Curbside Gift Guide: 2015

It is easy to slip into a blue Christmas when you are a literary artist. You could be the voice of a generation and not use your voice all day. 

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Gift season is hard when you fear no one understands your taste. On top of self hate, you are crushed by the anxiety of wanting to find that somethin somethin. You wish you knew an ice skater to get that beautiful pair of white blades. You wish you knew a baby to dress in that potato-sack-of-a-Santa stocking. 

But alas, it is mid-December and you’re stinky feet in your pajamas, couch cruising at home and emailing other literary lovers for their wish list. But do not worry—there is holiday hope for you yet. These literary prezzies will make any bibliophile giddy. 

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Why buy someone a book when you could turn them into a book? Nothing says “I love you” like “I want you to smell like a paperback.” Book smelling perfumes can be purchased in brands like Demeter Fragrance Library, Commodity Goods, and Tokyo Milk. If you prefer an ink smell, check out Byredo’s M/Mink Eau de Parfum. This Paris treasure is warm, sweet, and inky. How lit posh! 


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To help this paper-perfumer feel even more at home, also offer up a paper scented candle. Why go to the library when the library can come to you? Olden someone’s air with a crisp woodsy formula. Elegance is commercial. Elegance is attainable. My favorite: Anthology Candles’ “Law Library,” available on Etsy. Also notable: "Oscar Wilde’s Library Candle" by Paddywax. 


Pictured: Annie, a Border Collie, and my socks.

Pictured: Annie, a Border Collie, and my socks.


3. A Dog

Greyhounds are the best dog for writers because they like to sit in crates all day and leave you alone to your genius. Greyhounds aren’t very cute and they’re kind of scary, so other options: Miniature Schnauzers, who are compact and loyal watchdogs. Border Collies are keen and witty and active. Terriers are super cute, so their behavior is whatever. Get your loved literary ones a dog that looks like them. Let them name him or her and project all of their emotions onto the sweet loyal animal. 


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4. A Love Letter by Someone Else, Someone Better and More Famous

Don’t know what to say to your loved ones? That’s okay, you don’t have to say anything at all. Find an endearing and articulate letter by a famous artist and plagiarize. Once you get the handwriting just right, place the letter in an elegant frame. Choose someone who makes your loved ones nostalgic and weepy. You cannot lose with this gift. It will sit alongside small tea candles on the side of your lover’s bath tub. 

Curbside Splendor



I don’t need to say a lot about this. Some suggestions: The Librarian’s Naughty Habit by Heather Brown, Hot Pants Librarian by Mark Carver, The Naughty Librarian by Laura Quincy. Just a disclaimer these are all horrible and heteronormative, ya know, stocking stuffers.



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Do you love Jane Eyre but wish she had your name instead? What Frankenstein’s Monster was called (Insert Your Name Here)’s Monster? UStar Novels makes that possible for you. Whether it’s to diversify the mundanity of reading classics or to spice up a contemporary novel, U Star gives you the chance to cast your friends or enemies as well-known characters. Plug in the names and place your order. This dorky delight is fast, easy to navigate, and relatively inexpensive. For just a few extra bucks, you can even print a photo of your face on the back cover. They offer same-sex options, such as star-crossed lovers Juliet & Juliet (pictured).