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The NYC Sunday Brainy Book Club Message Board › A suggestion for better discussions.

A suggestion for better discussions.

user 3116632
Boston, MA
Post #: 28
Hello Readers!

It seems that in recent months the majority of our meetings have attracted lots of new members. While this is terrific and a big part of the whole meetup thing in the first place - I sometimes wonder if it's made it more difficult to have the in-depth and lengthy discussions we had been having last year and that new members would like to have. Understandably, sometimes new members can be shy and not ask questions or really voice their opinions until they are more comfortable. And, even the "old members" can then be wary of overtalking and "scaring" the new members.

Because of this, I think our discussions on the BOOKS have been getting shorter and shorter and we sometmes get "off-topic" earlier in our meetings than we used to. [For those who don't remember, this time last year we'd have usually 1.5-2 hour discussions on the book and then socialize for how ever long people wanted to stay afterward]

SO. All that being said, my best suggestion at the moment is if everyone could try to bring at least one question or thought or whathaveyou to the meetup, that may help me better direct our discussions. It would be great if you could bring it written down but you don't have to. Even if you read the book and then wind up not being able to come - send me your thoughts if you want, the more input the better.

PLEASE don't be scared away by this message, I'm just trying to make our group as rewarding and fun as I can. As a few of our vocal founding members have moved away, it's all fallen on me in recent months and I really welcome your suggestions on how we can make the group the best we can, without transforming it into one of those super structured groups where the organizer goes around the table and makes everyone speak in turn.

Thanks so much!

user 6546916
New York, NY
Post #: 15
Hey Rach,

I just saw this post. Sorry I am late to the party. I think it is an excellent suggestion. I have been MIA for the past couple of sessions due to work, but I will be at the next planned bookclub meeting and I think that your suggestion will most definitely enhance the discussions. I find that when I am reading a book, questions arise often... questions that I would love to address with the broader group for a deeper perspective, but by the time I get to the group meeting, most of those questions have gone by the wayside... especially the subtle/more specific contemplations that a specific word/phrase etc. inspires. Anyway, I think your suggestion will motivate me to be more cognizant of those moments and recording them in real time, so I can be better equipped at our meetings.

See you soon!

A former member
Post #: 1
Sounds great to me! I'm looking forward to the June Meetup.
user 10765281
Brooklyn, NY
Post #: 14
I was a part of a phenomenal book club group in the last city I lived in. You can generally find a big list of questions for most books (especially reputable ones) online (from various sources like online reading groups and book clubs) and each meeting the organizer (or whoever) would bring a copy for each table. Some months we would get through all the questions, some months they were just a springboard and would inspire other thoughts or questions about the book...but they were really nice to have in case people were having trouble coming up with things to discuss.

Just an idea that seemed to work well that I thought I'd put out there.

Looking forward to meeting everyone. :)
user 3116632
Boston, MA
Post #: 120
Thanks for your suggestion.

As you're new to the group, I won't get into all the details, but the original point of this post from 3 years ago was to have LESS work for me as organizer and put more emphasis on the members actively bringing things they would like to discuss. Those online questions are fine - but it's for the members to look them up in advance. I used to bring questions for the various tables but we don't seem to need them or use them as well as if people actively participate. We don't encourage "observers".

Thanks again.
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