NauenThen

"Frankly I am very shocked"

May 10, 2017

This is a letter that came to me from a woman in South Carolina (with my my mother's maiden name, btw) when I was fiction editor of a weekly woman's magazine in the late-80s. [It was in a 6" stack of cover letters that I had saved for some reason. Not no more!] She says she is a "saved and Christain [sic] woman" who took issue with someone taking the lord's name in vain. "If it's a womans [sic] magazine how about making it for a lady and not for some bum who doesn't care for nothing."

Did I respond? Probably, as we were "encouraged" to do so.

Whenever I got a letter like this (rarely), the editor-in-chief would go into a frenzy of apology & swear that things must change. I would respond by havin my sister (using a pseudonym) write an enthusiastic letter of praise about the same story, how refreshing to tackle contemporary issues in a fresh voice etc.