How To Make Your Own Zine in 7 Easy Steps (PICTURE POST)

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THIS.
The number one reason you should be creating a zine is because of the above quote. Making something with your hands, using your creativity and your brain, plus speaking your mind and putting it out there in physical form helps create your own world.
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I grew up on punk rock zines, which then led to Riot Grrrl zines.
I would pour over the Riot Grrrl ones – political, confidence building, badass, and sometimes angry – I identified and still identify with their messages.
The Riot Grrrl Revolution saved teenage me.
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Kim Boekbinder and I got together:
broke out the Poloroid camera,
glue sticks,
tape,
scissors
and magazines
and started a revolution on her floor this week.

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Today is the last day you can snag our homemade zine – it won’t be available after today – so go check it out. And even if it’s not your thing, we made a song/spell to go with it for you to download free.  Happy Holidays!
And while I’m excited we got our zine out to the world, I KNOW there’s a zine in you, too. So let’s dig that up, shall we?
Here’s how!

Step 1: THEME: Decide on a Theme or a Specific Message for your Zine.
Kim and I decided that we’d do a New Year 2015 takeover for our zine theme. We included stories, art, tips and tricks to help our readers rock out 2015.
What would your theme be?
What causes are important to you to talk about and share with others?

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Step 2: COLLECT: Start Collecting Pictures to Collage and Create Art.
You can do this by cutting out photos from magazines, and also by putting whatever you’re looking for into google search images and printing, then cutting them out.

Step 3: TYPE IT OUT.
What do you want to say?
Here’s the part where you get to unleash on the keyboard. Write uncensored. Print it out. Got an old-school typewriter to bang this out on? Even better.

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Step 4: MAKE YOUR MARK.
Have a friend take Poloroids of you in your environment – making your zine. Your readers will be able to connect to you and your words if they can also see you. It makes it more personal and captures that moment in time.

Step 5: ASSEMBLE.
Once you cut out all your images and words – grab a blank page and lay it all out to try different design styles. Once you’ve arranged it all to look how you want it….glue stick those guys down!

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Step 6: ADD YOUR OWN TOUCHES.
On our zine, I doodled in the margins of pictures, drew hearts and stars, wrote additional things in my own handwriting. Your zine is a part of you. This is a fun time to additionally make your mark and make it personal.

Step 7: PRINT FOR THE MASSES!
No matter where you live – there is some dusty print shop with and old copy machine somewhere. Copy, staple and send out to all.

Step 8: ROCK YOUR OWN REVOLUTION.
Promote your zine, hit up local record stores to carry it, put it all over social media and make a few extra copies to slip in your local indie bookstore or library.

Your words, writing and art are power.
Do you have a your own zine or thinking of starting one?
Share in the comments!

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5 Ways to Punch Seasonal Depression in the Face

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Winter sometimes makes me feel like this.
Luckily, Gizmo understands.
You might understand, too.
So I figured that if you haven’t seen this before – it was time to put this beating seasonal depression post up!

I was born in the Springtime.  I feel the most myself when Nature is blossoming around me, when the birds are singing, when the sun is shining.  You know, just like this chick…

Snow White thinks seasonal depression sucks, too.

Whenever I hear that turn-your-clocks-back-“Fall Back” thing – I think of getting pushed down a flight of stairs backwards.

Keep in mind, I am also the girl who spent the entire summer barely wearing clothes and now I’m bundled up in forty billion layers and feel like the kid from Christmas Story.  You know what I’m talking about…

Seriously. Don’t push me over when I get bundled up in a billion pounds of winter clothes. I might not be able to get up.

But here’s the deal. I love New York City.  Love it.  It’s my drug. So I gotta figure out this winter thing.  Only recently have I realized that there is way more people out there that are affected by this whole not getting enough sunshine thing than I thought.

Case in point:  My neighbors put this in front of their building yesterday.

On the walk to my favorite coffee hangout this morning, I looked up and realized that someone tied this bunch of flowers to a bare tree.  I really appreciated it.  Thank you, Stranger, who did this.  You made me smile.

My dear friend and Radical Self Love Queen, Gala Darling wrote about how she copes with beating the winter blues.  I’m taking note! Everything she writes is a must read.

Me and one of my fav people on the face of the planet, Miss Gala Darling. Raven haired girls UNITE!

