We Hear You! Letters from Our September 2011 Issue

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MORE • Editors

I have subscribed to your magazine for years. I especially appreciate the health section in the back of the magazine, and the travel-related articles. However, I was turned-off and angered when I read your profile of Liz Cheney “defending” her “controversial” Dad. To say the least, he’s controversial. More to the point: he is a liar and a war criminal. Why do you give Ms. Cheney and her family an opportunity to justify this behavior by such an interview or profile?
--Teresa Statler, Portland, Oregon

Me, me, me, me, me. Is that all MORE magazine ever writes about? Isn't there someone else you might be interested in discussing?

I've just picked up my September issue of MORE, and it's all about me...again.

In fairness, let me rewind here. A few years ago, I was at my hairdressers, where I was waiting to have the last pieces of dyed hair cut off, having decided to go to my natural color of grey. While I waited, I picked up a magazine, and idly flipped through it only to find an article on a woman who had just done the same thing, and how she felt a new sense of freedom. She put into words how I felt.

I looked around to see who was watching, and quickly stuffed the magazine in my purse, only "borrowing" it of course. Someone had removed all those annoying subscriptions inserts, so what other choice did I have, but to borrow the one I was reading! Since then, I look forward to every copy - knowing each one will tell me more about myself.

One of my favorite issues was April 2011. I had only got as far as the Editors Letter "Life with Risk, about the sudden paralyzing fear of flying, and she was already talking about me. Had Lesley Jane Seymour been on the same flights as me? Was it her hand I grabbed on takeoff once? Did our faces turn ash grey together when we hit that terrible turbulence once of Alaska? Then in the same issue, was the breath stopping "The Lost Boy". Now MORE wasn't just writing about me, it was writing about my teenage son? I felt such comfort after savoring every word of that article, knowing I wasn't the only mother who had a difficult, abusive son that I was at my wits end over. It gave me so much hope. Then there was "I'll have what she's having”.... again more answers to my questions about getting rid of my brown age spots and trying to make myself look younger .... If this many women want to know. Maybe I'm not so vain after all!!

Then came this month’s issue - I turn each page, wondering what you know about me this month. Here we go again.....I just bought my self an orange purse, much against my kids’ better judgement, but MORE says it was the right thing to do ("Spice Colors"). DCIS ("Breast cancer you may not need to treat") - I had that three years ago, and chose to have a bi-lateral mastectomy. Your article was one of the best I’ve read, on this controversial type of "breast cancer."

The incredibly moving article "The Runaway", where Anne Hood says "when I graduated the only job I wanted was a flight attendant". Me too, and I was for 10 years. Whenever I was struck by pain or grief, I always wanted to go somewhere else, run away. I never had the pain of losing a child, but I so identify with Anne Hood, and I had no idea I could go from Beijing (where I was on business last week) to Tibet by train. Thank you Anne, I will do that the next time I am in China, and will think of you. She also made me laugh, because I too, go nowhere without my coffee press & bag of ground Colombian Starbucks, in fear that I won't be able to get a decent cup of coffee, which is so often the case, in these far flung places!

MORE is like the sister I so desperately wanted but never had, a good friend who almost always agrees with me, but questions me also, my therapist, my companion, my buddy & my guide. You have helped me understand my mother, my husband, my teenage children, some occasional toxic friends, but most of all, myself.

I need nothing else in my life, except to keep on doing what I'm doing with my latest copy of MORE by my side.
--Judith Mosley

I did the survey, but didn't really get a chance to express my issue with page 128 of the Sept. 2011 issue. Re: the nude bodysuit. "Fur is back in fashion. Whether it's real or faux, wear a little or a lot." Really!!! This is very insensitive and I imagine many readers would take issue with this. As I said in the survey, More is getting more superficial (more about fashion and makeup) and less substance. Please get back to why this magazine was created in the first place. Stay true to your original goals.

Reading the interview with Liz Cheney, I see that we both love our father very much and that we both want our country to be safe. But neither of these admirable convictions can excuse the heinous torture called "waterboarding." This simulated drowning causes extraordinary physical and psychological pain, and it can even lead to permanent organ damage and death. Would we want our own loved ones subjected to it, were they prisoners of war? We are supposed to be a civilized nation in which there is never, and never will be, any excuse for torture.
--Elizabeth Grubgeld, Stillwater, Oklahoma

It has been a very long time that I have wanted to and enjoyed reading a magazine from cover to cover...but now there's More!

I am truly happy to turn the pages of this magazine with anticipation of delight to discover yet another informative, inspiring or interesting article, tidbit of information, recipe, book selection or lesson on fashion and style. I am also thrilled to see the models in the advertisements resemble me, now, not from 20 years ago!

Below are just a few of my opinions and comments. I couldn't decide which to submit, so I figured I send all three and let you decide.

