We Hear You! Letters from Our September 2013 Issue

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by MORE • Editors
angie harmon sept 2013 cover image

Best. Issue. Ever. Thank you
--Cassandra Killion

Great magazine this month. As a Black woman, age 41, I love reading More. I occasionally participate in the surveys and even less than that the writing contests. I have been reading More since my late 30's in preparation for this new stage in my life. As a devoted Rizzoli & Isles fan, I was surprised by the backlash Angie Harmon received due to her political affiliation. I too am a liberal republican. I don't get flack from my very democratic relatives for my views because I have the unmoving reputation of being more right than not on most subjects. My support of Angie increased upon hearing that she went out there and defended her views. I appreciate women who are not afraid to say it like they mean it. Best wishes to Angie Harmon.

On another note, the article, "My Family Tree--In Black and White" moved me as well. The writer, Dionne Ford and I share some similarities. My ancestors also stem from a master and slave relationship that was not the typical violent story of rape we are accustomed to hearing. My great great grandfather was Colonel "Tip" Bagley and my great great grand mother was his slave, Mary whom he had a relationship with according to the family stories. I, like Dionne am now married to a Caucasian and am raising biracial children. Life is funny for those of us whose ancestry is not so cut and dry. I sometimes feel like on any given day my different ancestry traits, (African, European, and Native American) emerge to contribute to my mood at the moment. However even in those three types of nationalities there are dozens of tribes, sects, and lines to investigate.

Because the past is something we can only piece together from photos and small clues that can't possibly sum up an entire life; I teach my kids to embrace what feels most accurate for them and to remember the most important thing is to know that they are making their own history. Soon they will be creating their own customs, traditions, and ancestral markings by what they do today as Americans. As fun as it was having my own Alex Haley moment when I found some "cousins" on the Internet, I feel closest to all my ancestors when I honor their contributions and sacrifices with how I live today by, "making time for what matters." Best of luck to Dionne Ford on the book.

Great issue!

Take care of you,
--Joe Williams-Nelson

Greetings Ms. Seymour,
My name is Kim Williams. I am a subscriber to More Magazine. Congratulations on 15 wonderful years. I am a 44 year old woman who finds your magazine truly amazing.
Warmest,
--Kimberly

I'm a HUGE fan of your magazine and am tolerating the aging process much better now that I am a subscriber! I just read the article on Troylyn Ball and was compelled to write in. Thank you for featuring such a gutsy lady who's overcome so much! I look forward to supporting her business. Thanks for your mag and great stories. Keep bringing me More!
--Lynn Vogel

Just a note to tell you folks at MORE magazine that 15 years ago I received an “invitation” to help launch a new magazine called MORE! I liked the concept and decided at the age of 62 (!) to sign on. I have enjoyed every issue since then except these past 3 months when I never received a renewal notice and neglected to look at the EXP. date on the last issue.

I renewed today and look forward to enjoying many more issues. I pass it on to my 54-year-old daughter and as a fashionista she devours every issue. At 77 I am probably your oldest and longest fan! I enjoy the articles, fashion and tips for keeping up with all the latest in the world of women. As they say, “I ain’t dead yet!” Thanks for many years of enjoyment, keep up the good work!

Sincerely,
--Helen I. Marchese

Dear Ms. Seymour,

My wife subscribes to More magazine and I will sometimes flip through it if I see something interesting on the cover. Well, I was pleasantly surprised by the most recent issue. Not only was the article on a woman's dog sledding experience fascinating and encouraging, but so was the story on Angie Harmon.

I particularly related to the section about her difficulty being a Republican in Hollywood. My wife and I are Scott Brown Republicans here in Massachusetts, which has been controlled by the Democrat party for years. I admire Ms. Harmon's courage in the face of incredible odds. I feel the same pressure--and abuse--here, to bow to liberal ideology. We did not vote for Obama and are constantly reminded that we are racists/homophobic/biggots for liking Mitt Romney. To quote Ms. Harmon: "It's bizarre to me that the so-called tolerant party can be so intolerant."

