you can.
We will be able to share accessibility/child care details for each city once we have more information.
The Race Riot! touring member lineup will be revealed in the coming weeks. HINT: Think more people, rotating members and lots of guest readers in each city.
Self-care and caregiving resources will be a significant aspect of this tour for participating readers/performers.
OK, enough context. Here are the dates & cities (all subject to change)!
[SEE UPDATED LIST ON OUR #RACERIOTTOUR PAGE]
All details subject to change. We will share specifics about each city as we finalize tour logistics.
MICHIGAN FOLKS: Wow, such love! We’ve received a few requests from y’all to come out this year. We did two events there in 2012 and cannot return in 2013 (we are not a funded entity - we rely on donations and have day jobs/other obligations <3). If you’re in Michigan and want to support this tour in other ways, contact us, thanks.
We can only do so much, and we do a lot with very little. Richmond, VA and other cities: We wish we could be everywhere for this tour, but we can’t. Let’s figure out ways to partner that will yield long term outcomes for local POC orgs and collectives. Thanks for understanding.
OTHER WAYS TO PARTICIPATE
We are looking for the following:
- Guest readers in every city (you must be a person of color)
- Rotating tour buddies: Join us on the road and participate in 1-3 tour events as a panelist/reader/tabler
- POC (or POC fronted) bands to perform at each #raceriottour event!
- More POC & ally tablers for each city: come to a POCZP event in your town and table for your zine/org/collective/creative project (check out some of the POC artists/merchants who tabled last year) <3
We’re also looking for folks to help us produce #raceriottour fundraiser events between now and September. This might be a good solution for you if you are unable to travel.
Contact email@example.com for more details. Make sure to use “2013 RACE RIOT TOUR” as the email subject.
ABOUT THE RACE RIOT! TOUR
POC Zine Project held its first Race Riot! Tour in 2012, producing 20 events in 14 U.S. cities, which included speaking engagements at six universities. Click here to view photos from the POC Zine Project: 2012 Race Riot! Tour tour finale at Death By Audio in Brooklyn and access all the tour stop recaps.
We will be taking the Race Riot! Tour through 12 more U.S. cities in 2013. Stay tuned for updates as we work on partnering with POC-affirming orgs overseas. If you are outside the U.S. and want to be a part of our emerging POCZP Global Ambassadors program, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
SUPPORT POC ZINE PROJECT
If everyone in our community gave $1, we would more than meet our fundraising goal for 2013. If you have it to spare, we appreciate your support. All funds go to our 2013 tour, the Legacy Series and the poverty zine series.
DONATE link via PayPal: http://bit.ly/SHdmyh
Ten days have passed since our Race Riot! tour finale event at Death By Audio in Brooklyn. Our last tour date had the most amount of people in attendance, and zine partner sales were higher than any other stop on our tour, so thank you NYC for your love and support!
We’re going to do a zine and art book about our first tour experience, (details coming soon) so for now, here are some beautiful moments from October 7, 2012:
Photo by Mimi Thi Nguyen
- POC Zine Project’s Race Riot! Tour attendees at Death by Audio on Oct 7, 2012
- Mimi Thi Nguyen reads at Death By Audio
- Leshaun lovell (l) Share roman (m) and Jade Fair (r) at POCZP’s Race Riot! Tour stop at Death By Audio on Oct 7
- DJ Shomi Noise holding her zines Building Up Emotional Muscles #1-3 at Death By Audio on Oct 7
- Shady Hawkins perform at Death By Audio
Photo by Mary Christmas
- Joan Chen came all the way from the west coast and brought Bay Area poc zines for the archive! <3 Thanks, Joan!
- Back of crowd during Anna Vo’s reading at Death By Audio
Photo by Mimi Thi Nguyen
- Osa Atoe, creator of the Shotgun Seamstress series (out now on Mend My Dress Press), reads at Death By Audio
- Aye Nako performs at Death By Audio
Photo by thetenderestheart
- Part of POC Zine Project’s Race Riot! Mall at Death By Audio
Photo by Mimi Thi Nguyen
MEMORIES FROM THE EVENT
The venue was PACKED and at a certain point (about halfway through the show) we had to ask everyone who was sitting to stand up so that a horde of folks waiting in line outside could get in. Like all of our other tour stops, the door cover was sliding scale/pay what you can with no one turned away for lack of funds.
