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By Johannes Helmold

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things writers should useRecently, I’ve been thinking about one curious thing. What is a necessary possession for, say, a photographer? Most likely, your reply is “a camera.” Bingo, you are right. I guess you can easily name at least three items necessary for any photographer. You can do the same for an artist (brushes, spatula), an office worker (a cell phone, a car, a laptop), a sportsman (sneakers, athletic wear), and for many other professions. But, what I’ve noticed is that when speaking of writers, people sometimes find it difficult to name things that writers should have.

All this made me think about what exactly writers’ typical possessions are. My guesses are hypothetical, but to justify myself, I can say they are based on personal experience.

1. A notebook. It can be electronic, one you pick up in regular department stores, or a self-made one. Its main function is to enable its owner (a writer) to record his or her thoughts anytime, anywhere, and under any circumstances. Of course, a pen or pencil is also included in this point.

2. Anything a writer has got used to and that helped him or her write. It can be anything—an armchair in you read on, an old sweater knitted by your first love, a favorite ballpoint pen, a coffee mug, whatever. The main condition is that this item is used regularly while writing.

3. A comfortable keyboard. Yep, that’s important—unless you use a typewriter or a pencil to make your final drafts, both of which I doubt. My keyboard is super solid and heavy, with big, loudly clicking keys, and with letters that probably can’t be rubbed off even with acid.

4. A place to go. It’s not a literal possession, but still it’s something a writer must have to relax, think, reboot, and to be charged with energy. A lonesome place is my choice, but I know people who do all their writing in a crowded night club.

5. An MP3 player, or another gadget that allows a writer to listen to music. Sometimes it is crucial that you insulate yourself from the rest of the world this way.

As I said, that’s my personal top-5 list of a writer’s possessions. And what about your ideas for what you need as a writer?

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