Talking zines with the Sticky Institute

For the 2017 festival, EWF has partnered with Sticky Institute to present 10,000 Staples, a festival-long exhibition featuring zine from distros around Australia and celebrating the national zine-scene.

Sticky Institute is a shop and resource devoted to zines and zinemakers. We spoke to Luke Sinclair, one of the coordinators of Sticky Institute, about the exhibition, his advice for newcomers to the scene, and his favourite titles.

What is 10,000 Staples? 

For 10,000 Staples, Sticky Institute is bringing together work from a variety of zine distros from different parts of Australia.  Each distro will show what they do and the kind of zines that they support. There will be posters from zine fairs organised by zine distros, large wall based displays of various zines the distros stock as well as various launches coordinated by the different distros throughout the festival at 1000£ Bend.

What is the Melbourne zine scene like?

Zines are in a very healthy state in Melbourne in 2017.  Sticky Institute has operated our shop out of Shop 10 Campbell Arcade since 2001 and there are more zines now than ever before coming through our door.  We have coordinated our zine festival – The Festival of the Photocopier – every year since 2008. The first festival had 50 tables in the subway outside Sticky.  The festival in 2017 had 240 tables in the biggest rooms of the Melbourne Town Hall. There is such a variety in the zines being made, both in terms of content and production.  The zines being made are as individual as the people making them.

Any words of advice for budding zine makers?

If you are interested in getting into zines my advice is to come down to Sticky and browse the shelves.  Have a look at what is in stock on the day you visit and think about how it relates to both the kind of content you want to create and the kind on production methods you want to use.  Find some zines you love and find some zines that you don’t like at all and then get straight to work and make you own.

Keep your first print run small. Make one copy for all family and friends plus ten more copies for Sticky plus copies to send to any other distros and then if you need more copies you can always print more off.  Sticky Institute offers zinemakers the cheapest photocopying in the Southern Hemisphere – 3 cents a copy if you get a one-year Sticky membership so go ahead and photocopy!

Come along to our exhibition in The Emerging Writers Festival, come along to the Festival of the Photocopier Zine Fair when it happens next (February 11th 2018), go to Other Worlds Zine Fair in Sydney, go to the Noted Independent Publishing Fair in Canberra, go to the Zine and Indie Comic Symposium in Brisbane.  Find some like-minded people and change the world!

Some recommendations?

Sticky Institute has stocked over 15,000 individual zine titles since we opened our doors in 2001 and we love them all!  Some names I suggest you seek out are Ashley Ronning, Gemma Flack, Take Care Zine Distro, Vanessa Berry, Rut Zine. Friday Night In West Ealing, Dexter Fletcher, Alice Kazam, Chester Carlson plus we have been stocking some pretty sweet eastern European comics from Latvia called Kus which will blow the minds of anyone who comes within fifteen metres of them.

10,000 Staples is a free exhibition running from Thursday June 15 – Friday June 23 at 1000£ Bend. Keep your eye on the website for individual distro launches!

Join us for the 10,000 Staples exhibition launch at 1000 Pound Bend on Monday 19th June.