Thursday, September 26, 2013



1. Watch your language! Try to avoid words like "awful" or "idiotic"-- even "like" and "dislike." Those type of words won't help move discussions forward and can put others on the defensive. Instead, talk about your experience -- how you felt as you read the book.  Compare and contrast the book with other books, your reaction of this book as opposed to other books.
2. Don't be dismissive. If you disagree with someone else, don't refer to him or her as an ignoramus (even though they probably are one). Just say, "I'm not sure I see it that way. Here's what I think...." Much, much nicer. Perhaps use the tool of repeating back what you believe the other person said and ask, "Did I understand you correctly?"  Most of the time you'll learn they have misquoted themselves and will then set the record straight with a line of logic and reasoning you do agree with.
3. Support your views. Use specific passages from the book as evidence for your ideas. This is a literary analysis technique called "close reading." Saying "I didn't care for it..." or "It wasn't my favorite..." are enough to get the message across.  Don't say, "It was good because I liked it..." because that doesn't mean anything.  Have a reason to back up your point of view.
4. Read with a pencil. Takes notes or mark passages that strike you—as significant or funny or insightful. Talk about why you marked the passages you did.
5. Speak up.  Have the confidence to let others know what you think. And, please, don't ramble on, repeating yourself because you've run out of things to say.  Just say what you know because, if you left something out, you can always go back and give clarification.
6. Summarize.  What is the point of a book club?  To learn, to be entertained, to socialize.  If you get hung up with not being listened to or blustering due to getting attention, you will not have fun.

No comments:

Post a Comment