‘Tis the season for gift-giving. Perhaps you have a friend or relative who writes, or even better, you write. If there wasn’t already enough writer’s block in the world..then someone asks you for a list of ideas for the holidays. Don’t worry. If you’re a writer, just send your friends and family to the Tate Street High Society Annual Gift Guide for Writers.
Don’t know what to get that special writer in your life? Here are our ideas!
Literary Tattoos with Litographs ($5). There are so many great quotes in the world, why make only one permanent? Litographs is an online shop with “custom-made products for book lovers to get closer to their favorite characters.” For only $5, you get two tattoos, a meaningful and perfect small gift. Our favorite? This Kyle Miller design of Moby Dick, by Herman Melville (3 inches x 3 inches). What’s yours?
Also, if you’re like us and you’re into worldwide literacy, Litographs partners with the International Book Bank “to send one new, high-quality book to a community in need for each poster, t-shirt, and tote bag we sell, and for every five tattoos.”
Library Card Socks ($10-12). As if the beret didn’t label your writer as such, these socks definitely say, “Check Me Out!” We spotted them at our local bookstore, Flyleaf Books, but you can find them online, too.
The Great Gatsby T-shirt ($28) Since the Baz Lurhmann production of The Great Gatsby, Jay Gats is not just for the literary elite. As you can read in Maureen Corrigan’s book, “So We Read On” (we met her a few weeks ago), this novel is a quintessential American fable, ready to wear!
Literary Cufflinks on Etsy ($10-$75). Etsy supports book lovers with many hand-made gifts. For High Society Functions, you might go with something a little more subtle. Our High Society recommends story-based cufflinks–because you know that vampires were cool before Twilight ($33), and that Sherlock was great before (and after) Benedict Cumberbatch ($20).
Ahoy! The White Whale Ring ($42) When you’re writing, sometimes it feels like you are chasing the epic White Whale from Melville’s great American novel. Here’s a reminder to keep going, despite your ship being thrashed (spoilers!).
Typewriter Earrings ($17). Perhaps your writer/you are more of quirky type. You’re not alone. Did you know that Forrest Gump actor Tom Hanks loves typewriters so much that he’s launched an iPhone app to recreate the experience? HANX (not Spanx) gives you the ability to type with the sounds of the original machine–CHING!
Or you could just get these cool typewriter earrings by Annette Blazon of your favorite book Like JRR Tolkien’s The Hobbit (above). Relive the magic of the story.
Literary Journals ($14-$50) What better way to stay on your game than a yearly subscription to one of the best literary journals? Be inspired when you pick up any of these magazines:
- Ploughshares ($35/year subscription)
- The Greensboro Review ($14/year subscription)
- Tin House ($20/year subscription)
- Poetry (2-for-1 holiday special! $35/USA $47/International)
Adagio Teas ($6-$20)Need a boost without the coffee? Tea is something that we always have on hand here at Tate Street High Society. And we like the best: Earl Grey, hot. Having a cup in hand helps you not only feel writerly, but gives you something to drink while thinking. Adagio Teas has beautifully fresh loose-leaf teas ready to order.
You might try their Jasmine Phoenix Pearl (if you like green teas), or a Rooibos (if you have reached your caffeine allotment of the day). We like the robust Earl Grey, Bravo. But, if you want to try something with more creamy flavors as you are writing, they’ve recently added Earl Grey Moonlight.
Tea Infusers ($2-$15). My dear Watson, what, you may ask, is the benefit of loose-leaf over pre-bagged tea? Well, for one, the flavor tends to be fresher, clearer, and more pungent. On top of that, you can have fun with all sorts of clever infusers as you steep. Like, for example, this Pipe Tea Infuser by Decodyneinfuser. ($11)
Story Magic ($35) 10”x16.5” print. This incredible photo by Andrey Popov Photography is enough to inspire wonder in writers young and old. Whether put up in your study, given to a professor, or framed for your favorite young reader, this is a magical and unique gift.
Popov, the Vancouver-based photographer, explains his concept: “the idea is that the photograph captures what happens when you read books – the world around you transforms into something magical.” We agree, don’t you?
Livescribe Moleskine Notebook ($30). We love the high quality of Moleskine notebooks. This year, they’ve stepped it up a notch: a combination paper + wireless synching transcription. In a word or two: “A new notebook by Moleskine has been designed for Livescribe smartpens and the Livescribe+ app, with each page containing a dot pattern that makes handwritten notes appear in digital form with surprising speed and accuracy.” This is for all of us who love writing in a notebook, but fear the paper somehow disappearing in a flood or house fire.
Only catch? You need a Livescribe pen ($120-$300) to make the magic happen.
FriXion Erasable Pens ($8 per 3 pack). We love these. Unlike earlier renditions of erasables, these are gel pens that actually bridge the gap between pencils and pens pretty well. The ink runs out relatively quickly though–or maybe we just write more when using them?
At-A-Glance Monthly Calendar ($15). What better to get organized and focused for publication and contest deadlines than a brand new calendar? We like the monthly version because it helps us see the big picture instead of simply looking at (or overanalyzing) the details. Nothing says “I love you; get writing!” like a calendar.
Happy Holidays to all from Tate Street High Society! We have some exciting news on the way, so stay tuned for some holiday announcements!
About the Author: Abigail Browning
Abigail Browning, Founder and Managing Editor, a native of Winston-Salem, North Carolina, received her MFA in Poetry at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. Abigail has poems either published or forthcoming in the Yemassee Journal Online, The Greensboro Review, Linebreak, and RHINO Poetry. In addition, she was honored to receive the Amon Liner Poetry Award, the Noel Callow/Academy of American Poets’ Prize, and was a finalist for the Linda Flowers NC Arts Prize. She also has a passion for jazz music and dance, and teaches swing-era dances in her free time: www.abigailbrowning.com.