1) I read the September issue from cover to cover then over again. I thank you for every article, including your choice of advertisers. I was especially inspired by the article “Do you have what it takes to work for a Nonprofit?” I have often wanted to add more fulfillments to my life and dreamed of how I could devote my time and make a true contribution to a cause I believe in. Thank you for showing me the steps to making an informed decision a reality.

2) I love, love, love “More now”! Goo-Gle-Hei-Mer’s? Really? It’s a condition that is shared by many!

3) Reading the article under the fang club, entitled “Maybe Barnabas Was Worth It” about Josette DuPres, brought back great memories of "Barnabas Collins" in Dark Shadows. Though it has been over 40+ years, just seeing his face and hearing his name catapults me back to a wonderful time in my pre-teen years...racing home (along with my sisters and girlfriends) to tune in at 4:30 to swoon over "the Edward" and “Bella” of our time. We still love you Barnabas!
--Von Margarite

I have noticed there seems to an inordinate number of right-wing women profiled in your magazine under the guise of them being feminists. You are one hair sprayed, bottle blonde hair from losing a loyal reader. Any woman who refers to other women as "wimp girls" is just an older version of the mean girl clique in high school. Broads are tough women who get the job done without self-aggrandizing and making others women feel "less than." All that money she raised for Meg Whitman should have gone to the battered women she pre ports to help. Between her and Dick Cheney's daughter's delusional rant, I am starting to wonder if your magazine is just going to come out with a blatantly right-wing agenda any day now.
--Alicia Evans

I'm not quite sure how to say well and quickly what I want to say... I live in three different countries each year with my family of husband and three boys (whom I home school). When we return to the states for a few months, all I want to do is kiss the ground, speak English and read fluff magazines (in English). Normally, I spend all my leisurely hours with cooking mags or light stuff - my brain is already so taxed with trying to keep up with my life that there's no hope of getting through anything heavier. But this summer I found your magazine and I LOVE IT. It’s really been a great time reading thru all the back issues at the library and I feel like I’ve satisfied my soul a little bit 'More' than I might have had I not found you. Your mag is a wonderful mixture of 'fluff' and really satisfying stories about interesting women - some not so different from myself. Though I don't necessarily see myself reflected in the pages (I’m a lot More 'earthy', alternative eater and medicine, would never spend $100 on any piece of clothing :), I have loved, loved, loved reading each and every page.

Many thanks for filling my hours here so enjoyably!
--Maria Brooks

I waited until this issue to address the last issue; perhaps I was curious to see if you would speak to it before I did. Clearly you have heard from your readership that featuring Ms. Kardashian in your last issue as a woman who has successfully reinvented herself was a very poor, insulting choice. Those who have written before me have surely covered the topic quite well.

So, I was surprised that you chose not to address this in your September issue.

And, I was further surprised by the irony, perhaps even the hypocrisy, in your statement: "Real women - and I don't mean reality show freaks - are once again being recognized as inspirational."

If Kardashian is not a reality show freak I can't imagine what you must mean. By profiling her you offer an endorsement of her lifestyle, her choices and all the unhealthy, non-contributing behaviors she and her entire family demonstrate. Do you seriously believe our lives and our society would be better if we were so inspired?

Your magazine has been quite inspiring and I am eager to get into each issue.

I hope you will not stoop to such profiles in the future.
--Beth Mehlberth Whelley

I just tried to do the September survey - to my surprise, I got a message that it was now closed.

There is so much I love about this magazine. My only criticism would be that I don't think good writers should use or spell out expletives. Especially the F-bomb, so to say, it always makes me kind of cringe when I see your use of it. It seems to be in vogue these days to use it in magazines; I think it is promoting the dumbing down of America. Most people don't use that word in a professional, social setting. I'd like you to be above it quite frankly.

I appreciate the opportunity to share my opinions.
--Janice Humphrey, More reader since inception

I have to start off by saying that this is the first time that I have ever even considered writing an editor. I am putting my faith in the fact that you may actually read this letter and respond as necessary. You asked for comments in the September issue, and I am willing to give you my opinion on More magazine. I apologize if my writing isn't professional, but I will do my best to communicate my feelings as effectively and clearly as possible.
I have been reading More magazine since the first issue, and have been a subscriber for many, many years. I attended the More Reinvention Convention in Chicago May 2010. I found some of the convention informative, but most of it unattainable. Even the Wells Fargo Financial Advisor that I met sighed when I told her that I was a teacher. I guess she wouldn't make much money from an average person such as me. For the past five-seven years when I get the renewal notice for More, I actually think hard about not renewing. Although I have enjoyed many articles about reinvention, I am finding that for the most part, I do not feel any connection to the people that are featured in the magazine. Can you please tell me who your target audience is? I try to give my past issues to others my age to read and they have started to tell me not to bother because they just get depressed. They say that the articles only focus on people who are accomplished, exceptional and high achievers. You may think "What's wrong with that?" Well, maybe I can shed some light on that comment for you.

