I first found out about the $45 zine stall fee at TINA this year three days ago when Staples emailed me from Brisbane with the bad news. I spent all day Monday and Tuesday writing angry angry emails to TINA but could not get them to do anything about the situation. On Tuesday night I wrote a final email to them that was so vile, so full of bile I no longer recognised myself in the email. I deleted that email and decided to try to do something about the terrible situation.
My idea was to contact some people I know through my work in zines and my work at Sticky, get a group together and purchase all the zine stalls, as a group, at the TINA zine fair this year and then offer the stalls for free to zine-makers. I wrote 18 emails and had the money covered in 12 hours thanks to some arts organisations, some zine makers, some zine distros and some individuals who like and read zines. I am still working through the details with TINA but hopefully there will be an announcement made in the next couple of days that zine stalls will be free at TINA this year. Thej group of people is aiming to cover the cost of the tables and the cost of the insurance that the festival wants stall holders to have. That
would make the zine stalls completely free to stall-holders.
I realise this is not a perfect solution. Terrible mistakes have been made at TINA. The zine fair at TINA was once the biggest and best zine fair in the country, that is no longer the case. We have had our own battles with funding the space at Sticky over the eleven years we have operated - especially over the past eighteen months when we have seen our funding go from a healthy situation to now being non-existant. If someone had said to me twelve months ago (when it looked like Sticky would serioulsy have to close down) that they thought there was something good deep down in what we do and they were going to actively do something to help I would have hugged them and thanked them. I would have given my right arm for someone to help out
Sticky in the first few years we operated because god knows we needed help. But this is not about Sticky. My take is that this is trying to do something to help out a bad situation.
I know everyone is not going to agree. But the TINA zine fair has been such an important day for me for such a long time. Maybe next year zine-makers can work together to make sure someone who has more of an understanding of zines can be involved from the planning stages of the TINA zine fair.
I'll post here again once all the details have been figured out with TINA as well as putting something out on the Sticky website, Sticky Facebook and Sticky Twitter account. Info will also be available through the TINA website.
Of course I would love to hear your thoughts. It is my daughter's third birthday in a couple of weeks and we are making her a knight costume for it. I will be wearing the knight's helmet for protection while you respond.
um, shucks... but i was just saying what kelly said. and now i wanna say 'what bastian said' (indeed, snapdragon was awesome!). i guess we're all coming out of the woodwork and saying similar things, which is
nice. i'd also like to book a patch of grass for Zinefest in andrew's backyard. kthx. px