If You Make a Mistake in a Thank You Note Should You Start Over?

When writing thank-you notes, there may come a time when you spell a word wrong or what to change a word. With handwritten notes, you have a choice to make. Should you start over or cross it out?

There is not an easy Yes or No for this question. It just depends on your situation.

Start over when….

* If it is a thank you note you are writing after having a job interview. The thank you note could determine if you get another interview or the job. Make sure your thank you note is not sloppy. No crossing out!

* The recipient is not someone you know well. You want to make a good impression!

* The person may put the thank you note on display. This could be if you are giving a thank you note to a co-worker. Some of my co-workers display any note they are given. It’s possible that other co-workers will read your note. Better to start over than to become known as the messy writer in your office.

* You have several cross outs within the same note. One or two is okay, but if your thank you note is only 3 sentences lots of cross outs may come across as sloppy and like you didn’t care about what you were writing.

Cross it out when….

* The note is being sent to someone you know well. I do this when writing thank-you notes to my parents, grandma, or siblings. We know each other well and have written enough thank you notes to each other that a crossed out word is alright. They are likely not judging your penmanship.

* It’s your last thank you note and you it’s not for a job interview. If you don’t have a blank card to start over with, just keep going. Most people are forgiving and will be thrilled to be getting a thank you note in the mail.

If you like everything to be neat, then feel free to start over in any situation.

Do you start over or are you a crosser outer?

Heidi has been writing thank you notes for more than 30 years and is the author of A Modern Guide to Writing Thank-You Notes. Her goal is to help people write better thank-you notes by providing tips and examples.

5 thoughts on “If You Make a Mistake in a Thank You Note Should You Start Over?”

  1. I don’t mind if you cross out a word when sending me a note. BUT if it is for something super special then no cross outs. I may have done a cross out but if possible, I would probably rewrite the note. The Pilot erasable pens sound like a nice idea but have never tried them. No cross outs on wedding thank you notes. It has been 50 years now since I did wedding thank you notes. As a general rule I would say no cross outs.

  2. I start over to a point. That is, if i have to start over often i just give up and cross it out, sending it as it is. Of course this may not always be the case.

Comments are closed.