Story, first published: Fantastic Universe, Aug. 1956
In "So Bright the Vision" ..., Earth has a monopoly on writing imaginative literature because of its "yarners", writing machines that supply plots and characters.
An alien "blanket" brings the gift of writing without a machine to a writer down on his luck. The writer finds the alien crying in an alley and takes it in. Another alien, a biologist, invented the "blanket" from a science-fiction story (here Simak is referring to his own 1944 story "Ogre") and offers the writer money for his alien friend. Without the comfort of his "blanket," the writer has rediscovered the lost art of writing and decides to travel around the galaxy writing about his experiences.
Ewald, Robert J.: When the Fires Burn High and the Wind is from the North, p.54