Do you remember when you were a kid and you wanted to be a famous athlete in the Olympics, or be the student that is twelve and is in high school, or an actor on The Partridge Family? You know, the people that were your age, but were already successful in life? That is how I feel when I read this magazine. Many of us are struggling to keep the bills paid, house clean, meals cooked and look for a job. We cannot make changes due to financial/economic situations and family obligations. I know that the people profiled in your magazine probably worked hard to get where they are in life, but not many of us have the money or the situation to reinvent in the ways written in the magazine. I don't know about the other "mature" aged women out there, but I have never been a highly paid executive for a large corporation with lots of many in the bank and a lofty retirement package waiting for me. I am an artist, naturalist and educator who would like some advice on how I can get to the next step in life without sacrificing what makes my life balanced and my mind clear. I don't need to read about Hollywood stars, how to look thirty, or getting a divorce and turning into a lesbian. After reading In Praise of Real Women in your September issue, I was confused to say the least. Although these women may be "real", they are not relatable. Also, you discuss how these people are not celebrities, but then continue to name Malaak Compton-Rock, Drew Barrymore, Jamie Lee Curtis and Rita Wilson in your article. Anyone who has read More already knows how wonderful these women are based on prior issues. I don't think that I am the only person who may feel this way. I have been reading the responses on the More website and can see the frustration. I think that I am the average woman who feels as if there aren't magazines out there geared towards me and my fellow "mature" readers. I enjoy kayaking, cooking, baking, tennis, hiking, traveling, spending time with my "children" (my two dogs), and trying to figure out how to live a life continuing doing these things, while making money doing what I love so that I can be "comfortable”. I dream of starting my own business and constantly research ideas and take classes that interest me, but at times get discouraged because of the lack of money and the economy. I am learning to listen to my heart and body by sacrificing an eleven year career as a teacher so that I can once again be happy. I do not shop at high end stores, and am very sensible when it comes to money, because I have never had a lot of it. I have accepted the fact that sometimes life doesn’t work out the way we expect, but we keep trudging along hoping that some time in the near future we can be More selfish and focus on being HAPPY, regardless of what society thinks of us and what we should be at a certain age. We have a lot of life left in us! My suggestion for More is that you focus more on the average woman. After all, aren't there More of us out there? If you continue focusing your magazine on the upper 10-15 percent of the population, then I believe that you will lose More readers like me. Since I do not like to give criticism without suggestions, I am including some ideas that I would find interesting.

Career -More magazine introduced me to Vocation Vacations, but I have yet to try a VV because of family obligations and money situations. Sometimes we have to sacrifice for others for the time being. How about information and suggestions on how to get into another field without having experience? Everyone focuses on how college graduates can get a job without experience, what about the rest of us that want or need to change careers for various reasons. How about setting up mentors and allowing a fortunate reader the experience of a lifetime. More always discusses how we should help each other, well this would be a great way to share and inspire. Maybe an article every other month with follow-ups? I would find that inspirational.

Health articles dealing with issues unique to our age. Thyroid disease is often confused with menopause and can go undiagnosed for years. Even after being diagnosed, most people are under-medicated and treated. I should know because it took years and thousands of dollars to find out that most of my physical problems were due to a low functioning thyroid. The physical ailments are so similar to menopause that most doctors shrug it off. The reason why it mimics menopause is because the thyroid is a necessary hormone that has little research dedicated to it. I would guarantee that many More readers are having similar symptoms and would benefit from learning More about this epidemic.

Travel/Recharging - What about focusing on shorter weekend trips that could refocus on putting balance in your life. Sometimes a vacation isn't possible and we need to be creative about how to recharge without leaving home. We can't always go to a spa or resort, but "we" are responsible for recognizing when our life needs to be More balanced and how each of us achieves that balance. Personally, when I need to get More balance and need a break, I run to the bathtub. If I do have More time I go kayaking, walking with my dogs, photograph nature or make art. Unfortunately I always put myself last, and put the house, husband, and errands and chores first. I am trying to teach myself how to get better at this. An article with suggestions or thoughts from others would be good.

Fashion - As stated previously, I have thyroid issues which means that I am "plump" no matter how little I eat, or how much I exercise. I am also only 5'1" and a size 8 and find it difficult to find clothes in the petite section that do not look like "granny" clothes. All of the pants are polyester with elastic waistbands and I am not ready to "give up" yet! I do not feel as comfortable in my body as I would like to feel, but am at an age of acceptance. Affordable clothes that are on trend, but hide issues would be greatly appreciated.

Self Help - I think that there are a lot of people out there aside from myself who would like to know what they are going to be when they grow up. I still thrive on the idea of discovering More and More about myself each day. Recently I was given a book called Strengths Finder by Tom Rath by a friend who knew that I was going through some difficult times regarding my career. The book focuses on doing what you are good at and not worrying about the other stuff. Imagine what the world would be if we could focus on our strengths instead of constantly be reminded of our weaknesses?

