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Tips for Running a Student Zine From BUMF Editor Alice Pomfret

BUMF Newspaper Launch Party

We've been printing BUMF, Arts University Bournemouth's student publication, since the start of last year. It's no small feat for busy students to get a zine to press each term – but the team behind BUMF are up for the challenge. They're on a mission to create a platform for the incredible work coming out of AUB.

At the helm is Alice Daisy Pomfret, a graphic design student at AUB and BUMF's editor and chief designer. Ironically, Pomfret has steered a publication which takes its name from "useless printed material" from strength to strength – showcasing work from hundreds of illustrators, designers, writers, photographers and artists along the way. Last year, Issue 4 of BUMF was shortlisted in the Stack Awards for Student Magazine of the Year and Pomfret herself was featured as Designer of the Week by Print.

With Issue 5 of BUMF fresh off the press (in traditional tabloid form), we wanted to catch up with Pomfret and find out what she's learned about running a zine. Below, she shares the story of BUMF (plus some zine making tips) in her own words.

BUMF Newspaper for Arts University Bournemouth. Make and print your own newspaper with Newspaper Club www.newspaperclub.com

Flipping through Issue 5 of BUMF at the launch party.

Running BUMF has been the biggest learning curve of my, dare I call it, career. So when Newspaper Club asked if I’d share some lessons I’ve learnt along the way, I jumped at the chance.

Let me tell you how it all began: It was Tuesday lunchtime and we were having one of those crisis meetings where no one wanted to take over the reigns of BUMF. Rory, my now co-editor, looked over to me, I looked over to him and we both posed the question – shall we do it then? As the saying goes, the rest is history.

To say we were thrown into the deep end would be an understatement. But taking on a mildly struggling publication gave us so much room to explore, experiment and build from the ground up. And that’s exactly what we’ve strived to do from day one.

BUMF Newspaper for Arts University Bournemouth. Make and print your own newspaper with Newspaper Club www.newspaperclub.com
Issue 2 of BUMF, Arts University Bournemouth's student publication.

Before BUMF, you wouldn’t have heard "Alice" and "patient" in the same sentence – but the ability to sit, plan and organize is imperative when you’re running a publication. Understanding that everything can’t happen at the click of your fingers is crucial. Printing is a traditional method and it takes time, so you have to adapt to the timeframes and confusions that come up when you’re creating something tactile.

Tips for Running a Student Zine From BUMF Editor Alice Pomfret
"A quote from my most current research," says BUMF editor Alice Daisy Pomfret. "Very true."

So, to celebrate Issue 5 of BUMF, here are 5 of the most important lessons I’ve learnt about running a publication:

Shouting won’t get your message across.

We’ve all been in situations where we just want our ideas to be heard, but shouting over everyone isn’t the best way to get a message across. Sit back, take in other peoples’ opinions and then form a judgment for yourself – see what I mean about patience? 

Persistence is key.

You want them writers? Get them writers. This goes for anything within a publication. You go girl.

Events are a great way to meet your readers.

We’re lucky to have our own gallery to host events for BUMF. Launch parties and gallery private views are a great way to have real interactions with the people who read your publication – and maybe get a bit drunk on the job.

 A little bit of social media never hurt nobody.

I’m not telling you to spam all channels, but social media has helped BUMF massively. As a creative publication featuring lots of artwork, a visual platform like Instagram is great for marketing.

Print deadlines will never get easier.

Yes, it’s always stressful. Just have a cup of tea and a couple of biscuits – everything will be fine.

BUMF Newspaper for Arts University Bournemouth. Make and print your own newspaper with Newspaper Club www.newspaperclub.com
Issues 2 and 3 of BUMF, Arts University Bournemouth's student publication.

Keep up with the latest news from BUMF on Instagram. And if you're inspired to get your own newspaper zine up and running, the best way to get started is with a free sample.

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