Readers and writers are notorious for being difficult to buy for, which is why we’ve put together this gift guide to help you out. Let's be honest, this could also make a perfect personal wish list. It's been a long year and you definitely deserve a literary treat.
A subscription to a litmag
Literary magazines are like catnip for short story writers and poets. Not only do they get to discover some new writing, you may also be introducing them to a new magazine where they can submit their own writing. And if they get published there? You get some of the credit too!
Some of our favourite litmags are Structo, Gutter and Bare Fiction. We’d be remiss not to mention our own literary magazine here: Firewords! We publish short fiction and poetry brought to life by amazing illustrations and we have subscriptions available in 2, 3 or 4 issue packages. You can also buy someone a single issue if they’re not THAT good a friend ;) Bonus points: Most gifts are forgotten soon after Christmas, but this is the gift that keeps on giving throughout the year.
The gift of reading
Books can often seem unnecessary and too luxurious to buy for ourselves, so why not give your recipient the guilt-free experience of choosing their own book? There’s no greater joy than wandering the aisles of a good book shop trying to choose. In the UK, National Book Tokens can be spent in all major bookshops and most countries have similar schemes. You can even personalise the voucher with their name and face! Bonus points: Choosing their own gift means this will be a totally personalised experience.
A helping hand to getting published
Getting published is one of the most difficult (and most sought after) goals for all writers. If your intended giftee has lofty ambitions, give them a helping hand with these books:
Writers' & Artists' Yearbook 2017 – This book is the big red bible that all writers trying to navigate the world of publishing should own. It’s ‘packed with advice, inspiration and practical guidance on who to contact and how to get published’. Not only that, but the 4000 listings of who to contact in the media and publishing industry makes this an invaluable guide. Bonus points: A practical present that is actually helpful – much better than socks!
Indie Presses 2016/17 – Mslexia, the magazine for women who write, recently released a new book and it’s an amazing resource for anyone hoping to get published. This guide features over 200 literary magazines and 250 small indie book publishers, so your recipient will never run out of places to send their work. Bonus points: Every magazine and publisher listed in this book is independent so you're supporting small businesses.
National Novel Writing Month is an annual feverish month of writing and it’s great fun! If you haven’t heard of it or haven’t been brave enough to give it a go, we definitely recommend it. Taking part is free but you could buy your literary pal the NaNoWriMo book, ‘No plot? No problem!’, which is a great introduction to the event. The NaNo store also has some lovely writerly-themed merchandise. Bonus points: The company is a non-profit organisation that does a lot to help young people get into writing, so you know your money is going to a worthwhile cause.
Wear it with pride
We love these enamel pins and the way they let the world know that you’re bookish and proud. There are other charming delights to discover on the Literary Emporium site, but these were our favourite. Bonus points: Cheap enough to be a stocking filler but cool enough to be worn with pride.
Etsy is a real treasure trove if you’re looking for something a bit more unique for someone special. We’ve picked out a couple of gems so you can avoid getting lost for hours, but there’s lots more to discover if you’re feeling adventurous! 1) Quote necklaces and keychains from LiteraryGiftsUK. 2) Book sculptures from WordsInk. 3) Read More Books gold foil print from RachelEmmaStudio. 4) Mischief Managed Harry Potter mug from BRobertsonPottery. 5) A Writer’s Notebook from FreyaArt. 6) Go Away I’m Writing door sign from LittleBookishLtd. Bonus points: Something unique they’ll never have seen before.