Well, hopefully I didn't come across as a crazy middle-aged woman. I just felt the need to let it all out and share my feelings with you about More magazine. You did ask for it after all!
--Pam Tarpey

I picked up your magazine for the very first time yesterday and happily delved in to it at bedtime. I loved what I saw. Your articles were diverse and fascinating, especially Ann Hood’s story. Her memoir was so raw, honest and powerful; and, as sad as it was, it was inspiring.

Then I got to page 129. I was so disheartened. You had a few faux fur pieces of clothing peppered throughout the beginning pages and although I held my breath when I saw those, I was overly impressed that they were, indeed, faux. But, not on page 129. I just can’t understand why a magazine of your seeming stature would cater to an industry that is unbelievably barbaric. What those animals have to endure in their very short lives that end so brutally is abhorrent. And for what? To “look good”? A better testament to your magazine would be to stand up against a fashion industry that turns a blind eye to this cruelty for the sake of a piece of clothing.

PLEASE reconsider showcasing any fur products; no one loses if you do.

p.s. I understand leather is also made from animals; however, that is a byproduct from an industry that we’ll probably never see fade in our lifetimes. The animal is not specifically slaughtered for their pelt, like foxes. And I’ll deal with that when I come back : )

My husband thought this issue was my daughter's Seventeen Magazine. My daughter thought the cover was someone from MTV. Julie Bowen looks like she has been air brushed, enhanced, re- touched to look like a teenager. OK MORE I want LESS fake and More real women portrayed on your cover.
--Sue Steele

I confess that for a long time I was in denial about being "of a certain age." In a few weeks I will turn 51 and officially be in my 50s--as opposed to just 5-0. I've been reading More for a couple of years now, and with every issue I appreciate it, well, More.

I have always been a magazine addict, and I have many subscriptions. And I am an editor by profession, which makes me a very critical reader. But your magazine always impresses me as being intelligent, interesting, timely, and very well put together.

The one thing that stands out in the September issue is your headline on page 56, "6 Fall Makeup Dos and Don'ts." One of my biggest pet peeves is the proliferation of incorrectly used apostrophes. Even in respected publications, I often see "Do's and Don'ts." I don't get it! I know what the apostrophe in "don'ts" stands for, but I wish someone could tell me what the apostrophe stands for in "do's."

What a relief to see that the smartest magazine I read got it right. This obsessive-compulsive editor compliments your editorial staff on consistently producing a high-quality publication that does not make me curse, grate my teeth, or reach for the red pen.

One More thing, your story about women working for nonprofits struck a chord with me. I am the Editorial Director of New Readers Press, ProLiteracy's publishing division. And after 14 years with this nonprofit organization that champions adult literacy, I can honestly say that every day I am proud of what I do and what my organization stands for. The difference in working for the nonprofit sector is that even when you have a bad day at work, you leave feeling that you've done something good.

Thank you for a great magazine.
--Terrie L. Lipke, Syracuse NY

I was terribly disappointed to read your comment and suggestion that "Fur is back in fashion. Whether it's real or faux, wear a little or a lot." (p. 128)
Anyone in the fashion-related world who does not recognize cruelty and suffering involved in the production garments and trim from furbearing animals could not produce a magazine like MORE. Since you cannot claim ignorance, you can only claim heartlessness. I will not renew my subscription. Fur may be a fashion statement, but it is a statement of selfish indulgence at the price of enormous suffering. Shame on you.
--Jane Cartmill, Encinitas, CA

There's so much about "second acts" in More related to career changes. However, there is nothing about women having families in their late 30s and early 40s. More and More women are waiting to have children later in life, after they've finished their education and are comfortable in their careers. I am surprised that there is no mention about older, new moms in your magazine. I had a daughter at 38 and 40 and am now 42. I don't think I’ve seen one article in the last two years about women having kids in their 40s juggling marriage, family, work and kids. Life is about so much More than my career endeavors and fashion sense, yet that seems to be the focus of the magazine. I'd really like to see More articles about older, working moms.

Today I read Peter Birkenhead's article about fatherhood and gained so much insight. Reading how emotionally invested he is in his daughter and knowing how much he loves her is heartwarming. I appreciated his honesty about his age, what he has left behind in his younger years and his awareness of how quickly children grow. What especially touched me about Birkenhead's article was his fear. Maybe he didn't intend to share his uncertainty with the reader but his admission is very clear to me.

I am a mother of a 6 year old boy and a stepmother to two other children. Blending families has not been easy and my husband and I admit we likely did damage to our children when we divorced our previous spouses. Each day is stressful, loud and never dull but Birkenhead's article reminded me to slow down and see my children as they are at this juncture in their lives- their growing yet incredibly different personalities, their conflicting insights, their fierce love for all involved in their world. Dozens of people have told me to enjoy this time with my children because it's so fleeting. It may not seem to be flying by as each day comes and goes but their independence is inevitable.

