Updated: Jan 28, 2020
Back in September I wrote about community and its impact on my life. I wrote about the struggles of becoming involved in a community, especially after my college days, as many friends are now scattered about. Finding that community is intimidating! No matter what age you are or what stage of life you find yourself in. Putting yourself out there and being vulnerable is a scary concept – particularly when you are unfamiliar with the terrain.
At Helium, we are making an effort to create and build a community of our own – and that starts with you! We have wrestled with the idea of starting a book club. At first, our brainstorming sessions were focused around the idea of offering up a unique book for any and all interested Helium members to collectively read, then implementing a structured format for members to engage in intelligent and thoughtful conversations centered around key takeaways, characters, etc. - essentially your basic book club. Food would be provided, we'd rotate meeting spots, and so on...
However, you all, like Helium, are anything but basic. We recently caught wind of a non-traditional reading trend..."silent" book clubs. Instantly intrigued by this against-the-grain concept, we dug deeper. The entire notion of what book clubs are supposed to be was being turned on its head – the seemingly forced sharing of thoughts and ideas, the reading of the same book, the at-times demanding schedule. At these "silent" book club get-togethers, readers - each reading whatever they so choose, at whatever pace they'd like - gather in a welcoming, safe, communal space to read, chat, and be in the presence of like-minded people.
Think of the possibilities! Meeting other readers. Challenging other's thinking, having your thoughts be challenged. Exposure to new books, genres, and topics. Of course, there is no pressure, nor obligation to engage in conversation. The purpose is to create an environment that is merely there to nurture a community of readers, however these readers see fit - be that chatting with others, or reading in peace.
If you couldn't tell by my raving, we loved this idea. Your decision on what to read is a personal one, one that is unique to you. Rather than confine you to a book you may have already read or an author you may not care for, we think these "silent" book clubs offer the best of both worlds. Read what you please, converse with people of similar interests, and be part of a collective - all in a welcoming, friendly, relaxed setting.
Again, we all can struggle with community, myself being no exception. Recognizing this, Helium wants to do something about it. "Silent" book clubs are definitely that something, forging an open-arms, local community that places an emphasis on the distinct personalities and interests of its members. Milwaukee, we're proud to announce that a "silent" book club is coming your way! We'll be rolling out this idea in the near future - all in an effort to build a family and create shared experiences!
** We want to hear your thoughts on this "silent" book club idea! ** Leave a comment with your two cents, or, if you prefer to keep it more personal, drop us an email at email@example.com! Either way, we would love to hear your feedback and your interest (or lack thereof) in Helium’s "silent" book club idea!
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