Thanks again for allowing Ms. Harmon to speak. I know there are many more women out there who have something important to say and are being shut out of the conversation for political reasons. Scary, huh?

Sincerely,
--Peter B. Robb

Thank you for your recent and thoughtful piece on Sharon Wilson. She and I have known one another for a long while and worked together on fracking issues around the world. Your article helps portray her as the committed and selfless advocate she is, and I deeply appreciate your efforts to illuminate for you readers the challenging and controversial issues surrounding the oil and gas issues currently and increasingly facing our nation’s communities.

Best regards,
--Lisa Bracken

Hi there!

I’ve been reading More since the first issue and have subscribed for almost as long. Needless to say, I love the magazine! In the latest issue I was delighted to see parts of two article directly address those of us who have been with you that long – the 60s crowd. I realize you can’t cover every age group but sure appreciated those items.

Wishing you another successful 15 years
--Sue Cotter

Dionne Ford’s article moved me to tears.
--Anonymous

Great job on the Lauren Hutton spread!  She is my peer (over 60), adventurous but classic, and I love every item she is wearing.  Perfection!

Thanks for giving attention to the over 60 woman!  I'm sure there are many of us who still have style and want to continue living every day we have left to the max!

I also appreciate the tone of the facebook page, which is positive, inspiring, encouraging, and enjoyable.

Thanks,
--Sally Miller

I've enjoyed More magazine for over 20 years and three name changes and still enjoy every issue at age 75!  You always speak to me.

Thank you for your wonderful magazine.
--Victoria

I love love love More!  I look forward to reading the magazine cover to cover on my iPad each month. Just finished the September issue and am disappointed by your Blipp technology. I want to be able to just click on a picture or article to access, don't want another app that I have to launch to get the info. I think you've missed the mark.

Two cents!  Will still read but won't use Blipp.

Cheers!
--Annette Lovitt

Lesley,

I have never taken the time to write to a magazine editor but I am very disappointed with the decision you have made to extend your demographic.

I do not want to read articles that are relevant to my thirty year old daughters.  Instead I loved a magazine that focused on women later in life and their issues.  I want to see fashion that is appropriate for a sixty five year old.  I want to know if affordable health care will change medicare. I want to find out how to cure sleepliness brought on by menopause.  My daughters have a million magazines focused on them.  Your older readers only had one.
--Anonymous

Hi Lesley,

Don't neglect those people in their 60's -- I know it's not a selling point for your publication, but we are still here and also are buying products!
--Karen Meler

Lesley, with being new to MORE, I found your letter very contradictory on the cover "What to wear at 30,40 50" then in your letter "It celebrated all things 40 - plus and rules were pretty rigid.  I ordered this magazine being in my 60's and would have preferred "What to wear at 40,50,60".

I hope I'm not going to regret ordering this magazine.
--Elle Pack
67 years young.

Dear Lesley,

Regarding the "This is what [age] looks like" column, would your subjects consider being photographed without makeup? I just think it would be a more genuine celebration of women if we didn't have to hide behind makeup.

Thanks,
--Abigail Goldberg

In regards to the latest issue,  With Angie Harmon, on the cover.  Why did she feel the need to say when she first had sex with her husband?  What relevance does this have to anything and does she not feel that's a bit personal?  She voiced concern about her kids living in LA and so they moved.  Morals start at home, Angie!
--Julie A. Roberts

I am rather disappointed in your decision to encourage younger women to subscribe to More. There are already dozens of publications dedicated to them that have almost no relevance to me. Their fashions, their parenting, their workouts, their concerns already seem to be the prime focus of retailers and advertisers and publishers, and I was pleased to have one magazine that bucked the trend.

I will wait and see; but if you abandon your focus, I believe many older women will be gone.

