BY PJ CARMICHAEL
This mini perzine (personal zine) both engages and affects the reader on a deep level. The 12-page miniature zine follows the story of Carrie, a 26-year-old young woman from Portland, Oregon. In the opening section, entitled “About Me,” she explains, “I doubt that a lot of people will read this. I doubt even 10 people will read this, but I have thought about it and that’s cool. Really, I am making this zine for me.” What follows is a strikingly intimate account of Carrie’s highs and lows.
The zine presents a graphic list of details and events of Carrie’s life. These details and events include her strained relationship with both of her parents, her coming-of-age problems, experiences with relocation, abusive relationships, violence, drugs, and self-discovery.
Following this list, Carrie explains how she came to discover feminism, and she describes its positive effects on her life. Her description includes an explanation of how writing helped her discover more about herself as a female and individual. Abusive relationships that eventually led to self-harm are analyzed, and Carrie expounds on how she overcame both. For Carrie, writing is therapeutic and purifying; this zine is proof of her dedication to grow beyond her past traumas.
The last pages summarize how far Carrie has come in the past three years. She then encourages readers to share any thoughts or questions they have, as well as connect with Carrie to discuss personal issues.
Overall, this zine is a vastly affective perzine which challenges the reader to understand the life of someone who has experienced abuse, self-harm, and profound sadness. However, the zine does not invite pity or garner unwarranted attention. Rather, it presents the reader with a story of self-discovery that empowers one to rise above challenges and hardships in his or her own life.
To purchase a copy of Unfashionably Late, visit https://www.etsy.com/listing/194542478/unfashionably-late-my-first-perzine.