This time of year is usually focused on presents, parties, and people. If you’re a bookworm, it can be a bit overwhelming. And whilst I’d never argue against disappearing with a book from time to time, why not bring others over to the literary side? Here are a few ways to get everyone involved in all things bookish over Christmas and New Year.
1. Be an Icelander
Did you know that Iceland publishes the highest number of books per capita? So it’s not surprising that it‘s an Icelandic Christmas Eve tradition to swap books with family and friends, and then spend the night reading them – cosy log fire optional. You don’t need to buy new books to try this idea. You could all choose a favourite book and share it with someone else.
2. Have a book-themed Christmas do
If you do want to get a bit social, why not do so on your own bookish terms? Throw your own get-together with a book theme and as many or as few, people as you like. It could be based around Christmas books or characters, or maybe summertime books instead!
3. Cook a meal inspired by your favourite book
Food and books go together like mince pies and sherry. So if you’re handy in the kitchen, you could try cooking a dish or two inspired by your favourite book. There are plenty of book based recipes online. How about a tasty glass of Butterbeer from ‘Harry Potter’? Juicy fried chicken and bread rolls from ‘To Kill a Mockingbird’? Or luscious spiced hot chocolate from ‘Chocolat’? Aaaand now I’m hungry.
4. Visit somewhere book related
You might not think there’s anything literary related near you but you’d be surprised what’s out there. Writers get everywhere you see, and most parts of the world have been a source of inspiration for a book at some point. If you’re looking for ideas, have a browse through my “Get inspired’ section. There’s Charles Dickens birthplace perhaps, the home of Rudyard Kipling, or the place where J.R.R Tolkien is buried.
5. Become a storyteller
Pick a classic Christmas story, gather your family and/or friends and take turns reading it out loud. ‘A Christmas Carol’ is an obvious go too (and it’s pretty short too), but you could also try ‘The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe’ or ‘The Snow Queen’. If you’re staying with people for a few days, you could read a bit each evening.
6. Make a book-themed Christmas decorations
No need to buy more shiny bits of plastic. Unleash your crafty side and create some decorations that will last with your own two fair hands. See what you can re-use around the house, or hit the charity shops to find materials. Your imagination’s the only limit here, so go wild!
7. Build a Christmas tree from books
Save your pennies (and the trees) and build a Christmas tree out of books! It’s a free and fun use for your piles and piles of (mostly) well-read tomes.
8. Donate books to a charity shop
It’s hard for a book lover to part with the objects of their affection, but be honest you’ll probably get a few more over the festive season. So make some room for those newbies and donate some of your less-loved books to a charity so they can find a new home and help out a good cause.
What do you think? What kind of book-related things do you do over Christmas? Please share in the comments.