Peter, thank you for the reminder to read stories to my kids at night and to peer into their future and what lies ahead for them. You also gave me a wonderful reminder that fathers want to hold onto their babies just as long as moms do.

Thank you!
--Shaina Eusepi

My subscription was about to lapse and I was about to let it. No complaints about the magazine, I just had more reading to do than time to do it. Then I read Deborah Copaken Kogan's article on "Judging Women" in your July /August issue and knew I had to remain connected with MORE. Thank you for shining light on the inconvenient truths about women in our society.
-- Gail Geary, Saint Augustine, Florida

I am very disappointed with the September issue of More. First of all, in your photo spread of Carla Gugino, you say that "Fur is back in fashion." Killing animals in cruel traps and raising them in fur farms for no reason other than to kill them will NEVER be in fashion. This was immediately followed by a photo spread using animals in every shot, the most aggregious of which was the zebra, which belongs in the wild and not in a ridiculous fashion spread wearing boots! To that I say, NO MORE.

I am quite upset and angry about the profile of Liz Cheney that you included in the September 2011 issue. What possible good has Ms Cheney or her family accomplished that More readers need to know about? And now they are writing a book to “set the record straight”? Now that the book has been released we see that “setting the record straight” involves bashing the reputations of some fine Americans and defending the use of torture!

Please remember that it only takes one mistake like this to turn off a reader. My renewal for More is coming up soon and I will NOT be renewing. As the election year approaches, I do not need to pay for a magazine that will make me angry - I can watch the news and do that for free.
--Suzanne Sellers

To be sure it is a great idea to honor women innovators and women who help other women. However, it seems that you left out several important details about Julie Castro Abrams, CEO of Women’s Initiative for Self-employment.

I am curious how when Abrams’ consultancy “business failed” she was able to start a non-profit in San Francisco, one of the most expensive cities in the US. Please fill in the blanks. How did Abrams fund the non-profit? How did she support a stay-at-home husband and two children for 5 years? Who paid for health insurance? Private school? How much salary is she drawing from the non-profit?

Women’s magazines all feature re-invention articles but they leave out the pesky money details. The women featured must be independently wealthy. For most women “Reinvention” is today’s Cinderella story: a nice fairy tale.
--Kathleen Powers Dunlap, New York, NY

The September 2011 article “Genetically Modified Food: Is It Safe to Eat?” may mislead consumers about high fructose corn syrup.

High fructose corn syrup (HFCS) serves many important uses in consumer food and beverage products.  The scientific evidence has been evaluated by the responsible government regulatory agencies and their conclusion has been clear: high fructose corn syrup is safe and is handled by the body the same as sugar.

While corn used to produce HFCS may or may not be derived from genetically enhanced varieties, existing scientific literature and current testing results indicate that corn DNA cannot be detected in measurable amounts in HFCS.

It is also important to note that genetically modified crops may be used in the production of cane and beet sugar, as well as corn. Though, existing scientific literature and current testing results indicate that corn DNA cannot be detected in measurable amounts in high fructose corn syrup. USDA estimates that adoption of genetically engineered sugar beet varieties exceeded 95 percent of U.S. sugar beet production in 2010.

Furthermore, there is a widely held view that HFCS is in everything – unnecessarily. And that many of these foods/beverages never used to contain a sweetener until HFCS came along. In fact, almost all of the products that now contain HFCS used to contain another caloric sweetener (primarily sugar).

As many dietitians agree, all sugars should be consumed in moderation as part of a balanced lifestyle.

Consumers can see the latest research and learn more about high fructose corn syrup at www.CornSugar.com.
--Audrae Erickson, President Corn Refiners Association

Honestly the September issue was the best issue of More I've ever read -- and I've been reading it for years. It was more politically balanced (yes, I noticed), and the article on overtreatment of "Stage 0" Breast Cancer should be required reading for any woman over the age of 18.

Keep up the good work!
--Beth McKinley

I have been reading More Magazine for many, many years now – and I love it. Realizing this is a magazine for “mature” women – over 40, I don’t ever see articles or spreads in More of what women who are over 50, 60 or 70 look like. These are women who have taken care of themselves, raised families and had careers, and are still going strong. So, in defense, I am attaching a picture of 3 women who live in our 55 Plus Community here in Bucks County, Pa. Heritage Creek is labeled as a community of active adults – and, WE ARE! I want your magazine to take a look at what 70 looks like – in particular, the woman in the middle. She is actually 71 – petite, attractive and very accomplished. Not only is she a terrific golfer – she plays as much as she can during summers here in Pennsylvania; but, mostly in the winter, when she goes to Florida for 4 months each year. She still works full time, in a business she started in the basement of her home out of necessity while her girls were young, and they were having financial problems. She started a relocation moving business, which today has mushroomed into a successful and lucrative business which her daughters and son-in-law now run, with her coming in as a consultant and full-time employee.

