If you thought blogging was a new thing, based on the idea of websites and links, then you're missing the point. Okay, it means web log, and in truth a blog can only be one once it's online however the art of making magazines is rooted deep in our history. Ever since the printing press, people have been making copies of writing to distribute around. Business soon caught on and the world of literary marketing was born. Once information and commerce came together in one document, a viable business model was formed. The magazine was born. Now we have a huge choice, and rightly so, the idea is to saturate humanity with quality and creativity. Garbage in, garbage out, so they say- so let's make sure that we consume as much nutritious media as possible.
Big name brands make headway in their field of course, however it doesn't stop there. Only if we're not really paying attention do we funnel through to the regular names that invest so much in every way to be the first one in mind. We of course pay more for these types of media, if we see an advert for it then they have paid for that advert. The bigger the ad, the bigger the budget. Grabbing the attention of the casual browser is big money and always will be. To stand out from those who can afford to be seen, we have to invest in other ways. Finding a unique edge, a voice that sounds different, a point of view that is under-represented, something that will attract people for the right reasons.
I've written at length on the ins and outs of alternative media. After burying myself in books for months, and living a lifestyle completely enveloped by alternative media for many years, I was able to create Subway Scene. It goes into real sociological depth as to how, why, and when art and culture grows. The 'zine, or a magazine made by start-up media companies (like my own), has been around for generations. After finding my way in writing books, I went on and joined Now Then here in Sheffield and worked as a music journalist for a few years. Once I had built a web-following I moved on and concentrated on my own journals. That's where we are now.
With Alternative Fruit, the aim is to bring people's attention to all the wonderful world of culture and art that's ready to be explored. With all this talk of 'zines, it's only right to share with you an archive of decades worth of varied zines from many angles. Open Culture wrote “While examples from recent years show that alternative print publications haven’t disappeared, the richest, most historically resonant examples tend to come from the 60s and 70s” which to me suggests that by the 1980s, too many cooks were spoiling the pot. It can be like this with blogging, as I know full well, when you do something well many others (who you had hoped would help you grow) refuse to do this and then begin to work on their own little empire. You'd think this was okay, but when they're untrained and ignorant we just find a lot of copycat work out there which has no real point to it. I guess it requires a critical eye when deciding whether a journal is worth bookmarking or not. I hope we all have many in our list, and of course Alternative Fruit is read by all the really cool people.
Go and explore the archive.
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