I need a little advice here.
When I wrote my first novel, I got a tremendous amount of help and feedback from a very dear friend whose name I will not reveal here. She was smart, gentle and insightful. Of course, it was always my intention to thank her in my acknowledgments.
Several months ago, however, for reasons that are still unclear to me, this friend dropped me like a hot ball of wax. She politely told me she was just too busy for the friendship. It was hurtful, but I’m a big girl and a busy mama, and got on with it. However, she followed this up with a few passive-aggressive attacks. This was excruciating, as I wouldn’t have hurt her for all the Hershey’s Kisses in the world, and have no idea why she would want to do that to me.
Again, I turned the other cheek and got on with it, as there was nothing else I could do. (That’s the infuriating thing about passive-aggressive attacks. You can’t stick up for yourself—you can’t even argue—because the attacker will always respond with a righteous, Moi? I meant no harm!)
Still, I intended to thank her in my acknowledgments, because no matter what else came after, her help with the book was undeniable.
Now, as you probably know, I’ve sold another book. And since this individual was such a huge part of the first book, I thought she’d like to know. Keep in mind that though we rarely correspond these days, we do maintain a cordial rapport. So, even though I knew she had already heard the news, I gave her the courtesy of dropping her a line to let her know. She never answered back, which I take as the final statement on this friendship. Am I hurt? You betcha. Because regardless of what transpired between us, there’s no force on heaven or earth that would have kept me from congratulating her if the shoe were on the other foot.
So now, dear reader, I need some opinions. Since the role she played in the book is not diminished, do I stick with my original plan and thank her in the acknowledgments, or just forget she ever existed?
To make this a little more complicated, including her in the acknowledgments is not necessarily taking the high road, as I’m pretty sure she would prefer not to be mentioned. So in a sense, if I wanted to sink to her level of passive-aggression, I would not only include her, but print her name in bold type.
What would you do in my shoes?