Composer Series: Emma Straub

The Composer Series:
Emma Straub

Bestselling author Emma Straub knows a thing or two about the art of composition.

Not only has she crafted compelling narratives in her books, Modern Lovers, The Vacationers, Laura Lamont’s Life in Pictures and Other People We Married, but she is also the owner of Brooklyn’s much-loved Books Are Magic bookstore. Here, Emma shares her tips for composing perfect gifts.
What are the similarities between composing a book and composing a perfect gift?

Both involve being thoughtful, but it's much easier to give someone a gift than to write a book, I must say!
What is your idea of the perfect gift?

I like homemade prezzies and thoughtful prezzies. Books are also perfect because they always fit.
“My main way of choosing prezzies is picking things I love that make me think of people I love.”
How do you go about composing gifts for the people you love?

Lately I've been buying people art that reminds me of them. One of my best friends got married recently, and I bought her and her husband a Joana Avillez drawing that made me think of how wonderful she is. I guess that's my main way of choosing prezzies -- picking things I love that makes me think of people I love.
What Cuyana items will you be gifting this season?

I'm giving all of my bookstore employees gorgeous scarves, bags and capes, because they work so hard and deserve to be cuddled in gorgeous things. My babysitter also deserves to be cuddled in warm things, and so I'm getting her a cape. (She is a superhero and a cape is required, no?)
What is the best gift you ever received and why?

When my first book came out, my husband took photos at all of my events, and then made a book for me of all those pictures. It's a time capsule, and I adore it.
“I'm giving all of my bookstore employees gorgeous scarves, bags and capes because they work so hard and deserve to be cuddled in gorgeous things.”
What is the best gift you ever gave and why?

When my husband turned 30, I wrote to his friends and family and favorite bands and writers and sent them self-addressed cards, so that he'd have birthday wishes from everyone. Then I gave them to him one at a time, very dramatically, to really milk the experience, and he cried cried cried. It was wonderful.
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