Some of my fellow librarians and I have started a reader’s advisory book club to help us make more informed recommendations in genres we don’t read as often. We’ll each read a different book from the month’s genre, then give a brief summary and share our thoughts on the book in our meetings.
I’m looking forward to improving not only my reader’s advisory skills but also my writing. I think it’s important for writers to read a lot in their genre, of course, but reading more widely can also introduce writers to elements that may not be as present in the genre they’re writing. I write mostly fantasy novels, but thrillers have taught me lessons about pacing, mysteries have taught me about creating suspense, and romances have taught me about crafting believable relationships. You don’t have to be writing a thriller to write something that keeps readers turning pages — and who better to learn how to learn those skills from than the masters?
I’ll post the best reviews from our book club meetings here throughout the year, along with lessons I took from those books as a writer. We’re starting off with romance in January. Do you have any favorite romances you’d recommend?
Finally, I want to wish all of you a happy holiday season! Whatever you’re celebrating (even if it’s just a few days off of work/school), I hope you have a wonderful time!