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Creativity

Banned Books Week 2022

Three Chairs Publishing

Banned Books Week is an annual event celebrating the freedom to read. Banned Books Week was launched in 1982 in response to a sudden surge in the number of challenges to books in schools, bookstores and libraries. Typically held during the last week of September, it highlights the value of free and open access to information. Banned Books Week brings together the entire book community — librarians, booksellers, publishers, journalists, teachers, and readers of all types — in shared support of the freedom to seek and to express ideas, even those some consider unorthodox or unpopular.

Banned Books Week 2022 will be held September 18 – 24. The theme of this year’s event is “Books Unite Us. Censorship Divides Us.”

By focusing on efforts across the country to remove or restrict access to books, Banned Books Week draws national attention to the harms of censorship. The ALA Office for Intellectual…

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Creativity

NEW! Limited Edition Issue of MANIFEST (zine)

Issue #10, The Lola Poems

“I have lived with several Zen masters — all of them cats,” writes Eckhart Tolle in his book The Power of Now: A Guide to Spiritual Enlightenment. “Watch any plant or animal and let it teach you acceptance of what is, surrender to the Now. Let it teach you Being. Let it teach you integrity —which means to be one, to be yourself, to be real. Let it teach you how to live and how to die, and how not to make living and dying into a problem.”
 
THE LOLA POEMS is a limited edition, memorial issue of MANIFEST (zine) that honors the passing of my own little Zen master, Lola, by considering the lessons she taught me in our time together.

16-page, 4.25 x 5.5 booklet, Cost: $8.00 or subscribe and get 4 issues for $25.00.


You can pay through PayPal using a PayPal account or any standard credit card. If you prefer the old school approach, please send your check, made payable to Jen Payne, P.O. Box 453, Branford, CT 06405.

Categories
Creativity Storytelling

Sleeping on Arch Street

A  100-WORD STORY

I slept on a cot near my grandmother’s bed in a room that smelled like eucalyptus. The aluminum frame squeaked when I moved, despite my small size and efforts to keep quiet. My grandfather slept in the adjoining room, his presence as unnerving as the Jesus portrait on the wall. The story goes he woke her once with a pitcher of water, threw it on the bed so she’d make his breakfast. I wonder if the train whistle ever disturbed him, pulled him down the tracks to the steel mill, back to the stacks and hot slag where he belonged.

 

 

 


©2022, Jen Payne.

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Creativity

Upon the Death of a Friend, 1986

Of course you were the one to call. It was late, I remember, a rainy night like the last time we met. Cars on the wet, weathered pavement, wipers marking time. Starshine in puddles and you, light years away, saying you knew I’d want to know, knew he’d been important. You knew despite the distance in our orbits, despite our final kiss that birthed a galaxy between us. My heart. You knew.

Poem ©2022, Jen Payne. Image: Mark Plötz.

Categories
Creativity Poetry

Summer Song at 4 a.m.



Lone Seagull

due east of the

Bell Buoy at Mermaid Rocks

is background vocal for

katy-did
katy-did
katy-did
she-did

and the
cicada cricket
chorus

while the frog
in the marsh
sings solo tenor

only
interrupted
by the
footsteps
of a deer

so I,
barefoot too,
ask her:

do you hear
the sound of stars?

Poem ©2022, Jen Payne

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Creativity

Subscribe to Manifest (zine) today!

Three Chairs Publishing

I hope you’ve enjoyed celebrating International Zine Month 2022 and have learned a little more about zines and zine culture along the way.

Want more? Then be sure to subscribe to MANIFEST (zine) today! This hold-in-your-hands art installation features writing, photography, and artwork, along with bits and pieces of whatnot that interconnect with themes like change and transition, solitude, time, storytelling, and finding refuge in these turbulent times. Each issue includes fun inserts and a curated Spotify playlist. Layered with colors, textures, meanings (and music), the result is a thought-full, tactile journey with nooks and crannies for you to discover along the way.

The Fall issue, coming in September, includes an interactive component and I think you’ll have fun with it, so subscribe soon!

SUBSCRIBE NOW AND GET 4 ISSUES FOR JUST $25
To order individual copies, click here.