Hoping for the best,
--Gretchen Gehring

Tried your magazine. 160 pages $5.00. Paid the same price for In style and Marie Claire. 700+ pages. Vogue. $6.00. 900 pages. Content of More...not interesting. Guess there is not much to say to your group. I will not buy again.
--Anonymous

I wish that the beautiful Angie Harmon cover including a feature story ad on “What To Wear At 30, 40, 50” read “What Not To Wear” at 30, 40, 50, 60, 70, 80.  A large segment of the women’s
population is being ignored. 
--Bessie J. Giges

 

Dear Meredith,

I find it hypocritical of Angie Harmon to be “devastated” by internet backlash to her political comments and then use More as a forum to blast all Democrats (“the so-called tolerant party”) for the intolerant remarks of her detractors.  But, then again, you did identify her as a member of the so-called  party of negativity.

I was attracted to the article by More’s subtitle “On Living Happily On Your Own Terms,” but found it uncharacteristically bordering on sensationalism since that was the only example you provided of Ms. Harmon’s uniqueness.  After all, doesn’t More celebrate women every month for their sense of humor, commitment to faith and family and dedication to professionalism?
--Anonymous

Dear MORE Magazine,

A few years ago as a gift, my mom gave me a subscription to MORE magazine and every year she renews it for me as a gift.  She too, subscribes to MORE and recently we had a very interesting ‘MORE’ discussion.

 I recently turned 50 and every month I absorb myself in your magazine - finding amazing articles on health, fashion, and everything in between.  My amazing mom, who is the most beautiful 75 year young woman I know, is quite disheartened that although you emphasize that MORE is for women of ‘style and substance’, your editors seem to neglect and appreciate the women in this world that are overflowing with style and substance after 50.

She is gorgeous and elegant like a Tiffany’s diamond.  She travels the world and has had a love affair with my dad for almost 60 years.  She still travels to other countries on getaways with her girlfriends from high school and she talks to my daughters about everything under the sun from birth control and sex issues - to fashion, and choosing a good mate in life.

She can be as elegant as Audrey Hepburn when wearing flannel at the cabin, and turns heads when she walks in a room at a formal event.

So I ask MORE to please DO more for women of substance that are 60, 70 and even 80.  These spectacular women are those that we, in our 30s, 40s, and 50s, admire so deeply.  Give them good reason to value your wonderful magazine. 

With Sincere Appreciation,
--Kristi Ducharme Johnson

Lesley, I'm 48 and a long-time reader.  For the first time I've had a really negative reaction to an issue - September 2013 with Angie Harmon on the cover.

The first is the cover - what to wear at 30, 40, 50. I started reading More at 40 because it was for women my age and beyond. I read articles and saw photos of fabulous women in their 60s that inspired me and made me not fear growing older.   With that one headline More has now brought in a demographic that I distinctly wish to distinguish myself from - 30s - and taken out one that is important, relevant, and an inspiration to me - women in their 60s. It's insulting and a clear shift from the mission that Ms Blyth established when she started More and why I started reading More in the first place.

The second was the article on Georgina Chapman.  You write in your editorial "No woman could be profiled without giving her age."  How old is Ms Chapman?  According to Wikipedia she's 37 but it's not listed in your article.  It was an obvious omission that goes against the spirit and heart of More.

I want Myrna Blyth's More back. It was honest and clear in its vision for 40+ women - not trying to deceive and appeal to advertisers and a demographic.
--Lisa L.  Davenport

The Editor,

I am a visitor to US, and had chance to read your mag. MORE. The article by Jennifer, What Do We............ I would like to talk about. To abandon our aging parents can only happen here in the western part of the world. It is shame on part of humanity and vernacular human values. This is even shocking that such issues are written and discussed in your mag! Do we abandon or throw out our handicapped child? Quite possible may be in this part of world! May be u love your pets more than your kids and parents! This is a dollar culture anyway! In this culture the moto is only sale and get dollars in return! Even if it comes to that u will sale your beloved kids and parents to a prospective customer! I don't deny this happening in eastern culture, but the percentage is very negligible.

