I’ve just spent a pleasant hour in my favourite bookshop (http://www.toppingbooks.co.uk/ – other independent bookshops are  - rarely – available) browsing for other people’s Christmas presents, and making a mental list for myself.

I love getting books for Christmas, not least because they are the perfect excuse to take a mental break from the festivities and curl up for half an hour.  I rarely get given them though, as people think that as I read for work, I can’t possibly want to read for pleasure.

So what are the perfect presents for a writer and a reader?  A writer needs nice things to write on and with – even if they’re a committed computer user, an ideas notebook is a great plan.  Most writers and readers I know are addicted to nice stationery, and I don’t feel you could ever have too much. 

For a more unusual collection of gifts, I’m rather taken with http://www.theliterarygiftcompany.com/ - especially their handbags (hint hint to anyone I know who’s reading this!).   I think their ‘Go Away I’m writing’ mugs are brilliant for sending a clear message to the rest of your household.

No writer can be without a copy of the Writers’ and Artists’ Handbook of course – and I’m not just saying that because we’re on their webpage – it’s the roadmap to taking your work further.

What are the best literary gifts you’ve had or given?  And what do you want for this Christmas?