Rules, Regulations, and Suggestions


1.) RSVP Policy and Procedure(s)

Members are required to keep their RSVP CURRENT at all times. ‘No Shows’ and/or repeated last minute/short notice RSVP changes will be monitored closely, and can potentially result in a member being permanently removed from the group. Of course, last minute emergency situations do arise from time to time. That being said, such situations will be considered on a 'case-by-case' basis, with regard to their impact on the final decision as to whether or not the member is permitted to remain in the group following such an incident (particularly if said member has demonstrated a repeated pattern of 'no showing' or last minute RSVP changing). Should a member happen to find that she is in a 'last minute’ (or short notice) situation that leaves her unable to attend an event that she had previously RSVP’d ‘Yes’ for, in addition to updating her RSVP on the meet-up site, she is encouraged to put forth an effort to contact the group's organizer personally (either via e-mail or phone call) ahead of time regarding her anticipated absence from the meeting. Bottom line – when it comes RSVPing, members are strongly encouraged to always be conscientious and courteous. Members are further encouraged to keep in mind that last minute RSVP changes impact the overall efficiency and success of a pot luck gathering, as the group might have really been counting on and/or looking forward to something that a member said that she was going to bring to the potluck, only to be disappointed when that member changes her RSVP at the last minute.

Members need to be aware of the fact that most (if not all) of 'ABC Club' monthly meetings will have a maximum limit as to how many participants can attend. This limit is due to the fact that reading groups and book discussions tend to not flow as smoothly when there are too many participants involved. That being said, when a member sees that an upcoming ‘ABC Club’ meeting has been posted, she should not just immediately RSVP 'Yes' in order to 'reserve' a spot for herself at the meeting. In other words, if the member even suspects that there is a chance that she will not be able to honor her commitment to attend (due to a potential scheduling conflict, a lack of time to read the book, etc...) then she should have the courtesy to hold off on submitting her RSVP until she knows for certain whether or not that she will actually be able to honor her commitment. Meetings are typically scheduled many weeks in advance, and as such, it gives dedicated members ample time to read the book, as well as ample time to arrange their schedules to accommodate the date and time of the meeting.

When the 'RSVP maximum' for an event has been met, members who were unable to RSVP quickly enough are then given the option to join a waiting list. In the event that a member changes her RSVP from 'Yes' to 'No', then a member on the waiting list is able to sign up for an open spot at the meeting. The problem with this is that people are sometimes hesitant to obtain and read the book, just to end up going on a waiting list, when (in their minds) there is no real guarantee that a spot will open up and that they will be able to participate in a meeting after all. It's not fair for a member to quickly RSVP 'Yes' for a meeting that has a maximum participant limit on it, simply in order to 'hold a spot' just to eventually end up changing her RSVP to 'No' on short notice, when she 'suddenly' realize that she is unable to attend the meeting after all, for one reason or another. Another member may end up missing out on the meeting because perhaps she was not able to RSVP as quickly (for whatever reason) as the aforementioned member. Regarding the latter member, by the time that she finally is able to RSVP for the meeting, she may ultimately end up disappointed to discover that the meeting is closed to new RSVPs due to the fact that the maximum participant limit has already been met.

The member who RSVP's 'Yes' quickly (just to hold a spot) and ultimately ends up changing her RSVP to 'No' on short notice due to her inability to actually honor her commitment to attend the meeting, makes it difficult (if not impossible) for other members to take advantage of the monthly meetings that this group has to offer.

A member's inability to quickly RSVP for a meeting (regardless of the reason behind said inability) should by no means be looked upon as an indication of her actual intent to honor her obligation, nor should it be looked upon as an indication of her level of commitment to the group. Just because a member may not be in a position to always RSVP as quickly as she might like, does not mean that she is any less committed than the member who often finds herself in the enviable position of being able to RSVP quickly for most meetings. Bottom line - NO member should EVER have to miss out on ANY monthly meeting due to another member's discourteous behavior with regard to the RSVP process and policy. PLEASE KEEP IT COURTEOUS LADIES!!!

