Holiday Gifts for Writers by Vanessa Kier

Let’s welcome back monthly columnist, Vanessa Kier as she shares with us “Holiday Gifts for Writers.” Enjoy! 

Welcome to the holiday season! If you’re stumped on what gifts to get for the writers in your life, here are some suggestions:


Your favorite writing book. Include a card or note explaining how the book has helped your writing process.

Gift certificate to the local bookstore. I don’t know a single writer who isn’t also a voracious reader.

Voucher for a writing course or conference. Meeting other writers in person and hearing news and advice direct from the mouths of industry experts is an excellent way to advance our writing careers. Gift a class from the online MasterClass and they can learn from writers such as Margaret Atwood, Judy Blume, and David Mamet. If the course or conference your writer friend wants to attend doesn’t offer vouchers, create your own that promises to reimburse your friend once they send you their registration information.

Magazine subscription. Yes, there are still magazines. Try a genre-specific magazine such as “Asimov’s Science Fiction” or a print subscription to “Writer’s Digest.”


Writing retreat voucher. Whether you pay for an official writing retreat or just offer to pay for a hotel room/bread & breakfast for a night or two, I bet there’s a writer in your life who would relish some dedicated writing time away from their usual environment.

Spa day voucher. This is the perfect gift for writers who’ve turned in a particularly difficult project or have suffered a major rejection and need a pick-me-up.

Chocolate/Wine/Coffee/Tea. A gift of food can serve as a reward or provide a necessary component to their writing routine. Me, I need coffee before I write, but if I drank tea I’d want one of the tea tins from NovelTeas.

NovelTeas Tins



Dixit board game. Dixit is a storytelling game appropriate for ages eight and up.

Writer themed jewelry. Help your writer friend proclaim to the world their love of writing with some jewelry. I particularly like the offerings over at Etsy.

Writer themed t-shirt. One of my favorite t-shirts says “Careful, or you’ll end up in my novel.” Etsy has some fun designs.


Writer themed skin. You can find these for laptops, tablets, and phones. Check out this selection from

Bluetooth keyboard. For writers on the go to use with a tablet or mobile device.

Noise canceling headphones. For writing in a cafe or on a plane.

Aqua Notes. How brilliant is this? Aqua Notes is a waterproof notepad and pencil for taking notes in the shower or bath. ( I SO need this!)

Old-fashioned, typewriter style keyboard. Lend a bit of nostalgia to your friend’s writing process.

Old-fashioned, typewriter style keyboard. Lend a bit of nostalgia to your friend’s writing process. (via DigitalTrends)

Old-fashioned, typewriter style keyboard. Lend a bit of nostalgia to your friend’s writing process. (via DigitalTrends)

Livescribe smartpen. The Livescribe pens capture digital images of handwritten notes as you write. The pens can also record accompanying audio. Before my pen died, I used it for taking notes at conferences and during brainstorming sessions. If I then discovered that I couldn’t understand what I’d written, I could play back the audio and figure it out.

Call center quality headset. For writers who use dictation.

Digital recorder. Some writers want a higher caliber audio recording for transcribing their dictation via Dragon Naturally Speaking. A digital recorder is also handy for simply capturing writing-related thoughts while on the go. Many of them are smaller and lighter than a smartphone and clip to your collar. Very handy for walks.

A fun or personalized bag. For carrying laptops, notebooks, and other writerly paraphernalia.

A writing or creativity app gifted from the appropriate app store. Or, if available, buy them a license to software such as Scrivener. Literature and Latte, the folks who make Scrivener, have instructions on how to do this in their FAQ section. (Not all software can be gifted, so confirm before purchasing.)

Of course, these gifts don’t have to be limited to the holiday season. Pick out a gift or two for your best writing buddies and surprise them with it when they’ve finished their current project or make their first/next sale.

And while you’re shopping, why not pick up a treat or two for yourself? You deserve it!




Vanessa Kier combined her love of teaching and her fascination with technology to form The Writer’s Tech Stop, where writers can get coaching, classes, and services related to Scrivener and other writer-related tech. She also writes action-packed romantic thrillers with an edge. When not working, she likes to take long hikes in the local hills, play puzzle games on her mobile device, and read.

Vanessa Kier’s Tech Tips for Writers on YouTube:


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