Bestype Imaging has enthusiastically helped New Yorkers with zine printing NYC life stories, art stories, music stories, and more for nearly 40 years. While Bestype doesn’t date as far back as the zine format itself (the 1930s), New Yorkers have used our zine printing services during the last great wave of zine production (mid -1980s through the mid-1990s). Today, our customers are reinventing the zine for themselves and their peers. We’re experiencing a creative wave of what’s new and what’s next in zine printing.

Our customers are asking two major questions about zine creation right now, “how to print a zine?” and “how much does it cost to print a zine?”

The answers to both of these questions depend on your volume of custom zine printing and how thick or thin each zine copy is. A few other factors figure into the equation: materials, printing technology, and binding methods.

Bestype’s zine printing services are more advanced and more affordable than what eighties and nineties zine creators were using — computers are more affordable, desktop publishing services are more accessible, and digital printing services are faster than ever. We’ve printed thousands of copies of hundreds of zines over the decades — we know zine printing NYC. Our zine creators rely on us now because we know how to print a zine and make every copy look amazing through our:

  • Help with layout and graphics
  • Faster printing for wider distribution
  • Premium printing services at budget prices
  • Customer service support at every stage of each project

What is a Zine?

Zines are essentially self-published booklets, and they can be about any topic. We mentioned custom zine printing orders featuring cutting-edge art, music, and fashion content. Many other zines have a literary bent — they feature poetry, fiction, non-fiction of any and many stripes, and print interviews with zine scene notables. Zine themes can be hyperlocal and hyper-focused: art in one specific neighborhood, a fan community, nomadic music followers, a specific swath of NYC nightlife. Even art, self-published comics, manga, and graphic novels can take advantage of the zine format.

Zines have no rules!

For self-publishers, custom zine printing schedules mean that your projects:

  • may appear on a regular calendar schedule,
  • appear on irregular schedules whenever you fancy, or
  • print as rare, one-offs (and may become cult collector items).

Custom Zine Printing for the Zine Renaissance

Today’s zines can be digital and print creations or appear as old-school magazine paper-only copies itching to be held and read. Bestype Printing NYC will help your idea come to life through zine printing services and we will offer all the support you need to get your zine printed.

How Does Zine Printing NYC Work? Your Zine in 7 Steps

The zine creation process is like any other publishing process, following these steps:

1. Bring Your Project Idea to Bestype Printing NYC for a Complimentary Project Consultation

We would love to hear about your zine idea and sit down with you to discuss your concept. We can map out the printing process with you. Our technicians will share a timeline that includes reviewing your samples for proofreading before we go to press. You’ll know when we can print your publication run and when your zine copies will be ready for mailing or distribution. We can even arrange to ship your order to bulk mailing sites for postal distribution. Let us know if you’re setting up a booth at local shows like ComicCon or other events. We generally can arrange delivery of your boxes to your site during your booth set-up dates.

Throughout your project’s printing lifecycle, our technicians offer support and answer questions about your order. They can even help answer technical questions about how to create your zine’s layout. We are committed to making your zine become the best it can be.

2. Collect Your Content

Your next steps are to write, photograph, draw, or otherwise assemble your content. After you know what you want to include, you organize how you want your content to flow.

Some zine publishers know how to use digital tools like InDesign or open-source alternative design software. Other people love spreading out their content manually across a table without the aid of a computer.

There is one important exception to the “no-rule” custom zine printing content directive: Bestype needs your pages laid out in sequence. We need to know the page ordering system so that we successfully print your zine. Our printing technicians will help you organize your pages so that we can print your zine accurately.

3. Format Your Content and Design Your Layout

Once you know what you want to include in your zine, it’s time to organize it. What’s your zine’s size and orientation (large, small; portrait, landscape). How many pages would you like to include? Do you have images that spread out over facing pages? Once you decide on your layout style, it’s time to create your draft.

Bestype Printing’s zine printing customers often know and love their favorite desktop publishing package. Still, you don’t need to know any flavor of desktop publishing applications to create a zine. (If you would like extra help with desktop publishing, we have access to templates that can help you.) Order your text and images as you would like them to appear in your booklet. Scan your pages in the sequence you want, and then proceed to the next step.

4. Export Your Scans or Digital files to PDF

Exporting your digital files to a high-quality PDF file locks your text, graphics, and layout into your page. PDFs allow us to print your zine easily. If you notice errors in your sample proof documents, we have remedies for typos. There are various methods of fixing problems before printing your final copies.

5. Decide on Your Paper and Cover Stock

There are multiple combinations of cover stock and paper varieties to choose from. Your interior pages can be coated or uncoated. How much weight would you like for your cover and your interior pages? Maybe you want your zine to be self-cover (the cover page finish and weight are the same as the interior pages)? Bestype’s technical team can help you decide which choices work with your unique project and your budget.

6. Select your Binding Style

The choices you make in layout affect your document’s binding. Most zines work well with inexpensive saddle-stitched booklet seams, but your zine printing isn’t limited to only one style. Our other binding options may also fit your budget.

Another common zine binding option is perfect binding, which gives your zine a printable spine and wider page margins. You can also choose coil binding for a notebook format or wire-o binding. When you know how large your booklet is, you can work with our zine printing NYC-based experts to decide on the best binding for your project.

7. Choose How Many Copies You Want in Circulation

This decision about how many copies to print may be one of the first choices you need to make. Once you’ve finalized your design concept, you need to consider these questions:

  • How much does it cost to print a zine?
  • How many copies of my custom zine printing project do I order?
  • Where do I distribute my zine?

The answers to all of these questions can fit within your project’s budget. Bestype Printing NYC has digital printing and offset printing services available to print projects of any type. Digital printing is usually a less expensive choice for small circulation runs. Offset printing is a good choice when you are printing thousands of copies for wider distribution.

When You’re Ready to Create Your Zine, Bestype is Here to Help

Zine printing with Bestype is an easy, affordable experience designed to be available to anyone who wants to self-publish their content. When you contact us with your idea, we can offer help on the entire printing process, from layout and design to how you print and where your zines go after they leave our presses.

So, do you have an idea for a unique zine? Let’s run with it and take on zine printing for your passion. Contact us today about how we can help you print your next design quickly and accurately.