2.) Potluck Contribution Policy and Procedure(s)

When RSVPing to an 'ABC Club' meeting, please be sure to state in the 'Comment' section of YOUR RSVP what appetizer or beverage that you intend to bring with you to the event to share with the rest of the group(please note that the hostess does not necessarily need to provide anything other than her home). Before specifying what you intend to bring, please read the information that others have included in their RSVPs, (found underneath their name and picture, in the column on the right hand side of that particular event’s page) so that we do not end up with an abundance of one particular item, while a deficiency of another. If you have already RSVP’d for an event, but forgot to include this information with your RSVP, simply go back into the event details and ‘EDIT’ your RSVP to specify (IN THE ‘COMMENT’ SECTION) what your potluck contribution will be. Please understand that this comment must always be attached to your RSVP, and NOT made in the comments section that can be seen at the very bottom of the specific event’s page. That section is intended for general comments only (i.e. “Anybody want to carpool?”, “Looking forward to seeing everyone” etc…) and should NOT be used for any purpose.

The reason that this is so imperative is because comments that are included in an RSVP show up underneath the participant’s name and picture in the column on the right hand side of that specific event’s page. The column then begins to look like a list of who is coming and what they are bringing. This ‘list’ is our system of ensuring that that we end up with an equitable representation of BOTH appetizers AND beverages at our meetings. Think of it like our 'Potluck sign-up sheet', if you will. Simply put, it is a safeguard against 10 people all bringing the same thing. If you attempt to specify your potluck contribution anywhere OTHER than in the comment section of your RSVP (i.e. in the comment area at the bottom of that event’s page, in an e-mail, in a message board discussion thread, etc…) it will likely get ‘lost in the shuffle’ and ultimately be overlooked. To reiterate for emphasis - POTLUCK CONTRIBUTIONS MUST BE SPECIFIED IN THE ‘COMMENT’ SECTION OF YOUR RSVP.

Members are strongly encouraged to RSVP via an actual computer (rather than a mobile device) as apparently, RSVPing via a mobile device does not automatically insert the ‘comment’ in the appropriate place. If a member insists on RSVPing via a mobile device, she should check afterwards to see where her ‘comment’ (regarding her potluck contribution) shows up. If she does not see her comment in the column on the right hand side of the page (along with her name and picture), then she needs to go back in and update/edit her RSVP to include her comment again. At that point, the ‘comment’ should reflect in the appropriate place.

Please understand that failure to adhere to the RSVP procedure can result in a temporary suspension of a participant's membership in this group. Any repeated failure after that measure has already been taken will likely result in permanent removal from the group. Rest assured, that neither of these measures will be taken before the group organizer has made other (more subtle) attempts to contact the member and politely point out her lack of adherance to the policy.

ALL participants MUST bring something to share (other than just their opinion on the book). Further, participants are expected to bring what they originally committed to bring, unless otherwise specified via an updated RSVP comment. This group's organizer does not have the time (nor the desire) to constantly monitor members' RSVPs to ensure that they are properly following the groups 'RSVP Policies and Procedures'. That being said, as a dedicated member of this group, please feel free to take ‘ownership' of the group when the occasion calls for it. If a conscientious group member happens to notice that another member's RSVP comment says something along the lines of "Looking forward to it!" or "Can't wait to see everyone!" but does not make any mention of what they will be bringing to share at the potluck, then that conscientious member should not hesitate to politely remind the other member (either by event comment, e-mail, etc...) that she needs to edit her RSVP to include a comment that specifies what food or beverage item that she will be bringing. Always keep in mind that an 'ABC Club' event can only be as successful as the efforts that its members are willing to put in to it.

3.) Membership Policy and Procedures(s)

Please keep in mind that while it isn't required that a member actually attends a meeting in order to remain 'active' in the group, if said member hasn't visited the website in over three months, she may be removed from the group. Please also note that members with inactive e-mail accounts will be removed automatically. If it is noticed that a member has been inactive (i.e. she hasn't visited the site in 3 months) an e-mail will be sent reminding her of her membership. If she chooses to remain inactive after the receipt of that e-mail, her membership is then subject to cancellation.

Membership in this meet-up group implies that the member has read, understands and agrees to adhere to the group’s ‘Rules and Regulations’. It is YOUR obligation as member of this group (new or continuing) to take the time to read the ‘Rules and Regulations’ (as well as any other documents on this site) in their entirety. Members should check back from time to time to see if any updates have occurred. While this group's organizer is acutely aware of the fact that the ‘Rules & Regulations’ for this group are extremely lengthy (to say the least), the following should be pointed out with regard to that fact: If a member finds that she is struggling to get through all of the information included here, she should remind herself that this is a book club after all, and as such, quite a bit of reading will invariably take place every month. If a member is unwilling/unable to put forth the time and/or effort to read the ‘Rules & Regulations’ about the group, then isn't it safe to say that it's pretty unlikely that she will be willing/able to committ to reading one (potentially lengthy) book every month for the group? Just something to consider.