Ricky is what 71 looks like--a full head of hair with lots of body, good skin, a slim, trim figure, limitless energy and tons of personality! You should use her in your magazine – just so the older, more mature readers have an idea of what being “over 60) can look like. A good majority of your readers are NOT 40 – but, rather 50 on up, as I am.

Ricky is a friend of mine, but, she belongs in your magazine for your readers to know how being over 60 can be fun and rewarding.
--Sue Bernhard, Warwick, Pennsylvania

I am a new subscriber, and I hoped to find a magazine which I would finally like but so far the September issue I am reading right now is more than nice, it's thrilling! The article I am currently reading and the one that really relates to me is "The Passage From India". I am not done reading it, but I feel really great to know that there are more Indian women in America, who also go through the same emotions and struggles I go through. It really makes life much easier to live.
I just came from India and when I arrived in USA, it was a big shock, the culture, country, people, food, etc, was all very different.

Now I am settled and still, go through mind battles, whether I should be the woman my family wants me to become, or whether I should rebel, fight and stress my family. I am an individual and want my individuality to shine. I do realize that whatever my family does is out of goodwill, but too much guidance does no good either, rather experiences do. I love my Indian culture, but if I could change one thing it would be to let the girl be different, even if it means her being non-traditional and very bold. This article, brought tears to my eyes, and this is the best magazine I have read so far, since my favorite magazine in India, Femina.

Keep up the good work! I look forward to more issues eagerly!

Thanks, More, for making up my mind whether to renew or not. Your recommendation to wear fur in your Sept issue made it an easy decision. No thanks.
--Deanna Stimus

A conversation with myself while on a house cleaning mission and on the eve of Hurricane Irene: I have too many magazines. I need to relieve myself of most of them. A lot of them are More. Of course I'm going to keep O magazine to go through, but as much as I like More I'll have to flip through them quickly for collage images and chuck them. Oh, wait. I'll just set aside the ones with stories about older entrepreneurs. Oh, the woman in this article is exactly where I am. And some of these stories are really encouraging and inspirational. Hmmmm. I can't throw these away without really looking at them first. Maybe I'll have to get rid of the House Beautiful, instead.

More More mags on my hands than I planned!
--Tiffane White, DC

Really did not like the cover of More coming to subscribers wrapped in a Vanity Fair ad.
I realize that the content of the magazine is based on advertising support. However, just as Post-It note ads on the cover of our local newspaper irritated me enough to cancel my subscription, I will think twice about renewing my More subscription.
There are enough ads to wade through in the magazine without you compromising the cover.

--Donna Yancey, Nashville, TN

I started to subscribe to More Magazine this past winter. I find it useful because it does focus on 40+ women. I read Glamour as well, but the demographic is definitely a decade younger.

Now, to the purpose of my note: I love the fashions, styling, hints and trends featured however so much of content is out of my price range. I think the mentality is that, if you are older you must have more disposable income. An outfit often costs more than I make in a month i.e: Sept 2011 issue pages 124-125. the dress, bra, shoes, tights and nail polish add up to a startling $2,164 not including the suggested blazer.

That was just a typical ad. I have to laugh (or cry) at the idea of spending over a thousand dollars on a dress. Where are the great clothes at superb prices? I know they are out there and you do give a nod to something like an H&M, but the focus is very upscale.

Is that your intended market? If so, I believe you are limiting your customer base. I am 47, but retired due to Multiple Sclerosis. Physically for me, hand over the high heel wedges; My M.S. took the path of causing cognitive issues and I am simply not even allowed to work anymore. This means a limited income which much of the country is suffering from because of the recession.

If you want to reach out to what is absolutely the majority of women, you may want to consider recruiting writers who like me have the mentality of "The size of your body nor the size of your bank account, does NOT define you". Look around the USA and you will find masses of 45 year olds who are wearing a size 14, and most of us are struggling still to make ends meet. We need your help!

I received an invitation to extend my subscription and get two "free" gifts. I was going to do just that, but when I went to More.com and looked around, one thing I saw was saddening to me. under anti-aging, you looked at Botox, expensive hard to find Galvanic Facial and spoke of all the fillers available. Averaging $550.00 per syringe, I can understand why there was a woman who injected vegetable oil into her face! Talk to us about OTC remedies, homemade and what items are worth the price and which the drugstore is equal.

I am holding off on extending getting More. I want to see if you are going to grow or if you are attracting all the women you want. It need not be an all or nothing. Heck, pay me and am able to whip off a great article on the best facial cleanser and what stunk!

