Christmas Gift Ideas for the Poet on Your List

We asked our Issue Ten Poets for Christmas gift ideas and here is what they had to say.

from Darren Demaree

My Christmas List:

Black ink.


Legal pads.


Newest Sun Kil Moon album.

$500 for contest fees.

from Michael Carrino 

Many writers I know, myself included, keep a writer’s journal, so a good lined writer’s journal is always a fine gift.  I’m particular about pens  I use to write in the journal, sleek roller balls are my favorite, but unless the person giving you the gift knows you well, journals and pens are probably gifts you should give yourself.  For me, the best gift for a writer is any book (poetry, fiction or non-fiction) that both challenges and supports my critical thinking.

from Gary Beck

Feathered quill pen. Electronic greeting cards with messages from deceased writers, e.g. Mark Twain, Marquis de Sade, Dosteovsky, quotes from Look Back in Anger.

from DM O’Connor

Books and Flights. Flights and books.

Most writers I know are minimalists. Or the business of writing has made them so. Really, if you are a materialist, go trade oil for a bank. So when gift giving season rears its ugly head, what do you give that special something who has nothing?

Simple: a trip. Whether it’s a round-the-world flight all expenses paid or a drive down to your park with a six-pack. Time and space outside of the normal routine is divinity for any writer. So get on Airbnb and book them a cheap room across town or take your writer camping. Air miles work. I can’t think of anything better for a writer, than the gift of travel.

Or, books. Leather bound notebooks and Mole-skins work best. Or something good to read. A subscription to a good literary magazine. Or better yet, a flight to Bali, a leather bound notebook, a issue of Barrow Street, Lori Oslund’s novel After The Parade and time to read and write.

Your writer will come home singing and recharged and ready to share a story.

from Ellen Noonan

The best writerly gift that I have ever received: A copy of the Oxford English Dictionary, in the format where all the volumes are condensed to one, with multiple pages reproduced in tiny print–and a magnifying glass to read the pages, of course.  I love the blue volume in its case, so there’s something sort of ceremonial when I take it out to use it, and I love opening to any page, putting the magnifying glass down, and seeing what I mind find, learn, use.  You can subscribe to the OED online now–which is great–but I do love the actual artifact.

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