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Creativity

Now that you know about zines…

Three Chairs Publishing

Order copies of your favorite issues now!
Buy one at a time for $8 or subscribe and get 4 past or future issues for $25.

Issue #8, ENDEMIC
MANIFEST (zine): ENDEMIC is a response to the tragedy in Uvalde, Texas, the proceeds from which will be donated to Sandy Hook Promise. Includes a curated collaborative Spotify playlist. (Color, 12-page 5×7 booklet, $8)

Issue #7, WATER
Inspired by the release of Water Under the Bridge: A Sort-of Love Story by Jen Payne, this 7th issue of MANIFEST (zine) is a collaborative effort featuring work by friends and fellow creative spirits Tara Buckley, Joy Bush, Jimine Camille, Anne Coffey, Juliana Harris, Rhonda Longo, Nancy Fitz-Hugh Meneely, Kristin Merrill, Mary O’Connor, and Laurel Valli. Includes a full color, 24-page booklet, inserts, and a curated collaborative Spotify playlist. (Color, 24-page 5×7 booklet + inserts, $8)


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Creativity

Swan Song

The swan has lost her mate,
so I wade ankle-deep in the
shallow pond and

with breath like water

crossover
lie child pose
in her nest
surrogate heart
close to her side
and whisper

Far away, there once
lived a king
who had eleven sons
and one daughter…


Poem ©2022, Jen Payne. IMAGE: The Wild Swans, illustration by Joseph Smith, Tales from Hans Christian Andersen, 1965.

Categories
Creativity

Want to Know More About Zines?

Three Chairs Publishing

CURIOUS? Want to Know More About Zines? Then check out these links for even more of the zine scene!

Find out What is a Zine?

Visit Wikipedia: Zine

Read Stolen Sharpie Revololution

Check out a Zinefest near you!

Then…Make a Zine!

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Creativity

Preview: Cat Lady Confessions

Three Chairs Publishing


You can pay through PayPal using a PayPal account or any standard credit card. If you prefer the old school approach, please send your check, made payable to Jen Payne, P.O. Box 453, Branford, CT 06405.

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Creativity

MANIFEST (zine): Cat Lady Confessions

Three Chairs Publishing

Poor Cat Lady. She always gets a bum rap. No one ever makes fun of Ernest Hemingway, whose Key West home was filled with cats — and he of a certain age. His strapping action figure includes a typewriter and a shotgun. Cat Lady? She gets six cats, bed head, and a ratty bathrobe. Doesn’t she earn points for opening her heart wide open? for loving even the most unlovable? for her strong, independent nature; Her patience and acceptance? for her superpower ability to nurture trust, stillness, solitude, balance? This issue of MANIFEST (zine) explores the oft-maligned life of the cat lady: crazy or contemplative? recluse or dancing to the beat of her own drum? You decide.

OTHER INGREDIENTS: acrylic paints, appropriation art, collaged elements, color copies, color scans, colored markers, colored pencils, cracker box, crazy cat lady action figure, Golden gel medium, hand-drawn fonts, hand-dyed paper, handmade cat mask…

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Creativity

Zines Should Be Treasured

Three Chairs Publishing

“Creating zines is a radical act. People create zines to provide an outlet for their inner voice in a raw way. That should be treasured.” — Zahra Swanzy, artist, activist

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Creativity

MANIFEST (zine) Part of State-wide Art Treasure Hunt

Three Chairs Publishing

MANIFEST (zine) Part of State-wide Art Treasure Hunt

I am totally psyched to announce that I am one of 15 artists selected by SomethingProjects.net as part of their Connecticut statewide art treasure hunt called THE EXCHANGE, supported by the Connecticut Department of Economic and Community Development and Connecticut Office of the Arts!

THE EXCHANGE is the brainchild of New Haven-based artists Suzan Shutan and Howard el-Yasin. In the New Haven Independent article “Artists Map Our Treasure Hunt,” Brian Slattery explains: “The idea behind The Exchange…is ​to encourage artists to embrace and promote curiosity and precarity as action, to support and explore; ​to enliven and challenge the communities at our landings; ​to be the spark that ignites possibilities; ​to dually highlight local artists as well as introducing communities to new viewpoints and practices by national and international artists; and to ​encourage artists to step outside their boundaries and…

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Creativity

Hold-in-Your-Hand Art Installations

Three Chairs Publishing

When I published my first book, LOOK UP! Musings on the Nature of Mindfulness, I imagined a complementary art installation: framed photos from the book, poems printed large and hung like tapestries, a CD of woodland sounds in the background.

