Monday, December 8, 2014

Holiday Gifts for Writers

By Ashley Hodges Bazer

The holiday season is interesting around my house. Not only do we celebrate the traditional Christmas, we have three birthdays from mid-December through New Year’s Day. Needless to say, shopping…or even just planning gifts…can get a little crazy and overwhelming.
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I’m one for more practical gifts. I have plenty of trinkets. (I once heard someone call them dust catchers. I immediately purged my collection.) There’s really very little I want, but there are some things I need. As a writer, I would find these particularly helpful.

1. Time. Finding time to write is never easy. Somehow, I manage to pack my schedule full of other important things…like momming, work, Facebook. The gift of time is invaluable!

2. An Endless Cache of Story Ideas. Admit it. Sometimes you get stuck. Either the idea fizzles out, or your character takes the story in such a different direction than you initially planned that you have no clue where to go. I sure could use a stash of ideas.

3. The Right Word Thesaurus. Yes, we’ve all been told to avoid thesauri. I happen to enjoy reading mine because I’m geeky like that. But wouldn’t it be nice to have a guide to the exact word you’re searching for and to be able to find it with ease?

4. Automatic Refill and Warming Coffee Mugs. I prefer decaf myself. Too often, though, I’ll be picking away at my keyboard, and the last ounce of my writing fuel turns to ice. Let’s keep that mug full and piping hot!

5. The Balance of Quiet. This goes along with time. Finding a cozy, quiet spot to write is necessary. And sometimes, you need music or background noise for inspiration. Package that balance, and you have a perfect gift!

6. Brain Flash Drive. For those times when your brain gets going way faster than your fingers can type. Just plug this baby into your USB (Uploadable Swift Brain) port, and think away! Transfer the brilliance directly to a Word or Scrivener document.

7. Marketing Genie. For those who are published, this little gem is a must-have! Just rub the lamp and stand back as the Marketing Genie goes to work, mastering your social media, live events, and book sales. See you on the NYT Bestseller list!

8. Enthusiastic Beta Readers. Tired of asking your friends and family to read your work? Or are they tired of you asking? Well, have no fear! For just one low price, as well as shipping and handling, you can have your very own beta reader.

9. Chocolate. Lots and lots of chocolate.

10. Pikes Peak Writers Conference 2015. Sure, the other presents are just wishful thinking. But this one is definitely a gift that will empower you for your writing journey. Compared to other writing conferences, the cost is minimal (only $395!), and you get so much out of it! I’ve attended the last two years and loved every moment. There’s also a payment plan option (Announcer Voice: “Only 5 easy payments of $79!”), which makes the conference very affordable.

“But wait! There’s more!”

With the conference, you’ll learn from top-notch industry professionals. Whether you’re a novice writer or you have twenty books on the shelf, there’s something for you. If you choose to do so, you can meet privately with an agent or editor to present your work (Query 1-on-1) or share a page of your writing (Read and Critique). You’ll even get to dine with these folks!

So make holiday shopping easy for your family this year. Request your registration to the Pikes Peak Writers Conference 2015, and get ready to Choose Your Writing Adventure!


About the Author: Ashley Hodges Bazer is the author of the sci-fi series, The Crown's Call. She’s often decked out in bellbottoms and grooving out on the lighted dance floor. Okay, not really, but she does have a thing for the BeeGees. She lives in Colorado with her husband and three children. After earning her bachelor’s degree in theatrical stage management from Arizona State University, she went on to work for Disneyland in that capacity. A love affair with books led her to work for several different bookstores. Currently a producer for an international daily radio program, she’s learning to balance working, writing, and momming duties. When she’s not writing, she’s crocheting or belting out Broadway show tunes. And she's a real duchess! Learn more about Ashley and her upcoming books at www.AshleyBazer.com.