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Friday, April 01, 2005


Low-Tech Appreciation

It’s rare these days—and it will help you stand out to your editor or fellow writer.  It’s low-tech and only involves a few minutes of your time. I’m talking about sending notes of appreciation or thank-you.

When I speak at a writer’s conference, a few people will take the time and energy to send notes. They are greatly appreciated. Or occasionally I get a note—but it’s pretty rare for someone who sits on the editor side of the desk to feel appreciated.  If you take this stance, it will stand out—in a positive way. You may not get a single response from the editor—but they will remember you and the next time you are in contact, your submission will receive a more careful reading—at least it would from me.

As best-selling author Harvey Mackay writes, “As readers of my first book, "Swim With the Sharks Without Being Eaten Alive," know, I'm big on the short note too. In fact, a lesson in that book details how beneficial the personal note can be. In sales, never underestimate the importance of the personal gesture, and right at the top of the list of effective personal gestures sits the handwritten note.”

If you ever feel stuck on how to express thanks, I recommend Instant Thank You Letters. Use this link to see my review.

I explore this concept in greater depth here. As my friend and best-selling author of great books on this topic, Florence Isaacs, writes in her article, “In this age of impersonal technology, of computers and recorded voices on telephones, the hand-written note makes a human connection. And not just to the recipient, but to the writer as well. It feels good to express your sincere thoughts. When you put pen to paper, very important feelings slip out, feelings that you might ordinarily keep to yourself. This is especially true with sentiments such as, "I love you," or "You're important to me," that may seem embarrassing to actually say.”

It might be just the perfect boost to your writing life today—a simple, handwritten thank you note.

2 Comment:

At 11:49 AM, Blogger Robin Bayne Left a note...

Great reminder, Terry. When I receive a thank-you from a writer whose contest entry I have judged, I am touched by their appreciation. I try to send thank-you notes after many writing activities, but will admit the hardest to write are to editors who have sent me a rejection letter. Still, they spent their time on my project and I like to show my appreciation : )

 
At 4:14 PM, Blogger violet Left a note...

Ah Terry, you continue to be a well of information.

If I had the technical know-how, I'd post this in script, and scan in my signature at the end. Alas I don't know how to do that. So please, despite the technology, consider this a personal thank-you, from someone in the trenches.

 

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