Sunday, August 21, 2011

Fight Boredom Distro & Blog Has A New Website!

The rumours are true! Fight Boredom Distro & Blog has a new home. You can now find me and all of my favourite zines at Please update your links.

fight boredom distro at queer between the covers

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Dear August, I'm Having a Nice Time

lying in the grass, guelph

The above photo was taken in Guelph by Dave Cave and he wrote about our adventures here.

I haven't updated in ages. I want to. But I think I'd rather just cut the legs and sleeves off all my clothes and lie in the grass and read French books and dance at shows and wander the city 'til dawn.

I'm in the midst of creating a website that will be the new home to both Fight Boredom Distro and my blog. Shall unleash it to the world in the next week or so. And I've got stacks of zines to review, and a bunch of new titles to add to the distro catalogue as well. Patience, my friends.

Don't forget to come to the Queer Between The Covers bookfair this Saturday, Montreal. I'll be tabling, along with many other fine people.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

It's Burning Up In Here / We Got Something To Tell You

Get Fit For The Pit #1
Such a good comp zine! This one is all about health and fitness, specifically viewed through a punk and activist lens. In the intro, Nicole says that she'd like to counter the romanticization of sleepless nights and drunken adventures. This first issue includes contributions by Maranda Elizabeth (of Telegram Ma'am), who writes about joining their local roller derby league, Ramsey Beyer (of List), who shares a comic about crossfit (noting that her fitness friends are interested in her 'punk life' but her punk friends scoff at her interest in exercise), Ele (of Cats Teeth), who writes about hooping, as well as several pieces on running, rugby, yoga and more. It's a pretty inspiring read and a creative theme, so I'm really looking forward to future issues. Order yours through Click Clack Distro!

Land Of Make Believe And Dress Up
I felt that this zine was haphazardly assembled and definitely could have used some editing, but I did really enjoy reading it. Rachel begins by writing about her introduction to sex work via selling used underwear online, and eventually moving on to porn and more. She identifies as a queer anarchist and discusses where her politics and work meet and/or clash, how sex work affects her relationships, whorephobia in society and more. If anyone has any recommendations for more zines on sex work, please leave 'em in the comments 'coz I'd like to read more about it.

Motor City Kitty #17
This zine is very much a continuation of Motor City Kitty #16 (which was a split with Culture Slut #24) and picks up where the last one left off, writing about the state of feminism in her local music scene and some shitty experiences with dudes, plus some heavy stuff about the death of her father. I love Bri's zines because they feel like a letter to a friend (and well, she is one of my best friends) and I feel like her skillz in writing, illustration and even cut-and-paste just keep getting better and better. Love you, Bri!

zines zines zines

What I've Been Up To Lately: Dancing, thrifting, jumping through sprinklers, complaining about the heat, and playing dress-up.

playing dress-up

playing dress-up

thrift scores, july 22nd 2011

This is my last post 'til August 'coz I'm spending the week in Toronto and Guelph with friends and lovers. Ta!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

No Gods, No Masters, No Shoes

Adventures, adventures. I've found myself staying up 'til dawn more often than usual these days. Exploring the city, going to shows, conversing with strangers, wandering in bare feet and making out in parks. Watching the sun rise from near-deserted downtown streets, or my bedroom window. It's strange because the season had such a horrendous beginning for me, yet it seems to be quickly turning into the Best Summer Ever. I feel like everywhere I go, every corner I turn, this city gives me more and more hints that this is where I'm supposed to be. I'm currently living in an apartment that is both the nicest and the cheapest I have ever had. I'm surrounded by friends who love and support me. My French is getting better all the time. It's amazing to finally be living according to my own rules and my own schedule. To meet people and be able to say, "This is what I want out of life, and if you don't want the same things, then let's not waste each other's time." To sing and dance with little self-consciousness.

It's been quite a few years since I kept up with my horoscope, but I clicked a link on a whim today and found this one pretty meaningful. Then I went back and read my horoscopes from the past two and a half months, and all of them were eerily accurate. So I've been officially converted to Real Detroit Weekly.

