Welcome to the sixth and final gift guide in the Ultimate Gift Guide series for geeks – book and writing geeks! It has been a lot of work putting these together and the response has been amazing, so thank you to everyone who has commented and reached out. Every single one of your responses has meant the world to me.
Book and write geeks are quite similar to fandom geeks, except their fandoms are limited to the world of books. They don’t just have a passion for the stories and characters, it’s also the physical books and the written world that brings them joy. Some of them will be working on becoming writers themselves. The biggest hint to whether you’re geek is a book geek is generally how much they read. They’re the ones likely to have their nose in a book during lunch break rather than popping out to the shops, or the family member that always asks for book store gift cards.
The most obvious gift for a book and writing geek is a book, but where do you start?! Even if you know what authors they read or what genre they prefer they most likely have a pile of books to be read at home (trust me I can attest to this personally 😉 ). So unless you are given a wish list or a name of a specifically book you are best erring on the side of caution and not buying a book.
Don’t worry though because this guide is filled with fabulous alternatives to books for your book and writing geek! The aim of this guide is to introduce you to a variety of online stores that offer some fantastic products for book and writing geeks. I’ll be highlighting some of my favourite products and I’ll also be providing you with links to some additional gift guides for art geeks. By the end of this article you will be confidently armed with a wealth of information to go forth and buy an amazing present for the book and writing geek in your life!
Handmade gifts are not only an amazing, and beautiful way to show someone you care for them, they’re also unique. In the gaming world handmade items are especially precious to us because they are created by fellow fans who share the same passion we do. It is very hard to find gaming items in stores sometimes and that means there is a thriving market for handmade gaming products online.
I could dedicate an entire series of guides just to what is available on some of these sites so I have chosen instead to provide a list of sites and let you browse them at your own discretion.
Etsy is handmade heaven and you may find yourself losing several hours browsing there, so if you’re short on time go in with a plan. You can find literally everything there including things you haven’t even considered. It is also an international site so you have access to creators from all over the globe.
Another great handmade site that has a vast range of handmade goods for sale by creators.
Folksy is the British etsy, so to speak; it’s described as the “the home of British craft”. They have some fantastic items available that you probably won’t find anywhere else.
Similar to handmade gifts are online stores where artists sell prints of their artwork and designs. These unique designs can then be bought as prints, stickers or printed on a range of products such as t-shirts, notebooks and even clocks! This can lead to you finding the quirky gift for just the right person.
Like the handmade sites above there are numerous incredible items and artists listed, so here are some sites to get you started:
Products designed by independent artists that are then printed and manufactured on quality products. Each artist decides which products they want their design featured on, so not every design can be placed on a mug, for example. The variety of products, especially when it comes to clothing, makes this a great option for gifts as there is something for everyone’s style.
If you’re looking for quality design and fine art then Society6 is the place to go. There’s graceful typography, detailed art depicting characters and everything in between – and they’re available on every product imaginable. There’s apparel, furniture, home decor, art prints, stationery and my personal favourite – bags. Finding decent geeky bags isn’t easy and here is an entire site full of beautiful designs.
As the name suggests Teefury focuses on apparel, namely t-shirts, tank tops and hoodies. They have a wide range of designs created by individual designers, which they’ve also grouped into specific collections to help you find exactly what you’re looking for – something really useful for gift hunting!
Qwertee has a different setup than the other sites on this list. Designs are only up for a limited time so you have to be quick to get your hands on the ones you want. The great thing about this is that it means there’s always something new and fresh, and you get some incredible gaming designs. It is a t-shirt only site catering for adults.
As well as having prints available to sell many artists also offer custom commissions. A commission is when you pay an artist to create a piece of work specifically for you based on your instructions. I’ve both been the recipient and the giver of a commissioned piece of art and I can tell you that it is the most cherished gift I have ever been given and also the most wonderful experience of gift giving. It is a very personal gift and one filled with love.
Never ask or expect an artist to work for free or for exposure – this is extremely rude and unfair. Each artist will have their own set of guidelines and information so always be sure to read through those carefully before applying for a commission.
