Writing is a notoriously difficult and solitary task, which is why many great writers are known for being curmudgeonly, crazy or both. If you’re looking to get the writer in your life a thoughtful gift, you might find it a challenging task. Part of that has to do with the aforementioned artistic sensibilities, but the larger issue is that there are very few material goods required to write.
Many writers approach the task of writing with the cheapest pens and most basic notebooks. Or, more likely, they have a MacBook Pro covered in stickers. David Sedaris writes in composition books. Barack Obama likes yellow legal pads.
The best approach to finding gifts for writers is to search for things that can make their task a little easier or more pleasant, whether that’s something to help them tune out the world or a subtle reminder that they ought to take a break and stretch their legs. Plus, every good writer also has a deep love for reading and books, which means you can always steal gift ideas from our lists of the best books to give as gifts and the best gifts for book lovers.
Of course, writers are people, too. If you don’t find what you’re looking for in our list below, be sure to check out our general guides to the best Christmas gifts for men and women. For now, keep scrolling to find the best gifts for writers.
1. Field Notes: Original Kraft 3-Pack
FOR THE WRITER ON THE GO
Simple yet stylish, this 3-pack of notebooks from Field Notes is a great option for any writer who likes to jot things down by hand. The notebooks are not so expensive that they’ll feel the need to be precious with them, but they look a little nicer than the average Mead notebook. Plus, these are made in the US.
Mooas Cube Timer
FOR THE WRITER WITH TIME MANAGEMENT ISSUES
Procrastinating is a natural part of the creative process. But sometimes, it can get out of hand. That’s why it can be helpful to procrastinate smartly. Allowing yourself regular breaks will help you be more productive when you need to. This cube timer has a 5, 10, 20 or 30-minute settings. Simply flip it to your desired time, and it’ll start silently counting until the alarm goes off.
YETI Rambler 20 oz Tumbler
FOR THE TEA-LOVING WRITER
Every writer appreciates having a hot beverage by their side, whether that’s tea, coffee or a hot toddy. The problem is that by the time they remember to drink it, it might not be hot anymore. This tumbler from YETI is double wall-insulated to help keep their favorite beverage hot, without feeling too much like a travel thermos. It comes in a wide range of colors, too.
TaoTronics LED Desk Lamp
FOR THE NIGHT OWL NOVELIST
Many writers get their best work done in the evening, which means they need a good lamp for their desk. Backed by over 20,000 5-star ratings, this affordable lamp suits a wide variety of preferences. It has 5 lighting modes and 7 brightness settings, and the touch controls make it easy to find your desired setting. Its small frame also won’t take up much space on a desk.
Kobo Clara HD
FOR THE TECH-LOVING WRITER
The Kobo Clara is one of the best-kept secrets in the world of e-readers, mostly because the market is so heavily dominated by Amazon’s Kindle. What’s great about the Kobo is that it’s designed to be super easy to borrow from your local library. That’s because it’s made by Rakuten, the same company behind Overdrive, one of the most popular e-book services for library systems. The Clara has a paper-like display, and it shows the cover of the book you’re reading when it’s in standby mode. Its 6″ size is easy to take on the go.
Out of Print Library Card Mug
FOR THE WRITER WHO LOVES LIBRARIES
This mug from Out of Print resembles a borrower’s library card, making it a cute and practical gift for any writer. It’s dishwasher and microwave safe and holds 12 ounces. Out of Print also makes stylish T-shirts featuring classic book covers, and part of the proceeds go to supporting literacy programs.
ShalinIndia 3 in One Wooden 3D Puzzle Set
FOR THE WRITER WHO NEEDS A HEALTHY DISTRACTION
This gift is a great option for any writer who likes to fidget while they brainstorm. It’s a set of three 3D puzzles that offers a small distraction that’s way healthier than checking Twitter. And when they’re not using it, it makes a stylish addition to their desk.
Giovanni’s Room – James Baldwin
FOR THE WRITER WHO LOVES THE CLASSICS
James Baldwin is so revered for his critically important writings on race, that his prose itself sometimes gets overlooked. This novel, part thriller, part romance is beautifully written and a great gift for any writer who might have missed this vital classic.