LIBRA: September 21 – October 20
It's pretty trippy to be you right now. You're in the middle of a very intense and perhaps difficult experience that will turn out to be totally rewarding if you manage your energy with some degree of intelligence. Don't be naïve about the things that are making everything in your reality so stressful but be careful not to be overly concerned. This is a test; all you have to do is show up, stay centered in the moment and take the good with the bad. If you can handle it, the things that are pushing you around will soon mold all of this pressure into something lasting and real.

For someone who doesn't work (at a 'real' job) or go to school, I sure am busy. I flip through my agenda and I don't have a free day for weeks. I don't have time to work on every project that interests me, or to see all of the people that I wanna see, but I'm doing my best and I'm content.

midwest is best

When I got dressed this morning, I put on my Midwest is Best t-shirt, and I guess it was yet another sign, because I wound up writing letters to three Chicago friends. My new goal in life is to go to a White Sox game and share beer and nachos with my favourite Midwest zinesters. I've got quite the stack of correspondence to catch up on. I think my concentration is slowly coming back to me.

i have this many letters to respond to

no gods, no masters, no shoes

Fight Boredom Distro News: I'm going to be in Ontario during the last week of July, making a trip to visit my sister and friends. If you live in Toronto or Guelph, now would be a really awesome time to place an order through Fight Boredom Distro, because I'll be able to pack up your zines and hand-deliver 'em, saving you the postage costs. Just make sure to send your order before July 24th (and you can pay through Paypal or give me cash in person). Seriously, go for it. The more zines I sell this summer, the more titles I'll be able to add to the catalogue in September. Please share the link and tell your friends!

Anyway, here's a nice song to listen to before you get on with the rest of your day. Comme Sam disait, c'est tellement parfaite pour une romance d'été.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

I Can Tell That We Are Gonna Be Friends

Important Message! Montreal People! Last week, I was at the Riot Grrrl For Rock Camp cover band show at Il Motore and someone came up to me and told me that they like my blog. I thanked them, but I get kinda awkward and flustered when this happens, so I forgot to ask them their name or tell them that their X-Ray Spex cover band totally ruled my night. So, if you're reading - I think you're really great too! You should comment with your contact info or something and we can be friends. Actually, this goes for any Montreal readers. Because one of my favourite things about being involved in zines is all the lovely friends I've made, but if people read my things without interacting with me, then it becomes a very one-sided thing and that makes me nervous. So let's hang out!

What I've Been Up To Lately: Let me tell you about this amazing date that I had last week. We had a picnic at Mont-Royal, which is always a good idea. Things were going along swimmingly, but suddenly turned strange. Two elderly people approached us from behind, one pushing the other in a wheelchair. They stopped right next to us, and the woman who was walking simply put on the brakes and began to walk away without her friend. She said, en français, "I'll come back to get you at dusk." It was three o'clock in the afternoon. She waved goodbye and left us sitting in the grass completely confused. My date and I made faces at each other, looked back and forth between the two women and laughed nervously. Then it hit me: This is the park where they film the Just For Laughs gags. I started to look around for hidden cameras or any hints as to what was going on. I spotted the person who was recording sound about thirty feet behind us, wearing headphones and carrying a large bag that was meant to hide his equipment. I smiled at him, and when he smiled back at me, we knew it was a prank. The woman in the wheelchair began to talk to herself, « Il neige, il neige » and got up and walked away, too. Finally, the crew came out from behind some trees, waving contracts and asking us to sign. We couldn't stop laughing! It was such a weird day, and a totally funny thing to happen on a first date! So we signed their papers. It was actually for a show called Les Détestables (more info here), and it'll be on television in the fall. I don't really watch tv, but maybe it'll wind up on YouTube someday? Would be pretty silly to see myself.

