By Kamryn Koble

Writers tend to be unique. They spend hours crafting people and words out of thin air – which can be pretty exhausting. If you have a writer in your life, chances are you’re not quite sure what Christmas gift would be actually useful to them. Look no further: here’s 20 practical presents your favorite writer will love to find under the tree.

Writing Software

            It might be worth checking what your writer actually owns, but writing software is a great gift. Here are some ideas:

Scrivener (https://www.literatureandlatte.com/scrivener/overview)

This is my personal favorite. I use it for every project I have. It’s like a digital three-ring binder created just for writing. There’s a one-time fee of $49 – once you buy it, your writer owns it forever. I promise they’ll love it.

Aeon Timeline 2 (https://www.aeontimeline.com/users/creative-writers/)

This tool was created with writers in mind and allows you to map out a story in an organized, streamlined way. I also love it because it’s another one-time fee ($50) product – perfect for a Christmas gift.

Hemingway Editor 3 (http://www.hemingwayapp.com/desktop.html)

I love this editing software because it focuses more on style and word choice than spelling and grammar. Help your writer upgrade from Word’s basic spell check to this great system, for a one-time fee of $20.

Books on Writing

Here are some of my favorite books about writing from a bunch of different perspectives. No matter what kind of writer you’re buying for, there’s a wealth of knowledge to be found in books. Luckily, writers tend to like books. All of these are available on Amazon.

 General Writing Craft Books (Safe for Everyone):

  1. Reading Like a Writer: A Guide for People Who Love Books and for Those Who Want to Write Them by Francine Prose
  2. Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life by Anne Lamott
  3. On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft by Stephen King

Books on Plotting (For Your Organized Writer):

  1. Save the Cat by Blake Snyder
  2. Outlining Your Novel: Map Your Way to Success by K.M. Weiland
  3. Structuring Your Novel: Essential Keys for Writing an Outstanding Story by K.M. Weiland
  4. Planning Your Novel: Ideas and Structure by Janice Hardy

 Books on Plotting (For Your Free-Spirited Writer)

  1. Story Trumps Structure: How to Write Unforgettable Fiction By Breaking the Rules by Steven James
  2. Plot Perfect: How to Build Unforgettable Stories Scene by Scene by Munier Paula
  3. The Book on Writing: The Ultimate Guide to Writing Well by Paula LaRocque

  If Your Writer Recently Finished a Novel and is Complaining about Editing:

  1. Revising Your Novel: First Draft to Finished Draft by Janice Hardy

  Fun Miscellaneous Ideas

            While software and books are practical, here are some more quick and easy ideas to make your writer feel loved and appreciated this December.

  1. A gift card to a local bookstore (big ones include Barns & Noble, Books a Million, Better World Books, etc., but consider supporting a small, indie, or local bookstore this year)
  2. Coffee, tea, mugs – Every writer I know is a big fan of hot beverages. Bonus points if you leave them a note encouraging their project when you gift this one.
  3. Some unique stickers or art prints (https://www.redbubble.com/shop/?query=writer&ref=search_box) – Redbubble has so many options for writers. I guarantee you’ll find some gems on here while supporting independent artists.
  4. Notebooks – I know this can be dangerous as your writer likely already hoards notebooks, but a well-crafted volume (Like a Leuchtturm1917) is always a safe bet.
  5. Nice pens – There’s no such thing as too many pens. My personal favorite is PaperMate InkJoy Gels.
  6. Highlighters – Especially if your writer is in the editing process, good highlighters are always useful. My favorite brand is the Zebra Mildliners.

I hope this gave you some good direction! Now go forth knowing your writer-approved gift will be a hit this Christmas.

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