Gift Ideas

35 Best Gifts for Writers 2021

Seltzer / Philips

Writing can be agony — every writer knows this. (People who claim writing is easy are not to be trusted.) But writing is a lot easier and more enjoyable when you have the right tools, the right environment and the right headspace for creativity and productivity.

To find out which gifts are on a writer’s wish lists, we asked writing professionals across different fields to recommend essentials and not-so-essentials they use every day — or really want this year. The journalists, reporters and authors we spoke to (including some of Good Housekeeping‘s own editors) suggested everything from the best pens and notebooks to coffee gifts, tech gifts and wellness gifts for relaxing both during and after a long day at their keyboard. This collection of the best gifts for writers also includes affordable gifts, productivity tools and a number of top-tested products by the Good Housekeeping Institute.

Keep in mind what kind of writer you’re gift-hunting for. While journalists and reporters might appreciate calendars, planners and notebooks they can carry with them when devices are too bulky or invasive, grad students and long-form writers need the right set-up and tools to work for days on end at home. (And while some love tech tools, others might prefer to keep things to pen and paper).

No matter their passion, there’s a gift for them.

For more Christmas ideas, check out the Good Housekeeping 2021 Holiday Guide for holiday decor ideas, Christmas games and activities, holiday recipes and popular gift ideas.

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Rising Colors Special Edition Hardcover Notebook



Leuchtturm1917 makes this writer’s favorite standard hardcover notebooks, which come in ruled, dotted, blank and grid paper versions. This special “Rising Colors” collection comes in sunrise shades to inspire your favorite writer, whether they’re jotting down lyrics, creating their own planner or writing the next great American novel. They can never have too many on hand.



Temperature Control Smart Mug 2

When they’re absorbed in thought (or trying to meet a deadline), they can keep their coffee or tea at the perfect temperature with the sleek and high-performing Ember Smart Mug 2. No more cold, forgotten mugs. 



Bookshop Gift Card



Reading — and reading a lot — is going to help them grow as a writer more than anything else. Give them a gift card and they can use it to shop online from hundreds of participating local booksellers across the country. It’s a great way to let them choose their next read while supporting local bookstores.



Pro Yoga Mat 6mm



“No matter what I do to try and prevent it, I can’t help but hunch my shoulders whenever I sit down to write,” says Sara Hendricks, senior editor at credit card company Ness

“I try to combat the effects of my hunching by doing some yoga or Pilates every morning on this yoga mat. It’s thick, hefty, and has just enough give to support my joints without softening so much that it trips me up. I also stand on it when I use my standing desk.”

RELATED: 8 Best Yoga Mats, According to Top Yoga and Wellness Experts


Spiked LaLa 1 Liter

“I can’t write if I’m thirsty, but I also can’t write if I’m constantly getting up and down to fill up my glass,” says Hendricks. “Having a full liter of water beside me when I start the day helps prevent thirst and my ability to distract myself by moseying over to the Brita filter in the kitchen several times a day.”


Vagus Nerve Oil

OSEA Malibu


For post-writing relaxation, Hendricks recommends this aromatherapy blend that targets the vagus nerve, which is said to help regulate the relationship between your brain and your gut. 

“When I’m feeling really wound up after staring at a screen all day, smelling something nice — like this essential oil blend — helps,” she says. “The brand recommends rubbing it into your hands, cupping them, and huffing the oil, but I usually just dab it on my wrists and behind my ears and let the scent waft.”


Gift Under $25

7 Year Pen

Seltzer Goods


Writers are always in need of a good pen. “I got this pen as a gift about four years ago, which is a little over half its promised lifespan,” says Hendricks. “It writes easily without needing a scribble to warm it up and never goes dry or leaves inky blotches.”


Heating Pad for Back Pain



“I don’t know a single writer who doesn’t have some form of chronic lower back pain,” says Wilson Wong, a culture reporter with NBC News. “This heated back brace has done more for my lumbar spine than all of my chiropractors combined.”


Gel Ink Ball Point Pen

When it comes to pens, Wong recommends the popular (and Good Housekeeping-approved) gel ink pen from Muji. “This baby has been a staple in my writing utensils for a decade — and still glides across paper like Michelle Kwan did across ice,” he says. This pen was also rated the Best Gel Pen overall in our rests. 

RELATED: 15 Best Pens for Back-to-School and Beyond, According to Reviewers


Reverence Aromatique Hand Wash



Wong also recommends gifting Aesop’s signature hand soap. “If you care about the hands of your writer friends during the winter,” he says, “this is an exfoliant, aromatic and moisturizing cleanser all in one.”


Santal 26 Classic Candle



Gifting a luxury candle that evokes old books, leather chairs and cozy mornings might get them inspired. “If you’re looking to splurge, this smoky and leathery-scented candle is the perfect wick for any activity, whether it’s writing, bathing or sleeping,” says Wong.


Inexpensive But Lovely Idea

2022 Weekly & Monthly Planner

Blue Sky


Help them stay on top of deadlines with a planner. Nicole Papantoniou, Deputy Director of the Good Housekeeping Institute’s Kitchen Appliances Lab, recommends this Blue Sky planner. “I love how it’s slim enough to fit in my backpack or purse, but has a monthly and weekly calendar with enough room to jolt down deadlines and to-do lists,” she says.