I had other ideas, too. (I still do.)

A show at New Haven’s Kehler Liddell Gallery (2017) was a start. “Random Acts of Writing: Common Ground” — featuring three of my poems and one photograph — was included in INAUGURATION NATION, an open forum exhibit that responded to the political and social climate of the time.

That same year, large framed photos from my second book, Evidence of Flossing: What We Leave Behind, were featured in the exhibit WHERE THE WHOLE UNIVERSE DWELLS at Perspectives, The Gallery at Whitney Center.

You might recognize the theme of my very first art installation effort. Random Acts of Writing: Pushing…

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Creativity

What is MANIFEST (zine)?

Three Chairs Publishing


According to Wikipedia, a zine — pronounced zeen — is a small circulation, self-published work of original or appropriated texts and images, usually reproduced via photocopier. It has no defined shape or size, and may contain anything from poetry, prose, and essays, to comics, art, or photography.

A zine is a multi-purposed publication form that has deep roots in political, punk, feminist, artistic, and other subculture communities. Original zinesters are rumored to include Thomas Paine, Ben Franklin, Ralph Waldo Emerson, and Margaret Fuller.


Let’s consider…

MANIFEST (noun): a list of contents

MANIFEST (verb): to make a record of; to set down in permanent form

MANIFEST (adjective): easily understood or recognized by the mind

Then see alsoMANIFESTO (noun): a written statement declaring publicly the intentions, motives, or views of its issuer;

and see also, especially, MANIFESTING (noun) : the creative process of aligning with…

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Creativity

I wanna publish ‘zines…

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Creativity

But I Love The Zine

Three Chairs Publishing

If you think the digital age destroyed print culture, this short documentary may surprise you. But I Love The Zine explores the thriving zine scene in the San Francisco Bay Area. To devotees, zines are more than just self-made publications, they’re tools for building community and offer an antidote to the disconnectedness of internet culture. In this film, viewers are taken to studios, galleries, and zine conventions where they’re introduced to a dynamic small press community. Publishers like Jeffrey Cheung (Unity Press), V. Vale (Re/Search), Tiny Splendor, and Jess Wu (Mixed Rice Zine), share their process and explain why self-publishing matters. A film by Fiona MacDougall.

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Creativity

Preview: It’s About Time

Three Chairs Publishing

,


You can pay through PayPal using a PayPal account or any standard credit card. If you prefer the old school approach, please send your check, made payable to Jen Payne, P.O. Box 453, Branford, CT 06405.

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Creativity

MANIFEST (zine): It’s About Time

Three Chairs Publishing

We humans sure are creative with time, aren’t we? This arbitrary turning clocks backward or forward twice a year, assigning time to zones and lines and frames. I myself try to trick time, setting clocks randomly wrong and always fast as if I can somehow control the hours, beat the Kobayashi Maru of time. Even Albert Einstein said time is an illusion — “a stubbornly persistent illusion” — that time and space are merely “modes by which we think and not conditions in which we live.” Of course, if you think too hard on things like that you end up down rabbit holes and worm holes…want to come along?

Then check out the next issue of MANIFEST (zine).It’s my favorite! It’s about time this time — time travel, time loops, time passing — a 28-page, full-color book filled with artwork, photos, poetry, and a curated Spotify playlist just for…

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Creativity

How Zine Libraries Are Highlighting Marginalized Voices

Three Chairs Publishing

Zines have long been a way for marginalized communities to record their stories and organize. Zine libraries are making sure those histories aren’t forgotten.

by Rosie Knight, BuzzFeed Contributor, December 2018

“Sweaty music venues, photocopiers, riot grrrls — these are the images that likely come to mind when you think of zines. Though the women-fronted punk rock movement of the early ’90s is often thought of as the time when zine culture thrived, the reality is that zines have long been a way for marginalized communities to record their stories, spread information, and organize. From the wood-printed abolitionist pamphlets created by the American Anti-Slavery Society in the 1830s to La Catrina satirical cavalera cartoons made and distributed by José Guadalupe Posada in the 1900s to the handouts the Black Panther Party disseminated in the ’60s, zine culture as we know it today was created by, and built to fit, the…

