I wrote this article about 14 of the best electronic gifts for writers in case: 1) you didn’t get any presents during the holidays, 2) you didn’t get the gift you wanted, 3) you didn’t get enough gifts, or 4) you want to give another writer a gift (now, or later). Some of these gifts for writers are serious and some are fun. Some are life changers. And one is a literal lifesaver. No matter how sophisticated or tech-savvy you are, I bet you don’t have all of them.
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Some of the Best Electronic Gifts for Writers
|Bose Wireless Noise-Canceling Headphones – If you have trouble focusing due to background noise, these noise-canceling headphones are a game changer. And you might as well go wireless, so you’re less likely to drop things or trip while moving around. There are many brands of wireless headphones, but I prefer Bose. Their sound quality is excellent, their noise-canceling technology is the best, and their headphones are lighter than the competition. I also prefer this “over-the-ear style” because the headphones wrap completely around your ears and block out every sound.
|Diffuser/Humidifier – This gadget is good for your health and it can enhance your mood. Just fill the reservoir with water and turn it on. You can also add a few drops of essential oils for fragrance and additional therapeutic effects. This humidifier or diffuser silently adds moisture to the air. Dry air is hard on the skin and sinuses. If you put the machine on a high setting, it will sometimes make a soft water sound, which you also might find soothing or calming. Like a mini-waterfall. There are many different types of humidifiers and diffusers. I bought this one because it has great reviews.
|Sparkling Water Machine – Writers spend too much time in their chairs. Good for their craft, bad for their health. It’s too easy to drink too much soda, etc. This machine converts ordinary water into carbonated water with a refillable CO2 cylinder. All you do is press down on the handle and your flat water instantly becomes bubbly. You can get the CO2 cylinder refilled at any Williams Sonoma store, and other places. I bought extra cylinders so I don’t have to get them refilled as often. I like this machine more than the others because this one doesn’t require electric–and I’m a fan of anything that lets me have one less power cord.
|Nespresso Coffee Maker – I used to have a Keurig machine but got rid of it because it didn’t make the coffee hot enough. Ingrid then convinced me to go to a Nespresso store, where we looked at all their machines. It was fun. If you visit a Nespresso store, they’ll give you a tour and let you taste their coffee to see what you think. We found a simple-to-use coffeemaker there that’s just as user-friendly as the Keurig. The coffee quality is better than Keurig as well. And you can make all types of coffee, including lattes, expresso, and capucchino.
|Breville One-Touch Tea Maker – If you like tea, in particular, loose tea (not just teabags), like Ingrid, this is the tea maker for you. It’s the Rolls-Royce of tea kettles. It has a timer and the tea basket inside the device goes up and down. In other words, if you’re a tea snob, you’re going to love this machine because it steeps your tea for the perfect amount of time. If, however, you just use ordinary teabags (like me, because I’m too lazy to fill and clean the basket in a fancy one like this), get a Cuisinart Cordless Stainless Steel Electric Kettle or something similar instead.
|WSJ Wine Club – Ingrid and I enjoy good wine, and finding new ways to save time. So, when we discovered the WSJ Wine club would automatically ship us a new case of wine every few months, per our personal likes and dislikes, we were thrilled. You can choose red or white, or mix it up. They have everything else you might desire as well, such as rosé and Champagne; good prices; and you can pause your subscription any time. Technically, wine isn’t an “electronic gift,” but you have to use the company’s website to register, so, with poetic license, I was able to add it to this list. 🙂
|Electric Wine Bottle Opener – I’m not so lazy or inept that I wouldn’t or couldn’t use an old-fashioned bottle opener, but why should I? This Oster brand opener easily removes a cork in seconds, and it opens up to 30 bottles on a single charge (6-8 hours). No, I don’t drink that much. I’m just saying it’s rechargeable. And, even a ten-year-old could operate it, all you do is press a button. I’m not saying kids should drink alcohol. I’m just saying the device is easy to use, and it comes with a foil cutter to easily remove those protective seals that sometimes hurt fingers and nails.
