Last month around this time I asked you what you thought of February GUIDEPOSTS. By now you should have gotten through the April issue, the one with the lovely Carmindy on the cover. By the way, I had to be talked into using Carmindy.
When her name came up at an editorial meeting I was hesitant; I didn’t know much about her and I wasn’t sure readers did either. Was there really crossover between GUIDEPOSTS and What Not to Wear? I checked with my wife, Julee, and she said, “Are you crazy? Everyone loves Carmindy. Yes, you should put her on the cover!”
I still wasn’t totally convinced. Then the gorgeous photo shoot overseen by our creative director, Audrey Razgaitis, came in. That got my attention. It was incredible, full of beauty and energy. The clincher was the story that Carmindy worked on with senior editor Celeste McCauley. I thought it spoke to everyone who was ever teased or bullied or ostracized as a kid, especially women. So on the cover she went.
“I told you so,” said Julee…among others.
It’s impossible for me to pick a favorite story in the issue but I can tell you why I like a story. Take Christine Webb (Holding on to Faith), the TV news reporter from Florida who happened to be in Haiti on an outreach mission when the quake hit. I saw her interviewed for about two minutes by Larry King the following night. Larry mentioned she was the only American reporter in Haiti the day of the disaster, distributing school supplies on the outskirts of Port-au-Prince.
As soon as I heard Christine talk I knew we had to get her in the magazine as quickly as possible. It would be a last-minute story but something told me we simply had to do it, even if it meant tearing the issue apart. I emailed her the day she got back from Haiti and asked if she’d ever heard of GUIDEPOSTS. Yes, she said, her father had been blind and as a girl she used to read stories from GUIDEPOSTS to him all the time.
Now she would be one of those stories and she was thrilled.
Assistant editor Nikki Lorimer was on a plane the next day to meet up with Christine. They made a great team and the story speaks for itself. We also thought that by April some of the intense media focus on the long-term plight of Haitians would be flagging. I hope Christine’s moving story keeps the people of Haiti in our thoughts and prayers.
They still need all the support we can give them. Too often we suffer from a national case of ADD. Amid the media hype over health care and the return of Tiger, we can’t forget the people in the world who desperately need our help.
Speaking of health care, the story by Dr. William Lascheid about the work he and his wife are doing in their Florida community I found wonderfully inspiring.
And who will ever forget the incredible spiritual experiences shared in Evidence of Life After Death by hospice nurse Trudy Harris? Her story is truly breathtaking.
Priscilla Salyers’s story, A Symbol of Hope, takes us back 15 years to that infamous day in Oklahoma City when the Murrah building, where Priscilla worked, was bombed and 168 people murdered. It is a powerful reminder of what happens if hatred and violence are allowed to poison the well of democracy and reasonable discourse.
My favorite photo? Of all the great shots in this issue I have to say I love the one from Best Friends, of Judi Longfellow and pal Teri Jameson. They seem to be totally doing a dance of friendship on a beach in California. Do you have a best friend? Send us a picture and tell us about her.
Okay. I’ve shared some of my thoughts with you. Now tell me what you think of the April issue. Did you have a favorite story? A favorite photo? An unforgettable quote? Let me know.