What If I Don’t Want To Be In A Book Club

I’m always trying to answer the impossible question: How do people make friends as adults? The one answer that comes up again and again is…book clubs. The ultimate adult friendship activity. And I get it! I love reading books. And I also like discussing books. And I hear there is usually wine involved, which I’m also a fan of. 

However, making a monthly commitment to read an entire book (that I might not even like) and then trying to work through multiple people’s schedules to find a meeting time sounds like my personal nightmare. 

I’m just not ready for that commitment. But luckily, there are a few alternative options for get-togethers with friends that seem a little more laid back and much more my speed.

Cookbook Night

I freaking love cookbooks. I have about a dozen in my kitchen that I read like some people read novels. Fortunately, cookbook night seems like the perfect opportunity to try those recipes I have bookmarked. A spin on a potluck, a group of friends decide on one book and each brings a cooked meal from that chef’s recipes. With a little bit of planning, you can have appetizers, main courses, sides, and desserts from 6-8 different people but feel cohesive.

It seems like the perfect dinner party, where I don’t have to do all the cooking. Of course, I’d have to pick Homemade Simple by Amanda Haas for the first get-together!

Color Party

A popular themed event on TikTok recently has been color parties. Everyone invited to the event is assigned a color and must bring activities, drinks, and snacks that are from their specific hue. For example, someone assigned the color red could bring red wine, strawberries, and the game Apples to Apples. Someone assigned the color green could bring guacamole and the movie, Green Lantern. (Maybe don’t bring that movie to a party.)

There are ways to expand the idea with colorful decorations, assigned dress codes, and maybe the game Hues and Cues. And if you need help with a playlist, may I suggest “Purple Haze” by Jimi Hendrix, “Yellow” by Coldplay, or “Blackbird” by The Beatles?

Favorite Things Exchange

Similar to the idea above, a favorite things exchange is about grabbing multiple copies of your favorite thing right now and sharing it with all your friends. The most important thing with an event like this is to set a price point early on, such as a $10 or $20 per person cap.

Favorite things could be a lipstick color you are really loving this season, a foot mask you found on Instagram, or maybe a book you found profound. I recently posted about 5 pieces that could revamp a mom’s closet. It’s all about sharing something that stood out to you with the people you care about most. Plus, you walk away with a bunch of new things to try or check out. Word of mouth is already the biggest seller of most things in our capitalistic society, so might as well bring your favorites right to the source.

Supper Club

Supper Club was introduced to me by my producer, Ann Marie. Once a month a group of 4-6 friends goes to dinner together and try new restaurants in the area. They each rotate picking the restaurant and making the reservation. Mostly, they try to challenge each other to try new places they never would have gone. Sometimes you can change it up with a pickleball game, bowling, or a sunset hike then a bite to eat. Mostly it’s nice to have dinner with your core group on a regularly scheduled basis.

At Home Cafe

Last but not least is to turn your kitchen and dining room into a cafe. Brew some coffee and invite your friends over to do…whatever they would do at a cafe. Maybe one friend has some emails to catch up on and another just wants to read. Sometimes it’s lovely just to cohabitate with the ones you love for a little while. Check out our latest gift guide for a cute waffle maker and affordable coffee maker. Just make sure to set your closing hours so you aren’t making lattes into the night.

Which of these book club alternatives would you try? Is there a special something that you like to do with your friends that doesn’t require a monthly commitment?

Speaking of book clubs, our latest book ADHD Is Awesome was selected as this month’s pick by bookclubs.com. Learn more here.