Some people think that magazines will soon go the way of the typewriter. With a world of information available via your computer and mobile phone or tablet, why would anyone bother to pick up a magazine with only a few articles to read? There’s so much more out there.
Well, I don’t know about you, but I am finding myself in a state of overwhelm a lot these days. When I watch TV, for example, sometimes the images flash by at such a fast rate that I can barely focus on one before it’s replaced by another. My eyes get so tired that watching TV becomes a chore. As an antidote, I look out the window at the trees and grass in my yard, a pastoral scene that doesn’t move much—just an occasional bird flying by or a branch blowing in the breeze. Nature relaxes me and reminds me to breathe. But I digress.
What I think keeps magazines viable and what makes readers keep coming back for more is the feeling of community that the magazine engenders. I’ve written about this before, but it’s a subject that’s dear to my heart—for obvious reasons. In this scattered, bit-mappy world we live in, to feel a part of something, especially something you identify with, is kind of like coming home or visiting with a trusted friend.
That word trust is also important. Magazine editors seek to establish both a sense of community within the pages of their periodicals as well as a feeling of trust, a sense that what you find between the covers will have meaning in your life. Of course, it’s impossible to ensure that every article every month will be meaningful to every reader. But I do hear frequently from readers of Tidewater Women that they read each issue cover to cover, and those words are music to my ears.
That’s why I think magazines will continue to thrive despite the plethora of information available via the internet. Who has time to find good information anymore? When you search for something online, you never know what you’re going to find—it could be accurate. But then again it might be hogwash. Sometimes the coolest websites are those most lacking in good information.
As editor, I try hard to include thoughtful articles in Tidewater Women that resonate, but occasionally readers have issues with the articles or topics we run. For example, the theme of the February issue was beauty, and for some reason this subject rubs a few people the wrong way. Granted we’re not all beautiful, but the truth is beauty is about so much more than appearance. Women who fight injustice are beautiful regardless of what they look like. I like to think TW celebrates beautiful women every month without regard for anyone’s appearance.
But one reader felt we were sending mixed messages when we include articles and ads for beauty businesses. She’s entitled to her opinion, but I personally see nothing wrong with including information in our pages about techniques that help women improve their image. It’s a free country after all. Some of us are less inclined to care about our appearance, and others make it a priority. The bottom line is beauty is all about what’s inside. It’s how we treat people, the feelings we project when we are around others, the smiles on our faces and in our eyes and hearts.
This month’s Tidewater Women focuses on wellness, which also contributes to how beautiful we are inside and out. I hope you find the articles enlightening and helpful. If you do, please share your copy with a friend. If you don’t, feel free to send me your comments. I always enjoy hearing from you.
By the way, happy spring! I think everyone is thrilled that winter is coming to an end. Hope to see you out in the woods!