Zine Review: Fix My Head

ZINES_Fix-My-HeadZine, Anna Vo (editor), Issue 6,,, $4.50

Portland’s Anna Vo is the definition of multi-hypenate: she’s one of those amaz­ing human beings who boasts the ability to juggle tons of important projects that are always executed wonderfully (and on time, which is an attribute that will for­ever elude me.) She’s a brilliant comic artist, makes delicately ruminative folk music, plays in doom metal and screamo bands, and writes fiction! She is also an activist and speaker who runs workshops about race, culture and empowerment and she’s been making an incredibly (I suspect) labor-intensive and thoughtful zine for POC punks called Fix My Head for a number of years now.

The zines run a standard size of 8 x 11, they’re black and white and there’s tons of stuff packed in each issue. #6 focuses on QTPOC punk artists and features an illustration by Karissa Sakumoto on its front cover of a piggy police cop getting his eye gouged out by a punk. That kinda sets the tone for the zine’s contents — there is not an iota of bullshit in the many interviews (all conducted by Vo) which read like a who’s who of rad POC creators, including artist Sarah Rosen­blatt, zinemaker Nia King (We Are Not White Lesbians) zinemaker Rosi Vo (Not Straight Not White Not Male) and fashion designer punk Ari Perezdiez. I especially loved Vo’s interview with the utterly un­compromising Oakland, CA punk band SBSM and the fold-out poster art titled “Unlearning History Series” by Cecilia Kavara Verran, which features a “map” of a nude mixed-race punk woman etched with the cartographical scars of coloniza­tion and control. Breathtaking.

My only quibble is that parts of the zine are a little faded, especially around the creator bios, which sucks because I wanna know more about all of them! Other than that minor detail, this zine is gorgeous and self-aware and funny, but it’s also balanced with a tone of author­ity, insistence and community, with not a shred of the pedantry and lecturing that sometimes comes from publications by and for punx. Read and feed your mind. (Alison Lang)

Calls for Submissions



Call for Submissions: Indigo Womyn

A new zine looking at creating and honoring spaces, communities, and conversations around black women’s health. See the image above for more details!

Call for Submissions: Black Lives Matter

Black Lives Matter is an anthology of short fiction, poetry, creative nonfiction, personal narratives, critical essays and visual art that features the voices and stories of Black American’s and all communities of color responding to this nation’s continued police brutality directed at our community. Submit piece and, on a separate sheet, bio including name, email, phone and titles, to by June 20, 2015.

Call for Submissions: Yellow Noise

A new Canadian magazine for Asian identified artists and writers bent on the destruction of the model minority myth and the systemic racism that created it. Submit your art/writing or proposals by July 31st to More info on their site!

Call for Submissions: Totally Radical Muslims 4

TRM is seeking submissions on the theme of rage! Or anger, discontent, frustration, resignation, overcoming, healing, unleashing, the edge. All self-identified muslims are encouraged to submit. Deadline is June 5, email submissions to

Call for Submissions: Living with HIV Poetry Anthology

Indolent Books is putting together an anthology about living with HIV in 2015. All voices are welcome. Read more on their submittable page.

Call for Submissions: Short Speculative Fiction by Transgender Writers

 Topside Press is now accepting submissions for an anthology of short speculative fiction by self-identified transgender writers. Publication would be Fall 2016, and its paid! Deadline is December 1, 2015, so you have some time. Check out the post! 


Zine Review: Cockroach Zine #6

ZINES_Cockroach-ZineThe Disguises Issue Meg Crane (editor), issue 6,,, $5

Cockroach zine is really more of a minia­ture bimonthly magazine than anything else. There are articles by regular con­tributors, recipes accompanied by pretty pictures of food, and even word games for when you get super bored/stuck on the toilet for a long time. The theme for this particular issue is “disguises,” which makes sense given that it was published around Hallowe’en, and every article touches in some way on that topic.

