Gift Buying Guide: 25 Gift Ideas For Writers

by Alicia Sparks on December 6, 2011

You can just go ahead and get me this.

Oh, holiday season, how I love thee.

Except for a few things coming by mail – and whatever little trinkets catch my fancy between now and Christmas (you know – for those relatives it’s just aggravatingly difficult to shop for – I am almost finished.

Woohoo! It’s going to be an excellent feeling. 🙂

If you’re not finished with your holiday shopping yet and have a writer (or editor or reader!) on your list, consider any of these holiday gifts for writers.

1. Good old-fashioned paper and pens. Many writers still like to write. Journals, notebooks, pens with smooth-flowing ink – ah, our weaknesses.

2. A coffee pot. Maybe even go all out and get a fancy-shmancy Keurig or even a cappuccino, latte, or mocha machine.

3. A wine rack, wine refrigerator, or just a bunch of wine. (So what if it’s stereotypical? I can say it because I’m a wine-drinking writer.)

4. A pre-paid VISA or MasterCard to help them cover the cost of writing contest entry fees.

5. A laptop. Or, laptop accessories like a laptop stand, lapdesk, or a laptop case.

6. Novelty items like feather quills and wax seals. FUN. (Don’t forget the ink pots!)

7. A nice stationary set. I know it’s not green, especially in this day and age of e-mail, instant messaging, and text messages, but I’m a writer who likes to write and send by post office actual letters. Perhaps your writer does, too.

8. Unique bookends.

9. An e-reader or tablet with e-reader capabilities.

10. A membership to a professional writers organization, like the National Writers Association, the National Association of Independent Writers and Editors, or the National Writers Union. (If none of these sound like YOUR writer, check out this directory of writers associations.)

11. Books for writers. Consider the latest edition of the Writer’s Market or maybe a book geared more toward your writer’s particular kind of writing, such as guides for writing romance, crime, or science fiction. You can find a wide selection over at Gotham’s Writer’s Bookshelf.

12. A magazine subscription. Subscriptions are the gifts that keep on giving. Consider magazines like The Writer, Poets & Writers, and Writer’s Digest.

13. A domain. I wholeheartedly believe that, eventually, every writer needs his or her own domain. Note that you might not be able to purchase this gift in secret (because your writer will probably want some say in deciding the name!).

14. Website hosting. Pay for a year’s worth of website hosting for your writer’s blog or website.

15. Web design. Lots of Web designers offer packages (especially those that work with WordPress) so you can pick a package that works with your budget and still gives your writer a kick-ass website.

16. A webcam. Sometimes freelance writers need to video conference with their clients, or fellow writers and editors working on a particular project.

17. A video camera, or a camera with video capabilities. This is great for writers who don’t need webcams, but who do want to get into video blogging or making videos as part of a content marketing plan. These don’t have to be expensive to produce good quality videos; my first camera with video capabilities was a little over $100, and that was $&#^$% years ago. So, things’ve improved.

18. A writing course or webinar. Whether it’s at a local college or university, or associated with writing organizations like Gotham or Writer’s Digest, a writing course that teaches or sharpens skills is a great gift idea.

19. A biography (or autobiography) of your writer’s favorite writer. Because some famous names have so many of these out there, be sure to spend a little time reading reader reviews.

20. Ergonomic item like a keyboard, mouse, or computer chair make great writer gifts.

21. A massage. Writing is tense business. Grab a salon gift certificate for a massage, or even a combo package that includes other treats like facials, manicures, pedicures.

22. A bookmark. Hey, bookmarks can be really nice. Currently, I’m using a free ASPCA one that I’ve been dragging around for, like, two years. Find a unique one that touches on your writer’s or reader’s tastes.

23. Personalized items. Shop with a store that allows you to create your own products (such as Zazzle) and choose an item like a mug or mousepad with a quote from your writer’s favorite writer, or a quote about writers in general that relates to your writer.

24. A ticket to a writing retreat or a speaking engagement with your writer’s favorite author.

25. Solitude. The only free gift on the entire list, but for some writers, probably the most valuable. Create a book of babysitting vouchers and let your writer cash in when he or she needs some uninterrupted time free of all responsibility – except for writing, of course.

Now, how about you? Have you already shopped for the writer in your life? What’d you get? If YOU’RE the writer, what are your ideal writing gifts?

{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Cristina December 8, 2011 at 6:44 pm

Such a thoughtful list! I’m the blogger in my life so my ideal gifts are #2 (must drink coffee daily plus you never have too many coffee pots), #5 (all of them); #20 (also all of them if possible); #18 because I would love to sharpen my skills and, last but not least, #21 writer or not, no one says no to a relaxing massage.

Happy holidays! Hope you get all the gifts you’re dreaming of!

Alicia December 12, 2011 at 8:42 pm

Happy Holidays to you, too, Cristina! I’m sure it’s going to be a great season for me – it definitely has thus far 🙂

Sonja Jays December 14, 2011 at 10:23 pm

As a writer, I would really like to grab hold of How to Draw Cartoon Characters. I’m looking forward to create my first graphic novel that incorporates character vibrancy; most people nowadays are really into images and I’d like to empower my writing skills a bit more through this approach. Oh, and I’m also adding to the wishlist a free domain where I can set-up all my writing and blogging exploits. Anyone?

Alicia December 14, 2011 at 11:25 pm

@ Sonja – Ha! A free domain would be great! I actually bought someone a URL a couple of years ago, but having an actual hosting plan would be awwwwwesome 🙂

Good luck with your novel – I hope you get your hands on that book!

Sonja Jays December 15, 2011 at 1:17 am

Thanks Alicia, I’ll be back to give you on an update. I’ve been inspired to this sort of thing after watching a few episodes of Gintama.

Kelley May 7, 2013 at 12:03 pm

I’ve been reading these types of lists all day trying to find something useful for a family member. This is by far the most helpful list I’ve come across. Thank you!

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