I was reading Poets and Writers Magazine the other day, the “Inspiration” issue, and came upon an article about silent book clubs. Have you heard of them? I hadn’t but apparently silent book clubs and silent reading parties are a thing! I guess I don’t run in the right crowd or something and this trend slipped right by me.
Anyway, I think the silent reading party came first in Seattle in 2009. Since then has taken off around the world. The idea of the party is for a bunch of people to show up at a bar or other public place and they all sit around reading together for an hour or two. That’s it. You don’t have to talk to anyone and you can bring whatever you want to read.
The Silent Book Club started in San Francisco in 2012 and they have a website. The founder, Guinevere de la Mere, hosts regular reading parties, publishes a blog, curates an international Silent Reading Book Club event calendar, and offers tips on how to start a club of your own. I checked out the club list and it appears one is starting up in the Twin Cities in February. It is being held at a cafe in Minneapolis and in March it will be held in St Paul. Very democratic to switch back and forth between cities! I’d love to go but it is going to be on the night I usually lead a group bike ride. February is a few weeks away yet so who knows, perhaps something will change and I will be able to make it.
Silent Reading Parties turned up in the pages of the New Yorker back in 2014. I don’t generally read the magazine. I’m so uncool. But it strikes me that this is the best sort of party ever for reading introverts like myself.
Have any of you heard about this? Or maybe you have attended a silent reading party or a Silent Book Club meeting? If so, do share! If not, would you go to an event if one were hosted in your area?