Reading groups and a course in miracles are excellent platforms to get together with other like-minded individuals and discuss books that you’ve all agreed to read. They can be rewarding and also comforting.
If you have thought about starting up your own book club, whether it be an online book club that caters to a wide range of people or a local book club that is primarily just for your community, here are the five most important steps you should take.
1. Get a Website
Regardless of how far away people are going to be, you want your book club members to have access to information at any given time. It doesn’t need to be anything over the top but you should at least have a page where they can e-mail you to sign up, check out the current book selections and review past selections. Other “extras” that you may want to consider for your website include: a chat room, a message board and a guest book for comments.
2. Write a Press Release
Press releases are the best way to spread the word around about your book club locally. The press release should contain information on the book club, how often you plan to meet with your members, whether it will be held out of people’s homes or in external locations and what type of books you plan on your group reading. As for where to send it, you can easily find media contacts by running a search on Google.
3. Contact Your Local Library
The library is a great resource for people in your community so make sure you reach out to that medium! Post a flyer for your book club if they have a community bulletin and ask about possibly holding your meetings there. Sometimes, if the library does not currently have a book club, they may even suggest recommending it to many of the library patrons as an added service that the library now has!
4. Contact Your Local Book Stores
As with the library, be sure to post flyers up in your local book stores. This is where your target audience goes to purchase books and they will be keen on contacting you if a book club is something that they wish to participate in! Another tip when contacting book stores: ask if they could provide your book group with a discount for the first three selections. You’d be surprised how many people would say yes!
5. Get Organized!
Now that you’ve put yourself out there to accept new members, get organized! Get a binder, fill it with dividers and set yourself up so there is no room for failure! Set up meeting schedules with times and locations and create a book list for your book club members to select from for the first voting period. Decide how often you’ll meet, how many books you’ll select in advance and all of those other items that your members will have questions about.