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Talking Hardcore with the Powerhouse Femmes of #Blkgrlswurld ZINE

Two Black femmes sitting on the steps of a brownstone building

Christina and Courtney Long. Image courtesy of #Blkgurlswurld Zine.


#Blkgrlswurld ZINE was recently in Chicago for our Teen Creative Agency Zine Fest and Christina is an alumni from the School of the Art Institute here too. What excites you about Chicago and our scene and community here? Did you spend a lot of time at Quimby’s?

Christina: That’s a great question, I actually didn’t spend much time at Quimby’s as a student, but I was always enamored with the underground comic book and indie publishing scene in Chicago. The printmaking community here is really great too and is one of the strongest in the Midwest.

People stand around a table filled with zines and stickers

Teen Creative Agency | Zine Fest 2023, MCA Chicago, Dec 16, 2023.

Photo: Shelby Ragsdale, © MCA Chicago.

Congratulations on TEN YEARS! That’s a decade, yo! The theme for the 10th anniversary zine is "10 Years of Black Joy"—could you expand upon that and possibly give folx a sneak peek on content?

Christina: We're really excited to share new work from artists in the community and take a look back at how we've grown as creatives and as music fans. Heavy music really has remained a constant support in our lives and we're always excited to share that with others. Documenting this scene through our #blkgrlswurld zine and podcast Heavy Girls is a great way to celebrate the diverse womxn who enjoy this wild music as much as we do. For many people a mosh pit can look like a dangerous risk, but for us it's still our happy place.

Speaking of 2014, A LOT was different back then. Shoutout to Tumblr, where #Blkgrlswurld ZINE began. Where do you see the future of indie publishing going?

Courtney: Social media platforms like Instagram are still really strong for the collecting of printed matter. People still like videos about the printing process and book making process. And as ecommerce expands, we're still seeing young audiences seeking out indie books on platforms like Etsy.

blkgrlswurld zine titled 10 yrs of Black Joy displayed on top of pink and salmon colored pillows near a window

Image courtesy of #Blkgurlswurld Zine

What should folx expect from your talk and workshop on Saturday?

We're so excited for this event and can't wait to share with y'all why heavy girls love heavy music. In addition to a conversation with Marshall Callery from Youth Talkz, we'll also have a live music performance by GoldGrrl, an artist featured on our Heavy Girls podcast.

View from the crowd of a singer holding a microphone. A drummer is just visible behind them.

Philadelphia-based band The Ire performs at a #blkgrlswurld event. Image courtesy of #Blkgurlswurld Zine.

Any recent favorite zines/bands/content creators you’d like to give a shout out to?

What advice do you have for inspiring zinesters and storytellers who are just getting started with their publishing?

Christina: Don’t be afraid to jump in even if your idea isn’t fully formed, or you feel like you don’t have the money to print things a certain way. Just getting started with whatever materials you have on hand will set you on a great path. One place we like to suggest printing on a budget is the xerox machines at your local public library.

A variety of stickers laid out on top of an illustration

Image courtesy of #Blkgurlswurld Zine

Event Info

Learn more and get tickets to the event.