Exitzine.com, R.I.P.

  • This is something I wrote to mark the end of EXITZINE.com:
      We regret to inform our readers that we will be ceasing publication of new material at this time. This has not been an easy step to take, but due to a lack of funding and lack of staff, it appears that EXITzine has reached its end.

      No doubt about it, publishing this zine has been adventure.

      It began back in 1999 when I and a couple of my friends (Kimberly and Aaron– she in Austin, he in Oklahoma City) decided to start a magazine that would talk about “alternative” Christian music. We knew there were other folks out there who also wrote about this genre, but we felt like we could do it in an unique and needed way.

      From there on the adventure began. It wasn’t easy to run a zine via long distance, but it worked. Aaron took care of most of our web design needs, while Kimberly did the editing. As far as content goes, Kimberly authored most of it while I–along with a few others from time to time–pitched in the rest. Photography was done by several friends (Erin Farmer, Tim Burger, and occasionally myself).

      We covered some local shows in Austin (naturally), but the most fun was had when Kimberly and I set out on road trips to hear bands in San Antonio, Dallas, and Oklahoma City, where we met some of our musical heroes and lots of other interesting folks. Sometimes we were disappointed with the folks we met, but most of the time we left feeling hopeful in the future of a Christian witness in the musical world.

      Down the road, I ended up doing more of the content, focusing EXIT’s energy into covering the extraodinary Cornerstone Festival in Bushnell, Illinois. Almost a month of my life (4 weeks) was spent in the oasis which was Cornerstone. I will never forget those times.

      In the last few years, other adventures have come into our lives and EXITzine has had to take the backburner. We will always have a fondness in our hearts for the “good ol’ days,” but we know better things are ahead.

      We do intend to keep our content archived on the web for those interested. For now our website www.exitzine.com will remain online. In the future we may take that domain off-line, but if we do this you should still be able to find our old content at my site (www.jmbzine.com) or at www.archive.org. (Some of our old content which I thought was lost has been recovered and will be published soon.)

      As to our present and past staff, here is what some of us are up to these days…

      James M. Branum – I am a law student at Oklahoma City University, and preach for a small rural church here in Oklahoma. I author a blog (www.jmbzine.com) and hope to write for another zine (Vagrant Cafe or The Phantom Tollbooth if either of them will have me) this summer at the Cornerstone Festival.

      Kimberly Hall – Lives in the world’s most beautiful city (Austin) with her husband. She currently works for the University of Texas and hopes to write the great American novel. (I think she’ll do it, too.) She’ll be pursuing graduate school in the near future.

      Aaron Young – Works as a web designer for the OU Health Sciences Center and also does extensive independent web design work through his firm AJY Design. He still is very interested in comics, art, legos, and sci-fi. He is married with two sons.

      Dan Branum – Is an honors student at Oklahoma State University and will be resuming publication of his inspirational newsletter, Seeking Truth Now, at his new website (www.seekingtruthnow.com) this spring. He is also currently working on a novel.

      Tim Burger – Is an artist working in Norman, OK. His work hangs in the Ronald Reagan National Library, countless churches, and in the homes of folks who dig good art. His online gallery can be viewed at TimBurger.com.

      Two of our early writers are now in the publishing arena themselves: Joel Thomas who is the editor of The Vagrant Cafe, and John Sant who is the editor of Fine Print Magazine.

      (If you wrote for us in the past and want your current happenings to be listed, please email me at jmb(at)jmbzine.com.)

  • In parting there is good news. Much of our old content that I thought was lost forever has been found. Most of it is now up in the archives at www.exitzine.com. More is coming.)