|Portable Breathalyzer – If you drink and drive, put one of these portable breathalyzers in your car. When I say, “drink and drive,” I don’t mean drinking while buzzed or drunk. Please don’t. However, if you ever have beer, wine, or something stronger when you’re out, and you want to know (or a friend or family member wants to know) if you’re safe to drive, this is the only way to really know. This particular device is so good that it’s approved by the US Department of Transportation (DOT) for law enforcement use, and you don’t ever have to send it in to be calibrated.
|Scrabble App – If you love words, you’ve probably played Scrabble. If it’s been a while, or if you only have the old-fashioned board game version of this timeless classic, consider upgrading. Download the electronic version for your phone and/or electronic tablet device. The advantages of this version over the board game version are: 1) You can’t lose any of the letters, 2) Your cat or dog can’t knock any of the letters out of place, 3) It’s easier to play in bed, and 4) You can play with friends and family all over the world (they don’t have to be in the room–or in bed–with you).
|NY Times Crossword Puzzle App – I used to think crosswords were just for old people. Now that I’m getting old (47), I’m enjoying them. Last year, I downloaded the NY Times Crossword Puzzle app. Most nights, before we got to bed, Ingrid and I do a crossword puzzle together. You can obviously do crossword puzzles alone, but it’s a great team sport. Ingrid knows things I’m clueless about, and vice versa. The puzzles are also humbling, because they’re hard. The Monday puzzles are easier than the others though, so you can build your confidence before doing the harder ones.
|Grammarly – I’m not an expert on writer proofreading software because I do well enough without it. I’m not perfect, but good enough. However, a lot of writers I’ve spoken with and worked with have raved about these writing aids. For example: Grammarly, Ginger, ProWritingAid, and Hemingway. Each tool has its pros and cons. So, if you’re considering invest in writer proofreading software, read this article to compare the most popular options. Based on what I’ve seen and heard, Grammarly is the best and most versatile writer proofreading software.
|Publishers Marketplace – Publishers Marketplace is an online community helping writers and publishing professionals find information about all things related to publishing, including information about literary agents. It’s driven in large part by Publishers Lunch, the most widely read daily dossier in publishing and known as “publishing’s essential daily read.” Publishers Marketplace is popular, more than 40,000 publishing professionals read Lunch every day. If you want to learn more about the publishing industry, consider signing up.
|Author Coaching Call – If you’re serious about becoming a more successful author, I offer coaching calls. One lady emailed me last month because she wanted to give her son a coaching call for Christmas. I thought that was pretty cool. I’ve also had a few authors gift themselves with a call for their birthday, etc. Authors are able to send me any/all of the following for review prior to their call: sample pages of their book, query letter, synopsis, book proposal, etc. I review the material and take notes. I also ask the authors to answer a series of questions about themselves, their goals, and their work–prior to the call–so I can be more helpful during our time together.
|Bose Noise-Masking Sleepbuds – If you have trouble sleeping and/or ignoring the sound of your snoring partner–or any other irritating background sound–you might want to give these “sleepbuds” a shot. Ingrid uses them and says they work like a charm. You can choose from a variety of soft “white noise” options to listen to, or one of many other relaxing sounds, to help induce and deepen slumber. My only complaint is that Ingrid no longer hears my alarm when it goes off in the morning, so I can’t rely on her to kick me out of bed. I have to be a big boy and get up myself!
17 More Gifts for Writers
- A sledgehammer to smash writers’ block
- A ticket to a writers’ conference
- An editor
- A ghostwriter
- A housecleaner
- A new computer
- Adoring fans
- Anything with caffeine or sugar in it (as long as it’s not your kids)
- Anything with nicotine in it
- A signed first edition of a rare book by one of your favorite authors
- An intimate dinner and a night on the town with one of your favorite looking authors
- A day or night without the kids and/or spouse
- A fountain pen
- A journal
- A bottle of Super Glue to adhere butt to the chair to finish writing book
- A friend in the publishing industry (aw, heck…you already have that in me)
- An Amazon gift certificate
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