Top Ten Gifts for Writers

Posted on Tue, Nov 20 2012 9:00 am by Chris Jones

The height of holiday stress begins this week. Overindulgent meals. Family gatherings. Family dysfunction. Office parties. Black Friday. Small Business Saturday. Travel lines, traffic lines, shopping lines. And often not enough spiked egg nog to make it all seem worthwhile.

But at least we can help you cross one thing off your list. Here then are ten great gift ideas (in no particular order) for the writer(s) in your life.

If You Want to Write by Brenda Ueland

Carl Sandburg called this classic published by Graywolf "The best book ever written about how to write." Enough said.

Read This, edited with a preface by Hans Weyandt

Sure Goodreads is great, but where do we really seek the best advice for finding a great book? Booksellers. And this new Coffee House Press book brings together suggestions from independent booksellers across the country. What writer could resist?

Views from the Loft, edited by Daniel Slager

When Milkweed published this collection of 35 years of the best essays from A View from the Loft, they dubbed it "a portable writer's workshop." Among others, this book features the voices of Mark Doty, Ted Kooser, Marilyn Chin, Rick Bass, and Grace Paley.

Books as Art through Etsy

Being one floor up from the Minnesota Center for Book Arts reminds you everyday that books themselves are beautiful. This Etsy page features a number of talented artists who use books as their medium.

Oxford Dictionaries Pro subscription

Not only does this online subscription get you access to the Oxford English Dictionary, it also gives access to some of the lesser known publications that can help any writer, including: New Hart’s Rules, New Oxford Dictionary for Writers and Editors, and Pocket Fowler’s Modern English Usage.


Wordie Wars, Forrest-Pruzan Creative

For the competitive word-lover. There are lots of word games out there, but most writers already have a version of Scrabble and most other word games don't quick stack up. This one offers a new and fun way to play with words (a close second would be Bananagrams).

One Hundred Writers Postcards, Penguin Classics

Most writers can waste hours fretting about stacking up, but we all get past it. And when we do, what writer wouldn't want a stack of photo greatness? Tack them to the office door for inspiration or huck darts at them when your envy level peaks.

Freedom by Eighty Percent Solutions

Facebook, Twitter, Email, YouTube, and Web games can derail even the most dedicated writer. Along comes Freedom for Mac and PC (only $10). Tell it how long you want to write, and it will disable all the other parts of your computer for that time frame. It truly is the gift of time.

Careful T-Shirt from Zazzle

Writers can be pretty shy about declaring themselves as such, but this t-shirt does it with enough self-depracating humor that it just might fit the bill.

Loft Gift Certificate, from the Loft Shop

No gift list would be complete without a little shameless self-promotion. But seriously, we're one of the nation's largest literary centers, and our gift certificates can be used for classes, studio rental, and conference registrations. Get yours online at the link above or stop by or call our office.


Don't forget to check out our list of WORST gifts for writers.