*A collaborative post
It is very, very healthy to have hobbies in your life. As parents and those with careers or ambitions, having time for these can be a very difficult thing to arrange. However, that doesn’t mean you should neglect it entirely. While our family is of course something we engage in for pleasure, it can also be very worthwhile to have something you curate, preferably social, to help yourself feel active and as if you have an avenue to blow off steam.
Running a book club or game night in your own home could be a fantastic idea. Not only does the convenience of hosting a social event in your own home speak for itself, but bringing people together and being the head of something truly wonderful can help you care for a project, and feel a sense of authorial intent.
After all, who doesn’t love reading or playing games? With the following advice, we hope to help your new hobby become the talk of your friendship circle:
Consider The Space
It might be that you wish to run a book club, but if you haven’t the space to organise it well, that can be a difficult situation. No matter how profound you felt the prose of the latest bestseller was, if everyone has to discuss this sat on the floor with crossed legs in the cold, no one will return to your gathering. Consider the space. For example, if hoping to run a board game night, you might choose to use your spare room. Purchasing chairs, an oak extending dining table, some lighting, something for the ambiance such as some candles, perhaps even bringing in your speaker system to play comforting tracks from your laptop, you can consider the space much more effectively if you give yourself room to breathe and consider the needs involved.
Of course, also ensuring basic amenities, such as coffees and snacks and use of a clean bathroom space is provided is essential. If you have none of these things (that would be strange, but just in case,) then it might be that hiring out your local hall could allow you to bring people over, and make use of the facilities there. Who knows, if your group expands, you might wish to hire this space out no matter what. However, without considering the experience of the group before the content of your evening’s purpose, you might fail to provide a fun experience.
Plan It All
It could be that you simply hope to bring a few of your best friends around for your board game night. Why not make it a little more fun, such as assigning everyone a week in which they can bring their board games to the table and show it off to everyone? This can not only keep the hosting ideal fresh and fun, but when planned this way everyone gets a chance to share. In book club discussions, you may choose to format the conversation ahead of time. For example, you might decide to open up with a general conversation, and then start to move onto the themes that you feel were presented. Or perhaps, you might give someone a toy and pass it around, whoever holds it can speak, and then when all thoughts are exhausted, the conversation can begin.
This allows a sense of structure and productivity, even in your completely recreational group task. It can also help everyone feel like they’ve had a chance to engage. If you can achieve that, you will have crafted something special indeed.
It might also be that you wish to employ some fun extras when taking care of this. For example, you might wish to stream your board games on a video game service such as Twitch, potentially welcome new viewers, and maybe even monetize your approach ahead of time. For your book club, you may desire recording your thoughts in the form of a podcast, and releasing it. You never know just how well your personalities might merge, or what positive impact you might have. Of course, this is just a fun idea, sometimes keeping a community insular can also have it’s huge benefits.
Consider Your Purpose
Consider why you’re putting on this event in the first place. If you do this, it can help you consider how to best arrange it in the future, and how to better your approach to keeping things fresh. For example, it might be that you wish to experience more writing from those who have an under-represented voice in history. Perhaps you wish to read all of the western canon, and need an excuse to do it. Perhaps, huge books that are considered cultural icons, such as Infinite Jest, are very dense and need a group to help discipline your progress and potentially help you understand the book on its own terms.
Sometimes, you just want to have fun, and there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that either. This can help you sell your idea to new members, and potentially build your club up. Sometimes, bonding with friends overrides any deep or purposeful action you might have, because that can be a routinely healthy experience to take care of. If you have a passion for whatever you want to do, you can be certain that others will find that interesting too.
Failing to hold sessions for a while, being inconsistent with your times, having to delay or postpone certain sessions can only lead everyone to feel tired with the event, and they will slowly start to leave it. Be reliable, and ensure that it becomes part of the routine of everyone involved. You might also use this as a means to meet people in your local area, or to connect with readers online. But what matters is that you take this event seriously, and try to do your best to connect people through experiencing this. If you can do that, you’ll be sure to have great fun. And that, after all, is the purpose.
With these tips – we hope you’re better able to run your book club or game night well.