Before blogs, before the Internet as we know it there were fanzines. The great news is that there are still fanzines being produced. On the ALA Expo floor was an exhibit of some of the publications.
Fanzines are small publications that focus in on a particular topic or niche subject area. They can be handwritten, assembled from found materials, photocopied or professionally produced.
The topics can range from surviving the workday after a bender to a catalog of every Tonka toy made. Whimsy or dead serious in content. Sometimes explicit. Sometime reveling in the mundane.
I remember finding fanzines on the floor of record stores next to the free alternative newspapers. That was one method of distribution. Another was mail sharing or trading. Fanzines could also be sold for subscription.
It was hit or miss. There could be one issue or seven or 130. It depended on the person. There are still a few folks producing fanzines in the U.S. but other countries are continuing the tradition.
It was kinda cool to find this spot of creativity at the conference.