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Creativity

Girl, Cat, Fish

Some days, I feel like the girl in the tub with the fish in the comedy show hitting so close to home but so far out in left field that eating popcorn while I watch doesn’t seem nearly as awful as eating chicken wings during an episode of Criminal Minds. Me and my dying cat curled up on the floor, my hand stroking her tail — and only her tail because otherwise she thinks I’m about to stick another pill down her throat and she’ll run to hide from me. It’s a terrible thing when a part of your heart runs and hides from you, but I don’t blame her. She likes me best now in the mornings, too tired and stiff for any chase. Instead we curl up, like the girl and the fish in the tub, floating there in the early morning hours as if nothing will ever change.

©2022, Jen Payne. Scene from Hulu’s Life & Beth.

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Creativity

3 Chairs at Quimby’s in Chicago!

Three Chairs Publishing

3 Chairs at Quimby’s in Chicago!

When I come back in my next life I want to be an artist AND I want to work at Quimby’s in Chicago. Quimby’s is an independently owned bookstore that sells independently-published and small press books, comics, zines and ephemera. They favor the unusual, the aberrant, the saucy and the lowbrow — and they are super enthusiastic about what they do!

Since I’m not dead yet, then I just have to enjoy Quimby’s vicariously through their website and weekly “New Stuff Saturday Livestream.” Check it out!

BONUS: If you watch the recent New Stuff Saturday and stay tuned to timestamp 20:20, you’ll notice a couple of familiar things in the pile: Manifest (zine) and Evidence of Flossing: What We Leave Behind.

That’s right, as of now, several of Three Chairs Publishing’s creations are for sale at Quimby’s. Get your butt to Chicago now…

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Creativity

Preview: Crickets

Three Chairs Publishing

24-page, full-color 4.25 x 5.5 booklet, inserts + curated Spotify playlist, $8.00


You can pay through PayPal using a PayPal account or any standard credit card. If you prefer the old school approach, please send your check, made payable to Jen Payne, P.O. Box 453, Branford, CT 06405.

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Creativity

MANIFEST (zine): Crickets

Three Chairs Publishing

Storytelling is in our DNA says Brené Brown in her book Rising Strong. We share our stories because “we feel most alive when we’re connecting with others and being brave with our stories.” That process, she explains, causes our brains to release cortisol and oxytocin, the chemicals that “trigger the uniquely human ability to connect, empathize, and make meaning.” So we write. And we create. No matter who listens or responds. Crickets be damned.

MANIFEST (zine): Crickets is a riff and a rant about the consequences of creative bravery. It’s a 24-page, full color booklet that includes a curated Spotify playlist for your listening pleasure.

• Read the BROKEN PENCIL zine review.

INGREDIENTS: appropriation art, black-out poetry, collaged elements, color copies, colored markers, ephemera, hand-drawn fonts, ink jet copies, laser prints, vintage illustrations, watercolor paints, and “11 Cute Facts About Crickets.” With THANKS to to the British Library Digital…

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Creativity

How to Zine — Three Chairs Publishing

Now that you’ve been learning about zines all month, are you thinking of making your own? On her website on “Hooked to Books,” Grace Plant suggests How to Make a Zine in 10 Easy Steps: Decide on your theme Choose a name Plan your features Choose a format Use a template Print a master copy […]

How to Zine — Three Chairs Publishing
Categories
Creativity

Preview: Refuge, A Quarantine Zine

Three Chairs Publishing

36-page, full-color 5.5 x 8.5 booklet, inserts + curated Spotify playlist, $8.00


You can pay through PayPal using a PayPal account or any standard credit card. If you prefer the old school approach, please send your check, made payable to Jen Payne, P.O. Box 453, Branford, CT 06405.

