Friday, January 10, is the early-bird deadline day for National Magazine Awards submissions.
This means that in order to submit at the discounted rate of $95* for most entries, you need to complete the online registration of all of your submissions (including uploading a PDF of each entry), and either pay by credit card (via Paypal) or select the option to pay by cheque and receive your invoice by email.
You do NOT have to submit the cheque, nor submit required hard copies, by Friday, January 10, in order to receive the early-bird rate.
All required tear sheets, photocopies and entry forms must be received (not just postmarked) by 5pm EST on Wednesday, January 15. Cheques not accompanying entries must be received by January 24 or entries may be disqualified.
If you enter some submissions before the early-bird deadline and some after:
- You will be charged the early-bird rate for entries submitted online by midnight EST Jan 10;
- You will be charged the regular rate for entries submitted online between Jan 11-15;
- All required tear sheets, photocopies and forms must be received in our office by 5pm EST on Jan 15.
Make your cheques payable to: National Magazine Awards Foundation
- All Categories
- Magazine of the Year
- Best New Magazine Writer
- Best New Illustrator or Photographer
- Guide to Entering Digital Content
When you’re sending in your hard copies–after you complete the online registration–be sure to note our new address:
National Magazine Awards Foundation
2300 Yonge Street, Suite 1600,
Toronto, ON, M4P 1E4
* Plus HST. Certain full-book categories have an early-bird fee of $150. The regular entry fee (between Jan 11-15) is $120/$175. For Best New Magazine Writer and Best New Illustrator or Photographer the entry fee is $25 through January 15.
For the 2013 National Magazine Awards, original content published in a magazine tablet edition or on a magazine website (companion site of a print title or an online-only magazine) is eligible in most written, visual and integrated categories. Check out the digital magazine section of our FAQ for more information.
There are also 5 categories, generously supported by the Government of Canada, which are open specifically to digital content in Canadian magazines:
TABLET MAGAZINE OF THE YEAR
Open to: Any single issue of a Canadian tablet magazine published in 2013.
Criteria: The award for Tablet Magazine of the Year will go to a 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.
Entry Fee: $150 (early-bird by Jan 10); $175 (regular by Jan 15)
Meet last year’s finalists
Last year’s winner: Canadian House & Home
MAGAZINE WEBSITE OF THE YEAR
Open to: Any Canadian online-only magazine or companion website of a print title.
Criteria: The award for Magazine Website of the Year will go to a magazine website (either a companion site or an online-only 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 web-based publishing.
Entry Fee: $150 (early-bird by Jan 10); $175 (regular by Jan 15)
Meet last year’s finalists
Last year’s winner: Hazlitt
EDITORIAL PACKAGE – WEB
Open to: Any original package of related or thematic editorial content produced by a Magazine Website.
Criteria: Maximizes the potential of web-based publishing and reflects collaboration by editors and content creators. Elements may include but are not limited to web design, written content, blogs, video, photography, infographics, illustration, social media and user-generated content.
Entry Fee: $95 (early-bird by Jan 10); $120 (regular by Jan 15)
Last year’s winner: The Grid (“Are you going to eat that?“)
Open to: A single video produced by a Magazine Website or Tablet Magazine.
Criteria: Eligible content must have been published during 2013, be clearly relevant to the magazine’s editorial mandate, and be part of an editorial process.
Entry Fee: $95 (early-bird by Jan 10); $120 (regular by Jan 15)
Meet last year’s finalists
Last year’s winner: Hazlitt (“Pagelicker 01: Irvine Welsh“)
Open to: A regular series of original written content by one or more authors produced by a Magazine Website that has a recognizable unifying voice or theme.
Criteria: Eligible content must have been published during 2013, be clearly relevant to the Magazine Website’s editorial mandate, and be part of an editorial process. Entrants must submit the blog’s main URL and then up to 3 sub-URLs linking specific content for the jury’s attention. The jury will be instructed to review the provided URLs as well as navigate other areas of the site, though only written content is evaluated.
Entry Fee: $95 (early-bird by Jan 10); $120 (regular by Jan 15)
Last year’s winner: Science-ish (Maclean’s)
Read our interview with last year’s winning blogger Julia Belluz
Finally, the category Magazine Website Design is open to submissions from all eligible companion sites and online-only magazines. This award goes to a magazine website with the most successful and original overall combination of visual and graphic design elements with functionality and user experience, including ease of navigation, readability of content, successful integration of audio/visual elements and a clear distinction between paid content/advertising and editorial content. More info.
The 2013 National Magazine Awards are now open for submissions at magazine-awards.com. The deadline for all entries is January 15. Enter by the early-bird deadline of January 10 and save.
The National Magazine Awards Foundation acknowledges the financial support of the Government of Canada through the Canada Periodical Fund of the Department of Canadian Heritage.
