Archive | November 2012

6 things you should read before entering the National Magazine Awards

The submissions process for the 36th annual National Magazine Awards opens on December 1. Whether you’re new to the NMAs or you’ve been with us for 35 years, here are six things you should read before you enter your submissions this year:

  1. The NMAF’s Eligibility & Rules for magazines and individuals;
  2. The List of Categories — There are 48 categories this year, including 3 new ones;
  3. The NMAF’s Frequently Asked Questions (updated since last year);
  4. What’s New — A complete list of changes to this year’s program approved by the NMAF board of directors in consultation with members of the magazine industry;
  5. The Canadian magazine industry Code of Reader & Advertiser Engagement;
  6. The NMA Archives — Unsure about which category to enter your work? Review the nominees and winners from previous years.

On or after December 1, visit magazine-awards.com to enter your submissions. The deadline for all entries in hand is January 16. The early bird deadline–for discounted submission fees–is January 11.

All About Co-Financing: Discounted NMA Submissions Fees

The submissions process for the 36th annual National Magazine Awards opens on December 1. On that date, the NMAF will begin accepting applications for Co-financing. [Version française ici]

The deadline to submit Co-financing applications is Friday December 14.

What is Co-financing? It is a NMAF partial subsidy of the cost of entering the awards. It is available to small publications with less than $250,000 in total revenue.

There are two levels of Co-financing available: one for publications with under 20,000 circulation; another for even smaller publications with under 2000 circulation.

How does one apply? Applicants must download and complete the application form and return it to the NMAF by December 14 along with a confirmation of circulation (either an AAM or CCAB audited statement, or a copy of the magazine’s most recent print-run confirmation). The application must indicate how many submissions the magazine plans to enter, though the magazine does not have to enter its submissions by December 14.

There is no limit to the number of submissions that Co-financing applicants can enter. All successful applicants will be approved for Co-financing of a minimum of three submissions (unless they’ve indicated they will only submit one or two). As the NMAF has limited resources for Co-financing, successful applicants indicating they plan to enter more than three submissions will be approved for Co-financing on the remainder of their stated submissions on a first come, first served basis until the NMAF reaches its funding cap.

What happens next? The NMAF will notify all successful applicants by email no later than December 20, indicating how many submissions are approved for Co-financing. Applicants will have until the submissions deadline of January 16, 2013 to enter their submissions.

Magazines that have been approved for Co-financing must pay their submissions fees in full when they submit. The Co-financing will be disbursed as a refund once all submissions are received and verified; not later than March 1, 2013.

Co-financing applications are available here.

What’s New This Year at the National Magazine Awards

Each year the National Magazine Awards Foundation conducts surveys, solicits feedback and hosts round-table discussions with key stakeholders in order to ensure that our awards program is in tune with developments in the Canadian magazine industry. Any changes that are made to the program reflect the consideration of numerous experts from relevant fields as well as the Judging Committee and Board of Directors of the NMAF. The NMAF is grateful to those who volunteered their time to provide us with feedback and sit on our 2012 Digital Round Table and other committees.

The following changes have been approved by the NMAF Board of Directors for the 2012 awards year. [Version française ici]

1. NEW CATEGORIES

  • Blogs: This written category is open to a regular series of original written content produced by a Magazine Website that has a recognizable unifying voice or theme. Entries may consist of up to ten (10) blog posts by one or more authors.
  • Online Video: This integrated category is open to a single video produced by a Magazine Website or Tablet Magazine.
  • Tablet Magazine of the Year: This special category is open to any single issue of a Tablet Magazine that successfully fulfills its editorial mission by representing the highest journalistic standards and effectively serving its intended audience by maximizing the possibilities afforded by the medium of tablet publishing.

2. MODIFIED CATEGORIES

Magazine of the Year—Digital is now known as Magazine Website of the Year. [Read definition]

Best Digital Design is now known as Magazine Website Design. [Read definition]

Best Multimedia Feature has been reconfigured as Editorial Package—Web. This award is open to any original package of related or thematic editorial content produced by a Magazine Website that best serves its intended audience by maximizing the potential of web-based publishing, and that reflects collaboration by editors and content creators. Elements may include but are not limited to written content, blogs, video, photography, data visualization, illustration, social media and user-generated content.

