The Book Industry Guild of New York (BIGNY) is an organization for book publishing and manufacturing professionals. Operated by members for members, it subsidizes educational seminars and trips, holds monthly information programs, and raises money for the Literacy Assistance Center, a nonprofit dedicated to “strengthening and expanding the adult education system, and to advancing adult literacy as a core value in our society and a foundation for equal opportunity and social justice.” BIGNY partners include the Graphic Artists Guild, Book Business magazine, and the Women’s National Book Association.
Initially named The Bookbinders’ Guild of New York, the group was founded in 1925 by bindery craftsmen in and around New York. (Binderies are workshops or factories in which books are bound.) Original members included employees from George McKibben & Son, American Book-Stratford Press, and Knickerbocker Press.
Each month, the guild’s original 35 members would gather to talk about common problems in the industry, and bounce ideas around for improvement. These discussions “helped develop many of the processes that we take for granted today.”
In addition to educational and networking events on topics relevant to book publishing, manufacturing, and sales, BIGNY hosts an annual Book Show, which celebrates “the best in book design and manufacturing” in six categories: Children’s Trade, General Trade, Special Trade, Scholarly & Professional, School Publishing, and Self-Published Covers. The 31st New York Book Show took place in Battery Park on October 12, 2017.
Over the years, the Guild has become less interested in manufacturing and more focused on the wider range of issues facing the industry – so much so that in 2010, the Guild changed its name to the Book Industry Guild of New York and updated its logo to “include a mirror image to reflect the changes going on in [the] organization” and in publishing.
BIGNY is looking to add new voices to its Program Committee, which plans and organizes BIGNY’s monthly programs. Interested? Click here for more information about the organization or reach out to committee co-chairs Sharon Watson and Carol Naughton. Interested in becoming a member? Here are the benefits and costs of registration.