Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Eastside Zine Market

Introducing Leo "Puppypants" Lopez, my tablemate at the Eastside Zine Market last Sunday, but honestly, I thought he went by the name of Mr. Panda.

Leo grew up on the other side of Soto Street in East LA, works as a librarian assistant in Berkeley, lives in Oakland, thinks about getting a MA, and writes and draws comics with other like minded ziners. When he heard there was going to be a zine market in East LA, he booked a flight. I was so lucky to get Leo as my tablemate for my first ever zine market. He taught me the ropes: how to walk them, how to jump over them, how to ignore them; he's done dozens of these before. You'll find him next at the LA Zine Fest in mid-Feb.

Here's a pretty famous ziner: Yumi Sakugawa, author of "I think I'm in Friend Love with You," and many wonderful meditation guides and comics for The Rumpus. (She was going to tell me her secret Compton connection for getting books printed for $1 each —unheard of— but we never talked again after initial introductions.) Her zines are sold at Skylight and on Amazon.

and here I am with my zines and half table display. (Note: tablecloth from South Africa in memory of Nelson Mandela.)


Although I sold only five books, I'm going to say that was OK, given the competition— a room full of talented cartoonist and ziners who are passionate about the form. The zine I sold the most was called "Lost Rat," about a rat who leaves her comfortable existence for the street. Here's some images:


Will I zine again? Not sure. It's fun to think about what works and doesn't work, and how to make a zine more cost effective; that takes time and patience, neither of which I have in spades. As Tom said in the build-up to this event, this wasn't about making money (boy, he can say that again!). Welcome to the zine world.