Of all the days of commemoration that escape the public consciousness (did you know that 28th September is Ask A Stupid Question Day?), here’s one we’re personally invested in: National Author’s Day, on 1st November.
I hope all of you have at least one author or writer in your life, someone whose work has been published in a professional publication, brought out to the public consciousness by an established publisher. We all need one because entire worldviews, zeitgeists and cultures have been manifested from these masters of the written word. What’s more, with the Singapore Writers Festival happening from the 4th – 20th November, now might be the time to stand up and notice our local writers and authors. The perfect gift should push them to keep up their good work – here are five that will do exactly that.
Montblanc Writers Edition Homage to Brothers Grimm Limited Edition Fountain Pen
When you think of brands whose raison d’être is to empower authors and writers, one name comes above all: Montblanc. And what better pen to buy for the author in your life other than the Montblanc Writers Edition Homage to Brothers Grimm Limited Edition Fountain Pen. Its marketing designation is a mouthful, yes, but it is a gorgeous must-have for any author.
This pen celebrates the magical works of Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm – German and European folk stories that are timeless and marked by universal appeal such as “Snow White”, “Cinderella” and “Sleeping Beauty”. The overall silhouette of the writing instrument is shaped like an old hiking stick and the Black colour resembles the darkness of the woods which usually serve as the main stage for the Brothers Grimm’s folklore. As an homage to the magic of storytelling, the handcrafted Au 750 solid gold nib with rhodium coating bears flames which were often the setting around which folklore stories were passed on.
This is the perfect pen for the traditionalist – the author who still swears by the tactile nature of ink on paper, even in the digital age. We recommend the fountain pen, but it also comes in ballpoint and roller ball, and in limited editions.
You can purchase the Montblanc Writers Edition Homage to Brothers Grimm Limited Edition Fountain Pen 3 here.
Rakuten Kobo Clara2E
The Kobo Clara 2E is a light, highly portable e-book and audiobook reader which offers great readability. It solves three problems: it encourages reading on-the-go, is a great product for those who don’t have space to store all their reading material, and it’s doing its part in ocean conservation.
The Kobo Clara 2E is made with ocean-bound and recycled plastic, part of Kobo’s commitment to using certified recycled materials. Over the course of the year, Kobo plans to divert more than 200,000 plastic bottles from our planet’s oceans and more than a million CDs and DVDs from landfills.
The book I read with the Kobo Clara 2E is a must-have for any author: On Writing by Stephen King.
Available at www.kobo.com and select retailers, Kobo Clara 2E will retail for SGD 219.90. Pre-orders are available now and the devices will be available in stores and online beginning September 22 in Canada, the US, the UK, Netherlands, France, Italy, Spain, Portugal, Sweden, Switzerland, Poland, Australia, Singapore, and Malaysia.
On Writing by Stephen King
On Writing is part memoir and part guide to becoming a successful author, based on Stephen King’s own experiences going from unknown to household name in American literature and cinema. The path has been difficult, and in the book, King drops many, many nuggets of wisdom that will be relevant to all authors, whether still aspiring, or even published authors who are looking to elevate their writing.
Consider: “What would be very wrong, I think, is to turn away from what you know and like . . . in favor of things you believe will impress your friends, relatives, and writing-circle colleagues. What’s equally wrong is the deliberate turning toward some genre or type of fiction in order to make money.”
There’s craft-specific advice as well such as: “The situation comes first. The characters—always flat and unfeatured, to begin with—come next. Once these things are fixed in my mind, I begin to narrate. I often have an idea of what the outcome may be, but I have never demanded of a set of characters that they do things my way. On the contrary, I want them to do things their way. In some instances, the outcome is what I visualized. In most, however, it’s something I never expected.”
On Writing is available at all major online and physical bookstores.
Louis Vuitton Notebook
Every writer and author will tell you at least once, “You never know when the muse will hit you.” And we can safely vouch for that notion. Inspiration strikes in a manner that can sometimes be best described as mercurial. Owing to that, every writer needs a notebook within reach, one to quickly write all the ideas that might someday change the world.
And, needless to say, the more stylish the notebook, the better. Louis Vuitton’s notebook refill is minimalist and understated, and in that, holds all the things that makes the brand so appealing. More than that, it is easy to carry around, coming in at a sturdy but portable 19.5 by 14 cm.
There are other notebook options by the Maison, of course, such as the Clemence Notebook featuring colourful hand-drawn detailing and the sleek, epi leather Notebook Gustave MM, as well as eye-catching covers such as the Graffiti Auguste Notebook Cover.
But nothing quite beats the muted elegance of the Louis Vuitton Notebook refill.
The Louis Vuitton Notebook refill can be purchased here on the Louis Vuitton website.
A Writing Retreat at one of the Author Personality Suites in Raffles Hotel
The Raffles Hotel boasts a series of personality suites dedicated to famed authors, including Chilean Nobel Prize in Literature laureate Pablo Neruda (who worked in the Chilean consulate here in the 1920s), as well as Joseph Conrad and Rudyard Kipling who visited our shores in their time.
These suites are perfect places for a writing retreat, to take your author friend away from the world so they can focus on their manuscripts.
Book a stay in the Pablo Neruda suite here.