3. CLARIFICATION OF TERMINOLOGY

Generally speaking the National Magazine Awards are open to content from all Canadian consumer magazines, whether they are published in print, online or in a tablet edition. Where previously we distinguished between Print and Digital Magazines, this year we are further clarifying the difference between three types of magazine publishing:

  • Print Magazine
  • Magazine Website (companion site or online-only magazine)
  • Tablet Magazine

Most categories are open to content from any of these types, though specific categories have certain restrictions. For all clarifications, see the list of categories, rules and eligibility, and frequently asked questions.

There is now a Special Award for each of these three types:

  • Magazine of the Year
  • Magazine Website of the Year
  • Tablet Magazine of the Year

A single publication may enter any and all of these categories if they meet the eligibility and category criteria.

4. HALF THE PHOTOCOPIES

This year, submissions in Written Categories require only 3 sets of photocopies (plus 1 set of original tear sheets) instead of 6. As usual all entries require a PDF version of the submission in addition to hard copies.

5. NEW ADDRESS

For the past 10 years you’ve sent your NMA submissions hard copies to us at Adelaide Street in Toronto. But this year we have a new address, so be sure to note it before you send in your submissions:

National Magazine Awards Foundation
2 Bloor Street East, Suite 3500
Toronto, ON, M4W 1A8

Off the Page, avec Pascale Millot

La nouvelle série Off the Page est une exclusivité produite par la Fondation nationale du prix du magazine canadien (FNPMC) et qui offre aux anciens lauréats de Prix du magazine canadien une tribune où ils sont invités à exprimer ce que leur prix a signifié pour eux et à nous dire où ils en sont aujourd’hui dans leur carrière. La série « Off the Page » paraîtra périodiquement dans notre blogue à l’automne 2012. Cette semaine, nous découvrons quoi de neuf avec Pascale Millot, rédactrice en chef adjointe du magazine Québec Science.

FNPMC: Au cours de son histoire, Québec Science a remporté 24 Prix du magazine canadien dont 13 au cours des 7 dernières années, notamment dans des catégories telles que Santé et médecine, Société, Dossiers thématiques et Science, technologie et environnement. Quelle est l’importance pour vous, comme rédactrice en chef adjointe, de voir votre équipe reconnue pour son travail? Et, selon vous, ce succès a-t-il un impact sur vos lecteurs?

Pascale Millot (Photo par Christian Fleury)

Pascale Millot: À la rédaction de Québec Science, nous sommes toujours fiers et heureux de voir le travail de nos journalistes reconnu par des prix aussi prestigieux que ceux de la Fondation des magazines canadiens. D’une part, parce que ces prix soulignent le talent de nos collaborateurs.

Ensuite, ces prix montrent la rigueur et l’originalité du travail qui est fait à Québec Science depuis des années. Vous savez, derrière un reportage se cache un important travail d’équipe.

Bien sûr, le plus grand mérite revient au journaliste qui l’écrit, mais le choix du sujet, la révision, le choix des titres et surtout l’encadrement pendant la recherche et la rédaction sont aussi d’une importance capitale et font souvent la différence entre un reportage «publiable» et une œuvre remarquable.

Quant à nos lecteurs, ils sont toujours impressionnés de voir notre récolte de prix. Je crois que cela renforce notre crédibilité.

FNPMC: L’année dernière, vous avez également remporté un Prix du magazine canadien pour votre article « Quand je serai plus là, qui va s’occuper de mes poissons? ». Ce reportage racontait l’histoire d’enfants qui souffrent de maladies mortelles et traitait de la réalité des soins palliatifs pour les jeunes, au Canada. Comment avez-vous été informée de ce dossier et pourquoi avez-vous décidé de faire enquête à ce sujet?

Pascale Millot: J’aime à répéter que, si j’avais eu plus d’audace et pas d’enfants, j’aurais fait du reportage en zone de guerre. Je pense en effet que les journalistes ont la responsabilité de nous faire découvrir des réalités peu connues et extrêmes.

