Yukon Conversation Society (not to be confused with the Yukon Conservation Society) is a group of artists, a creative collective. Its Facebook site has 81 members. They are organizing open mics and meetings and are publishing a zine—a self-published magazine.
“Our publication is really just for the sake of bringing artistic minds together and helping people showcase their work. So, in 2021, we got together with a mind to bring back community and culture,” said Nolan Boehm, a collaborator of the team who is putting together the zine.
Zines got popular during the era of punk. Starting in the 1970s, DIY culture of punk created a thriving underground press. Usually the zines would be given to people at concerts. According to Wikipedia there has been a revival in the alternative publication culture, beginning in the 2010s, in tandem with the influx of zine libraries and as a result of the digital age, which has sparked zine festivals across the globe. The San Francisco Zine Fest started in 2001 and features up to 200 zines. The Magazine Broken Pencil features reviews of hundreds of zines and is based in Toronto. So, there still is a zine scene in Canada and now in the Yukon. All over the world there are zine workshops held. It’s a platform that Yukon Conversation Society is using to showcase art: drawings, poems, stories and more.
Boehm told What’s Up Yukon more about the creation of the zine: “It all started with open-mic events in different locations. We planned and implemented an open mic for poets, storytellers and musicians, most of whom were amateurs. That is, most of the presenters were doing it for the first time that night, sharing with an audience something that they wrote. It was a beautiful, inspiring evening.”
There have been two more open mics of this sort, one online and another in person, this past summer. These evenings of sharing and creation led to the publication of a zine, compiling content from as wide a variety of people as they could reach. Boehm explained that it doesn’t matter if the texts are in French or even German, because there are French and Germans living in the Yukon. Boehm is also a contributor to the zine. The 33-year-old ESL Teacher writes poetry and short stories.
The upcoming zine will be the third. The theme of the first was simply “The Era of the Broken Windshield (Life in the Yukon).” The second publication, which they put together this past spring, was called “Stampeding Wildflowers” and was all about change and growth.
“Just recently, we decided on a theme and title for the upcoming publication: ‘Spicy Lattés: Laughing Through the Harvest while Preparing for Rebirth,’” Boehm said.
The deadline for the zine is November. Artists can send their work to [email protected]
“We accept any medium that can be printed on paper, so long as it is in keeping with the theme, and we encourage people who have been practicing an art for a while, without sharing, to take this as an opportunity to try.”
Find out more about the Yukon Conversation Society on their Facebook page.