Cressida DowningI hope you had a lovely Christmas and that you managed to give and receive some thoughtful gifts.

I think the ideal gifts for a writer are notebooks to jot ideas in, book tokens to enable a relaxing hour or two browsing in a favourite bookshop, tasty nibbles to have to hand as you write, and much more!

I did discover that Margaret Atwood has a gift list for beginning novelists, which would work equally well for birthdays too, while this Bookaholic blogspot features some interesting items – such as bookshelf wallpaper!

What gift did you most want this Christmas, what did you get, and what did you give this year to your writer friends? Do you like getting books that someone else has chosen for you – or does that really depend on who is doing the choosing!?

Or perhaps you were lucky enough to receive one of the e-book readers. If so, the top tip of the moment (from an article with none other than Amazon CEO Jeffrey P. Bezos) is that keeping it in a Ziploc plastic bag enables you to read it in the bath. Just one word of caution – I don't think he's actually tried the full experiment and actually dropped his Kindle in the bathtub to see what would happen!

Christmas is a good time to upgrade your writing space too – as discussed in this previous blog entry from John Simmons. If you got any nice bits and bobs – why not appropriate them for your own area.

And if you were unlucky enough not to get exactly what you wanted why not make a definitive list for next year – it's never too early to plan ahead!

(freelance editorial consultant)