Reader Friday – What’s on your Christmas list?

It’s not too late. You have nine days to get your request in. Well, actually eight, if you want Santa to deliver it. And that’s if you’ve been nice.

So, what’s on your Reader/Writer Christmas list? And, as I so often do (remember, I write fantasy), we won’t place any limits on the price or performance or actual reality of your requested gift. In fact, let’s see how creative you can get. We write fiction, right?

The only requirement is that the gift request relates to your reading or writing. Okay, now tell us about your dream gift. And don’t go on too long, or Blitzen will push the time-limit buzzer. She wants to get that gift made and packaged.

 Oh, I almost forgot: “Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good holiday break!”

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About Steve Hooley

Steve Hooley is the author of seven short stories published in four anthologies, a Vella serial fiction, and is currently working on the Mad River Magic series – a fantasy adventure series for advanced middle-grade to adults. More details available at:

32 thoughts on “Reader Friday – What’s on your Christmas list?

  1. That’s easy. Santa: please get me a generous publicist pre-paid package for Christmas – for a good one with a track record who can make the marketing finally sing.

    I barely have the energy for the writing but I’m happy with it – and that doesn’t look as if it will change until they understand and fix long covid and similar – but I need the help getting the word out now, and it’s a specialized world.

    Cookies and milk on the table by the fireplace. Thanks!

    • Now that’s a good one, Alicia. I hope Santa finds that publicist and gives you a generous prepaid package. How can he refuse when he finds the milk and cookies?

      Hang in there with the writing. I hope your energy improves. And we’ll all ask for some new discoveries and approaches to treating covid related illnesses.

  2. Dear Santa,
    I have been good this year – at my age there’s little opportunity to be bad 😉 – so this is my Christmas wish list.

    As a writer: Like Alicia, I’d love to have a publicist, someone to handle ads and promotions on a regular basis, and who doesn’t cost more than he/she brings in.
    As a reader: I’d love a new Agatha Christie mystery. It matters not who the protag may be (Poirot, Miss Marple, T&T) but it has to be written by the great Dame herself. For non-fiction, I’d love to have a new book every month from the inestimable JSBELL. (Just for the coming year, you understand, Mr B. I’d hate to wear you out. 😉

    Thank you, Santa. Sherry and mince pies in the usual place, reindeer feed by the back door.
    Lynda xx

    And a very merry holiday season to all contributors to the KillZone.

    • Dear Lynda,

      I can tell you’ve put some thought into this list. And I’ll put my reindeer to work finding all the items you have requested.

      I’m sure Mr. B will check in and do his part to provide that book a month request. I understand he has far more than 12 books already available on his shelves.

      Thanks for the sherry and mince pies. You understand that I will take the sherry with me to savor when my travels are finished for the night. I don’t want any tickets for drunken flying. I’ll return the bottle next year, for a trade in.

      And a very Merry Holiday season to you.

  3. Dear Santa Steve,

    While Donner is picking up publicists for Alicia and Lynda, please add one for me, too. I suspect they will sell out this year due to high demand from TKZers.

    A magic wand from Mad River would be appreciated. Please preload a spell so I can wave it around my brain and instantly learn Windows 11 which appears to be my fate b/c my Windows 7 laptop is terminal.

    Merry Christmas to you and esp. your grandkids!

    • Dear Debbie,

      I am so sorry to hear about your beloved Windows 7 laptop. He/she/they/whatever lived a long and productive life helping you crank out a beautiful line of wonderful books. We’ll start working on that Windows 11 brain transfusion.

      And we’ll put that magic wand on the top of your list so you can supercharge some of your other requests.

      You’re right. The publicists are in high demand this year. We’ll see what we can do. Prancer has taken a special interest in publicists this year. She loves to prance around and stomp her hooves and get attention. And when necessary, she’ll ask Rudolph to flash his nose.

      Please tell Win 7 that her work added much enjoyment to many people’s lives. She will be remembered.

      Merry Christmas to you and your family!

    • Windows 7 to 11 is going to be a jump, but I think you will like it. The biggest change for me is that the start menu is in the middle, Mac style and with it, the power button. It is more “frequent used” and search based than 7. If you are a desktop icon person, move things to the task bar.

      If you are reading this from a Mac, Windows 11 will look very familar.

  4. A nice fat check so I can retire early and finally have the one thing I’ve longed for–plenty of time to write. 😎

    • Ah, BK, you have made a very wise request. Now, I must ask, how fat is fat. And please don’t say as fat as Santa. That may backfire.

      I see one concern with your request. Have you allowed for inflation? Maybe we should invest that money in cryptocurrency. I hear there is a fellow doing unbelievable things in the Bahamas. Oh, I just tried to contact him, and he is going to be tied up for awhile.

      Seriously, I hope an unexpected windfall falls your way, and you have a Merry Christmas and more time to write next year.

  5. Good morning, Steve. Thanks for the interesting question.

    I haven’t been nice, but one of the items on my list has already been fulfilled with the publications of The Passenger and of Stella Maris by Cormac McCarthy. I’ve waited for over a decade.

    The other is coming. The Last Dangerous Visions will be published in 2024. I have waited fifty years. Now I’m wishing that I am on this side of the dirt when it happens.

    Merry Christmas and Happy New Year, Steve!

    • Good morning, Joe.

      I’m happy to hear that books you have been waiting for are being published. Maybe we can talk you into doing a guest post next year and report on the books.

      We all hope you’ll be on this side of the dirt in 2024 (and beyond.)

      Thanks for letting us know about some books to watch for. And a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you, Joe!