From all the pictures I post, you'd think that I do nothing but hang around Vincent's place singing along with Spice Girls and watching movies and eating ice cream. Well, that's mostly true. But I've also been making different kinds of homemade iced tea, buying fun apartment things at Ikea, making my bed with vintage sheets, getting soaked in the rain, warding off creeps, daydreaming about some creative projects that I'm gonna start soon, making new friends, getting a whole ton of snail mail, and trying to stay excited about life.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Another Dreaded Sunny Day So I Meet You At The Cemetery Gates

Kim Gee Comics #1 - #3
I had planned on going to see The B-52s downtown last night, but instead I curled up in bed to daydream and read zines and eat this yummy black cherry soy pudding stuff. Kim sent me a collection of her comics in the mail earlier this summer after reading about my forays into the world of online dating. I joked that I wanted to add to the newly burgeoning genre of OkCupid zines (but actually I'm quite serious, and hey, it is International Zine Month after all), and this is exactly one of those. In the first issue, Kim finds herself newly single after a long-term relationship has ended and is convinced by her friends to put an ad on Craigslist. She receives the requisite strange responses, but then a legitimately nice person writes to her. They date for a little while, but the real story begins when they drift apart and she finds herself signing up for OkCupid. We get to watch her travel all over New York (and sometimes New Jersey) to meet up with random internet dudes, all of whom come with their own emotional baggage. It was an engrossing read that had me laughing out loud at times, and also made me really glad that I have no intentions of entering into a monogamous relationship. The drawings are really simple and nice, though I did occasionally lose track of who each person was and had to check back with previous issues. Totally a fun read though.

Sex Work: 14 Answers To Your Questions
So this is more of an informational booklet, but it's in zine format and I liked it, so here goes. It's basically an explanation of what sex work is, why it's important to use terms like 'sex work' rather than 'prostitution', and how individuals and organizations can support sex workers. Really simple layout, with thoughtful and understandable explanations, kind of a sex workers rights 101. The only trouble I have with it is that it's written as if all sex workers are cis-women, and well, that's just not true. Still, it was informative. And I imagine it's available en français aussi, being that it was printed by Stella and the Service aux collectivités at UQAM.

Six Letters Addressed To You #1
I'm just going to admit it. I had this zine sitting on my shelf for like eight months before I read it. I probably flipped through and caught Neitzsche's name and the lackluster layout and set it aside. Had I read further, I would've seen that Doris was also quoted. And that the whole zine is actually really good. So, the premise is that this guy is writing six letters to people whose identities we will never know, and while they sometimes get a little personal, he also uses the opportunity to expand upon his own beliefs and ideas. It's a little heavy on the quoting-from-other-authors front, but he's obviously someone who enjoys reading and has an interest in both philosophy and anarchism and is able to articulate it in a really accessible way, so that's cool.

What I've Been Up To Lately: Road-trippin' it out to the Parc Nature du Cap Saint-Jacques for swimming and adventures with some lovely ladies, feeling hella relaxed as a result, planning more swimming and camping trips for the summer, laying in the grass on the mountain (I just wanna lay down and daydream forever), exploring the Cimetière du Mont-Royal, listening to Veruca Salt on cassette, hosting another get-together of the Post A Letter Social Activity Club, going to see Dekoder and The Facials, discovering that Sam Ectoplasm lives within walking distance (finally, friends in the neighbourhood!), collecting a bit of cash from zine sales at the Concordia Co-Op Bookstore, finding copies of On Beauty by Zadie Smith and Sex, Gender & Sexuality: The Basics in a free pile, and considering a trip to Queeriot.

I've been having so many lovely days and when I walk home from the metro at night, I can often be found with a smile on my face, tapping my fingers on my legs to the beat of my favourite songs. The other day I had my music on shuffle and Chairman Of The Bored by Crass was followed by I Have No Fun by Vivian Girls. Amazing set. (But I always have fun).

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Canada Post Service Has Resumed

It's true! Snail mail is back on. I've already received a letter from the lovely Heather, and a care package from my sister containing notebooks, assorted teas and Hello Kitty treats. I may wait 'til the end of the week to mail out my distro orders, because I know the workers have a huge backlog to deal with. You can read updates on the dispute here and here. Thank you for being so patient! Feel free to send me a letter at my new address.

Amber Forrester
1402 Blvd. Pie-IX #4
Montréal, Québec
H1V 2C1 Canada