Although DBA had a cash bar, people kept it together and the energy overall was amazing. Around 9pm, after I had made sure the projector was working, we kicked things off.
Jamie Varriale Vélez, our local guest reader, did an amazing job and was super brave (she read first). Race Riot! crew Osa, Anna Vo, Mimi Thi Nguyen and Cristy C. Road followed. I played MC, worked at the Race Riot! mall, dealt with problems as they came up and took some of the photos you see in this post.
BIG THANKS to Cristy C. Road for coordinating our finale event logistics, Death By Audio for allowing us to use the venue and all the DBA folks who handled sound and door needs.
I’m probably forgetting to thank a million people but we’ll get it together for the zine and art book that we’re doing for the tour.
We’ll have more candids and quotes from tour members and attendees in the weeks to come.
Thanks again, you reading this right now, for your interest and support. This is an experiment in community and activism through materiality. If you took any photos or video of this event and are willing to share so we can add it to our documentation, please email email@example.com. <3
If you’re interested in developing your digital media and community organizing skills by interning for POC Zine Project, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
We can provide college credit or, if you’re not enrolled at an accredited university, professional mentorship. Meatspace internships will take place at DCAP Media HQ in NYC. Telecommuting/remote production internships are also available.
1) We’re doing a zine about this tour, so if you were part of any of the events, let us know if you want to contribute by emailing email@example.com.
2) We’re doing a national conference in 2014.
3) We’re doing a west coast tour in 2013.
4) If you want to be a part of any upcoming POCZP events, let us know.
5) We love you.
ABOUT POC ZINE PROJECT
POC Zine Project’s mission is to make zines by people of color easy to find, distribute and share - community and activism through materiality. We took the Race Riot! tour through 12 cities from Sept 24 - Oct 7, 2012.
All tour dates: http://bit.ly/PeEgaR
TOUR RECAPS ARCHIVE
Oct 7: Death By Audio - Brooklyn
Oct 3: Skylab - Columbus
Oct 2: Rachael’s Cafe - Bloomington
Sept 30: multikulti - Chicago
Sept 28: The Trumbullplex - Detroit
Sept 26: Mr. Roboto Project - Pittsburgh
Sept 25: The Wooden Shoe - Philly
Sept 24: 538 Johnson - NYC - Brooklyn
All photos should be credited to Daniela Capistrano/POC Zine Project unless otherwise noted. Please be sure to credit and link to poczineproject.tumblr.com if you reblog individual pics. Tx! <3
Osa Atoe is a musician who lives in New Orleans, Louisiana. She is the child of Nigerian immigrants, who grew up in the suburbs of Washington, DC and then lived on the West Coast for seven years. She feels that her involvement with punk is unlikely and often wonders how she ended up here. Osa likes to play music more than anything else in the world, which is why her zine, “Shotgun Seamstress,” is mostly a music fanzine. She began that zine, a DIY publication by and for black punk rockers, when she lived in Portland, Oregon in 2006.
(Read issues of Shotgun Seamstress for free online.)
You can purchase all of Shotgun Seamstress as one very rad anthology from Mend My Dress Press later this month. (Osa will be selling the book during the tour as well!).
Osa is very proud to be able to say that she was in a band called New Bloods that put out a record on Kill Rock Stars before the label went completely to shit. While being in that band, Osa discovered that she loves to book punk shows and decided to begin booking all-ages DIY shows for girl bands & other folks, too, under the name No More Fiction when she moved to New Orleans in 2009. That initial love has turned into a more complicated, love/hate relationship since then, however Osa was still very much excited to help book the DIY portion of the POC Zine Project RACE RIOT! Tour.
Here is what Osa had to say about joining the POC Zine Project tour:
Why I want to be a part of the his ridiculously rad tour: Because I want to hang out with Mimi, Mariam, Daniela, Cristy and Anna every single day, every hour, every minute for two weeks straight. I need my POC punk time because I don’t get enough of it in my day to day life. Because I love to tour. I think that being able to tour & travel has helped me deal with how white punk can be because I’ve been able to make connections with black & brown punks all over the country and even internationally. I love to be on the road, I love to travel and I especially love to travel with a purpose, and what better purpose than this?
Community: Osa will be participating in ALL our tour dates: Sept 24 - Oct 7. Please help her offset the cost of participating in this tour by purchasing her zines, music and spreading the word about the tour.
MORE RACE RIOT! TOUR MEMBER BIOS
More bios coming soon!