Martha Stewart Made Me Write an Open Letter by Val Curtis

Martha Stewart Made Me Write an Open Letter by Val Curtis of Bonbon Break

Martha,

How could you? I just put my foot down the other day, saying I was tired of open letters, and now I have to write one.

I am not a finger-shaking school marm, although I could be. Instead, I will share my perspective.

In your interview with Bloomberg Television’s Stephanie Ruhle you stated, “Who are these bloggers? They aren’t trained editors at Vogue magazine. They are bloggers writing recipes that aren’t tested. That aren’t necessarily very good or are copies of recipes that really good editors have created and done. Bloggers create a kind of, uh, popularity, but they are not the experts and we have to understand that.

The purpose of our online magazine is to share and celebrate the work of bloggers and writers. There is some rubbish out there. It is why Bonbon Break is here – so you can cut to the “cream.” To me, our contributors are experts in their fields. To our readers, they are the women they turn to when they need an idea, some inspiration, a tip, a laugh or insight from someone “in the know.”

Professionals get paid, even salaried, for what they do and many of these women share their expertise for free. So, you are correct. They may not be considered professionals, but they are even better. They are in the trenches and sharing what they know first hand, for little or no money. Now that’s something. On the other hand, some are making very comfortable incomes. And guess what? They are teaching us how they do it. You might even be surprised how many ARE professionals.

Untested food recipes? Not in this house. I post what my family eats and what they help me make.

Daniel Tiger's Veggie Spaghetti

Daniel Tiger’s Veggie Spaghetti

While I do not currently have your enviable set up, I am working on it. Why? Because I am surrounded by incredibly talented women who believe in what we are doing and believe in supporting one another by sharing their talents and cross-promoting.

TV, publishing, radio, and more – you have created a media empire and you are one of my mentors. When I heard you speak at BlogHer ’12, I returned home gushing about how my respect for you had grown after hearing you in person. You commented that you HAD to be good at everything you tried. We feel the same way. We may still be learning, but we are trying and improving and growing. We just happen to be documenting the entire process publicly. The beautiful thing is that within this online community, we see one another’s growth and are there to cheer each other on when we find success.

Given how supportive you have been of the blogging community, I am going to assume that this was a mere verbal mis-step. Something will be said in the near future, I just know it. I had to write you a letter to let the over 400 women whose work we have shared know that it is respected and useful.

Thank you for inspiring and putting a fire under us. We are going to up our game, and if you ever need a break, feel free to stop on by and peruse our rooms. They are filled with quality posts that will help make your day a little easier and might even bring a smile to your face.

Warmly,

Val Curtis

Editor-in-Chief of Bonbon Break


Val CurtisABOUT VAL: 
Val Curtis is the Co-founder and Editor-in-Chief of Bonbon Break and the creator of the sites Mental Chew and Val Unplugged. She is a former middle school science/math/tech teacher who put her career on hold to be at home with her son and daughter on an island in the Pacific Northwest.

When Val breaks away from her keyboard, she enjoys gardening, cooking, hiking, camping, photography, tidepooling, sailing and potlucks. She gets a kick out of combing the web for recipes and making them gluten-free so she can enjoy them while cooking for her husband, family and friends.

She is a tech-gadget geek who is poked fun at, but it doesn’t bother her a bit. Combining her love of photography, tech and graphics to create new, fun content for her sites quenches her “thirst” for integrated technology .

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Comments

  1. says

    I’ve never made any bones about how I feel about Ms. Stewart’s unreal expectations of perfection in any and all things. What you have made here? A warm, open, welcoming, REAL place for readers and bloggers to come together and share REAL recipes, crafts, party ideas, and gardening tips? Is something I love and respect. It’s real living for real women and their families. Which, in my humble opinion, is the best kind.
    Please Bonbon Break, just keep doin’ what you’re doin’!

  2. says

    Very well said! I’m quite surprised by her comment considering how MS promotes bloggers with their seal. Maybe she’s just become extremely arrogant as she’s grown older.

  3. says

    Three cheers from me! And isn’t it funny how just when we swear we won’t do something again, that’s when we end up having to do it almost immediately?

    As I mentioned elsewhere on the interwebz, bloggers range everywhere from beginner to pro, and that’s a fact.

  4. says

    This was so well-put. It’s refreshing to read an “open letter” that is not just a rant, but a well-thought-out rebuttal. Thank you for not adding to the negativity.

  5. says

    I came here by Pinterest because of your fabulous image which piqued my curiosity! Had the blogging world been a venue back in the 1980’s, Martha would have been first in line to use the venue. People whose power is invested in old venues have a reason to poo-poo new ones.

  6. says

    Well said Val. Many of us are experts in our chosen fields, even if that isn’t what we write about on your blogs. We are professionals from all walks of life that come together to share our talents and be real with one another. It is a shame if MS doesn’t realize that and embrace it.

  7. says

    Val, you couldn’t be more spot-on. Where would Queen Martha be if not for the support of her ‘community’ when she wasn’t yet an ‘expert’? Oh yeah – she’d have been dismissed long ago, with a wave of a hand, as a bored mom who thought, laughably, that people might be interested in her ideas.

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