About Fanzines and Out of the Kaje
So What's a Fanzine?
A fanzine, or 'zine' as it's commonly known is basically a small-scale
magazine produced for the love of it and distributed on a not-for-profit
basis. Anyone can write one, and they can be about any topic/s dear to
your heart. Some people produce Punk zines, Heavy Metal zines, skateboarding
zines, etc. etc. The kind I'm interested in, and put out myself, isn't
quite like these. The fannish community (and by this I mean Science Fiction
fans) has a long tradition of producing fanzines which revolve around,
or at least peripherally involve, Science Fiction.
There are many different kinds of Fanzine, including (but not limited
Most people decide on one type of zine when they start out, and produce
that for varying lengths of time before getting tired of it and starting
something new. Occasionally, a zine mutates all by itself, upgrading itself
from a crudzine to a perzine for example, or drifting from perzine to genzine
as more people start to contribute. At other times the change is quite
deliberate, and reflects a personal change of focus on the part of the
editor - a former media fan, who produced a zine devoted entirely to Battlestar
Galactica for example, might decide that they're tired of the whole genre,
and move on to producing a much more general perzine, if they don't leave
fandom entirely that is. Some people actually produce more than one zine
at a time - a clubzine and a perzine, for example. I'm something of an
addict in this - I'm a member of three APAs, and I felt it was cheating
to reuse material, so I produce no less than four different fanzines, three
for the APAs, and the much more widely circulated Out of the Kaje.
Genzines - about subjects of general interest, and usually written and/or
edited by more than one person
Perzines - personal fanzines, generally the work of just one person
and focusing on stuff of interest purely to them eg.family, cats, gardening,
etc. Perzines tend to be much more chatty in tone than genzines.
Crudzines - Nobody (well, almost nobody) chooses to produce
a Crudzine. The term is usually used as a derogatory one, descibing a fanzine
with flung-together/offensive/low-quality or otherwise cruddy content,
poor presentation, and low quality reproduction. If someone describes your
painstaking production as a crudzine, that means they didn't like it -
don't worry too much, and get on with what you want to do.
Clubzines - zines produced on behalf of a club or organisation, featuring
articles, news etc. relevant to the club eg.info on the latest Star Trek
movie, fan-fiction and an article on the science of Trek in a zine for
a Star Trek club.
APAzines - fanzines produced for distribution mainly or solely through
an APA. Often very chatty, but there's no law that says they have to be,
and usually including Mailing Comments of some description.
Newszines - a zine produced on a regular basis, and mainly (or solely)
containing news about the genre and the Fannish community. Often also with
a large letter column for people to share their own news and views.
Reviewzines - just what the name suggests. A zine largely devoted to reviews
of the latest books, movies etc.
For Information on APAs in general, and my apazines in particular, click
here. To read about Out of the Kaje, continue below.
What's this Out of the Kaje thing all about?
Many people have asked me where the name for this zine came from,
and whether it has any special significance. Well, it does and it doesn't.
Because my initials are KJ, I decided I wanted a title which reflected
that, and started looking for words which I could subvert by changing a
I liked this one, because it has a double significance. Most of the content
is written by me (though that may change at a future date, and I welcome
submissions of material from others) so it does come 'Out of the Kaje'
- ie. out of my mouth. At the same time, this fanzine was my first attempt
at fannish publishing, and I hoped that it would be a way to express myself
more freely, a way out of the cage of mundanity and boredom. Some others
have asked whether there was any similarity to the term 'Out of the Closet'
(and whether I was perhaps revealing more of my intentions than I meant?)
but that's not actually the case :-) The only closet I came out of had
nothing to do with my sexuality, but rather was the one that many science
fiction fans hide in... That closet was well and truly cast aside when
I started handing out copies of my zine to some of my friends and family,
who had no idea that I was into this stuff at all (and who didn't understand
some of it AT ALL...) That's OK - I didn't expect them to, but I wanted
to share a side of myself that I had kept very private, and to come Out
of the Kaje :-)
Breakaje - something I'm quite good at, but not the best title in the world
Wreckaje - a not very optimistic prediction of the outcome of my self-publishing
venture - maybe not...
Corkaje - the fanzine for those who tipple (but I don't, generally)
Dorkaje - my brother's suggestion, and a homage to Dilbert
Kajual contact - a play on the Klingon work 'chaj', a friendship term used
from female to female
Iron Kaje - the name of the first science fiction novel for adults I ever
read (by Andre Norton.)
I didn't like it - I was only 10, but it had a big impact on me, and
I still remember it. Even though I found the content very depressing, and
especially the bleak ending, it was full of ideas that I wanted to explore,
and it led me to seek out 'grown-up' books by other SF authors such as
Heinlein, Asimov etc.
Bird Kaje - now we're onto something! This lead to
From the Kaje
Fleeing the Kaje
and of course the winning title - Out of the Kaje
But now I suppose you want to see what's actually IN this zine of mine?
Follow this link to a complete INDEX of
Out of the Kaje.
Top / Back
/ Main Index / Karenji
/ Kaje / Karen
/ E-mail Me