Cataloging Instructions

Below is a step-by-step guide to entering zine records into ZAPP’s catalog, including explanations of each field, examples of the correct way to enter information, and answers to certain questions that may arise while cataloging. If other issues or questions arise, contact 


An important reminder: Since zine publishers do not necessarily follow traditional periodicals in the way they present publishing information, you may need to spend some time paging through a zine, turning it sideways, or squinting really hard to find everything you are looking for. Don’t be afraid to leave fields blank if you can’t find certain data, but don’t assume it isn’t there if you don’t see it immediately. Publication dates, author names, contact info, and other information are most often found on the covers (inside and outside), but sometimes this data can be buried a few pages into the zine. So relax, take your time, and have fun cataloging!


Part One - Get Ready:

  1. Get yourself a stack of zines, pull a chair up to your computer and get comfy!
  2. Open the Internet Browser of your choice.
  4. Background research: If you are unfamiliar with a zine or have questions about how it should be categorized or described, it’s always a good idea to see how others have described or cataloged it before you begin. Some places to look include:


Part Two: Catalog!  


If your item hasn't been cataloged yet, create a  new record. Click on Add New.

  1. Barcode - A number one greater than the last barcode number entered. 
  2. Title – The title of the item.  
  3. Author – Always enter last name (if there is one) first (Ex: Smith, John).
  4. Editor – Same instructions as author; if no name is given, leave blank.
  5. Description – Use this field to fill out a general description of the zine and its features. 
  6. Category – The zine's primary subject matter. See Categories for more information.  
  7. Publisher – May be a press or publishing company (Ex: Soft Skull Press) or an individual. If an individual, follow the instructions for author. 
  8. Publisher Location - Location (generally city/state) information for publisher, if known. 
  9.   Publish Date – The month and year the item was published. Sometimes this information is not present on the zine - check in several locations before giving up.
  10. Edition – Enter Issue/Volume or other edition numbers if present. If this information is not present, leave this field blank.
  11.  Type -  This is pre-populated as "Zine". 
  12. Thumbnail URL - If you have an image for the zine cover, include the URL here.
  13. Keywords – Provides further information about a zine’s contents and classification, useful for cross-listing zines.  Take Keywords from the list of Tags

Part Three - Finishing up 

  1. Adding the record - When you are done with the record, click Add new item at the bottom of the page.
  2. Preservation steps – Write the item record number (lightly and in pencil) on the top right of the first right-side page (that would be opposite the title page verso on a book).  Place item in plastic bag (don't force items which will not easily fit into a small bag).  Fill in a card with the following information in this order:

     and place the card in the bag on top of the zine.  

Congratulations!! You’ve successfully cataloged a zine! To continue cataloging, repeat these steps.


Special Tricks & Tips:


-- Split zines (two zines in one physical item) should be cataloged as one record. 

     Choose the more well-known or established title as the main title; choose randomly if it is unclear.

     Under description write "Split zine with [title no. 2] by [author no. 2]."  

-- Duplicate Items