How to Select Your Next Poetry Book for Your Poetry Book Club

There are so many compelling reasons to start or join a poetry book club. Poetry book clubs are an excellent way to interact with other poetry-lovers, broaden your literary horizons, and gain inspiration for your own writing. While most meetings may be virtual right now, participating in a book club is still a great way to engage with the poetry community. If you’re wondering where to start as you search for a poetry collection to read together, here are a few tips that’ll help your book club flourish for seasons to come. 


1. Take turns selecting a poetry collection.

This is a fun way to get all the members of your book club engaged and excited. Each person has the opportunity to spotlight a favorite poetry collection and lead the group in discussion. This also keeps the “leader” of the poetry club in constant rotation, which can help alleviate undue stress on a single member of the group. This also allows for lots of different tastes to be factored into selecting a book, and it’ll make every group member feel included. 


2. Seek new poetic voices.

There are so many great poets out there who are self-published or represented by small publishing companies. Seek out these lesser-known talents for your book club. Whether you find them on Instagram or through a google search, there are tons of great voices to discover! It’s always exciting to know about an artist when they are just starting out. Your group may even help that poet get the exposure they need for their work to be appreciated and enjoyed on a larger scale. 


3. Check on new arrivals.

Most sites, like Amazon and Barnes & Noble, give you the option to browse new releases. You can also search a specific publisher and see what’s new on their poetry release radar.  Keep your eyes open when you’re scrolling through Instagram for book announcements and launch updates. There’s a lot of buzz and excitement around new releases. You and your poetry club can be among the first readers for your favorite poet. How cool is that?


4. Choose a poetry collection by category.

Maybe you are experiencing a season of life that you want to explore more thoroughly through poetry. Many poetry collections examine specific themes such as nature, fantasy, love, and healing. There is always a poetry collection that gets to the heart of what you’re experiencing. It can be incredibly therapeutic and helpful to process these things together through a themed poetic collection. For more personalization, poll the people in your group and see what topics they’d like to explore more or what emotions they’re experiencing that they would like to delve deeper into with the next poetry book selection. 


5. Choose a book recommended for you.

When you buy a poetry book online, the bookstore or website will often recommend similar titles for you to consider next. This can be a great way to find a book that has a similar tone or subject to ones you already love. Another great way to choose a poetry book is to ask what your poetry-loving friends in the community are reading. So many of the poets I love today were recommended to me by friends. Whenever you see someone reviewing or recommending a poetry collection, try and write it down and keep a running list that you can pull from when it comes time to choose your group’s next poetry book.


The biggest thing to remember when choosing a book for a poetry book club is to make all group members feel engaged and included in the decision-making process. Poetry books are great ways to connect and process things together, and the collections you choose should get to the heart of what each member of your book club is looking for. Poetry book clubs are a great way to bond with one another and to introduce each other to new and exciting collections. Your book club will be a unique product of each member, and it is such a special opportunity to read and reflect together. Enjoy your time together and have a great time making those book selections!