Zine Review – The Once Over

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George Wickham sent The Zine-iac Review Blog 3 issues of his zine called “The Once Over” and I’m glad he sent as many as he did, because It gave me a good idea of what the zine had to say month after month and also, the fact that it is a one page, two sided zine makes it even harder to review with only one issue, so right away it was a good start. The first thing I thought of was some of the other famous one page zines that are still in print today, like the East Village Inky and of course the grand daddy of them all “Slug & Lettuce,” who started as a one paper zine and moved up ranks due to good advertisers adding finances to fund more than one page.


The first thing I noticed about “The Once Over” zine was it had no real central theme, or no single message to it’s format, it didn’t follow any rules with the content included in the print. Which to me is a plus, because I sometimes get bored reading these long drawn out perzines about the same topic from cover to cover. Instead the Once Over zine was full of contributions from several people. Some writings were a trip, and some were cool and funny. Each issue had at least two stories, one had a poem I thought could have been a cool punk rock song. There was some book ideas, some movie suggestions, tips on picking up girls and some well suited custom art work weaved through out the entire two sided zine just right. Right away the zines had me laughing with funny little phrases like “D-I-Y-O-B-G-Y-N written inside a cloths hanger for a little bit of some dark humor to keep the reader amused. Some of the noted contributors were Brian Cutalo who made his mark in all three issues of The Once Over zine. Then their was Theren Rauffman who wrote a hilarious 10 tips to picking up chicks article. There was a good poem I thought was a song at first by somebody named The Illusion. Their was a blender recipe that I may try by the way, written by Bill W. called B.rian O.oze B.lend. The zine had some classic art drawings by Dan Kern about spooning and getting forked in one clip of his, which I would maybe like to discuss using in one of my zines someday if he’ll allow it. Hallie Sills was the lead artist in all three issues and deserves some credit for originality and creativity in the well done pieces and clips that are spread out on every page, keeping up with the topics at hand.



Overall The Once Over by George Wickham was worth the read and although I didn’t see a price, they do deserve to be thrown a couple bones for their efforts and their DIY labors. It should be noted they do invite contributors to submit material, also if you have questions, concerns, comments, or inquiries, they would love to hear from you and I’m sure they would love to add you to their mailing list for future issues. So drop them a note, or an email and send some love to George Wickham and his crew of publishers.

Here’s the contact information for “The Once Over” zine:

George Wickham
6489 Cavalleri Rd.
Malibu, CA 90265
(614) 208-2349
Or reach George at:

Final Thoughts:

DIY underground publishing is freedom of expression and a form of freedom of speech. Those of you who have tried to make a self published zine know to well how difficult it is to layout a format and all the trial and error involved in getting things sized and fitting just right for you the reader to enjoy. Sometimes readers send me the strangest things for trade or bartering purposes and as gifts. I’ve gotten dope in all forms, invites for cyber sex, lipstick on the envelopes, pocket change, etc… And the greatest gift of all is just a little letter of appreciation to show you care.


A New Concept

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Review 2014: The Stolen Sharpie Revolution 2

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A Complete Guide To Making a Zine And Being Apart Of The Zine Community

Alex Wrekk has truly built an empire in the world of zines with this little red how-to-book on making zines and participating in the zine culture. About to launch her 5th edition of this classic zine, Alex and The Stolen Sharpie Revolution 2, have reached the 21,000 copies sold plateau in 12 years now of publication. I sat down to review the book and then explored the popular website attached to the publication under the same name and if you know me I was looking for accuracy and consistency with what the author was offering to the new and old zine creator who may be reading this book.


Here’s what I found:
The booklet was loaded with information on various ways to create a zine from start to finish. I found nothing left unmentioned.
Additional information was included for other DIY crafts one could explore as well.
The book covered doing business with different zine venues and many how to facts for communicating with other zinesters in different areas of services offered.
This zine was packed with resource information including addresses and links to websites for every type of zine activity available world wide.
Zine etiquette was mentioned throughout the book and the importance of respect and surviving in the DIY underground world of zine making.
Helpful extras were available, for example, a guide to the postal services was included as a necessary resource to any zine creator.

