Michille passed along some great gift ideas for Writers and Readers in her post a few weeks ago, and I thought I’d add a few more items to the list for those who are still searching for that certain something for the writer in their life.
Reading is right up there with Writing as an important part of a writer’s life. It is a great way to broaden horizons, learn new things, mentally refresh, and have some fun. What better way to get your writer reading than with a gift-certificate for a local bookstore, an eReader, or some actual books.
Need some help selecting the right book? Micheline recently recommended Nancy Mitford’s 1945 novel, The Pursuit of Love and Lois McMaster Bujold’s Penric’s Mission. You can find many other suggestions in our “What have you been reading” posts here, here, here, or here. The internet is also full of suggestions, like The New York Times’ 100 Notable Books of 2016.
Looking for something a little more “educational” for your writer? How about one of the many titles by blog favorite Chuck Wendig like 500 Ways To Be A Better Writer or Jilly’s recent favorite, Lisa Cron’s Story Genius.
Besides being entertaining, movies are a great way to inspire creativity and learn a bit about story in the process. I’ve been doing a big sort out of files and paperwork recently, so I’ve been queuing up of movies to keep me company while I work. Some are new titles that caught my eye as I surfed my way through the offerings on Netflix like My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2, others are old favorites like Love Actually, The Philadelphia Story, and Miracle on 34th Street. The internet abounds with lists of movies to help you find the perfect title for your writer (or yourself). Remember, it’s not just entertainment, it’s educational too. 🙂
Comfort & Warmth
Okay, you can’t exactly wrap up a big box of comfort and warmth, but you can give the next best thing. Some fuzzy socks or cozy slippers (who can write with cold feet), or a blanket to wrap up in when writing on those chilly late nights or early mornings could be just the ticket. I know I’m far more productive when wrapped up in my favorite writing quilt than when I’m shivering in my office – pretty sure I’m not the only one. Pajamas, a fleecy robe, or even some comfy sweats would be good gifts as well.
Post-Its and Pens
I don’t know about other writers, but colorful post-its and an assortment of pens and highlighters are critical to my writing process. The post-its are very useful during the plotting phase and the multi-color highlighters make it easier for me to see the balance of elements in my story during the revision process.
If your writer prefers writing out stories by hand, rather than on a computer, then a nice pen (ballpoint, fountain, etc.) might be just the thing. A smooth writing pen that feels good in the hand, along with a pretty journal or notebook, always makes me feel a little more creative than staring at a blank computer screen, especially when I find myself stuck in a story.
Some Technical Support
Has your writer been thinking about trying out some writing software but hasn’t yet taken the plunge? If so, how about giving a copy of Scrivener, the writing software that many writers swear by. It’s not too expensive and it’s available for Mac, Windows, and as an app for iPhone and iPad.
A bit of Inspiration
Who doesn’t need a little something to kick-start their creativity from time to time? Here on the blog we have Random Word Improv on Fridays as a way to have a little fun, do something different, and get some words on the page.
Along those lines, The Amazing Story Generator provides tons of story prompts for improv sessions and/or to jump start new ideas. Along those same lines, Santa brought me The Writer’s Toolbox last year, which also provides a variety of tools like “First Sentence” sticks and the “Protagonist Wheel” to help generate ideas and spark creative thinking.
A Living Thing
No, not a puppy, although I did give Santa a hint about that. I was thinking more along the lines of a plant. Not only are they nice to look at, they remove toxins from the air, increase oxygen levels, and have even been shown to increase concentration. If nothing else, they provide a nice focal point when staring off into space and day-dreaming. If you decide to gift a plant, make sure to choose one that is hardy or low maintenance and can survive potential bouts of writer-ly neglect during marathon writing sessions.
A Delightful Beverage
If your writer is a coffee (or tea) drinker, then how about a gift card to a local coffee-shop? It’s like a two-in-one gift: the ability to obtain a delicious beverage (or two) as well as a place to people watch or work on the latest manuscript.
If your writer prefers beverages of a more adult nature, something like Tequila Mockingbird – Cocktails with a Twist along with a set of cocktail glasses might fit the bill. If you really like them, you could even provide a few ingredients, or make it a group gift and offer to be a taste tester.
So, what else would you put on the list?