Ode to Book Clubs!
Over the past few years certain book clubs in the Vancouver Lower Mainland have chosen my books and invited me to their meetings. As a writer, it has been a wonderful glimpse into how readers react to my work.
Book club members read a lot; their questions inspire me to keep learning and be ever so mindful of my intent. It’s intriguing to hear how they feel about the characters, my style, or if my intended themes are obvious or lost in the narrative. Their feedback inspires me to continually look at refining my writing process.
These women are busy. They don’t have a lot of their own time, so the fact that they’ve read my book and are inviting me to one of their monthly meetings is truly kind (there has yet to be anyone representing the male gender at any of the book clubs!).
The first book club was a group of grannies. In 2010 when Vancouver hosted the Winter Olympic Games, they chose The Crazy Canucks – Canada’s Legendary Ski Team. They invited me to their local library for afternoon tea and it was delightful to meet them and hear all about their alpine adventures from earlier times.
More recently, an old high school friend suggested Friends, Six Women, Six Cultures, One Humanity to her book club (formed through her work). We had a BBQ on the back porch and shared many, many laughs. They donated their copies and discussion questions to their local library.
And, if someone doesn’t like my writing, that’s perfectly fine, that’s their right. I always let the organizer know that I value everyone’s opinion; no one has to like my work. If they’ve read it, as I see it, they have the right to an opinion. I appreciate their tactful and honest insights.
Each meeting has been different, from an enjoyable chat to an in depth literary analysis, from discussing the writing process to sharing how to get published. I want to thank each club for your generosity, kindness, and support – it is appreciated.