Look, I have nothing against
adult coloring books. I like to color in line drawings of various film and television characters as much as the next girl. Once in a while, though, I want something a little more engaging than coloring within the lines. I want a book that'll force me to learn a new skill, or make inventive art, or even go outside once in a while before the sun goes down. If you've ever found yourself in a similar position, you might enjoy one of these adult activity books that aren't just for coloring.
And yes, some of them do
include coloring, to be perfectly clear. But each of these books goes a step beyond. Whether it's a feminist word scramble or a spontaneous art project prompt, each of these books offers something a little different for you to explore. Pick one up, and push yourself to be a little more artistic, or even just weirder than you were yesterday. These books tackle everything from writing a novel to making environmentally-friendly glue for protest signs. So the next time you find yourself bored or in desperate need of some non-screen-related stress release, check out one of these off the wall adult activity books:
'The Feminist Activity Book' by Gemma Correll
If you're looking for a book that can both make you laugh and fuel your feminist rage, look no further.
The Feminist Activity Book offers delightful, arts-and-crafts based methods of smashing the patriarchy. Gemma Correll's illustrations, games, and activities manage to be cute and fun while also genuinely critical of our current state of gender politics. Click here to buy.
'Ready, Set, Novel!: A Workbook' by Lindsey Grant, Tavia Stewart-Streit, and Chris Baty
Are you less into the artsy activities and more into pouring your heart and soul onto the page? Try
Ready, Set, Novel! Even if it's not NaNoWriMo, you can still write your very own novel with this handy workbook. The pages are chock full of writing exercises, plot maps, character Q&As, field trips, inspirational quotes, and plenty of space to scribble. Click here to buy.
'Cheerful in 3 1/2 Months' by Gerard Janssen
Cheerful in 3 1/2 Months is, quite simply, a book that will make your life better. This pocket sized volume gives you one offbeat activity to complete every day, such as sending a gift to stranger, lighting up a fake cigarette, or replacing all your filler words with Hawaiian. Add a little more whimsy to your daily routine with each colorful new page. Click here to buy.
'The Guerilla Art Kit' by Keri Smith
Keri Smith is the queen of non-coloring activity books for grown ups.
The Guerilla Art Kit is one of her most inspired: damage-free art projects for public spaces. Make your own stencils and "seed bombs," create a "wish tree," chalk quotes on the sidewalk, put up your flyers with eco-friendly glue, and follow this book's instructions for becoming an all-around more expressive person. Click here to buy.
'The Open Daybook' edited by David P. Earle
Every page of
The Open Daybook represents a different day of the year, as interpreted by one of 371 different artists. Enter your appointments into the "calendar" like it's an ordinary planner, or interact with the art to create your own unique artistic statement on the day. Either way, you'll be entertained all year round with this gorgeous collection. Click here to buy.
'Boss Babes: A Coloring and Activity Book for Grown-Ups' by Michelle Volansky
Color in Frida Kahlo’s flowers, de-code Cher's tweets, and fill out Beyoncé's crossword puzzle in this playful activity book. Michelle Volansky has collected and illustrated some of the most boss babes from history, politics, and pop culture in order to bring us this adorable, inspiring book for feminists of all ages.
Click here to buy.
'Everything That Can Happen In A Day' by David Horvitz
Insert yourself in the background of tourists' photos. Buy expensive bottled water, and then pour it on a tree. Leave flowers in a taxi for the next passenger.
Everything That Can Happen in a Day is full of weird, beautiful, and philosophically charged ideas for getting out of the house and finding new ways of interacting with the world around you. Click here to buy.
'Fill in the Blank: An Inspirational Sketchbook' by Vahram Muratyan and Elodie Chaillous
Fill in the Blank invites you to design your own vegetables, cars, and houses. It provides you with blank spaces to doodle tattoos, cliff side castles, topiary, roller coasters, wine labels, and more. Go beyond coloring in this interactive sketchbook, and find yourself inspired to think outside the box and fill in the blanks everywhere you go. Click here to buy.
'365: A Daily Creativity Journal: Make Something Every Day and Change Your Life!' by Noah Scalin
As the title might suggest,
365: A Daily Creativity Journal offers 365 unique projects and activities both on and off the page. Pick one prompt a day to inspire your doodling and journaling, or pick a few prompts whenever you're in the mood. With this book, you'll soon find yourself mastering everything from quilling to sculpting to engineering pop-up books. Click here to buy.