Thank you so much for taking the time to read my diatribe!
--Alisa Marit Olson, Sheboygan

I have been a MORE reader for many years. I also subscribe to other magazines such as Allure. Ironically, the typeset of my MORE magazine (target audience of over 40) is the tiniest and most challenging to read! Even with my reading glasses, I have trouble….especially when I am reading it from my elliptical magazine holder. Please consider enlarging the size of your print! Thank you.
--Stephanie Kin, York, PA

I would like to see someone put out a magazine for women 60+. When I was in my 40’s and 50’s dressing was pretty easy but now I find it difficult to shop for what is appropriate. I definitely do not want to dress like my grandmother and yet I feel that I am too old to wear things that are in magazines for younger people. Being a baby boomer I am sure there are many more women that feel as I do. We would like to fit in without looking ridiculous. Jeans are a mainstay but sometimes it would be nice to wear something a little more fashionable. Thank you for listening!

Please convey my admiration and gratitude to everyone who puts effort toward publishing uplifting articles on reinvention of self.    

Articles about reinvention and survival at midlife have been my lifeline in the last year. It seemed I should die from the emotional trauma of the custody mess with my daughter while being tortured by bully boss and Hurricane Ike damaging my home while my gallbladder twisted my gut in pain. In the midst of incredible Texas corruption at every level I found I was not alone and started to fight bad laws, corruption, bullying when I was not curled up sobbing with dogs and cats offering comfort and my 19-year-old Aspie son pacing his anxiety out.

Like Ann Hood, I wanted to run. Unlike Ann I have no financial means to run and still care for the dogs, cats, goats that mean home to my son. I disappeared into writing more than the occasional poem, editing and rewriting: distilling words and pain simultaneously. My family, my home, I was broken, wanted to run.

I did the only logical thing a broken soul can do; I bought an old house in very bad condition in another state without support, moved to it in the middle of winter without having job. Living with no running hot water, only hot plate and dorm fridge in ongoing work zone in abject desolation I survived, the grief persisting.

Still without a job, perhaps due to age, perhaps the visible pain, perhaps because I want to change specialties if not whole fields without supporting degrees I am left to explore life.
I have come to embrace sadness not as occasional but a constant, dove releases show that grief for the entire world. The  old homes slated for demolition stand in spite of neglect, showing glimpses of what they once were, camera freezes time.(third photo) Injustice whether by corruption or bad laws is not popular cause to fight for attorneys taking money but abandoning the fight, I will educate myself and fight remembering the only failure is giving up. Fear of speaking up, of being laughed at finds remedy in seeking to do standup comedy. With voice shaking, mind reeling I survived the first set.

I was not prepared, never expected this to be my life.  I do appreciate the accounts of others who survive, grow and make a difference in spite. I hope someday to be able to write from a vantage point of success.
--Cheryl Carlson, Danville, IL

In Lisa Bennet's article about genetically modified foods (aka GMOs, GM or GE)  the author seems puzzled about why the American public has not been as outraged as Europeans and Asians about genetically modified crops.  Perhaps part of the reason is that articles such as this one soft peddle the dangers of these crops, and get buried in the back of the magazine without any reference on the cover to the topic.  The popular media in general fails to bring attention to this critical subject in any meaningful way.

Bennet fails to cite the looming problems with these crops, not only to the environment, but also to human beings.  She makes no mention of the significant sterility, miscarriage, and still birth problems which have developed in  large mammals raised on GM feed, nor anything about the superweeds tolerant to the herbicide glyphosate (Roundup) now plaguing the US.  She says nothing about the contamination of non-GMO crops by wind and bees, along with death of both honey bees and Monarch butterflies attributed to Roundup.  She makes no mention of the recent research from the University of Sherbrooke in Canada which revealed that both mothers and their newborn infants have pesticides growing in their bodies from Bt crops such as corn and soybeans.  There's not a word about the massive suicides of farmers in India whose GE cotton crops failed, or whose animals died when they ate the cotton plants after the fiber was harvested.  Nothing is said about the monopolies created by the GM companies such as Monsanto and Syngenta which force farmers to purchase new GE seed every year along with huge amounts of expensive herbicides and fertilizers because they have bought up the other companies and virtually nothing else is available.  Neither is there any reference to the toxic run off of pesticides and herbicides which are sprayed on millions of acres of farmland every growing season.  She makes GMOs sound so benign that she implies that there is not too much to worry about.  Nothing appears to be further from the truth.  Monsanto hinders independent research on GMOs, and new GE plant species are quickly released in the environment with little or no consideration about their effects on human or ecological health. Bennet tries to console those who might still be squeamish about GMOs by advising the purchase of organic food.  Unfortunately this is already a challenge due to increasing GMO contamination of organic and conventional crops and the inclusion of GE substances in almost every manufactured supermarket food.  Eating organic could become completely impossible in the future since the Obama administration has just approved the marketing of GE alfalfa, the largest forage crop in America. Cross contamination is inevitable.  This nation stands to lose not only organic milk, cheese and yogurt with this action, but also our crop diversity, ecology and our health.
--Christine Crockett, Ann Arbor, Michigan

I like your magazine; so does my wife. She reads more of it than I do. I read bits and pieces.

I’m not going to take your survey, but I do have an idea as to how you might wish to improve MORE.

