Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Gifts For the Writer In Your Life

---Or Just For Yourself

There are many occasions when you might want to get a gift for the writer in your life, or maybe you want to get him or her a gift for no reason at all. Or maybe you’re a writer and just want to be nice to yourself. 

Whatever the reason, occasion or person, I thought I’d ponder a few gift suggestions for the awkwardly stuck. It’s so very easy to run into a stone wall when trying to think of what’s right in front of you, so I’ll spell it out; even break it out into categories – sort of. All you need is a bit of time, some thoughtfulness and some money (whether a little or a lot and in a couple of cases no cash at all). 

Books on writing often come to mind. They’re good too. There’s “Writer’s Market” both hard copy and online subscription for when one is looking for somewhere to sell his or her work. A new edition comes out each year. 

Also the “HollywoodCreative Directory” which provides lots of leads on where to market a screenplay (this baby is moderately expensive) . Then there’s Larry Brody’s Television  Writing From theInside Out, Jason Surrell’s “Screenplay by Disney” and Stephen King’s book “On Writing”  And if you’re looking for lots of other book ideas you can visit my Writer’s Emporium on Amazon where I’m always collecting stuff for writers.  There are a lot more and don’t forget the possibility of buying your writer a novel in his or her genre to read. 

If you’ve got the budget, a new thin, flat screen for the computer system incredible blessing. No flicker, much less eye strain for those who sit in front of it for hours at a time. Can’t believe everyone doesn’t have one yet, but you never know. And don’t forget the more basic things a writer needs like cartridges for that printer (or a new printer if the one he or she already has is dying. 

Thinking of software? Look into Movie Magic’s “Screenwriter” for the script writer. If you’re short on cash yourself you can collect some links to free software for scriptwriters such as Adobe Story or Celtx (and there are others).
There are a number of magazine subscriptions appropriate for writers. There’s “The Writer” magazine, “Writer’s Digest”, and “Book” to name a handful. Dash down to your local magazine shop, buy a copy of the magazine and send in the subscription card. Wrap the magazine with a note indicating the subscription. 

On a tight budget? Don’t let the little things pass you by. Make up a small basket filled with any combination of things like good pens (black and colored), paperclips, paper (8 ½ X 11) and envelopes, post it flags and notes, eraser, note pads small and large, highlighters, fine-line Sharpies, staples & stapler. 

Other supplies needed by most writers are things like three-ring notebooks and plastic sheet protectors. Plastic expanding folders are good for storing bits and pieces of a developing or ongoing project. Plastic file boxes hold archived projects and old files.
For the journal keepers on your list think about a really nice journal. They come in everything from clothbound to leather to metal.  You can find them ‘remaindered’ or at fancy full price. 

And speaking of storage, most writers would welcome thumb drives. Most would also welcome a small rolodex for desk top. I have mine divided into two sections: professional contacts and web information. The first section is obvious. The second contains an alphabetized area where I store information regarding websites, passwords, virus protection, software registration and tech support numbers. 

So, there’s your list if you’re buying for a writer. Or, if you’re a writer and want to give hints to get something you really need, print this and post it on your family or friends’ refrigerator or maybe email it. Happy gift giving – and receiving throughout the year! 

Take a moment and tell me what you'd add to my short list in the way of gifts for writers. 

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