Powerstation Plus XL




Charging Stand



Another charging solution for writers is this bamboo wood charging station, which has a designated spot for an iPhone and smart watch. It doesn’t come with any charging chords, so just make sure they have theirs handy.


Verdant Garden

Lula’s Garden


Spruce up their desk space with a pre-potted succulent garden.


Women’s Fuzzy Cross Band Slippers



Or keep them cozy as they shuffle around the house trying to think in some on-trend, fluffy slippers.


Waffle Jogger

Allison Picurro, a writer at TV Guide, recommends Skims loungewear for work-from-home days. “I was a Skims skeptic when I first bought this lounge set last year, but it blew my expectations away,” she says. “It’s so comfortable and it’s not too schlubby either. I legitimately recommend it to everyone.”


Bamboo Lap Desk



“I live in a small-ish apartment, and somehow two or twenty-thousand years into working from home, I still don’t really have a surface to work at,” says Picurro. “A lap desk just sounds nice and also easier on my back, which is most important.”


Miami Wireless Noise-Cancelling Headphones



If you can splurge on your favorite writer, consider gifting a pair of great noise-cancelling headphones. “I live on a really loud street, so I’m constantly trying to drown that out, and I’m also just one of those people who needs music on all the time in order to concentrate,” Picurro explains. “My AirPods aren’t as noise-cancelling as I’d like, so I’m pretty much begging someone to get me a pair of these this year.”

RELATED: 10 Best Noise-Canceling Headphones of 2021, According to Tech Experts


SmartSleep Sleep and Wake-Up Light



Picurro also covets one of the best sunrise lamps on the market. “I’ve always had a lot of trouble falling asleep, and I’m so deeply not a morning person, which means that waking up is always a struggle,” she says.”I read somewhere that Suki Waterhouse uses this sun lamp as a gentler way of waking herself up, which is good enough for me. Anything to make that process a little less painful.”

RELATED: 10 Best Sunrise Alarm Clocks of 2021, According to Experts and Reviewers


Symphony Smartpen Digital Pen




Under $10

Dr. Grip Ballpoint Pen

For more traditional pen-to-paper writing needs, Rothman recommends the ergonomic Dr. Grip pen. According to Pilot, the Dr. Grip is recommended by the Arthritis Foundation, and according to online reviewers, it’s the best “handwriting solution for those with hand problems.”


Prevention LED Adjustable Lamp



To reduce eyestrain after hours of reading or writing, Rothman recommends gifting a good desk lamp with adjustable light settings. The OttLite Prevention is a collaboration with the health experts at Prevention Magazine and is backed by the The Good Housekeeping Seal. 


Water Proof Note Pad

Aqua Notes


Some of our best writing happens when we’re not sitting at our desks. “I personally have this water-resistant paper hanging in my shower, since so many great ideas come there,” says Rothman. 



Silicone Wine Glass Holder for Bath & Shower

30 Watt


If you want to give them a good laugh and help get their creativity flowing, Rothman also recommends a shower wine glass holder.


Weatherproof Top Spiral Notepad

Rite in the Rain


If they work in the field as a journalist, a waterproof notebook will keep their handwritten notes safe from all types of weather.


Squire Rollerball Pen



This timeless aluminum rollerball pen from Baronfig comes in five different colors — and it could be their go-to pen for years and years to come.


Travel Blanket

E Marie


This elegant blanket-scarf can help them stay cozy when they’re traveling or just sitting at their desk at home. Bonus: It bundles up into a pillow for flights!



6-Cup Moka Stovetop Espresso Maker



Keep them caffeinated and focused on their work (with the added bonus of making them feel like an elegant European writer) with the classic Bialetti moka pot. They’ll get a strong espresso-like brew in minutes.


The Original Vietnamese Coffee Trio

Nguyen Coffee Supply


Or get them a trio of Vietnam-grown, Brooklyn-roasted coffee beans from Nguyen Coffee Supply.



Writers and Their Typewriters Print



Inspire their craft with this print of typewriters owned by famous writers, including Ginsberg, Twain and more. The print comes in many different sizes and framing options to perfectly suit their space.


Coccyx Seat Cushion & Lumbar Support Pillow

Every writer needs a good office chair — but that’s an expensive gift. Turn their bad chair into a better one with memory foam pillows that provide coccyx and lower lumbar support for their hips and back. (This writer is sitting in a chair with the bottom pillow right this very minute.)


Laptop Stand



An ergonomic laptop stand will also help their posture and prevent neck strain.


Feu de Bois Wood Fire Candle



Diptyque candles are considered the best of the best for a reason. This smoky, cozy Feu de Bois scent will create the perfect environment for them to write, particularly in the fall and winter.


Basil Hand Pomade

Le Labo


For some aromatherapy that’s more affordable than a luxury candle, consider gifting your favorite writer some rich basil hand pomade. It’s super hydrating and a great thing for them to apply when they’re stuck thinking of the next sentence.

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