I admire the feature, “This is what (insert age) looks like.”  I enjoy reading about women who have achieved notable success in the business world—some against prohibitive odds—or have created something exceptionally brilliant that makes lots of money. There are, I am convinced, other women out there (hell, I’m married to one) who may not have reached the same pinnacles of success worthy of multi-media focus, but who deserve your spotlight. Why not couple both, showcasing them next to each other, proof that professional achievement and recognition may not always be a slam dunk, but is, in terms of competence or effort, on equal footing with those who have earned your praise and respect.
--Stephen Michaelides, Cleveland, OH 44113

This is my complaint, and I’m sure I’ll never see it in print or even get a response but here it is anyway.   

I had to flip through to page 12 before I even found your “Contents” page for the September issue! 

You are turning into a paper waste for advertising!  I also have trouble finding real articles vs. advertising posing as content.  

I did find your “Black & White” story eye catching, but when I read the small print on clothing prices I just had to laugh at how out of touch with the real world you are!   Examples: Faux-pearl pumps at $1450, a felt fedora at $490, or how about white leather booties at $945!  

I suggest you get back to a magazine for women over age 40 that has some copy for women in the world right now.  We don’t all live in NYC and buy a new pair of leather shoes for a night out on the town. We are women struggling to meet day to day challenges with weight, families, jobs, and money issues.  

I’m sorry to say that I have been a subscriber on and off for several years. My first issue was the year I turned 40, and I’m going to be 50 this year.  I’ve ended my subscription and returned only to be just as disappointed.  I will not be renewing my subscription. 
--Cindy Gehrke, La Farge, WI

I love this magazine because it reinforces that women may be getting older, but we're getting better.  I'm sexier, more confident, happier, and smarter than I was 20 years ago.  I'm more comfortable in my own skin, and know what I want and how to get it.  However, I live in the Midwest, in Illinois, the state with the dubious distinction of being most in debt.  I am a public school teacher, and am happy and grateful to make the income that I do.  In my rural/blue collar, I make wonderful money for a woman.  (I also sell Silpada jewelry to support my habit of enjoying fine jewelry, and love that I see Silpada ads in your magazine.)  

With everything that I do have, I also have common sense.  Who, in their right mind, has the kind of money to spend $600 for a teensy little purse that will barely hold a tampon and a lipstick?  Who, in their right mind, can comfortably spend $2,000 on a dress?  A dress?  It's a freaking dress!  The motto for More Magazine is "woman with style and substance."  I understand you're trying to reach all women, as I see items that come from Target as well as Tiffany.  What turns me off is seeing how many items cost so much money, when our country is in a recession.  I'd rather see more items that cost what people should and probably can spend on clothing that costs more than a house payment. 
--Nora Kelly

My wife and I enjoy your magazine but had some comments about some of the content and ads. I tried to go on-line and take your survey as directed on the bottom of page 20. 

Unless I'm an idiot, that survey 1) does not have a place for comments, and 2) states that the participant is eligible for $5,000, not the $10,000 stated on page 20.  Not a big thing, but it affects the credibility of the survey immediately. We're not in it for the remote chance for either $5,000 or $10,000, whichever the correct amount is, but the lack of space for comments was, for me, off-putting. Feels as if the survey is exclusively for the collection of demographic info, not a format for comments and possibly criticism.

The thing that we noticed in this issue is the extremely heavy airbrushing of the women in the ads, so much so as to make the photos laughable. Drew Barrymore not only has all of her facial flaws removed, but I think her face has been re-shaped to a degree. Julianna Margulies has the skin of a 14 year old, no crow's feet, etc. Not how she really looks. Diane Keaton, who is 65, looks 35 and nothing like she really looks.

Too much of a good thing. I realize that you may not be in artistic control of the images, but these look so fake it takes away from the overall feeling of the magazine.
--Marc Bailes, Phoenix, AZ

A full-page ad covering the front cover of the magazine? Oh, please. Cancel my subscription, and let me know if you'd like revenue-generating ideas that don't compromise editorial integrity. Magazine Publishing 101. Sorry to be rude--but I find your Sept magazine RUDE.
--Gerry Romano

I enjoy MORE and look forward to receiving my issue each month. 

One question though: We're getting older, so why do the magazine's typefaces keep getting smaller? 
--Anne Neiwirth, Columbus, OH 

Feedback – you asked for it, you got it!

Just received the September issue in the mail (yay! Love your magazine!) and wanted to let you know how much I dislike the fact that it was covered by a Vanity Fair advertisement. Maybe it’s just the day that I’m having, but it’s annoying having to remove that and the sticky stuff on the spine of the magazine to get to the actual cover. (Beautiful btw – I heart Julie Bowen)

Small complaint in the grand scheme of things, but please rethink this approach for future issues.
--A. Edwards, Robins, IA

First Published Wed, 2011-08-24 13:16

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