A subscription box is a box of products that gets delivered each month, and you can choose to sign up for a subscription for 1 month, 3 months or more. Subscription boxes make fantastic gifts because they include a range of different products, often exclusive ones for a great price. Most boxes offer a variety of products so these are idea if you’re not sure what your geek/nerd likes. You can either choose to order an actual box or buy them a subscription/gift card which they can then choose to use when they wish.
Here are my recommendations for some great boxes:
- Dispatch – A subscription box with a twist, Dispatch is a mystery shipped straight to your door. A great idea for fans of the mystery genre or any budding detectives.
- Wonderful Objects – These subscription boxes are built around one simple question; ‘What if?’. They’re just perfect for the imaginative book and writing geek who loves to escape into worlds of endless wonder. Each box promises a fully immersive experience unlike any other.
- Owl Crate – Owl Crate is a book subscription box for Young Adult novels and each month it sends out a brand new hardcover novel and an assortment of bookish keepsakes.
- Hook and a Book – This one is great for bookworms who are also crochet lovers! Each box features a book and a bundle of crochet related goodies that relate to the book.
- Novelly Yours – Not quite a subscription box, this exclusive box of book related candles is sure to be a winner with many book and writing geeks. See below under shops for more details about Novelly Yours.
- My Chronicle Book Box – The great thing about this subscription box is that there are two genre options available; sci fi and fantasy and crime and mystery. They also have some special edition boxes available too. Each box is dispatched quarterly and contains 3 new releases, book related items and exclusive author products.
- Book and a Brew – Reading a good book and settled down with a warm drink often come hand in hand and that is exactly what this box is about. A monthly box combining “drinkable delights” and books.
- Illumicrate – Illumicrate is a fabulous subscription box that features fantasy and urban fantasy authors. Sent out quarterly each box contains a new release book, and 5-6 book related items.
There aren’t many shops that offer a great selection of products for geeks/nerds in the real world, so the best place to shop for your geek is online if there isn’t a small local store that you know about. If there is a local store don’t be afraid to go in and ask for help finding that perfect gift; like me they’re there to help and will be happy to share their geeky knowledge with you 🙂
This list is a mixture of UK and US stores.
Library & University Shops
Larger institutions such as libraries and universities often have their own shops and these can be a great place to look for gifts for book and writing geeks. You can either check your local institutions of visit online stores such as The British Library, The National Library of Scotland, Glasgow Women’s Library, and The New York Public Library.
Waterstones is the largest book store in the UK, and while it sells a book on every subject imaginable it also has a fantastic gifts section filled with bookish gifts and stationery.
For as long as I can remember I’ve been drawn to the selection of gorgeous notebooks that Waterstones has, and it’s grown to include some really useful ones for writers. I especially love this Ready, Set, Novel! A Noveling Jounal that has everything a writer needs to help them on their way to completing their novel. It’s created by the team behind NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) who really know their stuff!
One thing that brings bookworms and writers together is a love for words, and this 2019 365 New Words-A-Year Page-A-Day Calendar by Merriam-Webster is sure to tickle their tastebuds with a brand new word every day.
The College Magazine Shop only has a small selection of literary products but what it does have is absolutely wonderful and unique gifts such as this Jane Eyre Throw Pillow and We lose ourselves in books pillow. Both designs are also available on other products such as blankets, duvets and even a shower curtain.
An online book seller, The Book Depository delivers worldwide and has a wide range of products available including great gift ideas. If your book geek is anything like me they’ll grab hold of books wherever they can get them. That means they have their own hard copies, books they’ve been leant by friends, e-books and so on. Keeping track of all of those and what you’ve read can be a serious job so for the bookworm that loves to organise (or maybe needs a little hand in that department 😉 ) get them a reading log like Read Harder to track books and chart their reading progress – because as awesome as bullet journals are not everyone has the time in their busy schedule to create one.
Gifts for book and writing geeks don’t always need to be a book. They can sometimes be something in disguise like this lovely Bibliophile Vase: Collected Curiosities. It’s a ceramic vase in the shape of a book featuring an Louisa May Alcott quote on the back; “The power of finding beauty in the humblest things makes home happy and life lovely”. There are two other vases available too, so if this isn’t quite to your geek’s tastes then you can find one to suit them.