The content is generally pretty solid. I found some of the articles very emotion­ally affecting — for example, an essay written by a trans woman talking about the first day she left her house wearing a skirt, and one on the topic of name changes necessitated by doxxing. There were a few pieces that fell into the cate­gory of eye-roll forever (one was a pseu­do-feminist rant about Why Do Women Wear Makeup All The Damn Time that didn’t actually explore the social and cul­tural factors that make women feel that they need to at least put on some lipstick before leaving the house; another was a Cloud of Fancy Words That Doesn’t Really Say Much, a literary type that is a pet peeve of mine). On the whole, though, Cockroach zine is an enjoyable read, and it’s clear that there’s been much love and effort put into its creation. Plus there’s a hilarious picture of a cat on the back! Cockroach zine: come for the thoughtful articles, stay for the adorable cats. (Anne Thériault)

Fun With Crowdfunding: Satanic Panic


Throughout the 80s, American TV news, church pulpits, and suburban cook-outs were overwhelmed with a paranoia about a widespread Satanic conspiracy that was supposedly creeping into daycares, popular music and cinemas everywhere. A wash of cultural production was also produced in response to this “Satanic Panic” in the form of Devil-defeating VHS tapes, literature, and tapes.

Canadian micro-publisher Specatcular Optical’s new book Satanic Panic: Pop-Cultural Paranoia in the 1980s takes on this phenomenon with 20 interviews and essays by emerging and established writers, including our own Broken Pencil editor Alison Lang.

According to the project’s kickstarter, “From con artists to pranksters and moralists to martyrs, the book aims to capture the untold story of the how the Satanic Panic was fought on the pop culture frontlines and the serious consequences it had for many involved.”

In order to cover printing costs, the publishers are offering a crowdfunding/pre-order style campaign in order to get it released in time for the Fantasia International Film Festival in Montreal, where they’ll be launching it with Librairie Drawn & Quarterly. The funds raised will also go to contributors of the book.

So, pre-order your copy here on their kickstarter page! If you donate extra, you stand to get a deluxe edition, a sweet t-shirt, and more!

Event Recap: Chicago Zine Fest 2015!

czf pano


by Jason Luther

As I walked into the Chicago Zine Fest on May 9, I was trembling. Granted, I was hungover and famished after a morning run on the shores of Lake Superior, but as I surveyed the 200-plus publishers dazzling patrons with tables upon tables of printed rainbows, the only feeling I could sense was awe. It might be the closest thing I’ve had to a panic attack.

Indie Events Roundup May 18 – 24


Sisters Make Noise! this Thursday at Daniels Spectrum. [Image credit: Elevated Moments]

Tuesday, May 19


Hummingbird, 7pm, Paintbox Catering and Bistro, 555 Dundas St E, free

A monthly all-ages open mic hosted by Unbuttoned. Sign ups begin at 6pm.

Charisma Furs, 8pm, Videofag, 187 Augusta Avenue, free

Katie Sly, who made our list of 10 indie artists to watch in 2015, is workshopping a piece about her personal history of infatuation, abandonment, desperation, and ecstasy, before its iteration at the SummerWorks festival.  Runs through Wednesday May 20.

Wednesday, May 20


This is Our Community: Bisexual Anti-Stigma Video Launch Party, 7pm, Gladstone Hotel, 1214 Queen St W, free

Join Rainbow Health Ontario in celebrating the conclusion of the Bi Mental Health REsearch Study and the launch of their bisexual anti-stigma videos.

Thursday, May 21


Volume – Sisters Make Noise!, 6pm, Daniels Spectrum, 585 Dundas St E, PWYC

Join SMN! in imagining Muslimah futures through poetry, spoken word, song and music. This will also be the launch for their third poetry anthology, Homebound III.

Undefined 2, 7pm, Videofag, 187 Augusta Ave

A night with unfixed limits in art: language, music, visual, aural arts revel in hybridity. Artists Cheryl Duvall, Gary Barwin, Rik Maclean, Jennifer Chin, Andie Wolf and Helen Melbourne bring it. Curated by Broken Pencil writer Jacqueline Valencia.


Single Onion #123, 7pm, Shelf Life Books, 110 – 1302 4th St SW, PWYC

This edition of Single Onion will feature poet Jenna Butler a well as several local youth poets: Jasmine Blackett, Taylor Guidotti, Mary Innes, Eden Middleton, and Caitlin Young.

Saturday, May 23


Toronto Rumble Ball #4, 11pm – 4am, The Cage 292, 292 College St, $10 advance $15 door

Twysted Miyake-Mugler hosts this night of team vogue throwdowns, runway, realness, and late night partying. Always wanted a taste of the ballroom scene? This is your opportunity!

Sunday, May 24

In Your Pocket: After Midnight, 7pm, Buddies, 12 Alexander St, PWYC

A curated video program featuring works shot entirely on smartphones.