Monday, November 30, 2015

2015 Gifts for Writers

From Kate’s Writing Crate…


          If you’re looking for some gift suggestions for writers you know or for yourself, here are some of my favorites:


The Writer’s Book of Inspiration: Quotes on Writing and the Literary Life selected and edited by Stephanie Gunning

This book of 270 quotes is elegant. Each page contains only one quote in larger print—suitable for framing if you make copies. It’s easy on the eyes while reading straight through or flipping open to random pages. Two examples:



“I love writing. I love the swirl

and swing of words as they tangle with

human emotions.”

--James A. Michener



“Concentrate on what you want to say

to yourself and your friends. Follow your

inner moonlight; don’t hide the madness.

You say what you want to say when you

don’t care who’s listening.”

--Allen Ginsberg



If you are looking for wise words from a favorite writer, there is an alphabetical listing of all contributors on pages 280-287.


Women Who Write by Stefan Bollmann

          In this beautiful oversized book printed and bound in Italy, read about dozens of famous and not-so-famous women who changed cultures and history with their books, letters, and essays. On the glossy pages, each author has her likeness in a painting or photograph followed by one to three pages about her work and background. Photos of handwriting, homes, and offices are also interspersed in the book.

          Bollmann’s accompanying text covers the difficulties and successes of being a woman writer back when it wasn’t accepted through to today.

          “In a certain sense, [this] book…is a gallery and a refuge, made up of stories of women whose urge to be writers drove them to opt for a dangerous life.” (page 41)

          Starting with Hildegard of Bingen, 1098-1179, Christine de Pisan, 1364-1430, and Madeleine de Scudery (1607-1701), to Toni Morrison, Assia Djebar, Isabel Allende, and Arundhati Roy, Bollman discusses women writers’ lives and their works.

           Many of the women wrote serious books and pieces like Simone de Beauvoir and Marguerite Duras, but woman who wrote about characters that became world-famous like Heidi by Johanna Spyri and Pippi Longstocking by Astrid Lindgren are given their due as well.

          This is an inspirational book for all women who write.


Screenplay: Writing the Picture by Robin U. Russin and William Missouri Downs.

Both graduates of UCLA School of Film and Television who wrote every day and eventually sold screenplays, their book is a truly useful and often funny guide that gives you the basics, excellent advice as well as stating mistakes to avoid. The authors give examples of sceenplays, formats, and discuss line by line what should be there and why. They give terrific explanations of what works and what doesn’t. Then they share what readers for production companies are looking for as they read screenplays.

This book is well organized and easy to read. At the end of each chapter are exercises that get you writing the screenplay you’ve dreamed about in the correct format. Russin and Downs cover every genre with their suggestions. They presume you have a story in mind so they want to help you polish it as well as look professional when you send your screenplays out.



2016 Writer’s Market

A perennial choice both for the listings of periodicals and book publishers as well as the helpful articles that make the business side of writing easier.

Is this the year you submit a piece—or more—for publication?


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