So, over coffee moments ago, me and one of my best friends in the world, Kim Boekbinder, were talking about different ways to beat the dumb days, and here are mine.  They might seem weird, they might help you, you might get a good laugh out of them. Here they are:

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1.   I dab a little bit of sunscreen under my nose.

Yeah. I’m crazy.  But I’m crazy with a purpose.  It’s double duty because – one it’s a good moisturizer, but more importantly, two, when I smell sunscreen, it triggers Summertime in my memory, and it makes me feel better. It has been proven time and time again that certain smells can improve your mood – don’t believe me? Read this interesting New York Times Article The Nose, An Emotional Time Machine by Natalie Angier.

2.  I indulge in a twice a day coffee hangout with my friends. 
Kim and I started our day off  this morning in the sunny alcove of our favorite coffee place.  In the wintertime, I bump my coffee intake to two cups a day.  I really dig lattes and cappuccinos with lots of nutmeg and cinnamon.  And….check this out….research from the Harvard Medical School team shows that women who drink two or more cups of coffee a day are less likely to be depressed.  This article in the BBC News said that caffeine has “a physical effect on brain function and transmission by altering chemical pathways” and that caffeine is “known to enhance feelings of well-being and energy”.

Hell, yes.  Another cup of that, please!

3.  I trust animal instinct.   

This is my little dog, Niney, in the sunrise this morning. She follows the sun all over our apartment.  She’s been getting up earlier than normal to catch the sunlight longer, and I’ve been following her.  Getting sunlight helps boost our serotonin levels.  Serotonin is that hormone associated with energy and elevated mood and I kind of want to fill my whole freezing cold body with it.  In the past week, I’ve been waking up early and taking extra walks with Niney.  I seek out the sunny streets of Brooklyn.

4.  Happy Colors.  Give them to me.  Now. 
It may sound silly, but it’s backed by science, People!  And science is cool.  Check out this awesome Huffington Post Article for interesting color mood meanings.  Or perhaps I should show you my favorite winter coat of all time:

Me and my favorite pink faux fur coat.   This was lost in the fire of 2011.  But then miraculously returned to me in 2014 -found in a second hand store.  Yeah. Weird.  I know.  This picture was the original coat back in the day.

And just looking at Kim’s pink hair and that kick-ass turquoise color from Sugarpill on Kim’s eyes makes me want to sing a song of happiness.

5. I get a Gel Manicure.
There is nothing scientific to back this. It’s just that I look down at my nails a billion times a day – to write, to pick stuff up, to grab my coffee, to shake hands with someone, etc. When my nails are all bitten down to the quick and gross, I register that. I register it subliminally probably 20 times a day. I noticed that when I get a gel manicure – it lasts for 3 weeks and my nails look perfect. I just got one the other day and several times unexpectedly, I’ve looked down and then I see this pretty glamour deep red and feel uplifted. Like, damn, I’m presentable! I’m taking care of myself! Red nails! In winter! Yes!

Kim would like to add, “Get ridiculous mittens.” She’s got these cool ones with lamb faces on it and she said it makes her smile every time she looks down. They make me smile, too. I want a puppet show.

And if you can’t beat Winter, join it. 

In the darkness of winter, most times, I’m cuddling in my little secret nook in my apartment, decorated with happy Christmas lights and a window looking out to the twinkling lights of the city.  I’m using this dark time to plant some gorgeous seeds for the future (and to bundle up and go on wild unpredictable adventures- those are good).

So if you get the winter blues, too, know you’re not alone.  And if you’re anywhere near Brooklyn, let’s get a cup of coffee together.

And if you’re not, well…pretend we’re rocking this together….Cheers!

Now you tell me the inventive ways you deal with the dark days of winter!  Dish!

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Your Own BADASS Handbook Zine and Theme Song for 2015!

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I have wanted to do this since I was 13 years old.
At 2am this morning, partner-in-crime – Kim Boekbinder and I pose with our ZINE!
We wrote it for the New Year…a bit of a wild workbook, kickass guide and punk rock cheerleader for all of your world domination plans in 2015.

You can take us with you on all your adventures!
Yes.
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We sang a courage spell song for you.
Our voices entwined in the quiet of a late East Village night…
and we recorded this beautiful song that Kim wrote.

