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Friday, December 14, 2012

Best Gifts for Writers

I originally wrote a post about how my overactive imagination got the best of me during the week we were without power after Hurricane Sandy devastated much of the East Coast, but I decided that was too dark for the holiday season.

Instead, I thought we could talk about holiday gifts: the best to give, the best to receive, and the best you ever got.

Gift suggestions:

Encourage a hobby – If we’re not careful, we writers can spend all our time glued to the keyboard at the expense of relationships, health and other interests. For example: I've done three half-marathons so I appreciate anything from sneakers to sunscreen to an offer to walk/run with me.

A gift certificate to a café – Most writers are fueled by caffeine and many would relish the chance to be able to go out and write (or just people-watch).

A book YOU have enjoyed and think they will too – If you read a great book and you think your friend will enjoy it, pass it along, but DON’T give them a book you’ve “heard” is good. Part of the fun of gifting books is being able to discuss them.

A gift certificate to an office supply store – Office supplies are like catnip to writers

A subscription to a magazine – It can be a literary magazine, a writing craft magazine, or a magazine about a totally unrelated subject that interests them…writing is not their entire life/identity and sometimes a break from their chosen career path is a welcome break.

A gift certificate to a bookstore – Writers love bookstores, whether they’re book-and-mortar or online.

A chance to take a class/attend a workshop – Again, it could be writing-centric or could be something else. (Just don’t try to send them to something they have no interest in.)

Something for a writer’s desk/office – a pen, a candle, a computer program (I love Write Or Die and many friends swear by Scrivener) a motivational calendar, music, noise-cancelling headphones, something that shares YOUR gift (my office is filled with pictures taken by friends who are talented photographers, amazing hand-crafted items from crafty pals, and I’m often playing music composed and performed by a talented artist friend) a new robe (for those who aren’t big on getting dressed, lol) plants (writers’ brains are oxygen-starved!) or a kitchen timer (seriously, a kitchen timer is a GREAT writing tool)

Read and post a review of their book  -- SOOO appreciated

Time to write – offer to babysit, run errands, provide a meal that can be frozen

Support – read their work (published or not)  and offer encouragement (we all lose hope/faith at some point)

The above are, in my opinion, the best gifts to receive. What would you add to the list?

What are some of the best gifts you’ve received?

What gifts are do you dream of/hope to receive?

My favorites have been: the amazing support of the writing community and my friends (and DH) purple pens, a roll of crime scene tape, Panera Bread gift cards and the gifts of classes.


B.E. Sanderson said...

Those are all great gift suggestions, JB.

Anne Marie Becker said...

Oh, my gosh, these are fabulous ideas!

My favorite gift to receive is a spa certificate. I try to reward myself every few months, when I've finished some tough stage with a manuscript, with something indulgent. But I often feel guilty spending money on myself, so a certificate is the perfect excuse. :)

My other favorites are book store gift certificates or Starbucks/coffee shop certificates.

And you hit the nail on the head with the "time to write" option. What I wouldn't give for a babysitter or meal delivery some days! Of course, that's probably true for non-writers, too. ;)

JB Lynn said...

B.E. -- Thanks!

Anne Marie -- Ah, i forgot to add an indulgent spa certificate -- great suggestion!

Marcelle Dubé said...

What great ideas, JB! I'm with Anne Marie -- you can never go wrong with a gift certificate for a massage or a pedicure!

Shelley Munro said...

These are all excellent ideas. You can also do something like a writer care package - gather choc, coffee, pens, notepads, stationery supplies or other small items you know the writer will enjoy. Arrange in a basket or box and tie with a big bow.

JB Lynn said...

Marcelle -- Thank you. I'm not sure you'd go wrong for a woman in most professions (or homemakers/moms) with a gift certificate for those.

JB Lynn said...

Shelley -- Great idea! I love getting care packages, they're so much fun!

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