4.) 'Branch Meetings' Policy and Procedure(s)

In spite of the fact there will likely be more than one meeting a month (almost always on different dates in different parts of town) members must understand that regardless of how many meetings are held in any given month, ALL groups MUST be reading and discussing the SAME book selection at ALL times. In other words, the formation of ‘rogue’ groups that essentially decide to just ‘do their own thing’ is prohibited, and is cause for dismissal from this group. This is non-negotiable.

The logic behind all groups reading the same book is so that a member who read and enjoyed the monthly selection but then found that she was unable to attend the scheduled book discussion at the organizer's home, would then have the opportunity to attend another meeting at someone else’s home, in which that same book would be discussed. For further details regarding 'Branch Meetings' please refer to 'Suggestion #5' in the 'Suggestions' section of the 'Rules, Regulations, and Suggestions' document found on this site.

5.) 'Book selection' Policy and Procedure(s)

Members are encouraged (though not required) to cast their vote in the monthly poll for the group's upcoming book selections. For further explanation of this recommendation, members should refer to the Suggestion #8 in the 'Suggestions' section of the 'Rules, Regulations, and Suggestions' document on this site. Though voting in the poll is merely a suggestion, members must be aware of the fact that there is a REQUIRED way in which to cast a vote. Failure to follow procedure will result in a member's vote not being counted.

The polls will be posted on this group’s site (found under the 'more' tab) and will remain open for approximately 3-5 days, at which point the organizer will tally the results and post the winning title for all members to see on the site's message board. The only way that a vote will be counted is if it is actually CAST IN THE POLL. In other words, a member should not expect her vote to be counted if she e-mailed it, messaged it via the meet-up site, posted it under event comments, posted it on the message board as a discussion thread, etc... A final note about poll choices: ALL suggested selections MUST be readily available in paperback (for ease of affordability).

6.) Group 'Profile' Policy and Procedure(s)

Member profiles must be complete, to include a current picture of THE MEMBER. (not of a pet, a cartoon, a sunset, etc...) THAT CLEARLY IDENTIFIES THE MEMBER AS A FEMALE.

If a potential member is uncomfortable with the thought of posting her picture on the meet-up site, she should rest assured that the probability that there's a stalker or identity thief out there that's just 'chomping at the bit' and waiting to steal her meet-up picture is highly unlikely. Ever the optimist, this group's organizer is of the firm belief that the majority of people in this world are helpful, friendly, courteous, and essentially GOOD. That being said, if a potential member actually thinks that it’s safer to meet a group of strangers at someone’s home to discuss a book, rather than to have those same strangers look at her profile picture on meet-up, then perhaps she should seriously reconsider the absurdity of that belief. If there is a 'technical' reason that a potential member is unable to post her picture (i.e. no digital photos, no scanner, etc...) then she is encouraged to ask a friend, relative or neighbor for help. That should eliminate pretty much all potential excuses for not including a current photo with one's membership request. If a potential member has any other valid reason (cultural, spiritual, etc...) to not to post a picture of herself, she is fully encouraged to contact the group organizer and specify the reason, so that an exception can hopefully be made, and membership ultimately granted.

7.) 'Sales & Solicitation' Policy and Procedure(s)

Members are prohibited from soliciting other members for various ‘causes'. Such causes can include (but is not limited to) work, fund raising, their child’s soccer team, other meet-up groups, etc... Under no circumstances is this meet-up group to be used as a means to promote a business and/or sell a product. There are other ‘networking’ types of meet-up groups that exist for such purposes. Violation of this rule is cause for immediate and permanent removal from the group.

If there is something that a member wants to approach all members of the group about, but is unsure as to if it qualifies as an aforementioned ‘other cause’ that member is encouraged to run it by the group's organizer first, and if it’s deemed appropriate, then the organizer will more than likely direct that member to the group's message board as a means of addressing the group as a whole and sharing the information.

