Seven Holiday Gifts for Writers

20 days ago

If the writer in your life is anything like me, you’re having a heck of a time figuring out what to get him or her. I know my husband complains over my refusal to get excited about jewelry, dresses, perfumes and other apparent mainstays of women everywhere. That is not to say writers don't enjoy these things. Many do. I'm just not one of them. That's why I’m compiling a list of gifts I think are perfect for a writer.

1) Experiences: All writers need experiences so they can write more. Experiences can come in the form of a cooking class, martial arts, trips to the beach, trips to nearby tourist attractions you never bothered visiting, camping in the backyard, you name it. Now, here I’m biased because I love experiences more than just about anything else. I never lose them and unless I get Alzheimer’s or get hit by amnesia, they’ll last a lifetime.

2) Reminders and Inspiration: Promises of the future can be powerful things. Put together a picture or a plaque or something to remind that person why they stay up late nights and do what they do. Let them know you know what their hopes and dreams are, that you’re cheering them on even when you’re not around. A little plaque with their first poem inscribed forever, a rudimentary printing of the first novel, a frame of their first review. It doesn’t matter. It’s about letting that special person know you care and you know what’s important to them.

3) NaNoWriMo memorabilia: National Novel Writing Month just ended and a few hundred thousand writers participated this year. If the writer in your life is one of them and if they won by completing a fifty-thousand word manuscript, they might appreciate a reminder. Check out memorabilia at: NaNoWriMo land

4) Time to Write: As a married working mother who writes, life is hectic so time to write is golden. Guaranteed two-hour coupons would be heaven. Best thing about this gift: it’s free.

5) Kindle or Nook: Writers love books. It’s kind of a pre-requisite to writing so chances that a fifty dollar Amazon gift card or a Kindle will be at the top of the list are pretty high. I personally have two kindles: a Fyre and a 3G standard because it works in sunlight and sometimes I can’t stand the backlight for long hours. I love them both and will charge them before I charge my phone because they’re more important to me. I’m seriously considering replacing my existing Kindle with the White because it’ll be good for day or night but can’t figure out a way to justify the splurge.

6) Books: An Amazon gift card if a Kindle user or a B&N gift card for Nook or those who still love to crack open the pages of a new book would give hours or even days of enjoyment.

7) Software: My personal mantra is that software should make your life easier, not harder. It shouldn't be so bogged down with features you need ten classes just to figure out what's going on. It should be simple, effective and elegant. For writing software, I personally love Scrivener (review) and WriteOrDie (review). Scrivener is a word processor that helps to organize my thoughts and has really useful templates for writing novels, screen plays or even recipe books. WriteOrDie is a $10 software product that helps to minimize distractions on the computer while writing.

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