Morning Person is the weekly newsletter I always wanted in my inbox, packed with obsessively-curated recommendations, ideas, and essays, around living an intentional and well-entertained life.

It’s entirely member-supported, which means it’s free of affiliates (see below!), partners, and sponsors.

(Mostly) Affiliate-Free

With the exception of books linked via my Bookshop page, Morning Person is entirely affiliate-free and subscription-supported, for a few reasons:

  1. I want you to trust me and my recommendations. Affiliates are an amazing, accessible way for influencers to generate revenue so they can create free content for you—but they can also sometimes stir up feelings of mistrust (if I made money off of the products I recommend, you wouldn’t ever really know if I liked it or was recommending it to make money from it). Instead, I ultimately decided to opt for a paid subscription model, which allows me to be affiliate-free.

  2. While I’ll recommend plenty of products here, I don’t want to measure the success of this newsletter against how much money I make from you buying products. I prioritize my own spending toward experiences over products, because I believe it makes me happier and leads to more environmentally-conscious decisions. If I made money from links, I’d be at odds with my personal ethos.

  3. …So why affiliate-link books? I believe in BookShop’s mission, which supports independent bookstores. I would link to them, regardless of if they were affiliated, so I’ve decided to donate 100% of the affiliate revenue I make from Bookshop to a different nonprofit each month (September: Women for Afghan Women, October: Whole Woman’s Health, November - December: ACLU Reproductive Rights). I also highly recommend using the app Libby to download ebooks from your local library. If you’re in Portland, Broadway Books and Powell’s are two favorites. Just don’t buy books from Amazon, k?

  4. Referral links: I may occasionally use referral links for brands I love (always with a disclosure) that feel like a win-win, as they often offer both of us a discount on brands and products I love. (As of January, I’ve been writing for six months and have done this once!)

Thank you, thank you to all of my subscribers. I can’t tell you how grateful I am for your support!

Contact: If you have any questions, please send me an email at or reply directly to any issue of Morning Person!


Leslie Stephens
I'm a Portland-based writer and editor, by way of Food52 and cupcakes and cashmere. Obsessively questioning how to live a more intentional, meaning-filled life.