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Creativity

MANIFEST (zine): Refuge, A Quarantine Zine

Three Chairs Publishing

Thisspecial “quarantine zine” features the words and images and thoughts within which we found REFUGE last year. The literal and figurative reflections, the comforting quotes and laugh-out-loud memes that kept us breathing all those long months, and helped us regain our sea legs when it seemed like the worst was behind us. Includes a full color, 36-page booklet, fun inserts, a curated Spotify playlist, and more!

OTHER INGREDIENTS: acrylic paints, appropriation art, collaged elements, color copies, color scans, colored markers, Dymo labels, ephemera, essays, Golden gel medium, hand-drawn fonts, ink jet copies, laser prints, mixed-media collage, original photographs, pigment inks, poetry, rubber stamp art, and watercolor paint. With thanks to Lola, Jou Bush, the Red Cross, Lindsey Antin, Greater Good Magazine, Malene Thyssen, Emily Dickinson and the Emily Dickinson Museum, George Tooker, Pexels, Friends & Company Restaurant, Madison, CT, Pieter Bruegel the Elder, Dorney Park, Rainer Maria Rilke, Elena Mikhalkava…

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Creativity

Zines: The Power of DIY Print (short documentary)

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Creativity

Preview: Lexicon Zoom

Three Chairs Publishing

32-page, full-color 7×5 booklet, inserts + curated Spotify playlist, $8.00or subscribe and get 4 issues for $25.00


You can pay through PayPal using a PayPal account or any standard credit card. If you prefer the old school approach, please send your check, made payable to Jen Payne, P.O. Box 453, Branford, CT 06405.

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Creativity

MANIFEST (zine): Lexicon Zoom

Three Chairs Publishing

Zoom in…we are so myopic, aren’t we? What we see, how we interpret it, what we allow to be our singular understanding of something that can and usually does have different meanings for different people. Zoom out…we are all the same and all a part of each other. “When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the universe,” wrote John Muir. With that in mind, please come explore LEXICON ZOOM.

INGREDIENTS: acrylic paints, appropriation art, collaged elements, color copies, color scans, colored markers, ephemera, essays, Golden gel medium, hand-drawn fonts, ink jet copies, laser prints, mixed-media collage, and rubber stamp art. With Special Appearance by: Wonder Woman, H.G. Peter, Istvan Banyai, Carl Sagan, John Muir, Micah Kanters, Lena Dunham, Erik Pevernagie, Steve Trevor (look closely), Erich von Daniken, Georges Melies, Clile C. Allen, Gloria Swanson, John Hilliard, the Brady Bunch, the…

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Creativity

A Brief History of Zines

Three Chairs Publishing

The Papercut Zine Library in Cambridge, Massachusetts, Wikimedia


FROM “A Brief History of Zines,” by Chloe Arnold, Mental Floss, November 2016

After decades of existence, zines are no longer strictly counter-culture, but they originated as small-scale DIY efforts—many with an anti-authoritarian message.

Most definitions of zines include the fact that they are small-circulation, self-published, and often inexpensive or free. That’s generally true, although these are more guidelines than hard-and-fast rules. The most important aspect of a zine is generally that the publication identifies as one. Many zine-makers will say zines are as much about the community as the product, and that identifying as a zine is what separates these publications from comics, literary journals, websites, and other types of independent publications.

The first zine is often traced back to a 1930s effort by the Science Correspondence Club in Chicago. It was called The Comet, and it started a long-lasting…

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Creativity

Preview: Water

Three Chairs Publishing

24-page, full-color 5×7 booklet + inserts + curated Spotify playlist, $8.00or subscribe and get 4 issues for $25.00


You can pay through PayPal using a PayPal account or any standard credit card. If you prefer the old school approach, please send your check, made payable to Jen Payne, P.O. Box 453, Branford, CT 06405.

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Books Creativity

I’ll Be Right Back…

I have a confession to make. For the past six months, I have been disappearing down a rabbit hole, crawling to the backside of the wardrobe, hitching a ride on a tornado…and making my way to the empire of Une Belle Ville.

It started innocently enough — my nephew on his tablet in the backseat on our way home from an adventure.

“What’s that?” I asked, hearing huzzahs and sing-song chimes.

“Forge of Empires,” he said.

“A video game?”

“Yea, it’s cool. You build a city by collecting resources and building an army. I’m in the Stone Age still.”

