The Giving Season: Top 5 Gifts for the Writer in Your Life


Writing is a long-term endeavor. If you have a writer in your life, that person is going to need your support over the long haul. If you’re looking for something to give this holiday season or for other occasions, consider the following five gifts.

Top 5 Gifts for Writers

Some of the best presents I’ve received in the past didn’t come in a box or with a steep price tag. I will never forget a friend’s kind email encouraging me to continue writing or the unexpected Facebook shout-out to my book from a cousin I haven’t seen in decades. So, if you’re wondering what to give a writer you care about, check out this list.

#1 Give the gift of time. Most of us juggle writing, a full-time job, family responsibilities, volunteer work, and other activities. If you can give only one thing to the writer in your life, give the gift of time. Maybe you can do some babysitting or grocery shopping or run errands for that person. A few hours of uninterrupted writing will go a long way.

#2 Give moral support. This is as easy as a phone call or an email after your writer tells you about that latest rejection from a publisher or a nasty review of his or her book. If you can afford it, take your writer to lunch for a longer chat. A writer’s life is full of rejections, disappointments, and uncertainties. Your moral support is important.

#3 Give a book or two. When you buy a book, you’re supporting your writer and the publishing industry both. If the person has published a book, buy a copy for yourself or as a gift to someone else. If your writer is not yet published, pick a good writing book or something in his or her genre. A gift card for a bookstore is always a good idea.

#4 Give a subscription or pay for membership fee. Writers need continuous learning and professional support. If you have the budget for it, buy a subscription to a writing magazine (e.g., Writer's Digest, Publishers Weekly) or an online information service (Publishers Marketplace, Literary Marketplace) or a literary journal (One Story, Southern Review, Paris Review). If your writer belongs to an organization (Authors Guild, Romance Writers of America, Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America, etc.), offer to pay for next year’s membership fee.

#5 Give social media support. Most publishers require their authors to help promote their books through social media. If you’re already active on social media, you can afford to be generous to your writer and not spend a dime! Visit your writer’s Facebook page or Web site and interact by leaving comments and joining discussions. If the person has published a book, read it and leave an honest review on Amazon, Barnes & Noble (or the site of the retailer where you bought the book), as well as Goodreads.

Happy giving!