Dear Santa,

I know it’s been a long time since my last letter. If memory serves, President Nixon was in office. (Oh…I recently saw that FROST/NIXON movie. Highly recommended, you know, when you have some time.) Anyway, I know it’s been a while, and I know you probably thought you’d never hear directly from me again, but here I am. And I need your help.

This isn’t about my kids, well, not directly. I’ve got them covered. Thought still not sure they’ll get the iPods they keep asking for despite the fact that “everyone ELSE in my class has one!” And this isn’t about me, or maybe it is…I mean I am kind of a part of this.

What I am writing to ask for is a present. Actually presents.

Here’s the deal, it’s Christmas time…d’uh…and a lot of people will be looking for presents for their families, friends, co-workers, and whoever else they feel like giving something to. And then there’s you.

That first group is pretty big, and even if I had started in January I wouldn't have had time to talk to all of them.  But in you, Santa, is someone I can talk to in a single letter who I think can make an impact larger than if I HAD been able to talk to all those others.

I'm asking you to give everyone a book for Christmas. I know, I know, how self-serving can I be? I am an author after all. Out of the million books you give out, some surely would to be mine, right?

(Well, eh, right. I admit it. I would hope some would be mine. But only for the adults, of course. We can negotiate this point later.)

But since you give out a lot of presents, and often you’re giving more than one present to a person, can you possibly make one of the gifts you do give to each of us a book?

I think this is particularly a great idea for children! And again, if memory serves, children are your specialty. Right?

See, for most the love of reading starts when they are young. We need to take advantage of that, and instill the love of the written word while these tiny humans can still be bent to our will…I mean, while it’s still easy for these lovely children to fall in love with reading.

I know, kids have a ton of things to distract them. (Did I mention the iPods my daughters want?) I’m not asking that we take those distractions away. I’m just asking that you add a book to the pile. That’s all you have to do. We, the parents and friends of the children, will take it from there. We'll encourage the kids to read the books, and maybe even read them together.

Is that too much to ask? I hope not. But you let me know.

Oh…and for adults? Books, too, please! They’re the perfect present, really. Not too expense (a bonus in these economic times), and easy to wrap! (Plus I’ve been hearing that many of my book selling friends aren’t doing as well this year, so any help we could send their way would be great.)

I hope I haven’t been out of line writing to you about this. I also hope I’m not too late! You’ll notice that I haven’t asked for anything for me. And that’s fine. If you can make this happen, you don’t have to give me a thing.

One last thing: I’m going to ask my friends who might read this to go ahead and add their wish lists for you in the comments section. That way you have everything in one nice, neat place. I'm all about helping, Santa. All about helping.

Well, that’s about it for me. Hope you have a great Christmas! Stay warm on the sleigh right.

p.s. here’s one of my favorite Christmas videos to get you in the mood.

12 thoughts on “Dear Santa,

  1. pari

    Santa?I know we haven’t always seen eye-to-eye, you know, because our family doesn’t celebrate Christmas, but I’m willing to make an exception if you are.

    Besides the usual wishes — world peace, a healthy environment, a decrease in human arrogance so that we stop destroying the planet — I’d appreciate bookstore gift cards for everyone I know. Small indies would be nice for people who like to shop at those places. I wouldn’t be opposed to bigger store cards if that’s what you got.

    Oh, and please give the gift of literacy — the ability to actually read — to the millions of people in our country and around the world who have never experienced the joy of entering new worlds through books.

    Thanks so much,Pari

  2. joylene

    Dear Santa,

    I would like to cancel previous requests for books, a new publisher, an agent & a brilliant marketing plan in favour of ending the war in the Middle East and sending our troops home. I know that’s pretty naive on my part, but could you please put an end to the needless deaths. May I also be selfish and ask you to send our son home safe and sound?

    Thanks! And God Bless!

  3. Louise Ure

    Brett, you’re being far too polite here. You’ve got to give that fat boy in the red suit a kick in the butt.

    I’ve heard that he laid off half the elves and has cut back production in the toy shop significantly. And then he gave himself a bonus in the form of a St. Bernard-sized cask of brandy!

    Enough pussy-footing around. I say we threaten him with a PFitz investigation if he doesn’t start coughing up the books.

  4. J.D. Rhoades

    Dear Santa:

    If you don’t mind, I’d like for all my writer friends to have multimilliion dollar contracts and movie deals. And for Joylene’s son to be safe. And for Louise to keep making me laugh.

  5. Brett Battles

    Joylene I wish so much for your request to come through. (And would happily withdrawal my request to make that happen.)

    Louise, HA! Lead the charge, I’m right behind you.

    And Dusty…from your typing fingers to Santa’s ear!

  6. joylene

    Thanks J.D & Pari. I think you guys hit on something because our son just called. He had been trying to get through for over a week! He’s doing well and wants to thank Santa too.

  7. Fran

    I’m thinking Santa’s pretty well connected, and I’m hoping, seriously desperately hoping, that he can make both big wishes come true.

    Obviously my wish for people to get books has a self-serving edge. I want to keep my job, y’know. Still, books are always a good idea no matter where you get them.

    But I’m with Joylene too, in my heart of hearts. Lillian’s brother ships out to the sandbox for his third trip, and I’d love for A) him not to have to go because peace has been declared; B) for him to come right back once he arrives; C) for all our troops to come home healthy.

    And to arrive to homes filled with great books!

    Thanks Santa!

    And thanks, Brett!

  8. Mothrababe

    Great post Brett. 😀

    Joylene, I do hope your son and his brothers in arms see a safe Christmas and come home really soon. And that Fran’s wish for Lillian’s brother to come back soon is fulfilled, pronto. Both of my cousins are safe home in Australia now, having done service in the giant sandbox.

    We did two runs to the furniture store to donate toys to Toys for Tots this week – amongst the goodies were a bunch of new kiddies picture books from my collection. I’m hoping they bring a bright hour of story time to a couple of boys and girls somewhere. The Marines do a great job with their collection. We also did a good spend up a the supermarket and ran the food to our favourite cafe and their Food Bank collection box.

    I guess that my wish this year is that my family cease to be plagued with serious health dramas half way across the globe, and that they and every one else’s friends and families have a safe, warm, well-fed, content Christmas and holiday season. I have books on my wish list as well as a couple of seasons of NCIS, and my own personal Santa has already hidden some of these about the house… 😀

    Warmest wishes to all (and chocolate and the odd martini. Cornelia, you get a Dark and Stormy),Cheers,Marianne


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