Gee Don, I’m not a real big sports guy/gal, any other ways I can get ahead in the publishing business?
You know, I’m glad you asked because I have just the thing that might help you out. They are called “Publishing Associations” and they dot this great country of ours from north to south, east to west.
I have been involved with two of these associations; Bookbinders Guild of NY (now Book Industry Guild of NY) and Publishers Association of the West (or PubWest for short). Both of these organizations are highly recommended by The Book Kahuna as great places to meet aspiring professionals and network in all areas of the publishing vista.
Book Industry Guild of New York
The Book Industry Guild holds dinner meetings once a month in NY and has speakers on various publishing hot topics. They have a “President’s Night” that is just that: A president from one of the local publishers is the featured speaker for the night. They promote and participate in the Book Design Awards for the NY Book show, and also have a charity softball game in the summer. One of the first 2 Wednesdays in June is “Barge Bash” time. The Barge Bash is normally at the Sequoia Restaurant in the South Street Seaport. This is a party for all of the publishing professionals to meet and mingle with printers, vendors, marketing, production, and editorial people throughout the book publishing community. The Bash got its name from the fact that it was held on a boat for years that was anchored in the Hudson River.
Content Management: 9/12/12
Hitting the Books: Publishing Education: 10/9/12
50 Shades of Fan Fiction: Managing a Best Seller: 11/13/12
President’s Night: 1/8/13
Trending e-Topics: 2/12/13
New York Book Show March 2013, date TBD
New York Book Show Designer Winners Circle: 4/9/13
3rd Annual Production Round Table: 5/14/13
Schedule and programs subject to change. Unless otherwise indicated, all events (except for The New York Book Show and the Barge Bash) will be held at the New York offices of Random House, 1745 Broadway. Cocktails begin at 5:30 P.M. The program will follow at ~ 6:15 P.M. Admission charges include beer, wine and soft drinks; and passed hors d’oeuvres.
PubWest started out in the 1970s as the Rocky Mountain Book Publishers Association. The underlying reasons for forming PubWest were the same as Bookbinders in the 1920s: professionals in the industry needed a place to meet, exchange ideas and keep their business relationships fresh in an ever-changing industry. Since PubWest has geographic challenges that BIGNY does not face, the organization developed the “Conference” mentality instead of the monthly meeting. (Although there are bi-annual meetings called “Booklores” that are held from time to time on a range of publishing topics.)
At a PubWest conference you can expect to hear industry leaders speak about timely and pressing topics of interest to all in the field. The conference this year was held in Keystone, CO in late October, and the conference in November, 2013 will be held in Santa Fe, NM. Seminars and workshops are scheduled with each area of publishing expertise in mind. The meetings, networking and interactions with peers and colleagues over the course of 2-3 days are priceless and can only advance you in your career objectives.
I can speak as a member of the PubWest Board of Directors, that there is not a finer group of professionals working in the publishing industry than my fellow board members. They are publishers, marketing professionals, sales executives, and leaders in all fields of the industry. It is a humbling experience to be asked to be among them, and I do not carry this responsibility lightly in my day-to-day efforts on behalf of the board.
Other associations to check out:
- Bookbuilders of Boston http://www.bbboston.org/
- Chicago Book Clinic http://www.chicagobookclinic.org/
- Bookbuilders West http://www.bookbuilders.org/
- Colorado Independent Publishers Association (CIPA) http://www.cipacatalog.com/