emerging voices scholarship

** Our scholarship application period for 2019 is now closed: thank you for your interest! Follow us on Facebook for 2020 application announcements come fall **


Mzf wants your voice heard.

We’re excited to offer our second annual scholarship opportunity.  Started for the 2018 festival, the Emerging Voices Scholarship now continues to encourage brand new work, and underrepresented voices in the world of zine creation.  Milwaukee Zine Fest recognizes that supporting new publications, and diverse perspectives keeps our community dynamic, evolving, and sustainable into the future.

Deadline to apply: January 28th, 2019 by 11:00pm

(See below for all the details—and to apply!)


What does the scholarship award include?

Two zinesters will be selected to receive the following, each:

  • A $50 stipend for materials/production of your zine

  • Free registration for MZF to debut and sell your new zine

  • Promotion of your work via Milwaukee Zine Fest, The Bindery, and The Public Library

  • Copies of your zine for sale at Woodland Pattern Book Center in spring of 2019 (with 100% profit going to you: aka no sales commission)

  • A personalized tour of several nationally-recognized zine collections located in Milwaukee

  • Your publication archived and housed in Milwaukee Public Library’s permanent zine collection

What you need to apply:

An idea: simple as that.

On the application form below, you’ll see that we want to know about you and your amazing zine idea—but we don’t need anything beyond that: no fancy sketches, scans, portfolio, or resume necessary. Ideas are accessible to everyone: we all have them.

So think up your ideal zine: imagine its look and feel—how is it made and bound? Is it colorful? Sewn? Hand drawn? Typed on a typewriter? What is its subject matter? How is it uniquely yours and uniquely wondrous? What makes your idea stand out from the rest? Why should your voice be heard?

Got that all in mind? Great, you’re ready to apply.

Who is ELIGIBLE to apply?

The MZF Emerging Voices Scholarship is designed to support new zine work, and work from marginalized communities.  For our purposes we define “new” as being:

  • A zine created by someone who has NEVER made one before  (OR)

  • A zine that is an idea in your head, notebook, laptop, or other draft format, but has never come to fruition in terms of printing or other publication due to financial barriers (even if you’ve made other zines before)  (OR)

  • A zine that has been created but never officially presented to the public in any way due to financial barriers (cost of production, festival registration, and/or other distribution).

All new work is welcome, but award priority will focus on emerging and underrepresented voices including:

  • People of Color

  • Youth (13-22)

  • People with (dis)abilities

  • LGBTQ+ folks

  • Recent immigrants and DREAMers

  • Local zine makers (residing in the Milwaukee Metro-Area)

Let us help you get started:

Thinking about applying but not sure where to begin? MZF recognizes that folks who have never made a zine before may need some inspiration, helping hands, and basic guidance. So this year we’re offering a Zine 101 workshop before the application deadline.

Details pending, but mark your calendars for mid-January. This workshop will be free and open to the public.

What is the scholarship selection process?

All applicants will be anonymously judged by a jury of peers, reporting back to the MZF Zine Team. Judge selection is in process and the panel will be announced shortly. (Interested in being a judge? Let us know via our volunteer application here.)

Important dates

  • Zine-101 Workshop: mid-January, 2019 (details pending)

  • Deadline to apply: January 28th, 2019 at 11pm

  • Award recipients announced via Facebook: February 15th, 2019

  • MKE Zine Festival: April 6th, 2019 10:30am to 4:30pm (attendance with your new zine required)

* Special Note: MZF vendor registration will open mid-January. If you know that you would like to table at zine fest regardless of your scholarship status, please register and pay for a spot when registration opens. If you are selected as a scholarship winner, your registration fee will be refunded.