In Print:
I expected the book to be bigger than it actually was, it was done in the quarter size design at around 4.25/5.0 inches in size, a great pocket, or back pack size for your on the run uses.
Although zines are known for having imperfections, I didn’t expect to find so many misspelled words and typos in a best seller such as this. I stopped counting the noticeable misspellings and punctuation mistakes after 20+, but I must note, I tend to be critical about such things given my background in quality related jobs I’ve had over the years and a background in journalism. In fact I find typos in everything I read, but these were obviously overlooked during editing, or planted as props to show zine quality acceptances.

The Stolen Sharpie Revolution website had helpful information spread though out the web pages, but as much as I dislike typos, dead links is a close second on my list of peeves. I started the review with looking at the listed distro links Alexx had provided and most of the sites are now in hiatus, or haven’t had any recent activities in a long time. I will not name names, but at one website the last post was in 2010, at another site the zine listings were out dated and only one post was available on the news page for the site.

Overall this how-to-zine is a worthy purchase for anyone. It is loaded with knowledge from a very respected zinester in the community. The pricing of the zine is very reasonable and it is available at all the major book stores world-wide. I recommend the book to anyone interested in entering the world of zines. Any advice from such a seasoned expert is always a valuable investment and at such a low price I would recommend this book first over many others I have read. Get your copy today and feel confident on how to make a zine the right way using this helpful publication.

Home Website:

-The Zineiac

Self Publishing Basics: How to Read an ISBN

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How Does An ISBN Work?

Technically you need an ISBN and a Bar Code to sell your publication in Bookstores

ISBN stands for “International Standard Book Number.” If you want to sell in bookstores, self-publishers know that you need to have one of these, along with a bar code for your book or zine.

Some self-publishers are buying single ISBN numbers from RR Bowker, but if you are planning to publish more than one book, or more than one edition of your book, then you really need to have your own ISBN numbers. As the Official ISBN Agency for the United States Of America, RR Bowker is responsible exclusively for the task of issuing the ISBN prefix’s to all publishers who resides in the U.S.A.

You can tell a lot by looking at the ISBN that appears on all books. Their are some people who know how to read these ISBN sets and can tell information about you just by how the numbers are grouped together.

The traditional ISBN prefix is a series of 10 digit numbers, but in 2007 three numbers were added, “978 was added to the original 10 numbers, to make the range broader.”

Let’s breaking down an ISBN prefix by each number.

Look below at 10 of the 13 digits of a ISBN prefix for this example.


Right away you’ll notice this number sequence is divided into 4 number combinations separated by a dash. You will soon see their are only three digits that have any usefulness to you at all. First is the initial digit, in this case it is a “0.”


The “0″ is the “language identifier” which in this example it indicates the English language.

The next number set is the six digit series of 820475.


This set of numbers is the publishers identification series. A small publisher who purchased only a 100 ISBN’s from RR Bowker will have a long publisher identifier number. Large publishers have much shorter publisher identifier numbers, leaving more digits available for the individual book number.

The third set of numbers for this ISBN set, in this case it is “10.”


This is the title identifier, and it’s assigned by the book publishing company to a particular book publication, or specific edition of a book. For example, I might assign this ISBN to a softcover edition, and another ISBN to an e-book edition. As you can see, if you go with the smaller purchase of buying ISBN’s it will be just a matter of time before you’ll have to go back to RR Bowker for more numbers, it is nice if you can afford to buy the ISBN’s in bulk and it’s price affective.

The last digit in this ISBN set is the number “2″ and it is called the check digit.


This number is mathematically calculated and helps assure that the rest of the ISBN has been recorded, or scanned accurately in the system, it confirms all information given prior to this number is set and store ready.

The 13-digit system came into use in the year 2007. The format basically remained the same, but three numbers were added to the prefix set. The number are “978″ and they were added to the beginning of the ISBN original prefix of 10. The ISBN would actually look like this, “978-0-820475-10-2.”

-The Zineiac