I blogged about acknowledgments today...and why we may want to check in before saying that public thank you. Thought I'd share an excerpt here because this was eye opening to me when I talked about it with a friend recently....
(From the blog post - the whole thing is here: http://www.katemessner.com/think-before-you-thank-writers-acknowledgments/
An acknowledgment in the back of a book is different from a quiet thank you note that arrives in a mailbox. Itís a very public thank you, and in some situations, it might not be comfortable for the person being thanked.
A museum employee or zookeeper who granted unusual access to records or an exhibit, for example, may have bent some rules in doing so. A public thank you could make for an awkward conversation with that personís boss.
A teacher or librarian who enjoys an authorís work might be delighted to see his or her name in the back of a book. But what if that reader wants to be on a state or national awards committee and the authorís book shows up in the pile of titles to be discussed? Suddenly, having that public thank you in the book is awkward at best and at worst, could create pressure for the person to resign from a great opportunity.
Iíll be honest Ė I wouldnít have thought of any of this until a friend brought it to my attention recently. Because what could be wrong with saying thanks? NothingÖas long as the person has a heads up.
Hereís what Iím going to do from now onÖ There are certain people I know are happy to be thanked Ė my critique partners, my agent and editor, my family. But for othersĖ individuals who have helped along the way by assisting with research or spreading the word about my books Ė Iíve decided itís probably best to fire off a quick note first. Something like thisÖ
Dear awesome person,
I wanted to drop you a note to say thanks again for (awesome things that you did). If itís okay with you, Iíd like to say a more public thank you by including your name in the acknowledgments for (title of book that is awesome because of you). Please let me know if thatís all right, and even if itís not, know that Iím so very grateful for your help.
So Iím curious now. How do other writers handle acknowledgments?