  6. Santa doesn’t come to my house, so I’m keeping all the cookies, egg nog, and Irish. If he gets lost and shows up, I’d like a word processor that writes what I really mean without typos.

    • Sorry about the lack of response this morning, Terry. I just now have been able to get back onto the site and able to respond to comments.

      I like your word processor idea. I’d like one that had the additional functions of editing and publishing. Type in your rough draft, push a button, and boom. Your book is finished, edited and formatted with a pdf and ePUB file ready to go.

      I hope you have a good holiday season. Don’t drink too much of that egg nog.

  7. Windows 7 to 11 is going to be a jump, but I think you will like it. The biggest change for me is that the start menu is in the middle, Mac style and with it, the power button. It is more “frequent used” and search based than 7. If you are a desktop icon person, move things to the task bar.

    If you are reading this from a Mac, Windows 11 will look very familar.

  8. Dear Santa:
    I subscribe to the Abebooks newsletter. The Most Expensive Books Sold List always shows something to put on the ‘If I hit Powerball’ list.

    If you could find one of the asbestos covered copies of FARENHEIT 451. I would be most appreciative.
    “The Tour of the World in 80 Days by Jules Verne” listed was also interesting. It isn’t the book as much as this copy’s interesting history. “It was owned by Mrs. Nellie W. Pillsbury. One of Nellie’s daughters, Nellie Ruth King, was the mother of the author Stephen King. The book was accompanied by a handwritten note from Verne, signed and dated October 1883, where he describes two upcoming titles. In addition, a handwritten note from American author Nellie Bly is tipped into the book.”

    • Interesting books. Interesting stories, Alan. I hope Santa can find those books for you (without “borrowing” them from someone else’s library.)

  9. Good morning, Steve. Fun question!

    I have a new iPad Pro with Apple Pencil, and keyboard case, arriving today, so my physical writer needs are covered. What I really need as a writer is the ability to banish self-doubt at the twiddle of my fingers as I sit down to write. I have all the books I can read–if Santa could add an extra hour or two into the day, that would be the perfect reader gift for me.

    Steve, thanks for all your wonderful posts here at KZB, and your encouragement. I hope you and your family have a Merry Christmas and a very Happy New Year!

    • Thanks, Dale. And thanks for jumping in while I was held hostage by GoDaddy.

      That’s some neat computer gear you’re getting. I hope it showed up and you enjoy it.

      And we’ll pass along a request to Santa for self confidence and an extra hour or two. I’m afraid I would fill that time up tasks and still need more.

      Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you and your family!

  10. Dear Santa,

    I hope you and Mrs. Claus are doing well. I know you’re busy, so I’ll keep this short. I’d like the following:
    – a box of inspiration to keep my ideas flowing
    – a canister of endurance so I won’t give up
    – a package of wisdom so I’ll write something worth reading
    – a large bottle of patience so I can deal with customer service
    – a bunch of new friends in this wonderful writing community
    – a thermos of discernment so I’ll choose the best books to read
    – a large vat of humility so I’ll remember it’s not all about me

    If you can deliver all that, I’ll take care of the rest.

    Oh, I’d also like a ride in your sleigh. (Can I drive?)

    Merry Christmas to all.

    • Great list, Kay. And thanks for asking for that bandwidth for GoDaddy. Your list is one we should all ask for.

      As for that ride in the sleigh: Santa says you can have a ride, but you won’t need to drive. Rudolph takes care of that.

      Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to you and your family!

  11. Another stellar post, Steve. I’ll be brief.
    As a nonconformist, I run Xubuntu and Libre Office. Simili modo, I believe in Santa, but can’t stretch my imagination to include the Easter Bunny, honest politicians, and effective publicists.
    My primary project is the non-fiction Guardienne Hypothesis, which I’ve drummed on here aplenty, rum-pa-pum-pum. For those fortunate enough to have missed those screeds, the hypothesis can be summed up thus: When RLS said, “…[M]an is not truly one, but truly two,” he wasn’t just awoofin’. This explains tons of anomalous human behavior, from deja vu to dipsomania.
    So instead of a publicist, I’d ask Santa for a friendly contributing co-author for publishing my ResearchGate Guardienne preprints in a recognized journal. PhD in Psychology or equal required.
    There will be cookies for Santa.

    • Great request, JG. I’ll pass that along to Santa. If he was watching our comments today, he probably got tired of reading “Denied for too many attempts.” Santa should have some ideas for qualified co-authors looking for just such an assignment.

      Have a Merry Christmas and a successful publishing year.

  12. Dear Santa,

    Please send me the post office box number of the Idea Store in Schenectady so I can get a subscription. I anxiously await your reply.


    Struggling Scrivener.

    Feliz Navidad, y’all.

  13. And Santa, please give GoDaddy enough bandwidth — or whatever they need — so we won’t get any more of those annoying “Denied for Too Many Attempts” messages.

  14. Dear Santa –

    I hope this letter finds you and Mrs. Claus doing well?

    I have been mostly good and I am always nice until someone else isn’t. I believe you will agree I deserve a present this year.

    My present wish is in two parts. I would like a never ending successful publishing career and the confidence and stick-with-itness to take full advantage of it.

    What would you like for Christmas? If you simply need a break, feel free to use the beautiful oceanfront house you gave me last year.

    Love to the reindeer and elves,

    • Very thoughtful requests, Michelle. I like those.

      We’ll send your letter on to Santa, and a copy to Mrs. Claus. If Santa comes up missing, Mrs. Clause will know where Jolly Old Saint Nick is taking a prolonged coffee break.

      Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

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