Friday, December 12, 2008

What to get a writer this Christmas??

Here’s a holdover question that is apropos for the holiday season. From Susan:

I have a good friend who writes for a tv show. What's a good gift to get for a tv writer, especially one who's out of work right now (between seasons, hoping to get picked up for next season) and is working on her own projects for a while? I got her a book on writing once that I love ("Bird by Bird" by Anne Lamott) but it didn't go over well - she said she doesn't really like to read writing books, since she already has her own process that works well for her. Any hints or help?

Yeah, writers generally don’t take well to writing/motivation books. PAY THEM! That’s all the damn motivation they need.

You can’t get them clothes because most of their wardrobe comes from show jackets and shirts. I still get compliments on my IT’S ALL RELATIVE fleece.

I polled a number of writers and this seemed to be the general consensus.

Pappy Van Winkle's Family Reserve, 20 years old bourbon.


Cap'n Bob said...

Ink cartridges for their printers. Is there a bigger scam in the world than those? Cheaper to buy a new printer when the cartridge goes dry, damn near.

Anonymous said...

Booze. Even if they don't drink (someone they need to 'influence' does.

And if they're amongst those of us that still partake...even better!

blogward said...

Paper, brads, white-out? Nah, bourbon.

Tallulah Morehead said...

"Pappy Van Winkle's Family Reserve, 20 years old bourbon."

That's also a perfect gift for film legends. HINT. HINT.

(Little Dougie doesn't drink. He may be insane, but its' just more for me. However, he gratefully accepts gifts of - ahem - "Medical" marijuana.)


Tallulah Morehead said...

"blogward said...
Paper, brads, white-out?"

WHITE-OUT? What is this? 1980? How about carbon paper?

But you can't go wrong with booze. It's the perfect gift for the woman who's had everyone.

(WV: "preporka" A woman just about to have sex.)

Anonymous said...


Also in the holiday spirit, great news for our people. Oil is down to $46/barrel. We don't have to stretch a quarter of a cup out to 8 days anymore. Finally.
Hope this wasn't too crude.

And goining with the Cap'n, HP and Epson are the drug Pushers of Prose, "Pssst. Here kid, try a taste o' this color cart. #S020191. Won't cost ya' a thing, comes free with the printer. Oh btw, the one that comes with the printer are only half full as kind of a demo. The ones you'll be gettin' from our guy Staples from now on should easily last a week-an'-a-half....But it'll cost ya'."

Anonymous said...

Hey, if you really want to make an impression, spring for the original top shelf Liquid Paper -- none 'o that cheap off-brand stuff.

Tallulah, there's no shame in being a little behind the curve. Early 90's I was the last one in our building still using an IBM Selectric (MadMen Model), white out liquid (and strips, remember them), and carbon paper (because the damn office suites management was getting 20 cents a copy).

We once had a power surge, and the word went out that Buck was beside himself, because he had lost an entire word.

P.S. Because there's never enough, even after the polls close, my word for the preceding was "betteri." I'm going with, Sammy Davis' pet name for half his face. See what I did there, Mr. Saturday Night? I used the easily recognized iconic symbol for the cheap Bob Hope laugh. Like Dolly Parton for the boob reference and, uh...Rosie O'Donnell for bitchiness. See what I did there...?

Jeff Tompkins said...

I have to second the suggestion about ink cartridges for the printer.

And, yes, they are quite the scam. Imagine the price per gallon. ;)

Anonymous said...

From everyone's comments, so far, it sounds the main choices are either Liquid Paper (white out) or Bourbon (black out).


Mary Stella said...

Gift cards to Office Depot/Office Max/Staples are always useful. We can use them for anything from copying the manuscript to Tyvek envelopes for mailing said manuscript to nice paper for the query letters.

We can then save our cash for booze.

Anonymous said...

I think the office supply suggestions are good. Of course a Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf gift card would probably hit the spot, generic as it sounds. I never met a writer who didn't depend heavily on coffee!

TCinLA said...

Glenlivet - currently available at Trader Joes for about $30.

Or perhaps the tuition for a class on taking the LSAT, since unemployment among TV writers is about to increase drastically as NBC takes themselves out of the market.

Actually, as a dramatic writer, I wouldn't miss NBC if I was pitching projects. I haven't watched a Big-3 drama now in several years. Basic cable is where to go - the money might not be as great, but you'll be able to look yourself in the face in the morning after you've finished the latest script for the show you're working on and feel like a Real Writer.

blogward said...

You don't get quite the same buzz with Liquid Paper as with White-Out. Sorry for any confusion.

Anonymous said...

Jay Leno's head. He just put a lot of them permanently out of work. God help us all if he gets high ratings. Every network will kill its dramas for bad comedies. BTW, if you guys have missed it, Donald Sutherland is awesome on "Dirty Sexy Money." I will miss that performance.

Christina said...

Jameson Irish Whiskey and a cashmere sweater would go far with me.

TVBlogster said...

Just send a case of vodka, and yes, printer cartridges. Just make sure you know the brand. And I'm talking about the vodka, not the printer. The writer can sell the toner and drink the vodka.

Susan said...

Thanks for answering my question, Ken. :)

Kate Coe said...

Red Vines.

If someone gave me a book by Annie LaMott, I'd kill them.