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Words of gratitude

Writing the acknowledgments to my books has always been one of my favorite things to do, because it lets me thank all of the people who help me write a story. So I’m taking an opportunity today to tell them again just how very grateful I am for the contributions they’ve made to my writing career.

To the Rubies – It would be hard to list all the ways you’ve had my back. You are wise, kind, generous, and there. Although our sisterhood is virtual, I know I can count on you to stand by me through troubles in writing, relationships, or life. Thank you, Rubies; your support has been amazing.2 guys high-fiving

To readers – We couldn’t do it without you, and not just because you buy our books. We love the fan letters, the comments on our blogs, the lovely reviews that show you “get” the book, the word-of-mouth that brings in new readers, the times you show up for our book signings. Readers rock!

To my editors – You have made me a better writer. Your comments can be wrong frustrating, but you can also–through questions and debate–transform a good manuscript into something great. Thank you, editors.

To my daughters – When you were younger, you put up with a distracted mom, takeout meals, trips to historical sites you weren’t interested in, and conversations where I (the YA author) pumped you (my then-teenaged kids) for plot points and dialog.  Despite the challenges, you have grown into awesome young women. Even though you didn’t sign up to be the child of a writer, you’ve handled it with grace and humor. There are no words.

To my husband – When I recently confessed my fears about writing in a new genre, as always, you encouraged me to press on–never once pointing out the risks, the potential for failure, or the reasons I should stick with what’s safe. Instead, you listened carefully, then said, “If it makes you happy, that’s all the success we need.” Yeah, you’re a keeper. I’m so grateful to have you on my team.

What about you? Who has helped you as a writer? Who would you like to thank? Here’s your chance to leave words of gratitude.

 

Elizabeth Langston writes YA magical realism and YA contemporary (as Julia Day).  To learn more about Elizabeth/Julia, visit her website, follow her on twitter / FB / instagram, or subscribe to her newsletter.

15 responses to “Words of gratitude”

  1. Jennifer Bray-Weber says:

    Lovely post, Elizabeth. I share your sentiment nearly word for word. I would add thanks to my accountability partner, as well. She has kept me on track, not only with words counts and days-long brainstorming sessions, but with hard truths and unwavering support beyond the craft.

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    • Julia Day says:

      I’ve never heard anyone use that term–accountability partner. I can guess what that means. Is she also a critique partner?

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      • Jennifer Bray-Weber says:

        In the early days, she was a critique partner and maybe again in the future. I work differently now. We read stuff to each other as we go and beta read when we’re done. She hires me from time to time to edit, too. We know one another very well and so we know when to push and understand when we can’t. Having an accountability partner is a must! Being held accountable for a word count keeps a fire under the butt! 🙂

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  2. Love this post. In addition to all the sister who help keep me sane during the writing process the support from family and friends, I like to thank all the people who I’ve checked facts with.

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    • Julia Day says:

      Oh, yeah, I have so many people who have been kind and patient. Especially my health care providers–who always seem willing to spend an extra 5 minutes helping me brainstorm. It’s amazing how helpful can be.

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  3. Love your post, Elizabeth. I got a chuckle out of your edit in the section about your editors. 🙂

    Like you, my family is a huge source of support– my daughters, parents, sister and brother. As well as extended family and friends.

    My writing friend and mentors are right up there, too. Having that tribe that “gets” you and the writing world, whether it’s when dealing with rejection or just the smallest of moments to celebrate.

    I’d have to add my agent to this list. She’s a HUGE positive in my writing life. From cheerleading to brainstorming to handling conversations I’d rather not…she’s a wonderful person I can rely on.

    As a newly published author, I’ve only just started getting feedback and making connections with readers and I have to say…goodness, what a true blessing to hear from others who have fallen in love with my characters like I have. 🙂

    Your post is a great reminder to pause in the busy-ness of our day to think about those around us who make the good days better and the bad days manageable. Thanks for sharing!

    Happy reading and writing to everyone!

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    • Julia Day says:

      I have a group of writer friends that I go on retreats with–twice a year. I love all of the support I get from them, and how much fun it is. So, yeah, I need to thank them too.

      And of course, my agent. She is still so busy, and yet she always seems to have plenty of time for me to do–as you say–cheerleading, brainstorming, and handling those icky situations.

      Thank you!

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  4. Liz talley says:

    This is beautiful, friend.

    I would like to thank my writing friends. I walk with Phylis Caskey (Women’s Fiction) and Jennifer Moorhead (suspense) every week and we brainstorm. I like to meet Ashley Elston (YA) and Winnie Griggs to write at coffee shops. I meet several of my NOLA chaptermates every Tuesday for creative lunch bunch. Kellie Coates Gilbert (WF) and I brainstorm on the phone. And Beth cornelison (RS) always answers when I call with a plot issue. When I need advice about the business of writing, I email Robyn Carr and she always kicks my butt into the right place. Lol. I’m surrounded with women who help me, hug me, and keep me sane. And sometime give me a well-placed kick in the pants.

    Writing is solitary but we never really achieve success all alone. I love my writer community – and I mentioned them by name so I can remember how much they mean to me.

    Whether they are online like here (love my 👠) and my lovely Fiction From the Heart FB group, or physical like my support network here in North Louisiana, they are a blessing to me.

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    • Julia Day says:

      True–the writing is solitary and lonely and confusing. But I love my writer community too. I love that they let me lean on them when I need to–and don’t get upset that I’m neglecting them when I’m “in the zone.” And I hope your friends see this, although I suspect they can feel your gratitude every day.

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  5. Tamara Hogan says:

    –> “If it makes you happy, that’s all the success we need.”

    I love this. Your husband is wise. 🙂

    My husband has never read my work. He doesn’t read fiction, period; he’s more of a white paper and tech magazine guy. But one critical way he’s supported me from the beginning of my career has been to not say or do anything that would make me feel guilty about time spent writing.

    Guilt-free time is a gift beyond price.

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    • Julia Day says:

      My husband is non-fiction all the way. (I shudder to admit this, but the only novel I’ve ever seen in his hands was by Dan Brown.) So, nope, never read any of my books.

      But you’re right; knowing that he’s behind me no matter what–no guilt, no eye-rolling–is the best.

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  6. Awwww I love this!!! And I second all of those above. The Rubies rock so hard it’s unreal. And our readers? Aren’t they the absolute best? They make all the blood, sweat, and tears so worthwhile. My editors and agents are incredible. My family is beyond awesome. My assistants keep everything flowing smoothly. They are worth their weight in chocolate. I have to say, I have the best support system and I am beyond grateful.

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  7. This is such a lovely and thoughtful post, Elizabeth. Along with everyone’s comments, it left me with a big ball of gratitude in my chest.

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    • Julia Day says:

      Thank you. So many people make a difference. It’s great to have a public opportunity to let them know we appreciate it.

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