Hi! Reprinting and expanding on an earlier post, because some folks have been asking for more about the "Alpha-Omega" Christian comics APA-zine. I thought it would be easier to have the info handy in one blog post I can just directly link to...
As some of you may know, I don't post online here very often because so much of my time is instead involved offline with Alpha-Omega, the Christian Comic Arts Society's long-running Christian comics APA (which stands for Amateur Press Association.)
For those who don't know what an APA is, there's a Wikipedia article on the history of the concept. It's basically a short-run, members-only fanzine that works sort of like a pre-internet equivalent of a private discussion forum/bulletin board/blog, printed out and shipped back and forth through regular postal mail. Each member of the APA produces their own mini-zine (called "contributions", or "tribs" for short), mails their 'trib to the group's "Central Mailer", who then collates and combines the individual 'tribs into complete photocopied/stapled issues of the APA-zine which is then mailed back out to all participating members, who then are generally expected to review/critique/comment on each other's work in the following issue.
Given the bi-monthly schedule of issues, this group a much slower paced (and given the cost of photocopies and postage, much more expensive) alternative to the free and instantaneous fellowship available through modern online forums and social media, but it tends to provide an outlet for a different set of creative muscles and provides a different style of feedback and fellowship. It's a unique way for amateurs to refine their skills, for creators to bounce ideas around and get feedback, and most importantly, a great way for Christians who love the comics medium to have fellowship with other fans who share their values.
The rules for content in Alpha-Omega includes no nudity, no profanity, no extreme violence or gore. We ask that all members please be respectful in reviews and conversation with other members, and require that all participants keep up with their postage/copy dues and also with minimum participation requirements (at least two pages every other issue).
So, if you've never heard of an APA before and would be interested in joining, you can talk to Ralph Miley (the current "Editor" of our APA, who coordinates stuff between members) or myself (the current "Central Mailer", who physically assembles and mails each issue) to find out more. You can reach me by email about this at alphaomega (at) crosshatchery (dot) com.
Thanks, and God bless!
PS -- I've mentioned it previously, but I'll say it again: the special edition 200th issue of the Alpha-Omega APAzine was released this summer, and unlike our usual members-only issues, this one is available for sale to the general public at Amazon.com. This celebration of Christian comics fandom features new original content plus "best of" reprints from the past three decades of the CCAS. (370 pages, B&W, $25)