ethnic mother and daughter preparing christmas present

If you’re lucky enough to have a writer in your life, then you might be considering what to get them as a seasonal gift. Whether it’s through an office gift exchange, on the basis of friendship, or otherwise, here are J & K’s must haves for writers.

J Note-taking is an essential part of being a writer. Inspiration may strike anytime, anywhere, making the ability to capture ideas quickly of the utmost importance. I’ve taken to using voice dictation on my phone to accomplish this, but for the traditionalists there’s no beating the classic Moleskine notebook. It’s the perfect size to fit in a pocket or handbag with a premium feel that justifies its price. Also, its pages resist bleeding much better than those of most notebooks, a key quality for those of us who curl our hands when writing. Here’s one at Barnes & Noble for $17.95.

Buy a Moleskine notebook, build an empire - Los Angeles Times
Moleskine notebook

Writers will sometimes suffer from the dearth of inspiration known as ‘writer’s block.’ The best cure I’ve found is to immerse myself in sources of inspiration, whether that’s books from my favorite authors, tv shows, or even video games. While I’m a bit old-fashioned and prefer having physical books, audiobooks are all the rage, and far more convenient to access. I will admit that it’s pretty nifty hearing the actual author narrate their story, or talented voice actors bring characters to life in a way that print format never can. And, some people just don’t like reading. Listening, though, is a whole other story. Consider gifting a subscription to Audible.com, which is my preferred source of audiobooks. Use that link to get one free download when you sign them up, courtesy of my favorite YouTuber, Mamrie Hart.

K Depending on who you are purchasing for, some people gravitate toward physical items and others the cloud. For physical, I second a note-taking item. While I like using voice dictation, my phone’s programming doesn’t always do a great job in capturing the right words. So I’ll often just fall back on pen and paper. I loved this Walls notebook (~$18) as it combines an element of visual stimulation while you write. Or you can think that you’re doing some awesome graffiti while staying within the law.

Physical + Digital I’m going to recommend a writing aid. But not the one everyone always goes to (Stephen King) but something that can help take writing emotions to the next level. When you find you’re writing your characters frowning all the time, this can help spark describing actions etc. of emotions in a creative way. The Emotional Thesaurus.

Lastly, a digital item which could be a little harder to pull off. Most authors these days need a website. Gift them a month of hosting cost or purchase their website name. This might ruin the surprise a bit as you’d need to work with your gift receiver if they already have a website, or that you are picking the right host provider and website URL. You can get creative though. Make your own digital gift certificate “redeemable” for website costs and send them Zelle or other funds transfer to use on their own.

Are you last minute shopping?

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