It is our responsibility by humane values to take utmost care of our parents old or young. This is what is to us a civilized culture!
--Anonymous

I just wanted to say that I am SO disappointed that you have extended your coverage to include 30-somethings.  I loved that MORE was for us older women and was able to really focus on products/clothing that suited us, our health, our stage in life.

I feel you have caved to the call of money in opening up your mag to younger women.  I'm in my mid-50's and do not want to look at the fashions my daughter wears.  Nor do I want to hear about their career choices as I am in such a different place.

Your reach is now too broad to adequately address any age group with much depth.  So disappointed...
--Christina Hees

Dear Ms. Seymour,

I have been a subscriber to MORE magazine for several years. I have enjoyed the magazine and found it to have some helpful tips. I particularly enjoyed the Letter from the Editor in the September 2013 issue. It was fun to learn how the magazine got its name.

I wanted to point out a couple of things. On your website under the Speak Out!section, it says write to us at more@meredith.com. When you click on the address, a caption comes up that says this site isn't working as the site wasn't initialized correctly. You might want to look into this.

The other thing that has always bothered me about the magazine is the references about age. Every issue you feature women of certain ages. This is what 30, 40, 50, 60 looks like. I have yet to see you feature a woman 70 or 80. I was wondering why that is. I am 73 and it always makes me feel that I no longer count I am invisible and not worth mentioning. I have lots of vital women friends who are over 70. Women are living longer and healthier today. I would like your magazine to acknowledge us and include us too.

Sincerely,
--Elizabeth Lister

Dear Lesley Jane Seymour,

In your August magazine, you showed on page 28 and ostrich bag by Henri Bendel.

Please don't promote the killing of animals, most in inhumane ways, to sell clothes and magazines.

Thank  you.

Sincerely,
--Betty A. Baldinger

Hello:

I discovered More nearly a decade ago when I was in my early 40’s. At the time, I was starting to feel like I was cycling out of all the usual magazine fodder and I was thrilled to find something  to bridge the gap between Cosmo and AARP magazine. The articles and features were relevant to my age at the time and the magazine felt like a path to my next decades. I was so excited; I got a subscription for me and my friends.

Over time, however, I noticed the articles were becoming more like all the other women’s magazines and the emphasis on topics related to middle-age and beyond (yes, I said it) were obscured in ads and articles for a younger demographic. I let my subscription lapse – I could read what you had in any number of magazines. I never bought another copy.

I happened to buy this month’s issue because I like Angie Harmon. Imagine my non-surprise when I read the editor’s anniversary recap and found that you decided to “erase the dividing line” because you were receiving letters from “thirty-something” women who were unhappy to be excluded from your “smart, savvy club.”

There’s a reason to consider women in middle age members of a savvy club. We’ve earned the privilege to be there.  And while it seems everyone would like to think so, 60 isn’t the new 50, and 40 certainly isn’t the new 30. I can read what “thirty-somethings” are doing anywhere. I’ve been 30 and I’m happy to be past it.  What I’m looking toward is my future with “women of a certain age” who are taking on new challenges, making world changes. It’s a unique group and should be celebrated!

You didn’t break down any barriers by “younging down” your magazine. You sold out.
--Katie Muno

Ms. Seymour,

I was concerned when I received the September issue of MORE and noticed the title on the cover "What to Wear at 30, 40, 50" It occurred to me for an instant that those of us who are dangerously close to 60 and over are now out the game, at least as far as MORE is concerned. My concerns were confirmed when I read your editorial re the 15th anniversary of MORE and your decision to "throw the doors open" to 30 year-olds. Interesting.

I have been a devoted reader of MORE since 1998, when I was in my early 40s. I have appreciated the focus of the magazine on our age group.  As a woman in my late 50s who values health and beauty and style, I purchase and read a number of fashion magazines. My almost 30 year old daughter does too, but let's be honest, she and I have very little in common re our health, beauty, and style concerns and what interests us in a fashion magazine (She would never even consider picking up MORE!)

