After a few weeks, months, or years, you may find that your book club has become a bit stagnant. It’s not necessarily anything you’re doing wrong or even about the members that attend your club. Sometimes, it’s just a good idea to try something different. Mixing it up will make your book club more vibrant and entertaining.
Here are a few ideas…
- Location: Particularly if you’ve hosted most of your meetings at one location, try a new place! For instance, if you’ve hosted it at the library before, invite the book-club members to your house or another meeting place. Don’t be afraid to get creative with your book club location.
- Performance: It may have been a while since you’ve “acted out” a scene in a book or play, but it’s a fun way to liven up a book club. You can ask each club member to pick a scene to read (or act out). If the membership loves performance, you can become more elaborate (with costumes, etc.). If plays or book scenes don’t appeal to you (or the other book club members), you may want to do a short reading or find other ways to enjoy the book.
- Adaptation: For your next book club selection, pick a book made into a movie, play, or other form of adaptation. Then, meet the other club members at the movie theater, home, or library (preferably a location that offers multimedia support for your viewing experience). Be sure to set aside enough time to discuss the adaptation–what you all loved (or hated?), etc.
- Author Appearance: We often think of authors as god-like persons–untouchable. But, you may find that some authors in your community love to participate in your book-club meetings. You can ask him/her to do a reading from one of their books. Or, depending on how approachable you find the person, you might even ask him/her to attend a meeting–to answer questions about the book you’ve just read. If you cannot find someone in your local area (or a visiting author) who will speak (or answer questions) at your meeting, piggyback on a scheduled reading in your area–you can attend as a group and then plan to meet after the reading.
- Guest Speaker: You’ll find many great guest speakers available, particularly if you don’t limit your search to only published authors. Is there a dynamic local teacher willing to share his/her passion for books and literature? Or, find a librarian willing to speak with you all about his/her adventures with books. A speaker is an ideal choice for your book club for many reasons. You could even select a guest speaker based on their personal experience. (For example: If you’re reading about the American West, ask a historian to speak.)
If your book club has become a bit boring or even stagnant, don’t despair. As long as we share a passion for books, there will always be creative ways to imagine/re-imagine our literary experience.