Maybe you read to relax. Or to learn. To pass time. Or to look smart. All good reasons.

Or maybe you don’t read at all, but have been meaning to start. Regardless of your motive, reading is no doubt good for you. It has been proven to boost intelligence in kids and make you more empathetic. And reading for up to 6 minutes can lower your stress by 68%.

The question is, what to read?

Here are five books perfect for event planners.

1. Between You & Me: Confessions of a Comma Queen

Keeping up with the New Yorker every week might be a slog, but this book by New Yorker grammarian Mary Norris is not. It humanizes grammar for the layperson, breaking down the proper use of, say, the Oxford comma, but without being condescending (or boring).

Why should event planners read this?

Because communicating well in writing is a major part of your job. Whether you’re composing an email to a potential sponsor or creating a promotional campaign, you can’t afford typos or grammatical errors. Plus, if you think your job requires exhaustive precision, it’s nice to know that it could be even worse. 

Read it

2. The Culture Code

This New York Times bestseller by Daniel Coyle was written for leaders who want to know how to “unlock the secrets of successful culture.” It uses entertaining examples from sports teams, military teams, successful companies, and even jewel thieves to describe how effective groups of people work together. 

Why should event planners read this?

If you create and organize events, you deal with group dynamics. From your event team to your ecosystem of partners — sponsors, vendors, marketers, and more — you need things to hum along smoothly. This book will teach you some practical tips for creating a positive, effective culture at work. 

Read it

3. Comfortable with Uncertainty: 108 Teachings on Cultivating Fearlessness and Compassion

Some of Pema Chodron’s Buddhist teachings on mindfulness are pulled together in this timeless text. The focus, per the title, is on being “comfortable with uncertainty,” making this a particularly effective read for event planners who expect things to go awry at any moment.

Plus, the short passages make this one a super easy read, so you can peruse during your breaks to end the day on a high note.

Why should event planners read this?

Every event planner has times when they simply can. Not. Cope. This book will help.

Read it

4. Devotions: The Selected Poems of Mary Oliver

Nothing says escapism like quality poetry. With this collection of poems by the recently deceased Mary Oliver, you’ll lose yourself in revery.

Oliver often focused her poetry on natural subjects, but her messages were those of self-love, forgiveness, and redemption — making her a particular favorite in self-help circles. 

Why should event planners read this?

Oliver had a knack for imparting simple but sage advice:

“You must not ever stop being whimsical. And you must not, ever, give anyone else the responsibility for your life.”

“Keep some room in your heart for the unimaginable.”

“If you suddenly and unexpectedly feel joy, don’t hesitate. Give in to it.”

Read it

5. A straight-up guilty pleasure read

The life of an event planner is a hectic one. As far as coping mechanisms go, a reading crutch is probably healthier than, say vaping. Sometimes, the best book is one that’s borderline trash.

Maybe it’s a tawdry romance, or a murder mystery. The guilty pleasure is a paperback you devour in a day, sometimes with a glass of Chardonnay — or, screw it, a bag of Doritos. 

Some suggestions: 

  • A celebrity memoir — Consider your favorite child actor’s tell-all: Taraji P. Henson, Rosie Perez, Mindy Kaling, Gabourey Sidibe, Melissa Joan Hart, Candace Cameron Bure. Rob Lowe…
  • A thriller or mystery with a satisfying outcome and a paint-by-numbers plot 
  • An oldie but goodie — Valley of the Dolls or Flowers in the Attic

Why should event planners read this?

There’s no better way to relax than to become completely immersed in a story. And let’s face it, every event planner needs and deserves a little R&R. 

And speaking of rest, one more reason to swap out your nighttime TV-watching or screen-scrolling for a good book: Bright screens mess with your internal clock, making it much harder to fall asleep. Specifically, the blue light screens emit is known to block the release of melatonin, which your body needs to get sleepy.

Which brings us to the sixth type of book you might consider reading: something really boring. Might we suggest War and Peace?

On the hunt for a gift for your event planner friend? Consider these books contenders — and remember to avoid these options