Like everyone who works in the greeting card industry, I happen to know that August is a month when a LOT of people have birthdays. And since so many writers read my blog, I wanted to do a post about great gift ideas they might like to give to their writer friends or add to their own wish lists for birthdays or for Christmas. And of course, you might want to treat yourself!
Some of these are inexpensive gifts, some are splurges, and some are in between. Prices or availability may change after I put up this post. I can’t go back and check it all the time. I have writing to do!
I’m giving away #6 to one of my newsletter subscribers in October, so sign up if you want to! (I used to try to do giveaways on the blog, but it was too hard to track people down afterward, so now I do them on the newsletter once in a while instead.)
Let’s start with the basics! This is what I write first drafts in. To me, it’s the best notebook because A. it has more pages than the other notebooks and B. it has a plastic cover that doesn’t get all torn up and protects your writing when you spill your coffee on it, not that I would ever do that.
As a kid, almost nothing made me happier than a brand-new notebook, and I haven’t changed a bit.
I thought about my horrifying Google search history a lot when I was writing my “Not Quite Dead” post, hahaha.
I love this design! I can just imagine snuggling into it on a fall day and starting Chapter One, page one of a brand new novel.
4. GMC: Goal, Motivation, and Conflict, by Debra Dixon. $9.99 for Kindle
Hey, fiction writers! Here’s a book about plotting that might change your life! I’m sure I’ve talked about it on the blog before. I’ve given it away in a drawing for my newsletter subscribers, just because I think it’s great. Do I follow it exactly as a writer? Um, no. I should maybe try that! But just the principles have helped me so much.
5. A big corkboard. (This one is 30” x 18” and it’s $23)
Virtual corkboards are included in the popular novel-writing software Scrivener, and you can use Pinterest boards for inspiration. There’s something so old-school and awesome about having tangible inspiration and notes right on your wall, though! It’s like what investigators do in movies to solve cases. Maybe add some index cards to go with it.
6. Eat. Sleep. Write. Mug, $13 + shipping.
Very nice for anyone trying to make writing more central in their lives… or anyone who’s already writing nonstop, for that matter.
Since I spend more time editing than writing, I figured I’d include an editing mug as well. This mug was created for photographers in mind, but if there’s a better gift for someone who just finished a first draft of a novel, I don’t know it (as long as they like glitter.)
8. Novel Teas, $15.
This is English Breakfast tea, in teabags with literary quotes from novels to inspire a writer. You could put this in a basket with one of the mugs above and maybe some cookies and you would have an awesome writer gift for somebody! This actually would be a very nice gift for a fellow book club member or any reader, too.
Many of us writers do drink more than caffeinated beverages, after all.
10. Final Draft 9, $175 – $180
If you’re a screenwriter, Final Draft is amazing. I know! It’s expensive! But it will save you about a half hour on the hour of formatting time. It does it all for you. It has over templates for television shows, screenplay, stageplay, and graphic novels. It even reads your script back to you! You can assign different voices to the different characters.
Okay, if you really need something cheaper (and without as many features), check out Celtx!
Ohhh, I bet I could have used this a while back. It probably would have saved me a lot of trouble! I don’t have this book, but it has good reviews, and it looks like a great gift idea for any emerging author who’s looking into setting up her blog or author site.
12. A Passion Planner, $30
For writers to get their work done and still hold down jobs and raise children and so on, they need to stay organized. I’m a Franklin Covey kind of gal, myself, but I know a lot of people who love this planner. I think a dated one is a particularly nice Christmas gift, so I’m linking to the 2017 planner here. They have other designs and undated options, too.
I’m making this suggestion particularly with indie authors in mind. Sometimes you need to print up business cards for a conference, or bookmarks and other swag for writer events… a gift certificate to Zazzle can help with that!
14. A massage gift card.
Writers can develop problems with their hands, arms, shoulders, and back from being on the keyboard for so long. They can also get stressed out about their work! That makes a massage gift card a great idea. I’ve linked to Spafinder here just because you can use their cards at thousands of locations, but you can get gift cards from lots of spas and practitioners. (Here in Kansas City I go to Michael Schuver, the best massage therapist I’ve ever visited.)
Crockpots are great for writers. Slow cooker recipes usually don’t take much time, they make a bunch of food so you can freeze some for later, and your dinner won’t burn while you’re trying to figure out how the heck to fix a pesky plot hole.
I wrote this book to help people think of how to describe things, develop plots, build characters, and so on, and hey, lots of people like it!
Do you have a gift idea for writers, or is there something particular on your wish list as a writer? Let us know in the comments! Thanks so much for reading, and happy writing!