As I’ve gotten more serious in my writing, I’ve noticed that I’ve developed a specific habit in my reading. When I finish a book, I don’t consider myself to be really done until I’ve read the acknowledgment pages. I’m not sure when I started, but suddenly I’ve realized how much I enjoy seeing those pages of thank yous.
It’s not as if I know the people they’re thanking, although occasionally they thank other authors and I always find it interesting to see who is friends with who. I think I just like seeing the army of people who come together to get these books out on the shelves. Agents, publishers, editors, people over seas, beta readers, illustrators, people who helped with research or acted as sounding boards, friends, families and writing groups.
People tend to think writing is a solitary career. That writers just hole up in some remote locale pecking away at their keyboards while living a hermit-like life. While that may be right to an extent, the final product that the readers see on their shelves or even the self published ebooks are rarely, if ever, a solo project. By the time you read the back cover, a review or a blurb, there are already a score of people who have fallen in love with the story, picked their “teams” and are telling their friends and relatives about it.
We’ve discussed in other posts that not everyone is going to enjoy the same story. Different things appeal to different people. Even so, please remember that while you may dislike something you read, somewhere out there is a veritable army of people who enjoyed it and believed in it enough to help the author to polish the plot, promote the story and make it the best it can possibly be. It takes a whole lot of people to publish a book and even if you don’t enjoy the story, at least give the author the credit deserved for gathering their troops and working hard to bring you the best they have to give.