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Cool Fandom Stuff: Fanzines!

There are a million different ways to participate in anime fandom, but I want to focus on one that's new for me - fanzines!

Fanzines are an important part of fandom history. They started in the science fiction community in the 1930's. Lovers of science fiction would write fanfiction and create art, bind it together, and sell the results.

In the age of the Internet, this may seem like a waste of time - most fannish content can be easily accessed online - but nothing replaces having a physical book in your hands, especially one that you worked on making yourself.

I recently participated in the King of Hearts fanzine, which was dedicated to JJ Leroy, a character from Yuri on Ice who is often misunderstood by the fandom. I applied after a friend who has heard me rambling endlessly about my deep and abiding love for JJ suggested I do so. While I found this zine through a friend, there are plenty of others that are a quick Google search away.

The application process involved filling out a survey where I answered questions about what I wanted to contribute, what sort of writing experience I brought to the table, and how I felt about the character in question. My application was approved, and I was asked to write a 1k fanfic about what JJ might be like a father.

From there, I joined a Discord server, and planned my project alongside a large group of writers and artists who were all working hard to make something awesome. Artists posts WIPs and gave each other tips on shading and line work, while writers talked plot and characterization and posted excerpts of their work. We all about our love for JJ, and Yuri on Ice in general, and we talked about our lives. Meanwhile the zine's creators, blacknekojess and spelonberry, kept us updated on the deadlines, and worked behind the scenes to put the fanzine itself together.

After months of hard work, King of Hearts actually came to fruition! While it didn't make as much money as we hoped, participants still got a free copy of the book they'd worked so hard on. It was an amazing experience, and one I highly recommend to anyone who wants to get more involved in anime fandom.

My personal copy!



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