Sitting quietly in the corner of the library, or coffee shop, or wherever the latest local book club decides to meet and reminisce over this week’s reading, that is me eavesdropping on the book hat. Yes. Me. Eavesdropping. I no longer participate in the nifty, smart chats about the latest brilliant novel because I’ve been told that I suck at discussion.
Short story…I am a book club reject.
I have been part of an online book club for years and like how it is not the same set-up as a traditional in-your-face club. It’s simple really… I read; I offer some discussion on our Facebook group and then post about how the read inspired me. We never post a traditional review and this, I would say, is the top reason I love my online book club.
Have you ever felt the need to try a traditional in-your-face club? Well, I felt the need to at least give it a try and just see. Honestly, it was more a why not shrug; I mean I had nothing to lose except a few hours of binge watching ”Iron Fist” on Netflix. So, I tracked down my local library’s website and perused the local book clubs. I jotted down one club that seemed to fit me based on the description and added the meeting info to my calendar.
I was finally off to my first official book club meeting…
…and it was horrible!
I was completely intimidated by the BIG talk! Don’t get me wrong. I shared how I felt about the reading; what inspired me, quotes that I loved, and certain topics that I could take away and use in my day-to-day life, but it certainly didn’t seem like it was enough. I didn’t use BIG TALK and it seemed to really bother the group that I simply discussed to express my thoughts instead of big word intimidation.
I say “simple,” but it wasn’t simple. I expressed myself well and got my points across, just apparently not the way the group – lead – wanted it. When the evening ended, I was taken to the side by the group lead, thanked for coming, and then she proceeded to ask that my input for all future discussions be more elaborate, using words that elevate the reading.
I have not gone back.
Now, of course, this is only one group. I don’t believe all traditional book clubs to be close-minded in discussion which I do believe this group was. Big confusing talk doesn’t make a discussion group, but participation by everyone with varying points of view does. Their book club focus doesn’t deter me from finding another club that wants honest discussion and views from varying kinds of people.