Intercourse Afforded by such a Club - Its Size
A feature of modern life is undoubtedly the large number of magazines published, all containing something of interest, and many of them valuable information, published in no other form. To many people it is impossible to subscribe to more than one or two, but by the formation of a magazine club each member is given the opportunity of reading as many as are subscribed for.
The formation and working of such a club is quite simple, and forms the basis for pleasant companionship, invaluable as well in a small country town or village as in a city. Members can spend afternoons or evenings together discovering mutual interests, and discussing any especially striking articles.
To start the club will not be found difficult by an enterprising individual, who will first consult her acquaintances and decide upon the number to join. The magazines to be taken can be chosen by allowing each member to select one, which, after it has gone its appointed round, will become her property. Another method would be, by submitting a list of a larger number than will be required and asking each member to vote for those she wishes to see each week, the final selection naturally depending on those receiving the highest number of votes.
The total cost of the subscriptions for one year, including double numbers, may be divided equally among the members, or each may pay for the one she chooses. The work of the secretary will be to decide on the rotation in which the magazines are to circulate, and to ask each member to forward her copy on to a given address after, say, three or four days' retention, as may be agreed upon. For the preservation of the paper-covered periodical, it is advisable to cover it in brown paper, and on this may be written the name of the first reader, say, Mrs. Brown, and the date on which it reaches her from the newsagent, January 25th, four days from which date she passes it on to Mrs. White, who makes her entry, and so on till it reaches the last member, who duly returns it to Mrs. Brown, whose property it becomes.
Another method of distribution is for the organiser to make a list of the periodicals to be subscribed for, and hand it to the local newsagent, with instructions to make out a bill for the whole of the annual subscriptions due, not forgetting any double numbers, and to deliver the entire set to one member as they are issued, she to pass them on to another, as previously mentioned, after perusal.
In one club, in actual working, the members are only supposed to keep each copy twenty-four hours, and when it reaches the organiser, who is last on the list, it remains with her. For the average weekly periodical, with fashion plates and pictures of passing events, this allows sufficient time for perusal, but for some of the more serious monthly magazines the longer period of four days may be found none too much.
The advantage, to the organiser at least, of this plan is that she only has to devote about half an hour in December to the placing of the order with the newsagent and paying his bill for the entire club, the amount being equally distributed among the members, and that she has the privilege of retaining the copies.
Should any member wish to cut out a special design or paragraph she sends a note of what she wants, with a stamped addressed envelope, to the organiser, who makes the cutting and posts it on immediately the numbers reach her.
Any magazines that members do not wish to keep may be forwarded to a hospital or workhouse, or sent in volume sets to a local working men's club or institute.
Size of a Magazine Club
A magazine club should not be too large. From eight to twelve members is a good number If exceeding that, the time allowed for reading will have to be shortened, or one month's journals will not have made the round before the next are due.
The necessity for promptness and punctuality in the passing on of the copies must be courteously impressed upon subscribers, or friction and misunderstandings may arise, and the club thereby defeat its own object, that of affording pleasant social intercourse.