Answer: Yes, I am a member of two books clubs.
- My church book club has been going for twenty years (I just realized) and all the gals who currently attend are members of the church. We have invited others but they tend to fade away if they are not linked in to the church first. We meet monthly, on the 3rd Tuesday of each month in the evening, and rotate around through the different homes. The gal who is hostess for the moth also leads the discussion. The majority of our books come from the library book club kits. We sign up for the kits up to a year in advance then pick up the kit from the library and have to return it within two months. It works really well because it cuts down on the expense. Also the librarian who selects the books for the kits usually (not always) does a good job finding books which facilitate good discussions. The kit contains 15 books and a discussion guide. See what I mean about convenient? Contact your library to see if they do something similar. Our library system probably has over 200 books in kits now. For a look at our megalist of all the books we've read for the twenty years check out the link. MEGALIST Book Club selections 1995 to present (and beyond.)
- My second book club has been going for around 10 years. It is made up of gals who all worked together at an area high school. Even though several have since retired, or in my case, moved schools, we have stuck together. We are a closed group and have all been together since the beginning. We meet once a month, on the 4th Wednesday in the afternoon, rotating between our houses and occasionally restaurants or Indie bookstores. A discussion leader is assigned monthly and that person is usually not the hostess. We spend time at the end of the meetings selecting up-coming books. We usually try to select at least three months in advance to allow people time to get the books from the library or to purchase them.
I think the reason for the longevity of both groups is two-fold.
- One, we have a scheduled day of the month that doesn't vary. If someone comes in the group and wants us to shift our meeting time, we tell her sorry. This way everyone gets the date in their head and on their personal calendars. If you are having trouble keeping a club going it might be because you haven't a fixed a date. Try it and see if it helps. Mine meet the 3rd Tuesday in the evening and the other meets the 4th Wednesday in the late afternoon.
- Two, we spend part of time talking about things not related to books. All the gals in both clubs are now friends of mine because we visit and share about our lives. If someone doesn't show up, we miss them. This does take a while to develop, so patience is required.
Are you a member of a book club? How is ours set up?