I bought a NaNoWriMo Survival Kit from Second Star Books and this is what I think about what I’ve used so far.
I sewed up my own spectacular laptop tote awhile back and haven’t used anything but to carry my laptop since. Still, I got a bag in this expensive survival kit so why not use it. I used it to carry my laptop (duh) to an event and it was functional. I like the design on the outside and I did get a few compliments on it and the pin I attached to it (see below). Really my only critique is that it had zero padding. I’m clumsy. I need my things wrapped in bubblewrap otherwise those table corners and linoleum floors will definitely leave their mark on my precious writing tools. If I do use it again I will probably use a padded laptop sleeve as well.
I am not a pin person so I wasn’t too excited about this addition to the Survival kit. It’s super pretty though and I would love to have earing made to match. Earrings would definitely get more use from me. I attached it to the laptop bag because like I said I am not a pin person and don’t like random holes in my clothes. It did, however, get a lot of compliments from my fellow writers so I might move it to my usual laptop bag to show it off more often.
Bunny Egg Timer
Okay, so I have mixed feelings with this timer. For one it’s super adorable. How am I supposed to concentrate on writing with something that freaking cute in my line of sight? Two it’s annoying as hell. The darn thing ticks every second for 55 minutes straight before going off like the old oven at your Grandma’s house. I am not going to be using it at home during personal writing sprints, but it did come in handy for my group writing sprints outside the house. The ambient noise of a bar or cafe drowns out the constant ticking, but the ding at the end is loud enough to be heard as well. Note that I said this is a 55-minute timer and not a full hour. It states it can be used for an hour, but the two times I tried it either didn’t work at all or rang a few minutes early.
I found them comfortable but a little too warm since I keep my house a decent temperature and when typing my hands are the furthest thing from being cold. They would be more useful for someone who enjoys writing outdoors regardless of the weather. Maybe even when your favorite coffee shop runs out of those little cardboard hand protector things so you can still sip your latte and write while it’s still hot.
Upon the first sniff, I didn’t think I would enjoy this candle. Its espresso scented and I tend to like lighter floral scents like the Plotter Candle. Thankfully its not as strong when lit and left a pleasant coffee shop smell in my office. The wick is one of those long even burning ones too so no worries about it burning straight down the middle leaving plenty of useable wax along the side of the tin. I will definitely be using this candle again when I’m in a cafe writing mood but don’t want to venture out in the cold to get to an actual cafe.
I really thought I was going to love this candle, and I was WRITE!!! *wink wink* It has a pleasant smell that reminds me of fragrant flowers more than the tea it hints at. I found burning this candle very soothing, and it really helped me not freak out when I wasn’t killing my word count goals as quickly as I anticipated.
Voltaire Quote Ceramic Mug
Not much to say about this one. It’s a cup and it doesn’t leak. Has a cool quote but I’m not reading it as I sip my delicious beverage from its metal lip. Holds a decent amount of liquid but does get a little warm so using the handle while your drink is still hot is a must. I also found the handle to be a little slippery so if your hand’s sweat then you might not want to fill this thing to the brim.
Pep Talks for Writers by Grant Faulkner
Didn’t think I would be needing this so soon into the NaNo Process but it definitely came in handy. Just pick it up and flip to a random page. It’s full of inspiration and kick butt, no-nonsense get-up and go! This book may just be the best thing about the Survival Kit. Definitely keeping this in my writer’s toolbox.
Things Not Yet Used From Kit
Plot Bunny Notebook
It’s just so cute! I haven’t wanted to ruin its pristine pages with my hideous handwriting just yet. For now, it will sit on my To Be Used shelf with the rest of my adorable journal collection. I admit I have a bit of a problem when it comes to cute journals but I’m sure once I do finally crack the seal on this beauty it will be a great addition to my Past Muses Journal shelf.