By January 24, 2009 0 Comments Read More →

It’s 5 o’clock somewhere

Much as we like to gather with our book groups, every once in a while we book group leaders like to convene without you, dear reader.  We need to. We need to hear what our fellow facilitators are up to and the idea sharing is invaluable.

Recently I journeyed to one of the far flung branches in my system for a meeting with the three book group leaders there. This branch is a joy to visit. The staff care very much about the community they serve and are always encouraging the library visitors, young and old, to share what they are reading with each other.

All three book group are vastly different. One has been around for quite some time and read the typical book group fare. Another is new and the attendees have chosen only to read and discuss Inspirational fiction/nonfiction. The last is aimed at teens. None of the leaders were aware of the different challenges each faced with their respective groups and we all provided encouragement and suggestions for dealing with each challenge.

Nancy’s biggest conundrum was choosing a book the entire group would enjoy, particularly one tough reader. Everyone agreed that one person who didn’t like a book was not to be catered to at the expense of the other group members or a good discussion. Kate wanted to see a few new members in her group and we all brainstormed ways to promote the library’s newest venture. Amanda entertained us all with gleeful stories of her energetic, intelligent teens. She allowed that their attendance was sporadic, but when they did show up, conversation was lively and insightful.

It only lasted an hour but all of us left the meeting feeling rejuvenated about our book groups and with ideas for book selection, promotion and handling difficult readers.

All that was missing was the wine and hors d’oevres.

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About the Author:

Kaite Mediatore Stover refuses to give up her day job as director of readers' services for The Kansas City Public Library to read tarot cards professionally or be the merch girl/roadie for her husband's numerous bands. Follow her on Twitter at @MarianLiberryan.

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