Making this zine with Kim and singing together was something I’ve wanted to do for so long and I was so excited about it – I was jumping up and down on two broken toes and didn’t even care.
THAT’S how happy I am.
We want this to get in the hands of everyone because we poured so much love into it….so we are making available 2 different limited editions:
one is an awesome regular New Year’s version
and
one is a deluxe double New Year’s version with a Poloroid picture for YOU
and EVERYBODY gets the song whether you get the zine or not.
We love you guys.
Send these things to your friends! Your enemies! Your Mom (she loves us!), Your Uncle Al (he hates us, but he seriously doesn’t need another tie this holiday), People who need a boost! People who love zines! People who love best friends! People who love adventure and intrigue!
WE HAVE GOT YOUR BACK.
They will only be sold until December 10th
and then they are gone forever.
The magic starts here –
click here to see it ALL.
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Making it HAPPEN!

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Confessions of an Analog Girl in a Digital World. #letsgetphysical

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Weird Confession: I once was so overcome by reading a particular novel, that when my eyes took in the last line on the last page…
tears fell from my eyes and splotted the paper
and some weird thing came over me.
I pressed my face to the book and licked the author’s name,
so I could hold the story inside me for a little bit longer.
It was instinctual.
Physical and real.

I’m an analog girl in a digital world.
I want to touch it.
I want to hold it in my hands.
Fuck your Kindles, I want hard bound books
I want to feel the pages with my fingers.
I want the sound of a Poloroid whirl and a picture I shake to watch it all develop before my eyes.
I want to pin that picture on my wall with a thumbtack.
A fucking real thing. Not a .jpg to be lost in some vastness of iPhoto.
And here…..
on Danger Diary….
I use the power of the internet
to try and touch your soul…
but you can’t hold me in your hands,
and you know I want you to.

KIM BOEKBINDER AND I ARE MAKING A ZINE, PEOPLE!
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This is the 3rd edition of Kim’s brilliant Boek Book zine, and she asked me to collaborate with her on this one.
We are cutting things up and pasting them down.
We are taking Poloroids and scrawling messages on them in our own hands.
We are click clacking our fingers on typewriters with ink and hum and lust.
We are cutting those things up and photocoping it all.
So you can hold us.
Wherever in the world you are….
A thing we made every inch of.

I feel alive making this right now.
It feels good to be on a floor littered with scraps of paper
as orange handled scissors fit into the curve of my hands.

As I write things in my shaky cursive script on a page
it feels more intimate than writing on a keyboard that produces my thoughts neatly in Times New Roman font.

I exist in the world.
YOU exist in the world.
We are not just fucking icons and emoticons and filtered down selfies.
I want more of you than that.
And in those moments when we can physically march outside in the streets in peaceful protest of fucked up things,
the moments when I can press a hand-written letter you wrote to my heart,
the moments when I tack a Poloroid of us by my front door that I can kiss when I walk by and smile.
How can we gain more of those moments?
How can we push ourselves out there in the wilds of the physical world
and “do” with our actions
and “create” with our hands
and speak out to make an impact with our voices in the physical world?
I love the internet and I love being able to connect with you here….
but it needs to be more than that.
We can marry the analog and the digital for a powerful world.
We cannot leave one or the other behind.

Tonight, my 2 broken toes and 8 good ones
will wander to the East Village
by a certain magical fire escape
in a place where wolves howl in a dead fireplace…
and Kim and I will make a song to go with the zine.
You will be able to hold us in your hands
and hear our voices sing to you in your ears
and we
can be
together.

Tomorrow – December 3rd.
Come back here and we will tell you all.
A limited secret treasure
in a little span of human time
that disappears.
But we will be here always
smiling into the bright light of the Poloroid flash
alive
real
on a hardwood floor in an East Village apartment
cutting up a dream and pasting it into the physical world.
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How To Not Die While Going After Your Biggest Dream: 5 Easy Tips!

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1. You Aren’t Done Until You’re Dead.
For the last 2 months, I’ve been in my own personal Lord of The Rings journey.
Hear me out:

  • If Frodo and Sam left the Shire and walked to Mordor getting tans and drinking margaritas, nobody would give a fuck about their story. And while I’m sure they would have had a great time, their victory wouldn’t be as big either.
  • But instead, Frodo and Sam have to deal with dragons flying at them, giant spiders attacking them, monsters running at them with battle axes and a naked bald hunched over slimy guy trying to steal their shit.

They keep pushing through ALL of this.
Even though they think they might die at any moment.
Even when it seems too big and too crazy to continue.
But all those obstacles and all those true tests make the victory even sweeter.

