Monday, February 20, 2012

Book Group!

Hello All,

     So I have forgotten to mention some pretty awesome news. I was allowed to take over for my library's book group. I have actually belonged to this book group for over a year. There are usually about 9 to 10 people there on average. I have always liked it because they read things that I would never really pick up (but then again I rarely pick up anything outside of YA).

    So how did I become in charge of the book group? Well, the head of the Adult Department runs the book group, but they have recently retired. For one month it was passed off to another librarian in Adult, but no one really wanted it. So the Director asked me if I would like to take over. She said that she had gotten permission from my department head. Since the book group belongs to the Adult Dept. and I am in Circ, my dept. head had to approve me using my time for something that is technically belongs to Adult. The former head of Adult had mentioned that he was going to nominate me to take over the book group since I already belong to the group. I am very excited about this awesome opportunity.

   So this all happened about a month ago. The first meeting that I was officially in charge happened on Valentine's Day. I didn’t schedule that day. Since the group meets at a standard day of the month, I was pretty much stuck with that day. Since I knew it was going to be difficult to get new people there on Valentine's Day I threw myself into promoting my first program!

What I did:
 - Signage. First I created some pretty nifty signs in publisher using the cover of the current book we were reading. The sign included the when, where, and other important information. I gave these signs to the Adult Department to showcase
 - Web. Next I asked our webmaster, who is a genius, to place the event on the library website. She created a pretty snazzy banner and placed it front and center on the website. She also placed the information on the blog and FB.
 - Newspaper. I invited two local newspapers to come to our Feb 14th meeting (it was too late to advertize in the paper) so I suggested they could come write and discuss this great and FREE opportunity that is available. I also submitted event listings for the rest of the book group meetings
 - Word of mouth. I told everyone I could about this book group meeting.

So Feb. 14th has come and gone, so how did it go? I am very happy to report that we had an unprecedented 14 people come to the book group! 5 brand new people. 2 heard about the event from the website, 1 from one of the Adult librarians, 1 was a coworker that I convinced to come, and the last person was my best friend who I 'convinced' to come or she would die. My director was stoked and everyone at my library was super proud of me. We ran out of chairs and name tags!

What book did we read? Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese. We checked out a book kit from another library for this book. The book kit included 10 paperbacks, information on the author, and a list of discussion questions. I probably won't be doing this again. This is a great resource, but I do not like relying on people to be responsible. One of the members could not be there, so I have to wait almost a week before I could turn the kit back in (several days overdue)

I also brought several copies of the next month's read for patrons to check out right there. This went over very well and I plan to do this again.

Also, I got permission from my director to make the book group year round. Previously, they met from Sept to May, which is pretty rare in library book groups. From what I understand, the Adult staff had too much going on to keep this program up and running during the summer. Don't know if that is true or not but I plan to make this group a success. Several people have mentioned having a separate daytime group or a separate nonfiction group. I really like the idea of a daytime group, but I don't want to push my luck. I have to remember that my job is actually in Circ and not Adult. Maybe one day I can try. I really like planning programs.


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