The Emerging Writers’ Festival work, learn and play largely on the land of the Kulin nation, and pay our respects to their Elders, past and present.

EWF celebrates the history and creativity of the world’s oldest living culture.

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Q&A with Maeve Baker

I am a Brisbane-bred, Melbourne-based zine and comic maker. I love the atmosphere at zine events, both when I’m tabling and just attending. I really like meeting other artists and sharing advice, experiences and work with all sorts of different people. Through my work I try to find humour and significance in everyday routines and interactions. I like working with bright, limited colour palettes and textured lines. I am a very busy artist and struggle to sit still (both a blessing and a curse) so events like these are a great way to gather my thoughts/ work and show them to people!

When and why did you start making zines?

I started making zines and comics when I discovered Visible Ink in Brisbane in 2015. It’s a creative Youth Centre in Brisbane city and out of it operates the Copy and Destroy zine library – a treasure trove for zine lovers! I started making zines because I have always loved story telling and find publishing really interesting. I love the creative problem solving that is required for both parts of production. I called my work comics rather than zines, but they are kind of a hybrid. I rarely use comic strips, instead using just one image per page. I found these zine-comics a really nice, effective way to present my stories.

What is your favourite thing about zines?

I love the printing part of zine making. I really enjoy laying it out on the computer and figuring out which page is going to be on the back of which. I also love the production pipeline feeling of having all the pages printed out and sorting and stapling them. Aside from being a publishing nerd, I really like the freedom and creativity that comes with making a zine. I love the DIY nature of them, they can almost feel anarchistic sometimes. Just a kid with a photocopier and something to say. I love it!

Do you have a favourite zine (aside from your own!)? What is it and why do you like it?

My favourite zine is one I bought at Sticky Institute in early 2018. It is called Midge by Bianca Martin. It is a small, black and white zine about Marge Simpson from The Simpsons. It focuses on the complexities of her character that often go unnoticed or unappreciated. Bianca Martin talks about Marge’s value in the family, not just as a nagging home maker, but as a moral compass. I love this little zine because I really like Marge as a character and I don’t think she gets a lot of credit. Bianca Martin writes in a really easy-to-digest, direct way which I like. She has also included a bunch of stills from The Simpsons of Marge doing cool things, like shooting a gun, smoking a cigarette and eating a big bowl of ice cream in the bath.

You can view Maeve’s zine The Loneliest Frog in The World here