When you think you can’t go anymore,
when you think you are going to lay down in the middle of the road and wait for it to be over,
drag yourself up and keep going.
You can handle it.
As long as there is still breath in your body and the bastards haven’t killed you yet,
you are winning.

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2.  Find Your Allies.
One thing I discovered out on the road is that the majority of people out there in the world have had some kind of wild dream.
When you come across these people and you’re in the middle of trying to figure out your wild dream…it sparks something in them, and they will be kickass allies in helping your journey.
We found Allies in every town we found ourselves in.
We did that really scary thing every single day:
We asked.
We talked to complete strangers and told them what we needed and what we were looking for.
We got rides, awesome locations, free coffee and donuts, hugs, homemade dinners, and a borrowed sedan from a Mayor’s office (you can’t make this up).
There’s too many things to even list all the sweet things that people did.
And we were grateful for every single one.
Without our Allies – people that were previously strangers the day before, who became our friends and rescuers…we would have been screwed.
Shout out to Team Revolver and Team Revolver Graphic Design (Michelle and Shawna).
To all of you who are reading this, and you know who you are, we are allies for life, and any wild dream you need… I’ve got a car, a spare bed and a warm meal for you any day of the week.

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3. Fuel Up By Being Inspired By Others Doing Their Dream.
Remember this: You are not on this path alone.
There are other crazy motherfuckers out there that are also going for their biggest dreams.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again:
Every person you look up to – every hero you have had…
has travelled this road you are on right now.

There would be moments waking up in dingy motels or moments I’d feel lost and I couldn’t push forward anymore where I would grab my phone, throw in my earbuds, and listen to friends like Kim Boekbinder, Jaye Bartell, Emilie Autumn and Kai Altair, to just escape for a moment and know that all of them are out there right now on the path to their dreams. I would read inspiring blogs and thought provoking articles by my friends like Gala Darling and Molly Crabapple to name a few.
You are not alone. Keep repeating it.
Hurl your body into the wild unknown of your dream knowing that others are right there with you.

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4.  Still Look For The Stars Even When You Are Lying In The Gutter.
Rock that attitude of gratitude.
One of my favorite quotes of all time is from Oscar Wilde:
“We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars.”
Even in the scariest and worst moments
look up to one thing that you can hold on to…
just one positive thing.
And I promise more will come.
You can always just roll around with me in the gutter with me for a little while – I’m always there.

5. When You Have Been Beaten Down and Turned Over Sideways By Your Dream, Refer to Rule #1.

Never give up, motherfuckers.
We’ve got this.
Sending you all my love with 2 broken toes and battle scars from my dreams.
If you think someone in your world could use this today, please share.

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Road Trip Adventures: Lost, Ghost Towns and Abandoned Railroads

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In the last 48 hours, I crossed “lying-in-the-gutter-on-Route-66” off my bucket list.

I also saw a wild coyote for the first time in my life.

The road has been magic.
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Saturday night, we were out on the deserted plains of the Salton Sea near a Heron’s nest.

I took a branch and scrawled a magic symbol in the sand and put a rainbow candle in the middle of it, under the stars, and send out good things for all of you that have been with us in some way or another in our journey.

If you’re reading this…. it was about you.

The Herons called out under the stars.

Burke said, “Why do we want for Heaven so badly, when it can be all around us?”
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The road has been good.

We looked for the abandoned.
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We drove for half a day out into the middle of nowhere.

Places where there was only Burke, me and everyone who had ever been put into the Witness Protection Program.

Speaking of “Ghost Towns”…
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Today’s blog has a soundtrack to listen to as you read.

This is one of my favorite people on earth, Kim Boekbinder.

photo by JB Knibbs

photo by JB Knibbs

On Facebook, she asked for 2 words from people and she would write a 1-minute song for one.

I submitted the two words: “Ghost Town”.

She wrote this to me – and I got to hear it right before we lost reception….

It broke my heart with its brilliance – and you should listen to it while you read the rest of this blog. (And Danger Diary readers and fellow adventurers can download it for free in the next 24 hours only. Thanks, Kim!).

We pushed further out into the desert.

There was an old abandoned railroad line we needed to find for a chase scene.

We twisted down dirt roads not seeing anyone for hours….

going further and further in.

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The sun beat down.

The dirt roads dead ended on us.

The flooding had made some impassable.

We would take another turn.

Turn back.

Dead end.

Turn back again.

Washed out roads.

