2011 was a great year for our site. We reached—and quickly passed—one million page views, and are closing in on 3,000 posts.
We began our work in November 2006 with the belief that Content is Queen. The founders of Women’s Voices for Change believed that if we wrote with authenticity and clarity, our audience would find us. We used only word-of-mouth advertising and promotion, since that was what our budget allowed. We chose not to dilute our message: that “The New Menopause,” when entered with optimism and managed with the help of scouts from the decades ahead, would give each of us not only the opportunity for reinvention but to have “The Time of Our Lives.”
We know that life is unpredictable, and that illness or other changes in life circumstances will happen to each of us. But we believe that the discussion of these issues—by writers to whom these events happen—will be helpful to others who are in similar circumstances, and that information from our advisory board can give support to those who do not have access to expert advice.
We believe that if we live life in the moment, focused on the joy that is possible, and avoid anxiety about tomorrow (which can never change tomorrow but will certainly ruin today), we will be on the right path to managing this new transition.
We have not chosen to be serious all the time, nor to focus on the trivial. Women over 40 are both fun and serious, and our evolving ’zine demonstrates that daily. Our site is a place where civility reigns and women who have different opinions express them with intelligence and grace. Our site has Sexy Saturdays and Poetry Sundays. Hard to find those back to back!
Our content sections have evolved organically, and in 2012 we will be introducing new associate editors who will oversee the areas of style, fashion, finance, etiquette, humor, relationships, nutrition, social change, environmental concerns, parenting and caretaking, poetry, the arts, fitness and beauty, shopping, sex, health, spirituality, and menopause. We plan to have an editor for each of the decades that we celebrate in The New Menopause. Our goal is to have assistant editors from all parts of the nation. And as we reach for a global audience, we already have active columnists in France and Denmark.
We hope to hold a salon each quarter—opportunities for our virtual audience to meet other members of our community, and to engage in conversation with writers, artists, designers, financial experts, style mavens, as well as leaders in the fields of health and wellness. We plan to aggressively implement a new social media presence and to work on establishing links with sites whose audiences are similar to ours.
2012 is not the year to sit on the sidelines and let someone else decide the fate of our country, and the fate of women—not only the women in our demographic but younger women, who stand to lose so much that we who came of age in the 1960s and ’70s worked so hard to change. Our voices will be heard on these and other important matters this year.
But this is also the year when Women’s Voices for Change needs you to become more involved. We need each of you to introduce us to your communities, and to ask the women in those communities to sign up for the daily e-newsletter that connects to the latest WVFC posts. Ask your book club members, your local League of Women Voters, Jurnior League chapter, and Women’s Forum in your city, and any college or professional association to which you belong to promote Women’s Voices for Change in their wide-reaching networks. On the most immediate level, remember to click the email button to send favorite WVFC posts to friends and colleagues.
We plan to increase the number of posts each day, so do stop by often for a chat. It’s easy to comment at the end of each piece. Send us your ideas about community-building and join us on Twitter and Facebook as we extend our community on these platforms. We know you like us, but we need you to “Like” us, too—to click that button, and to re-tweet us, too.
On behalf of every member of the Board of Women’s Voices for Change, I extend our gratitude to you and our hopes for a wonderful 2012. The committed women of this Board who have given their time, financial support, and talents to the work of Women’s Voices for Change are: Board Chair Catherine Wood, Faith Childs, Laura Sillerman, Elizabeth Hemmerdinger, Lisa McCarthy, Mary Kelly Selover, Kathy Rogers, Dr. Hilda Hutcherson, Dr. Elizabeth Poynor, and Darlene Pasquill.
Happy New Year!