‘Sapphic Angst Fest’ named Best Fanzine 2018

My body currently has no idea what time of day it is – after three nights in Toronto, I’m back in England, and I haven’t felt in sync with the clock for about a week. I’m hungry at completely random moments. It’s been totally worth it, though, because on Saturday evening, our Berena zine, Sapphic Angst Fest, was named Best Fanzine at the Broken Pencil Zine Awards!

The competition was impressive, and as I heard about the zines that we were up against, I was sweating (and not just because the weather over there was amazing). Several of the other zines were so well produced, and spoke of north American culture – and there was me trying to tell people what Holby City is, and who the heck Berena are. So I must admit I was quite surprised when they named Sapphic Angst Fest the winner!

Here’s a video of the moment (I didn’t realise they were filming, otherwise I’d have tried to look a bit cooler about it all). The judges said the zine was “culturally important”, and that “seeing a community of women express their love for proper lesbian representation is really touching”.
The zine was on sale at Canzine (the first of four zine fests across Canada organised each year by Broken Pencil) on the day, and any copies that were left will tour the other events, and eventually be on sale through the Broken Pencil website. I’m also looking at getting some more copies printed… after all these months my office feels strange without piles of zines everywhere. 
As a winning zine, Sapphic Angst Fest will feature in an article about the winners, and there will also be excerpts from inside. Hopefully the story – and its special place in our hearts – will continue to reach new audiences across the globe. 

When I posted on Twitter about our success, Catherine Russell was among those who offered  congratulations. She had already read the zine, and said she found it very touching. I have donated the prize money to Catherine’s Go Sober for October fundraiser for Macmillan Cancer Support.

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