When we got home, we sat on the couch together and he showed me his city. Just a few random huts, some dirt trails, an obelisk — but it had me at sing-song. So I loaded it on my iphone and away we went, my nephew and me sharing our cities and achievements.

“I’m in the Iron Age!” he announced.

“Me, too!”

“You caught up with me. I have three archers!”

“I built a fruit farm!”

We went on like this for a few weeks, comparing notes as we played dueling technologies. And then one day, I started hearing zap-zap-zap and kaboom instead of huzzah and sing-song, sing-song.

“What age are you in now?” I asked, curiously.

“I’m playing Minecraft.”

“Not Forge of Empire?”

“No. It was too boring. This is better, see…”

And so our paths diverged. He and his kabooms went one way, and I skipped along with my huzzahs from the Bronze age straight on through to the Industrial.

Ok, maybe it seems a little silly. It’s also one of those nefarious escape mechanisms that gets you strung out on dopamine.  But given the state of the world (and the state of my family of late)? I’m all in for an extra hit of dopamine thank you very much.

The funny thing is, my city — Une Belle Ville — is exactly the kind of place I’d like to spend my time if the rabbit hole jumping, wardrobe crawling, tornado clinging thing actually worked. My fellow villagers and I rank high in enthusiasm and participate happily as members of the local Guild. We trade instead of battle, we polish instead of plunder, we explore the world and give aid when we can. We have lots of trees and gardens, a rosarium and a butterfly house. There’s a mountain preserve, a Celtic farmstead, and a vineyard. We can see the Oracle of Delphi, the Arc de Triomphe, the Lighthouse of Alexandria, Notre Dame, and a Statue of Zeus all in an afternoon’s walk. We can visit the zoo, laugh on the ferris wheel, take a hot air balloon ride, or climb the steps of the Observatory to see the stars.

So far, I’ve built a paper mill, am working towards a print shop, and look forward to the day I can build a library for my city, because we all need books, don’t we? Those other things that give us a beautiful out, an “I’ll be right back” excuse to leave the 21st century messes and remember what’s possible with a little bit of imagination and some escapism-flavored dopamine. Huzzah!


Categories
Creativity

MANIFEST (zine): Water

Three Chairs Publishing

The water and its shoreline has been home to all of the creative people you are about to meet in this issue of MANIFEST [zine]. The theme – Water – was inspired by the release of Water Under the Bridge: A Sort-of Love Story by Jen Payne, and is a collaborative effort featuring work by friends and fellow creative spirits Tara Buckley, Joy Bush, Jimine Camille, Anne Coffey, Juliana Harris, Rhonda Longo, Nancy Fitz-Hugh Meneely, Kristin Merrill, Mary O’Connor, and Laurel Valli. Read more about these folks below.

This issue of MANIFEST (zine) includes a full color, 24-page booklet, inserts, and a curated, collaborative Spotify playlist.

INGREDIENTS: acrylic paints,collage, color copies, color scans, cut paper, driftwood, freshwater pearl, gold leaf, gold wire, haiku, hand-drawn fonts, handmade paper, illustrations, love, memory, paints, photography, poetry, ribbon, rubber stamp art, sea glass, Swarovski crystals, and vintage photos. With Special thanks to the contributors…

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Creativity

Zines at the Library

Three Chairs Publishing

Watch the video to learn about zines with Arizona State librarians Rachel Leket-Mor and Michelle Ashley Gohr.

I am so excited that MANIFEST (zine) currently finds a home in these national zine libraries: Trenton Library Zine Library (NJ), Cleveland Heights Public Library (OH), as well as at my local library, the James Blackstone Memorial Library (CT).

The Zine Library at the Trenton Free Public Library

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Creativity

Preview: Endemic

Three Chairs Publishing

On May 24, 2022, an 18-year-old with an AR-15 semi-automatic rifle fatally shot nineteen students and two teachers, and wounded seventeen other people, at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, United States. MANIFEST (zine): Endemic is a response that event.

12-page, full-color 5×7


You can pay through PayPal using a PayPal account or any standard credit card. If you prefer the old school approach, please send your check, made payable to Jen Payne, P.O. Box 453, Branford, CT 06405.

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