For over ten years, Women’s National Book Association’s initiative, National Reading Group Month, has promoted the value of book discussion groups, organized chapter author events in October, and created the annual Great Group Reads list of 20 top books for discussion groups.
The goals of National Reading Group Month are:
- Increase public awareness of the joy and value of shared reading
- Provide a time for reading groups to celebrate their accomplishments and plan for the future
- Provide opportunities for individuals to join an existing reading group or start a new one
- Encourage libraries, bookstores, and organizations to host special reading group events
The WNBA launched National Reading Group Month in October 2007 as the premier event of its 90th anniversary. Special events held in chapter cities featured best-selling authors and book-club “favs” Hillary Carlip, Laura Dave, Beth Gutcheon, Jennifer Haigh, Wally Lamb, Jamie Saul, Matthew Sharpe, Beverly Swerling, and Adriana Trigiani. Eager readers met authors, swapped tips, shared reading suggestions, and left with armloads of new reads. The official signature event was held at The New York Center for Independent Publishing organized by the WNBA-New York City chapter.
For over ten years, WNBA continued the tradition of annual events in the month of October in each of its chapter cities. A portion of the proceeds from selected NRGM events is donated to the U.S. Fund for UNICEF.
NRGM augments the WNBA’s mission to promote the value of books and reading. Through this initiative the organization aims to foster the values reading groups encourage: camaraderie, enjoyment of shared reading, and appreciation of literature and reading as conduits for transmitting culture and advancing civic engagement.
National Reading Group Month is the innovation of sisters Martha Burns and Alice Dillon, Women’s National Book Association members and the authors of Reading Group Journal: Notes in the Margin (Abbeville Press).
Great Group Reads provides an annual list of 20 top titles selected for book discussion groups. The list is announced each September, in time for celebrating National Reading Group Month in October.
Committee for National Reading Group Month
Jill A. Tardiff, Chair
Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com
Susan Walker, NRGM Event Coordinator
Kristen Knox, Great Group Reads Selection , Committee Manager
Pamela Milam, Coordinator, Great Group Reads Selection Committee
Linda Rosen, Coordinator, NRGM Great Group Reads