Will Pfeifer, Underbelly
Selection: "Family Circus of Horrors"
Sample: $2 cash from 2221 Cumberland St.
#2, Rockford, IL 61103
When did you launch your zine? What inspired you to do so?
First issue appeared in July
of 1995. As far as inspiration goes, it wasn't like a bolt from
the blue or anything. I had accumulated tons of pop culture debris
in my head over the years and saw plenty of other folks publishing
zines, so I said, "Hell, I could do that."
Why publish a zine?
I've actually been self-publishing
mini-comics for years, so the decision to collect and publish
my writing just seemed natural.
What can you tell us about the selection you provided for
"The Book of Zines"?
It sits there innocuously
on the funny pages, but The Family Circus is one bizarre little strip.
It's rarely funny in the conventional sense, but it can be a
fascinating (and even disturbing) thing to read day after day.
I just wanted to write something that would allow everyone to
get the same enjoyment (if that's the right word) out of it that
Have you published any other zines?
I've published a mini-comic
called "Violent Man" since 1986. I suppose it's basically
yet another superhero spoof, but I've gotten to the point where
the super-heroics (or mindless violence, as it were) is a minor
segment of the book. I have a lot more fun writing deliberately
convoluted storylines and throwing in lots of pop culture satire.
Any general tips for aspiring zinesters?
It's probably a good idea
to invest in a computer so you don't have to spend days cutting,
pasting and playing with rubber cement when it comes time to
put the whole thing together. Also, crazy layouts are fun and
we all love Raygun magazine, but if you want people to actually
read your articles, put some thought in how you're going to present
the contents of your zine. Most of all, write whatever you want,
'cause it's your magazine and no one's looking over your shoulder.
As a guy who works at a newspaper all day, it took me a while
to realize this.
What's your favorite part of doing a zine?
I enjoy the writing the most,
but the feeling of holding the (finally) finishes publication
in your hand is tough to beat.
In my other life, I'm an:
Assistant graphics editor
and columnist at the Rockford Register Star in Illinois.
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