Turn back again.

The sun came down harder and mocked us.

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Lost.

No cell reception.

Caught in the middle of abandoned roads and ghosts.

We found our railroad.

Surrounded by cross marker graves dotted along the terrain.

I went out and sang for them in this lonely place.

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Some kind of deep fear took me.

Shook me to the core.

I take chances – I pick up hitchhikers, I roam abandoned places, I trespass regularly, I sleep on stranger’s floors and in parking lots.

But this…

Being in the wide open

in the middle of nowhere

sun beating down

dead ends

washed out roads

nobody for miles but the dead

summoned up this deep rooted panic.

I am certain

certain

that somewhere in this world

there is a bunch of bleached out bones

in the desert

that once belonged

to

me.
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How To Get Inspired SUPER-FAST in 5 Easy Ways.

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My very first print article I’ve ever written came out in Faerie Magazine TODAY (pssst…..secret 15% discount code is: dangerdiary).

Truth: I haven’t bought a copy of a real live magazine since Jack White was on the cover of Rolling Stone and before that I can’t even remember how long.

I forgot what a source of inspiration holding something in your hands can be! I got lost in the otherworldly photos of midsummer garden parties, enchanting handmade houses, castles and Little Red Riding Hood photo shoots.

It’s only Tuesday – so we can all use some inspiration to kick ass this week.

Here’s some quick tips to get you all re-charged and get that imagination flowing!

I like to:

1. Pretend I’m a Secret Spy.

I hunt for gems in random public conversations.
Okay, okay…. I eavesdrop…don’t judge.
I go to my local coffee shop armed with my notebook and a pen. I get inspired by watching other people and making up imagined lives for them in my notebook. Or – I’ll listen in to a conversation and pick out one sentence and use that as the start of a story.

2. Play Dress-Up.

At the local flea market, I scored a vintage purple falling apart gown with black lace for 20 bucks that looks like Snow White Gone Goth. I paired with my white flower crown and hit the Hudson Project festival last weekend. Just being in this dark faerie tale dress inspired me and made me feel like I was creating my own faerie tale as I danced in the mud. Also, rocking out some wigs on occasion makes me feel like I’m someone else for a moment…and that’s kind of cool.
When I’m other people:

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3. Hit the Record Store.

Trust me on this one. Hit your local indie record store. Run your fingers through some fine ass albums of bands you may or may not have ever heard before – marvel at the artwork, the photos and the song titles. This is a huge source of visual, writing and fashion inspiration for me.

4. Hang Out with Inspiring Partners-In-Crime.

Kim Boekbinder is one of my favorite people on this earth. We’ve lived together, played together, secretly carried ugly faux wood paneling to the garbage together at 3 in the morning (don’t even ask) and while I was naked covered in body paint on a trash bag in our living room, she covered me in baby oil to help scrub it off – only 48 hours after meeting me.

One of the things I love about her (beside her artistic body oil rubdowns obviously), is that she makes her wild dreams into realities. She lives for her art, pulls genius moves to make it happen and achieves the impossible time and time again…. maybe that’s why she’s “The Impossible Girl”.

Her thinking-out-of-the-box saved me from a nervous breakdown three days to the end of our Kickstarter for Revolver. She inspires me to believe that dreams can come true and she’s got the hustle, the talent and the brain to make it happen.

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5. Get Lost.

Shut off the iPhone.
Rip up your maps.
Go out and Wander.
Uncover whole new worlds.

I asked you on Twitter and here’s what some of you said:

@Kristi_Klein said: “I get inspired by listening to music. Something with a big soaring sound and pounding bass drum always gets my mind flowing.”

@whiterabbitdays said: “By watching my dog, Patch. Her wild strength, freedom and unconditional love.”

also: “By being aware. Noticing detail. A dew drop, a spiderweb….everything can be inspiring if you are still and mindful.”

@gizzylovett said: “Sometimes, even by something simple like being on a swing with closed eyes, just surrounded by wind and feeling free.”

@joha_89 said: “My inspiration is LOVE.”

@EmilyJackCO said: “Music and reading. And working out in the gym – pushing myself further than I thought I could go…is a new level!”

@4OClockOphelia said: “I feel inspired with candles lit, the right music, the rain dripping down on the window and a hot cup of tea.”

@sweetindeed said: “Through music. Everything I do has a soundtrack:)”

How do you get inspired to do something or create something new?  Share in the comments!

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