8.) 'Consumption of Alcohol' Policy and Procedure(s)

If a participant at an 'ABC Club' event plans to drink, she is expected to DRINK RESPONSIBY. As the ‘C’ in 'ABC Club' obviously stands for ‘cocktails’ it is safe to assume that there will be ‘adult’ beverages at these events. There will also be non-alcoholic beverages available for those participants who do not drink.

In spite of the fact that this is a group whose members represent a variety of different age groups, It is not open to anyone under the age of 21. Membership in this group implies that the member HONESTLY answered 'Yes' to the profile question that asked if if she is at least 21 years old. It was her obligation to be honest about her age, not the obligation of the organizer/host to check her ID at the door. Further, if a participant does plan to partake of an alcoholic beverage at an 'ABC Club' meeting, she is strongly encouraged to always do so in moderation, as this group does not want alcohol consumption to ever negatively impact the quality of its book discussions, nor does this group EVER want any participant to not be able to drive home safely. Bottom line – be responsible!

9.) 'Book Club Etiquette' Policy and Procedure(s)

ALL members are required to familiarize themselves with the document entitled 'Book Club Etiquette' that can be found on this group's site.

Participants at 'ABC Club' meetings are expected to conduct themselves in accordance with the 'standards of common courtesy' that are explicitly outlined in this document. Repeated breaches of 'Book Club Etiquette' can potentially result in a member's permanent removal from the group.

10.) Anti-discrimination Policy and Procedure(s)

Other than the fact that ALL members are women , this group more than likely consists of a great deal of diversity, ranging from different ages, religious beliefs, nationalities, sexual preferences, political affiliations, socio-economic statuses, etc...

That being said, ALL members are expected to respect other members ‘uniqueness’ as they would want their own 'uniqueness' to be respected. Discrimination and/or defamation will not be tolerated, and is cause for immediate and permanent removal from the group.

11.) Guests and 'little visitors' Policy and Procedure(s)

Participants are not permitted to bring guests with them to 'ABC Club' meetings. This restriction is due to the fact that most (if not all) meetings have a 'maximum participant' limit, and as such, participation is limited to 'members only'.

If a member has a friend who would like to attend a meeting, it is recommended that the member encourages her friend to actually join the group, so that said friend will then be able to RSVP for the meeting, and come out to see what the group is all about.

'Mommy' members, need to make sure that they have made any necessary child care arrangements for their little ones prior to coming to an ‘ABC Club’ meet-up.

Kids are cute, and sweet and all of that, but this group's organizer works around them all day long, and as such would prefer that 'ABC Club' meet-ups remain for for adults only.

12.) Photography Policy and Procedure(s)

By joining this group, a member is giving her consent to have her picture taken at any given meet-up event, and possibly even posted on the meet-up group’s site.

Any member who objects to this policy most specifically express such to this group's organizer so that an exception can be made.

Congratulations! If you've somehow managed to make it this far, then that means that you've read (or at the very least 'skimmed') ALL of this group's Rules and Regulations. That's quite a bit of reading - one book a month should pose no problem at all. for you. That being said, you are strongly encouraged to...

Table of Contents

Page title Most recent update Last edited by
How to 'lead' (facilitate) a book discussion September 30, 2011 10:25 AM Mary
Generic Discussion Questions October 3, 2011 9:04 PM Mary
Financial Information (dues, donations, etc...) September 28, 2011 8:34 AM Mary
Resources for Readers October 7, 2011 12:42 PM Mary
Rules, Regulations, and Suggestions October 11, 2011 2:35 PM Mary
Rules, Regulations, and Suggestions (continued...) October 11, 2011 2:36 PM Mary
Book Club Etiquette October 11, 2011 2:36 PM Mary
About ABC (Appetizers, Books, and Cocktails) Club September 10, 2012 1:00 PM Mary


$2.00 when you can

This covers: The $72.00 every six months the charges me to be an organizer

Payment is accepted using:

  • PayPal
  • Cash or check - “Please feel free to maail you nominal cash donation to Mary E. Walter 3409 Ferndell Drive Winter Park, Florida 32792

Refunds are not offered for this Meetup.

Our Sponsors

People in this
Meetup are also in:

Sign up

Meetup members, Log in

By clicking "Sign up" or "Sign up using Facebook", you confirm that you accept our Terms of Service & Privacy Policy