This stationery shop based in Edinburgh is an absolute dream to wander around so it you ever get a chance to visit it then do! Thankfully they have a wonderful online store too so you can grab some of their beautiful products that are fantastic for book and writing geeks. They’ve got a fabulous Harry Potter and Fantastic Beasts selection of notebooks right now which offer a really unique gift for fans of that franchise.
A super collection of literary gifts that would make your book and writing geek squee with joy. Their jewellery section includes everything from enamel pins, to bracelets and cufflinks, many of which have a quirky style you won’t see any where else. I feel in love with these Origami earrings which are sadly sold out (and I can see why!) but it gives you an example of the wonders you’ll find here.
You can find bookends pretty much anywhere, however, literary bookends? That’s another story and as you would expect the Literary Gift Company has you covered with a selection of literary bookends in a variety of styles.
Litographs is an incredibly beautiful site because their products are made of words. Each item features a design that is made out of words, put together to form an image. The words used are from the book that corresponds to the design, so for example, this Alice in Wonderland Top features a design made up of the original text by Lewis Carroll.
A site for book geeks by book geeks, Out of Print has some brilliant collections that the geek in your life is sure to love. Try their ‘Raised by Books’ collection like this t-shirt, or this Book Nerd hoodie. They also have a fabulously huge list of products by author that features some of the greats from the classics and contemporary times.
Novelly Yours is no ordinary candle shop; each and every candle has a book theme. You can shop by author or book series, or by scent and colour. They also have an assortment of ‘generally bookish’ candles too, with names like ‘Cliffhanger’, ‘Plot Twist’ and ‘Currently Reading’. These make an inspiring and thoughtful gift for a book and writing geek, especially if they love candles.
The point of these guides are to help guide you to find gifts and that is why I’ve not heavily suggested my own gift ideas. I also wanted to provide you with some variety and alternate opinions so here are a selection of fabulous gift guides to give you some inspiration:
- The Magical Harry Potter & Fantastic Beasts Gift Guide perfect for every witch, wizard and muggle – With the new Fantastic Beasts movie just out Harry Potter is on everyone’s minds and this guide by Maya and Andy of Dreaming of Butterflies takes you through a tour of some of the official merchandise currently on offer.
- The ULTIMATE List of Gift Ideas for Grammar Geeks and Word Nerds – We all know that one person who always corrects everyone’s grammar, and this guide from Proofread Anywhere has a superb selection of ideas for those grammar and word obsessed geeks out there.
- Stationery Lovers Christmas Gift Guide – Many book and writing geeks are also stationery lovers, it’s something that tends to come hand in hand and this guide by Rachel has some great choices for picking just the right gift for them.
- 2018 Gift Guide: Gifts For The Harry Potter Fans In Your Life – If you’re not familiar with Jamie of The Perpetual Page-Turner then you need to be, because she has an excellent blog and her gift guides are always amazing. This one for Harry Potter fans is thorough, well thought and has something for all types of fans.
- Gifts For Book Lovers That AREN’T Books: 2018 Gift Guide – Another excellent guide from Jamie of The Perpetual Page-Turner, this one reflects what I was saying earlier about buying gifts that aren’t necessarily books. She’s got you covered with an expansive guide that also includes some of her favourite etsy shops to check out.
- Magical Harry Potter Gifts – Another Harry Potter gift list, this one has a few more magical ideas for the Harry Potter fan on your list.
Wait a sec, she said don’t buy gift cards?! Well, I kind of did. I said don’t default to gift cards. I want to give you all the options and one of them is giving you a list of useful gift cards to get for geeks rather than just getting them an Amazon one or a general shopping one like Love2shop.
Most of the places I’ve already mentioned have gift card options, but here’s a quick and easy list for you:
- Libraries, museums or other institutions
- National Book Tokens (UK)
- The Literary Gift Company
- Out of Print
- W H Smith
If you’re still well and truly stuck for ideas for the geek in your life or want some advice then let me know! Either leave me a comment or drop me message on Facebook or Twitter and I’ll get back to you within 24 hours.
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