Je ne fais pas de reportage en zone de conflit, mais je m’efforce tout de même de traiter de sujets extrêmes où des hommes et des femmes sont poussés au bout de leurs limites. C’est le genre de sujets qui me passionne et dont j’ai besoin pour garder mon intérêt dans ce métier.

Parler des enfants qui vont mourir, du don d’organes, de la torture, du suicide, de la maladie mentale et de toutes ces situations où l’être humain est poussé au bout de lui-même est ma manière à moi de faire du reportage extrême. En ce qui concerne ce sujet précis des soins palliatifs pédiatriques, j’ai été frappée de constater à quel point la mort, et particulièrement la mort des enfants, est taboue dans notre société.

D’ailleurs, beaucoup de gens autour de moi ne comprenaient pas pourquoi je me penchais sur un tel sujet, comme si c’était trop triste pour en parler. Mais c’est justement pour cela qu’il faut en parler.

FNPMC: Cette année, Québec Science célèbre son 50e anniversaire. Qu’avez-vous fait pour souligner cet anniversaire et quels sont les objectifs futurs du magazine?

Pascale Millot: C’est un gros anniversaire! 50 ans pour un magazine au Québec, c’est une incroyable longévité. D’autant plus qu’il s’agit du seul magazine de science destiné au grand public au Canada.

Pour souligner cette grande année, nous avons produit un numéro spécial qui présente les 50 grands défis de la recherche scientifique. Notre rédacteur en chef, Raymond Lemieux, a également publié un livre, Il était une fois Québec Science (Éditions MultiMondes), qui raconte l’histoire du magazine, mais aussi de la culture scientifique au Québec. Nous avons aussi repensé complètement notre site Internet et nous avons (enfin!) rendu nos archives accessibles en ligne.

Nos objectifs futurs? Produire de l’information sous forme numérique, mais aussi et surtout continuer à produire des reportages de fond, bien écrits, à même d’informer et de captiver un public non spécialiste. Il est de plus en plus difficile de produire de l’information de qualité, de fouiller des sujets, de prendre le temps de comprendre les différentes facettes d’un dossier.

Le reportage magazine demande du talent, mais aussi du temps et de la rigueur, des valeurs qui sont malheureusement de moins en moins dans l’air du temps.

FNPMC: Merci Pascale!

Découvrir plus à quebecscience.qc.ca. Lire la suite des gagnants du magazine Québec Science dans nos archives.

Prix d’Or, catégorie Société, 2010

Prix d’Or, catégorie Science, technologie et environnement, 2010

Prix d’Argent, catégories Santé et Médecine, et Science, technologie et environnement, 2009

Important dates for the 36th annual National Magazine Awards

The NMAF Board of Directors has approved the following key dates for the awards program of the 36th annual National Magazine Awards:

  • December 1: Call for submissions
  • December 14: Co-financing deadline
  • January 11: Early-Bird submissions deadline
  • January 16: Final submissions deadline
  • March 1: Outstanding Achievement deadline
  • May 1: Nominations announcement
  • June 7: 36th annual NMA gala

Stay with us at our blog, newsletter, twitter and facebook for updates along the way.

New Writers.ca portal available from PWAC

The Professional Writers Association of Canada (PWAC) has launched a new online portal to connect freelance writers and magazine editors across the country.

The site writers.ca is being promoted to Canadian magazines and from now through the spring of 2013, the site is free. (After February 14, there will be an annual fee for magazines to join, based on circulation figures. Read more.) Writers who are members of PWAC will be listed on the site. (Join PWAC.)

On the site, editors can find writers for specific projects, writers can find editors who might be interested in their work, and organizations can post jobs for specific needs.

The portal also includes tips such as:

{Hat tip: Canadian Magazines}

Off the Page, with Eighteen Bridges editor Curtis Gillespie

Off the Page is an exclusive series produced by the NMAF that reaches out to former National Magazine Award winners to find out what their awards have meant to them and what they’re up to now. Off the Page will appear each Thursday on the Magazine Awards blog during the fall of 2012. This week we catch up with three-time National Magazine Award-winning writer Curtis Gillespie, editor of the new magazine Eighteen Bridges.

