By: Marilyn L. Davis
I Can’t Go Out and Shop – What Gifts Can I Get?
It’s Christmas time again, and you’re struggling to come up with gifts for the writer. As you rack your brain, you remember:
- You give them a beautiful moleskin notebook last year.
- They are still using their favorite pen from college.
- They bought a new laptop for quarantine.
- You’re not spending the holidays with family.
1. Wet Paper Usually Means a Lost Post
I know that showering and writing don’t seem to be compatible, but how many times have you been in the shower, and suddenly you have inspiration for a post, character, or the dialogues that make a passage work? I know I have, and I hate jumping out, drying off, and then forgetting what I wanted to jot down. Aqua Notes solves that dilemma.
So, now you can write in the shower.
2. Moleskin For All Ages
But what about all the stuff that you’ve got wasting away already? From this point on, use a Mod Notebook.
Just scribble away, send the handwritten notebook back to them, and voila, within five days, they’ll have your jottings on the Mod App where you can access it from your phone, tablet, or desktop.
Of course, you’ll still have to make all those random passages into a piece, but at least now you know you won’t lose them.
3. Write, Wash Clothes, Feed the Cat – Too Much Going On!
Most of us are stay-at-home writers with COVID 19, layoffs, and quarantine restrictions in place. Like me, I’ll guarantee that they are torn between writing, washing clothes, organizing the pots and pans, or feeding kids or pets. Please give them a gift of house cleaning or send their laundry to a wash and fold service.
For writers who are at home with their children, please give them the gift of write time without children. Hit a drive-thru and find a park – socially distance, and give Mom or Dad some uninterrupted time to write.
Create a coupon book that your writer can redeem when the clothes, kids, or stuff piles up, and they’ve got a deadline.
4. Reading: Homework for All Writers
There’s a surprising thing that happens to all writers. We discover that we either didn’t read, skimmed, or read Cliffs Notes when we were in school and that maybe some of those “old writers” actually did know how to write well. Don’t worry. There’s a remedy for being remiss.
I own each of the books listed on Jerry Jenkins’s list of best books on writing, and yes, I’ve read them. Any of these books help clarify what their teachers were raving about all those years ago.
Here’s my shortlist of books:
- The War of Art by Steven Pressfield
- Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott
- Zen in the Art of Writing by Ray Bradbury:
- The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron
- Writing Tools: 50 Essential Strategies for Every Writer by Roy Peter Clark
- Write Within Yourself by William Kenower
- Writing with Precision by Jefferson D. Bates
Want the ease of ordering and shipping? Then here’s the list from Amazon for over 100 pages of books about writing.
5. Destress To Write More
I know one gift I would love to get is a massage, but it’s not likely this year.
So, what can I do to prevent neck, back, and hip pain? Well, learning about office ergonomics has already alleviated some of my discomforts. I have an antique prayer kneeler, and using it under my desk, solved my problem. Now my knees are about equal in height to my hips.
6. Look Up: See the Inspiration or Deadline
We writers are always on the lookout for inspiration as if the thoughts in our heads weren’t enough to start with; we’re looking for more.
Some writers are visual learners and find their bright ideas for a post from looking at images or quotes from other writers. I have a muse board, and I get encouraged each time I look at it. Think this would work for your writer friend? Here’s all it takes to make a Muse Board.
- Get a corkboard from your local office supply.
- Google “quotes about writing.” One site I like is Goodreads.com. With over 9,000 quotes about writing, you’re sure to find one that’s about your writer’s genre or a general quote that can inspire.
- When you see the quotes you like, copy them to your computer, and play around with fonts and colors.
- Find pictures that you know will inspire your writer. It’s not just about quotes.
- Print them.
- Cut them out and use either adhesive or colorful pushpins, and you’ve not got an inspirational gift for your writer.
7. The Old Standby – Another Book
Know your writer’s favorite genre or interests? Give them something for pleasure. We’ve already covered books on writing.
I’m a huge fan of Thriftbooks.com. Just recently, I ordered a novel for $3.59 that listed it in excellent condition. I got a refund of my purchase the following day when Thriftbooks judged it as only being in good condition. That’s the kind of people they are – excellent customer service!
Plus, I get a notification about my wish list when a book comes in, a $5 coupon with each $50 spent, and free shipping with some purchases. No, I’m not on their payroll, just a loyal customer who is thoroughly pleased with what they offer and their services.
Here’s a link to get you started finding that book for your writer, complete with coupons. Oh, and if you see something for yourself or your family, great.
8. Buy Wearable Art for the Writer
Let your writer proclaim their profession with jewelry. Etsy has some creative necklaces, rings, pins, and charms.
I have a necklace with about 20 charms on it, given to me by friends in recovery. Each of these charms represents something special to me.
This piece of jewelry always elicits positive reactions from people when I wear it. Each charm also represents a connection to a person, but I think that a writer’s necklace would help me in this phase of my life, too.
9. Inspirational Coffee and Tea Mugs
Want something that they will see every day? That’s probably the inspirational must-have coffee/tea mug proclaiming their writing purpose. A favorite of mine is the Write-Revise-Rewrite, boldly written on a mug from my granddaughter.
Café Press is where you’re sure to find one that will show your writer that you care.
10. Dress Up as a Writer
Besides wearing jewelry that reinforces writing, maybe your writer wants to wear a bolder statement with a t-shirt or a hoodie. Café Press also has a variety of wearable writing that, if nothing else, will keep your writer warm while they labor away.
11. Deck the Halls with Writer Alerts
Is their tree missing unique decorations that proclaim them as the writer in the house? Zazzle has over 100 ornaments, so you’re sure to find one for that particular writer in your life.
12. Organizing Thoughts, Genres, and Whatever
And for the writer who would appreciate any or all of these gifts but still wants to record their thoughts, ideas, and inspiration in that trusty moleskin notebook, here’s a way to organize them, the Redi-Tag Divider Sticky Notes.
They’re 4 x 6, heavyweight, and I can add additional information, more ideas, or add links from research or an image idea after I’ve filled the page in my notebook.
Plus, they come in several colors to keep fiction, nonfiction, or my memoir separated.
My Gift to You
I want to extend an invitation to all the writers who read this – we’re open for submissions. Here are the guidelines.
Sent a Submission? That’s a Gift Back to Us!
I hope this helps you in your quest for the perfect writer’s gift they didn’t know they needed.