Binding a 10,000-page book

Hand-binding books is a hobby of mine. I’ve hand-bound a couple of very limited editions (read: one to three copies) of a couple of novels I’ve written as gifts for my beta readers. Those books worked out to be around 500 pages each, and they were difficult to assemble. I can hardly imagine the challenges of binding a book with ten thousand pages.

Thanks to The University of Iowa Libraries, there’s no need to imagine. When author Bill Voss composed a 10,000-page poem and decided to bind it entirely in a single volume, he kept a photo journal of the process that’s now on the Libraries’ blog. It’s very interesting, and the process differs significantly from what I did with 500 pages.  The final result was a book two feet thick.  For bibliophiles, this is sort of like an exhibit at the Mutter Museum.


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