My Safe Place

My Safe Place drawing by PL

My Safe Place, drawing by Piotr

Prose by Piotr

My safe place is far away in the mountains. The smell of earth entering My nostrils as I take a deep breath of cold crisp air that feels like winters first snow. The taste of the water that I drink is as glacier runoff, and minerals, yet so pure and good to me. It would be surrounded with trees so old, but they would never die or molt. From the highest summit, I’d be able to see a blanket of green ocean, with jagged beautiful teeth, and clear, clean blue skies above.




They see me around town.
Everyday on the same streets.
They don’t know I work everyday.
They don’t know how hard it is to keep a steady income when you have.
Judgmental eyes see me walk down the ally.
To shelter.
If there wasn’t shelter,
I would have to sleep on the streets.
Tickets I can’t afford.
You see me everyday on the same streets.
Don’t think you know me because I’m
How would you feel if you were,
Life torn out from under you.
No job.
No hope.
Forget the struggles you may or may not have.
And put yourself into my shoes.
Tell me how you feel now that you have,

A Letter


Untitled by Anonymous

Untitled by Anonymous

I’ve been thinking about writing
To my mother.
I even had a dream about it.
I wrote to her
And I moved back in to her apartment
And my dog
Tasha was there
And lept up
And gave me a hug
And licked my face
And everything was better.

Before it really wasn’t too good.
I was depressed all the time
And I didn’t want to do anything.
I was going to community college and I wasn’t doing well
And I didn’t feel good because
I wasn’t doing well
And I wasn’t doing well
Because I wasn’t happy at home
And my mom was wishing I would just leave.

So one day I just
Packed up my bags and walked out the door.

When I woke up, I thought it had been something real
Because I kind of want it to be real.
Because I plan to write to her.

I think about doing it everyday
And then I somehow manage to put it off.
For whatever reason.
Like I’m too busy.
And I really want to do it
But I never make the time for it.

I wouldn’t know what to say.
I imagine I’d say sorry
Sorry to leave without notice
Without saying a word
Without saying goodbye
That I’d like to see her in person
To talk to her and apologize and be re-assured
by her that everything’s ok.


By: Lanoir

Infatuation looks like me calling you from a blocked number, thinking I know you but I don’t at all, wanting.

It feels like my heart beating in my throat, our bodies gently holding for a split second of hello, and that first cool and relaxing chill I get from jumping into the water on a hot day.

It smells like hot cherry pie hot and fresh from the oven, cherry blossoms blooming in late spring Seattle air, and brand new clothes.

It sounds like a cold, dark, silent and lonely night but it also can sound like young boys and girls talking loud with a nice tune and fat bass bumping from club speakers in the background. It can sound like the vast large ocean, waves hitting the shore, and seagulls chirping and soaring through blue skies.

Infatuation tastes like a blank tongue waiting and yearning a taste of that delicious food in nearby store window but not  having enough change in the pocket to enjoy. Its like the sweet watermelon jolly rancher in your mouth that you’ve been sucking on, slowly but surely dissolving turning into nothing but melted corn syrup swirling in your stomach.

Dream Big 2013

Are you a fan of the Zine Project? Check out this invitation to attend a celebratory breakfast about Zine and other youth programs brought to you by CCS

Are you a fan of the Zine Project? Check out this invitation to attend a celebratory breakfast about Zine and other youth programs brought to you by Catholic Community Services of Western Washington

You are cordially invited to

Youth Services’ 9th Annual
Breakfast Benefit and Celebration

Friday, March 15, 2013

415 Westlake
415 Westlake Avenue North
Seattle, Washington

Registration at 7:00am
Breakfast and Program
from 7:30am-8:30am

Register here to join us for breakfast and learn from youth how the Youth Services of Catholic Community Services and its programs
support young people as they transition from challenging beginnings to successful adult lives-ready to achieve big dreams.

Tickets to this event are complimentary. Guests will be asked to make a gift to support Youth Services and its programs (which include Zine Project Seattle). These gifts help sustain the critical work of Youth Services throughout the year.

Can’t join us but want to support Youth Services? Make your gift here.

For more information about the event,
please contact Rebecca Kuenzel at 206-328-5659.

Groundwork Project I University District Youth Center I Youth Tutoring Program  

I Am a Wheel

by Michael

My life is always moving.

Years go on and on but nothing stays the same.

As I roll on, I grow older and older. What do I do?
Keep rolling down the same hill

  I turn to a new way,

 to find a new downhill.

One that never ends,

        So I turn to my right and I stop in a valley of  wheels.

This is not the end I think.

So I find a way to keep moving.

I jump but I am a wheel.

 How does this work?

I am rolling down the valley of lost wheels

but I am not lost.

 I am free.

Group Zine:The Adventures of Flying Toaster Strudel

Things in Zine can get heavy!

As you may have noticed, our writers write about homelessness, addiction, confusion and loss.

Though their writing is often sad, they themselves are just as often full of joy and resilience. In The Zine Project, we believe that their writing—no matter how sad—is a product of this resiliency. Expression is hope.

With that said, there’s a real need sometimes for a little comic relief.

Zine Interns are required not only to make personal zines but also a group zine. The point of the group zine is for the interns to experience working as a team to create something. From our perspective as a prevocational program, this cooperative effort is an extremely valuable job skill.

Interns have to band together and decide a common theme—a process that sometimes can take longer than the actual writing.

While some groups delve deeper into the heavy themes—poverty, addiction, domestic violence— our October-December 2012 group decided to dedicate themselves to the story of a special little pastry we’ve all come to know and love:

Flying Toaster Strudel!

Flying Toaster Strudel!

During our first brainstorming session, one of our interns shouted out the idea and it stuck.

“We were done writing about sad stuff,” said one.

“Yeah, my zine was filled with difficult, serious themes. And so I wanted to do something different.”

And different was what they did.

The group decided to create a comic zine about their original super hero.

And they had three weeks to do it.

This achieved another great professional skill—working under a deadline.

To meet their deadline, the ziners had to answer prompts about their hero, creating a wisdom figure, a sidekick, a nemesis, an origin, a final conflict, etc…

Each decision required them to listen to each other and compromise as they propelled their idea forward.

After the stories were made, the interns took ownership of a section of each story to draw and though each hand executed its lines differently, they all worked off sketches drawn by Sam, one of the interns. Sam’s sketches had a defined style that the rest of the interns followed to create continuity. FTS Characters

They were devoted to their twee aesthetic—creating cherubic looking characters and keeping swearing to a minimum. They discussed fonts and page order and, more often than not, made decisions unanimously after thoughtful processing.

On the final day of the project, their group zine was complete—much to the joy and hilarity of all who read it. Each of the five interns walked away with a united feeling of success and a confidence in their ability to be a part of a collaborative team.

Click here to check out the full version of the Adventures of Flying Toaster Strudel and admire our interns’ efforts creating and preparing themselves for employment.