A wonderful little item I came to know in the 1970’s was the Fanzine. These were
nice little home published magazines that started in the 30’s by SF fans and in the
50’s by Comic fans. Some of the copy methods were very crude.
Now the fun part of the zines were they were like the social networks on the Internet
today. Instead of posting - we made zines. There were people who would do art for
them, others who would do articles and stories. Some would even have Comics stories
in them. And we would have our LOC or letter pages. We would write back and forth,
and we would review one another zines. It was a lot of fun and we got a lot of friends
that we never had a chance to meet (and we have found some of them on Facebook).
The computer which gives a format to do really nice looking zines today has also
just about done away with the zine. Websites cost less and can be seen my many more
people. Email list and social networks have done away with the LOC. The e-zine is
the child of the fanzine, except they cover many more topics than the fanzines ever
did. (We would see music, non-SF movies and TV move into some of them, but Comics
and SF stayed the main stay of Fanzines.)
When we started Florida Fandom we had several choices of how to print it. 1. Ditto,
2. Mimeograph 3. Offset at a quick print shop was all that was open to us. Photo
copies were around, but were very poor and cost about 25¢ a page. It cost around
$15 to get 100 copies of a 12 page digest size zine offset printed. Now to keep
cost down we had to put it together and staple it, but that was the fun part. Before
we could take it to the printer we had to put together a camera ready originals.
This took a lot of cutting and pasting using scissors and paste. And if we wanted
titles we had to use press type. (Believe me using a computer and a word processor
you can do much more than we could back then). As time went on the cost kept getting
higher and the size of the issue got bigger. Soon it was costing around $100 for
a 100 issues... This made time between issues grow larger (most issues went out as
comps). Then to save the day came the Super Office Supplies stores with low cost
high quality photocopiers and the cost came down again to under $20.00. We did Florida
Fandom from 1976 till the mid -90 when we took it online as a website. In 2011 celebrating
it 35th year we came out with an e-zine version with many of the people who helped
put out the originals giving us stories and art along with some who were not born
when the zine first came out.
To see more about Florida Fandom go to www.floridafandom.com on the site we have
the web version along with the e-zine in PDF format for you to download or read on
line. Also check out Florida Fandom on Facebook.