Friday, December 6, 2013

10 Holiday Gifts to Inspire You to Write!

If your New Year's resolution is to write,  here's a list of fun, practical gifts to put on your holiday wish list!

1.  Aqua notes  Get your best ideas in the shower?  Tired of carving paragraphs in the soap?  Try Aqua notes.  A waterproof notepad.  Now there's no excuse to let that novel idea go down the drain.

2.   "Unjournaling:  Daily Exercises That Are Not Personal, Not Introspective, Not Boring!"    This cool book has 200 writing prompts that will keep you busy for days. A couple of examples: "Why on earth would Yankee Doodle stick a feather in his cap and call it macaroni?  Come up with a plausible explanation."  Or "write a paragraph about a girl named Dot but use no letters with a dot (no i ro j)."   Who wouldn't want that kind of quirky, creative nudge?

3.  Don't Break the Chain Calendar  First of all it's FREE.   Yes, I said FREE.  It's a downloadable calendar created by the Writers Store, based on Jerry Seinfeld's "Don't Break the Chain"  writing tip. Seinfeld says he hangs a year-at-a-glance calendar on a wall and puts an X on every day he writes new material.  The idea is to not "break the chain" and write every single day of the year.   So, print out this calendar on some pretty paper and follow Jerry to more productivity!

4.   Black Dry-Erase Board with Neon Color Pens    Yes!     A BLACK dry erase board.   NEON pens.   For BRAINSTORMING.  Really, need I say more?

5. Writing Classes   The Writers Store offers an array of screenwriting and TV writing courses online. (Some are free!)  Gotham Writers' Workshop  also has a wide range of classes that includes:  mystery writing, food writing, novels and sci-fi writing to name a few.  If you'd rather do a class in person, classes I can personally vouch for are: Sketchworks Intro to Sketch Writing  (Atlanta),  Screenwriter Michael Lucker's Screenwriters School  and Writer Lamont Ferrell's Sitcom Writing 101 (Atlanta).   Rather study alone?  Award-winning writer Steven Barnes offers several self-study courses  for purchase on his website.

6.  Writers Wall Clock    This clock really lets a writer know what time it is:  Time to publish?  To edit?  To mix a margarita?    Maybe watching the clock isn't so bad....

7. Working Writer's Daily Planner   You need deadlines to be motivated?  Application deadlines and other resources are built right into the calendar.  It also includes info on finding writers groups  (Are you a writers group whore?), conferences, grants, workshops and contests.  If you're not careful, this gift could make procrastination impossible!

8  The Storymatic.   There's no excuse for writers block with this deck of 500+ cards around.  The rules are pretty simple:  Draw four cards and follow what they say to create a main character and the start of a story.  Then the rest is up to you.   Let your imagination run wild.

9.  My Life in Graphs a Guided Journal   It's 128 pages of fill-in-the blank graphics to chart your life:  Venn diagrams, bar charts, pie charts. It's a visual way to do some soul-searching and probably come up with some ideas for jokes and stories.

10Writer Hat  Put on your thinking cap.  How can you not want to write with this on your head?

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