Title Slide! Want to talk about book clubs, because they’re something that everybody does. Not saying you’re wrong, but want to share what works for us. Talk about getting started, problems you may run into, some potential solutions and book selections.
The best way to start a book club is to ask your teens what kind of book club they’d like. Do they want a general teen lit club or something that focuses on a specific genre or type of book (Fantastic Fiction, Animanga) A hybrid of the two (Copperwood Book Club) Make sure your dates are good – ChickLit, very popular in summer. A small enthusiastic group more valuable than a big “meh” group -- And remember – Book Clubs are viral. You just need to find the patient Zero for your club.
Brings us to Marketing – for us, word of mouth is the most effective marketing too (for all programs) However, social media is changing the way we talk to/with our book groups.
Once your club is started have to deal with those wonderful teens who can stop a discussion dead in it’s tracks. The Monopolizer – the teen who has a lot! To! Say! All at once! And nobody else gets to talk. “I Hated It!” – This teen shares her opinion emphatically, and will not be swayed. Underprepared Teen Leaders – Teens are often eager to lead a discussion, but less willing to do the prep work.
This frustrates librarians to no end. Ask Why Not – “Sometimes, having to read a book is worse than not having a book to read” – Kami Garcia, Author of Beautiful Creatures. Meaningful discussions can be had about “why” a teen couldn’t get into/didn’t finish a book No Read, No Eat – if you serve refreshments, instiutitng a “no food for you” policy could help solve a habitual non-reading problem. No Read, No Talk – If you didn’t read the book, you shouldn’t be discussing it. This was a policy that Merideth had to institute with more vocal members of her club. Not being able to speak was a harsh enough punishment for them.
Off Topic Discussions are not Always Bad.
More problems can spring up as you go along. If your club gets to big, it might be hard for everybody to speak. And that might be O.K. Some teens might be more comfortable listening than speaking (Denia) Some groups institute a “talking stick” – Merideth’s teens wound up hitting each other with it. Age – Merideth’s book club ended because the Teens all “aged out “ of teen programs. So recruiting as you go is crucial. However that can cause a problem in trying to mix older and younger teens. Out of Ideas – particularly in genre and “theme” based clubs, can run out of book suggestions or ideas for books.
Book Selection is key to success. Books librarians love sometimes do not make good discussion books. Feed – failed twiceRed Spikes
Vet your books. Greg Bear – Porn Star! A Great and Terrible Beauty – Susan/Lesbian Sex Scene.
Controversy is not bad
We’ve had a lot of success with books with multiple/dual POV’s
Books with Ambiguous Endings/Events
Books that take the reader outside of their own experiences.
What would you do?
Dystopias – Very hot, and lots of good discussion fodder.
And even with all that, sometimes book clubs just don’t click. These are examples of our failures.
Book Club A-Go-Go
Kearsten LaBrozziMerideth Jenson-Benjamin Glendale Public Library
Book Clubs Can be Spendy – Particularly if have an extra activity.
For this presentation visit www.slideshare.net/MeridethLibrarian For more from the Glendale Librarians http://bookobsessiongpl.blogspot.com More from Merideth http://meridethsays.blogspot.comhttp://www.goodreads.com/MeridethSays More from Kearstenhttp://www.librarything.com/catalog/kayceel