The word is I’m hard to buy a gift for. And maybe all writers are. I’m told that normal people have no idea what goes on in our heads.
I decided to spend some time thinking about why no one seems to know how to give a writer a gift. What would make buying for us creative types easy?
Of course, research was called for. I checked with my writer friends, my readers and asked in my Facebook groups. This list, while of course, not complete, is a list of things I heard over and over again.
So here you go normal-not-writer-types, this by category is what I came up with for you to get that very special writer in your life…
**Some of the links in the following article are affiliate links for which I’m paid a small commission but costs you nothing additional. For my full disclosure statement click here.**
First up? Software…
So far the most versatile writing software available for writers. This software makes it possible to plot, plan, research and format all in one place. This one piece of, very reasonably priced, software has upped my productivity and made the whole novel writing experience so much easier than using Word or some other word processing software. I love it so much that I’ve created a free class for it for my readers.
There is a learning curve to Scrivener so if you are buying this for the writer in your life feel free to send them to my class so they can get started quick and easy with short video lessons, learning only the skills they need at there own pace for FREE.
If your writer is getting ready to indie publish and owns a Mac, this is a lifesaver. Vellum formats print and ebooks in all the needed formats and makes the entire process so easy. I want to kiss the guys that created Vellum. (I won’t of course, even if I meet them at a conference but I will probably gush like a fangirl) This software is an indie authors dream. It’s a bit more pricey than Scrivener but it is a powerful tool and pays for itself by the time you’ve published a book or two.
I’m really into productivity and streamlining my writing process so these two books by Chris Fox, in particular, have been extremely helpful.
Lifelong Writing Habit and 5000 Words Per Hour
These books were amazing for my productivity and helped me to develop better writing habits. Chris is the real deal. Look him up here to see the kind of amazingness he’s accomplished and shared with his readers. Your writer will love him!
On Writing by Stephen King
This was the first book I read about writing that wasn’t assigned for a class in school. The first half is his autobiography where he talks about his childhood, how he became a writer, and his harrowing accident that almost killed him. The second half is his advice on writing. When I read this book I felt like I was sitting in a room with Stephen King while he shared with me his story and his writing secrets. I recommend buying this one in print for your writer because if they’re a nerdy learner like me they will want to make notes.
This next book is by a writer who also teaches other writers. She has a fabulous podcast and has published numerous nonfiction books on the craft of writing. This one, in particular, is all about characters
Creating Character Arcs by KM Weiland and (Nerd Alert we authors love these!) the Workbook to go with it! Books on the craft of writing are always welcome. I find most writers to be lifelong learners and we’re always looking for ways to improve so these kinds of gifts are perfect, trust me.
To go along with these I’ve picked out some stuff to go with the books that all writers love:
Generally speaking, all writers love paper, pens, and ways to organize their time. The way to a writers heart is through office supplies and these are easy and good quality.
Conventions and Writing Groups…
These are always welcome to any writer. Writing is a solitary job so we love to get together with other writers and learn more about our craft and the business of writing. Honestly just being with other people who don’t look at you like you’re a nut when you tell them about the voices in your head is a gift in itself.
I always start with my peeps.
Romance Writers of America. Even if your writer doesn’t write romance RWA has an unequaled educational program. Romance writers are some of the hardest working writers out there and they love to share their knowledge with other writers.
They have a huge convention every year that is full of amazing authors and teachers and tons of people in the business. Your writer will come home from the RWA conference with a head full of knowledge and you will be the one that sent them there. That’s got to be good for some ‘you’re the best’ points for you!
RWA National Conference
List of Chapter Conferences these are smaller and more affordable so if there is one close to you these are really good options for a first conference so as not to be overwhelmed by National, which is huge!
Writer’s Digest also puts on a good conference. I haven’t attended this one but friends have recommended it and it appeals to all genres of writing.
RWA has local chapters and other events for your writer to attend throughout the year and Writer’s Digest has a publication that is available as well.
One of the classes I’ve found to be incredibly helpful and fun is MasterClass. They have a selection of video-based writing classes given by famous writers and this year they are offering an All Access Pass to all their classes for a very reasonable price.
I’ve personally taken the Shonda Rhimes Television Writing class and loved it.
Book Marketing Class…
I’m offering 40% off to the readers of this post for my Visual Content Marketing for Authors class. If your writer is struggling with book marketing my class can help with that. Along with a private Facebook group for questions and critique.
I love to help other authors move forward in their career and visual content marketing is a great way to do that.
Here is a quick video
Any of those writing classes will be a hit with your writer. And giving all of them? Big points for you!
One of the biggest topics in writing circles now is mentoring and coaching. Individual and group coaching to bring your writing to the next level.
Is your writer having trouble getting to ‘The End’? Coaching can be really affordable and incredibly helpful to keep your writer on track.
WriteNowWorkshops offers one on one coaching to get that book finished! Your writer will be over the moon.
The last two are gifts that when I posted my question to my writer peeps about what they wanted, popped up the most.
Dedicated writing space. I understand that everyone has limitations on space in their homes but if as a gift you could give your writer space or better yet a room to write you would be in. If your writer doesn’t have that now I guarantee that is on the top of their gift list!
Here are some ideas from my Writing Space Pinterest Board
And last but not least?
For the modern writer who most likely has to work a day job and/or is busy raising children, running a household or just having a life, carving time out to write is difficult. If you can think of a time in your writer’s schedule that they could consistently have that time just for their writing, give it to them.
Create a coupon book or a gift certificate that says Writing Time – 4 hours a week on Saturday mornings or whatever works for your family schedule. Encourage them to make time and to keep it. Don’t allow other family members to interrupt unless it’s life-threatening. Make sure they know what’s important to them is important to you. That would be the best gift of all!