Five Things Every Writer Wants for Christmas

J. L. Harland   •   December 8th, 2019

We’ve been chatting about the best presents you can get for a writer. We don’t give each other gifts at this time of the year. Instead, we arrange to go out in the New Year for a meal, a drink and a trip to the cinema. In 2020 the cinema has been superseded by a literary event. What better way to celebrate a writing partnership during the festive season?

So, our list of five things we’d like at Christmas:

  1. Time. There never seems to be enough of it. What joy it would be to have a dedicated day, once in a while, to just write or even to dream up the next story/novel. A writing retreat, at home, could be just as good as a day away although going somewhere different, even for a few hours, stimulates the senses and the imagination.
  1. Books, books, books. Can you ever really have too many books? Books to read and relax, books to make you stay up at night because you just must finish them, books about writing and poetry books – music for the soul.
  1. Music. Although many writers insist they can only write in total silence, the right music can have the effect of soothing your tired brain or speeding up your progress through that difficult passage. What sort of music helps you with your writing? What CD would you like for Christmas?
  1. Stationery. Is there any writer who does not delight in beautiful stationery? Notebooks with patterns; velvet pages to touch; big ruled notebooks; small dainty handbag sized. We love them all! In fact, we bought each other the same notebook for our birthdays which are only a few days apart. Totally accidental but weird. We do write together and think in the same way but that was freakish!
  1. Chocolate or cake. Our agenda meetings, where we get together and sit down to plan the next stage of the writing process, always involves coffee and cake. Sometimes we have something more substantial. The sense of smell is linked with food and builds atmosphere in your story. But food is important to maintain energy – and as a treat. If you are a writer, working hard on your project, you need to indulge now and again.

Of course, every writer has different ways of working and your favourite gift may not feature here. Perhaps you need a glass of wine or a bottle of your favourite perfume to stimulate your senses. As we were talking about this topic, we also had a thought.

What five things would your protagonist want for Christmas and why? Do let us know.

May the spirit of the season brighten your days and your ideas. Keep writing!