While I know that our feature articles and locally focused content like Around Town and Locally Owned are very well read, I often wonder if anyone reads our Lifestyle Letter. I put a lot of energy and emotion into the ones I contribute. That was especially true with our December and January issues. We were already well into final edits with the December issue when the Borderline tragedy stuck, followed immediately by the fires that hit Malibu, the Conejo Valley and Calabasas. We literally “stopped the presses” (sounds like an old movie from the 1930’s doesn’t it?) and replaced my Happy Holidays Letter with one that was much darker and troubled. We also redid our entire editorial run sheet for January and as you have seen, we’ve covered the fires and Borderline. What follows are emails we received from readers that made us feel it was all worthwhile.


I read your Lifestyle Letter for the December issue a week or more ago and it has stayed in my mind. Very well written and I agree wholeheartedly with your thoughts. It’s rare to see the ugly truth confronted in a publication like yours—which obviously is intended to focus on beautiful and successful lifestyles—but these things need to be said in public forums. I appreciate your willingness to tackle the hard issues in an unlikely space, and I hope that many of your readers read your comments and took them to heart.

Martha Farwell, Westlake Village


Hello Ben,

As a local writer and editor who has contributed several articles to Conejo Valley Lifestyle, I love to read our local and regional publications for inspiration. I’m writing to thank you for the thoughts you shared regarding the Borderline shooting in your Lifestyle Letter in the current issue of the Conejo Valley edition. Your thoughtful reflection articulated the feelings of many in our community and were especially prescient in light of the fires that devastated our area soon after you wrote them.

Thank you for publishing magazines that celebrate the best of our community.

Best regards,

Mary Noe