NMAF: Some might call it a bold venture: launching a publication of narrative non-fiction journalism—a magazine of big ideas—in an age when long-form is seemingly subsumed by Internet media and niche publishing. Perhaps that’s a misconception. As an editor and an award-winning long-form writer, what were your founding objectives for Eighteen Bridges; what did the magazine seek to achieve that wasn’t already on the landscape?

Curtis Gillespie: The founding objectives of Eighteen Bridges were very simple: marry sound research with compelling narrative. We wanted to offer a home for great writers who can also do trustworthy research.

Long form is more important than ever, because context is more important than ever. We’re awash in information, but lacking in depth and background, and that’s precisely why the long-form narrative journalism format is, I believe, essential.

This kind of in-depth journalism is expensive, and so most outlets are shying away from it. Digital-age, quick-hit, small-dose journalism is fine, but it needs to be supported by genuine investigative journalism that offers trustworthy and thorough research (to further our insight) along with genuine writing talent (to keep us reading!).

We didn’t see this style on the Canadian landscape. The Walrus is a great magazine, but doesn’t necessarily focus on narrative. Maclean’s is newsy. Brick is arts and culture. All are good magazines and serve their readers well.

The point of doing something like Eighteen Bridges is to create an immersive experience for readers, so that they’re enjoying a story but also gaining context.

Eighteen Bridges, issue #1, Spring 2011

NMAFOne of the pledges Eighteen Bridges makes to the Canadian readership is that it will “initiate vibrant debate.” What has informed this perspective that we’re in need of enhanced public debate in this country, and what is the role of narrative journalism in fostering such discourse that is unique among the myriad forms of Canadian media.

Eighteen Bridges, issue #2, Winter 2011

Curtis Gillespie: The “narrative” aspect is crucial. It’s our base camp, in a way. We believe in story telling as the perfect conduit for in-depth journalism, because we believe a magazine article should be both enlightening and entertaining, and that the two are not mutually exclusive. But this takes talent, hard work, and a clear editorial mandate.

Too often, newspapers and television provide facts, but no context. We learn the issues, but not the subtleties behind the issues. We don’t get to know the personalities in their complexity.

You can’t really have a vibrant debate without feeling well informed. Otherwise, conversations, arguments, debates and discussions are simply an exchange of opinion.

Our goal (if we can ever reach anything like the level of cultural penetration of a major media source) is to offer enough background and context to allow for vigorous discussions based on good research and compelling stories, rather than sound bites and quick hits.

If we can take the principles of narrative (characterization, dramatic arc, psychological and emotional inquiry, and so on) and use those to convey the stories that are shaping our world, then we’ll be creating journalism that people enjoy and value.

NMAFAmong the early measures of success for Eighteen Bridges are the ten National Magazine Awards nominations and 2 wins—Gold for Don Gillmor’s “All In” and Silver for Alissa York’s “Class Mammalia”—that came from just your first two issues from 2011. Was this a key step in the realization of your vision for the magazine, and what have the awards meant to the magazine and its future?

Eighteen Bridges, issue #3, Spring 2012

Curtis Gillespie: I can’t honestly say it was a key step in the realization for our vision for the magazine, since it would be unwise to ever plan on winning awards!

Having said that, we did feel that if we were lucky enough to get noticed at the National Magazine Awards in our first year of eligibility it would help us spread the word of what we are about and who we are trying to reach.

The NMAs mean a great deal to people in the magazine industry and to writers in general; they indicate what is working at a high level and signal to the country what might be worth paying attention to.

We were stunned and delighted to get 10 nominations and two wins in our first crack at it, partly because it means people might notice our magazine and what we’re trying to do with it; that we take issues that matter and create great stories about them. But more because it was recognition for some outstanding writing.

Don and Alissa were rightly recognized, but it also drew attention to many other fine writers.

We think it also showed, in some ways, that our rationale for creating the magazine wasn’t completely without merit!

Curtis Gillespie won 3 National Magazine Awards for his writing in Saturday Night magazine, and has been nominated for a total of 14 NMAs since 1999. He has also served as a judge for the NMAs. Eighteen Bridges was nominated for 10 NMAs last year, and won Silver in Travel (Alissa York, “Class Mammalia“) and Gold in Arts & Entertainment (Don Gillmor, “All In“; featured in the new NMA eBook). Discover more at eighteenbridges.com.

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