Clearly, women my age and older have health, beauty and style needs the younger demographic doesn't want to hear about - after all they are already turning to botox and other plastic surgery options in their early 30s - and appears that MORE doesn't want to address them either going forward. Now it seems that the decision has been made to slowly change the focus to the young, as fashion magazines exclusively do, the occasional feature of an older model, notwithstanding. From a business perspective you make choices to feature what will sell the most magazines. That's fine. I get it. But I challenge you to be quite a bit more sincere and honest about why the "doors are now thrown open." It's not about wanting to be inclusive of 30 year-olds because they want to be part of MORE's "smart, savvy (older women) club." It's about having a pretty young face on each page to sell the most magazines and no longer be the magazine that focuses on the smart savvy older women who are embracing the aging process and finding beauty in it! Ageism is not dead at MORE! In fact, it is thriving under the guise of inclusiveness of the young!

I will cancel my subscription to MORE magazine. My dollars will be better spent on a fashion magazine like Harper's Bazaar which makes no pretense about the market it targets.

With disappointment,
--Judy Styer

How sad. MORE was definitely ahead of the times when it was designed for women over 40. During the years it has been on our coffee tables, we have grown; however, the first over-40 readers have grown older not younger. It is lovely MORE is adding the 30-somethings, but it is sad that in so doing, the older sisters are neglected. In the September issue, there is an article titled “What to wear at 30-40-50” and another “Your Fifteen Financial Plan at 30,40,50,60.” Sorry folks, 60-70-80 year old women would like new ideas about style, and many 70 and 80 year olds will wish they had had financial planning advice when they become 85 and 95. We are all getting older, not younger…. So add our younger sisters, but not by excluding our older ones.
--Linda Rounds-Nichols

Funny thing..you want a survey based on a first time reader, you take all my information, then stipulate that I haven’t read it for six months, so my opinion is not necessary?? As a 56 yr. old woman of substance, I’d like to state that your sense of style is shallow. Jewelry, fashion, expensive skin care, money advise and a celebrity section; fluff w/no solid substance. Only page w/what really matters is on the very last page. Come on girls; my 17 yr. old daughter is insecure enough w/the worlds value system of true beauty and she’s gorgeous. I ask her why she feels this way and she says because of the looks from others of what she’s NOT, based on her clothes and her “style”.  REALLY? She’s 5’6”, long beautiful hair , w/a face AND spirit to match. What are we telling our teens and our own girls, w/superficial methods? Keep the 10,000; I’ll be happy anyway.
--KK

I just sent you a bitch email about how the magazine has changed for the WORST! I am not to techie so here I go again just to make sure you got it. I have been an avid reader since I was in my 40’s, now I am 62 and you have left me and lots of baby boomers out. When it comes to how to dress us and makeup for us, you don’t offer much for us 60 yr. olds and nothing for 70 plus. Also how about some real life boomers on the cover, not actresses? Also the articles are not what we boomers are interested in reading.  I am soo disappointed I will cancel the rest of my subscription! Just thought you might want to know.
Sincerely,
--MJ Huth

I just renewed for one year because I still find some things worth reading once I get past all the things that annoy me.   As I get closer to sixty, I feel you are tending to skew younger which will turn me off at some point. Besides the high end products I will never buy, I also find it irritating that your magazine seems to be pushing artificial means of maintaining youth through cosmetic procedures rather than celebrating the way older women can look better just being healthy and taking care of themselves. It seems that the magazine that put the unglam Jamie Lee Curtis on the cover has backslid on this issue.  Most of your models are unnaturally youthful and slim, and the cover shots are extremely altered.    

Another observation I have is all the other magazines I subscribe to offer their e-reader editions free of charge to paid print subscribers.  I generally prefer to read the print magazine, but I do take may Nook traveling and in my purse during the day so it would be nice to have that option to use that to read the magazine when I'm away from home.

--Anonymous

First Published Wed, 2013-08-28 08:48

Find this story at:

http://www.more.com/member-voices/your-letters/we-hear-you-letters-our-september-2013-issue