James Clear, author of Atomic Habits
We choose themes based on member recommendations, trends and stuff we're really curious about. We make an effort to continually mix it up and rep at least 1 x indy publisher in our shortlists.
Favourite themes so far: Altered (mental) states, work smart, race & identity, habits, gender, AI, cryptocurrency, magic, fast fashion, startups & undercover jobs.
We pull together a short list of contemporary nonfiction books under a theme, on average 250-350 pages long.We know we have reading biases. How? We looked at the 175 books we've short-listed over the last 5 years and asked our members how they choose what they read. The result?
We've explored a great mix of themes from race, to AI, to gender, to taking risks, but more often than not end up reading books written by white men from Europe & the US-backed by large publishers. This doesn't mean the books aren't powerful or mind-changing. They frequently are. But we are also limited by our choices in what we really learn. A lot of our book biases are built into the publishing industry's culture and its new giant recommendation machines.
We want to shift that. We want to shine a light on a wider mix of voices, lesser-known authors, and smaller publishers on the themes we explore. We want to read books from diverse voices across every subject we read: Whether that be the metaverse, the science behind addiction, or how to challenge systemic racism.
How are we doing this?
For each set of authors, publishers and experts we line up, we will consciously look for a diverse mix of ethnicity, gender, nationality & size (less established authors & publishers). We'll check in and share our progress publicly regularly. Learn more and read a little differently with us.
Every week members are nudged to remind them where they should be in the book.
A lot of members will read 1 x RBC book a month 1 book of their choice. Some members are now reading 3-4 books a month.
Members reading styles range from intensive, to slow-slow-sprint, to mix and match. We read in paperback, ereaders, audible and borrow or swap.
We spend a chunk of time connecting our members through our meets, 'rebel coffees' (one-to-one shared interest matching for video chats and in person meets with other 3-4 RBCers who live in your area) and our social channels which are based around interests and where people live.
The biggest long-term value of joining RBC is the people you'll connect with 🙂
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