The National Magazine Awards Foundation (NMAF) is now accepting applications for two (2) paid Administrative Internship positions for the National Magazine Awards (NMAs) and the Kenneth R. Wilson Awards (KRWs) in Toronto for Winter/Spring 2014.
Contract Duration: January 20, 2014—June 30, 2014; 15 hrs/week on average.
Description: The successful candidates will be reporting to and working in consultation with the NMAF/KRW Communications Coordinator and Special Projects Manager and specifically will:
- Assist with the day-to-day operations of the NMAF/KRW office, including support for the submissions process, judging process, and awards production;
- Handle some of the office-related communications and outreach with the Canadian magazine industry in both English and French—including but not limited to initiating and responding to phone calls and general email;
- Assist with the research and production of content for the NMAF blog (blog.magazine-awards.com);
- Copy edit and fact-check NMAF/KRW communications materials and publications, including newsletters, press releases, website copy, gala programs and related material;
- Assist with ongoing projects to promote the NMAF/KRW and its various initiatives;
- Attend regular staff meetings.
- Exceptional communication skills;
- Familiarity with the Canadian magazine industry;
- Ability to work independently and on deadline with goal-oriented projects;
- Solid writing and editing skills;
- Knowledge of French an asset;
- Career aspirations in the Canadian magazine industry or similar;
- Strong interest in fulfilling the mandate and vision of the National Magazine Awards Foundation.
Terms and Remuneration: The length of the contract will be from January 20, 2013 until June 30, 2014. The average weekly commitment may range from 10 hours per week (Feb-Mar; Jun) to 20 hours per week (Jan; Apr-May). Working hours are flexible except at specific times, and most work may be completed remotely.
Interns will be paid a stipend of $1500 for the duration of the internship, plus receive two (2) tickets to the National Magazine Awards gala on June 6, 2014.
Applications: Candidates should submit
- A cover letter demonstrating their specific interest in the internship;
- A resume;
- And at least one letter of reference from a professor or career mentor.
Please send applications by email to NMAF Communications Coordinator Avary Lovell at staff[at]magazine-awards.com.
Deadline: Tuesday, December 31, 2013.
Off the Page is an interview series that appears regularly on the Magazine Awards blog. Today we catch up with Brett Popplewell, editor of The Feathertale Review, winner of the 2012 National Magazine Award for Best Single Issue.
NMAF: The Feathertale Review has been dubbed the “illegitimate love child of Mad Magazine and The New Yorker.” We just saw your latest issue, no. 11, double in size to 128 pages. Is this a signal to readers that the child is growing up? And if so, where is it headed?
Brett Popplewell: It’s definitely a sign that the child is growing up. Where it’s heading, I have no idea.
Truth is our entire team has grown up since our launch in 2006. We were just kids back then who felt there was an absence of high- and low-brow humour magazines in the Canadian market and thought we could be the cork to plug that hole. Lee Wilson, Feathertale’s co-founder and art director, and I wanted to create something that would feel fresh and cutting edge but that would hark back to an age when magazines leaned entirely on illustration to bring their words to life. We’re the ones who started calling our creation the “illegitimate love child of Mad Magazine and The New Yorker” because it felt like the best way to describe it.
We really started to grow up with our fourth issue (summer 2009). I finally started writing editorials to help nail a raison-d’etre for each issue and we began interviewing interesting people (David Rakoff, Stuart McLean, Patrick deWitt, Lynn Coady, etc.) in the magazine, using those interviews to try to answer some of life’s greatest questions, like: “What does it actually mean to be funny?” All of this added a creative depth to what we were doing.
By that point Lee and I were both working fulltime with mass-market magazines and had a much better understanding of our industry and Feathertale’s place within it. We began wanting to use Feathertale to challenge what we and others thought a magazine actually was. That’s how we came up with the idea for Feathertale 9. That issue, which looked, read and felt like it was lost in time, was modeled after 250-year-old magazines in order to show readers how far magazines had evolved and changed since their initial creation back in 1731. I think the moment we started thinking about Feathertale on such a bold scale was when it grew up and became more than just the bastard love child of Mad Magazine and The New Yorker.
We didn’t have it in us to make Feathertale 10 as crazy an innovation as its predecessor. So we sought instead to create a “swan song” issue that resembled some of our earlier issues and served to book-end a chapter of our lives.
After Feathertale 10 we had time to reflect on what we’d accomplished and assess what we thought was working and what wasn’t. We had contemplated ending the print product and concentrating on Feathertale.com, the online companion to the Review. Our $10 cover price hadn’t been doing us any favours on newsstands and our online readership had always outstripped our printed circulation. But we still believed in producing beautiful printed products and decided to double down on that belief. That’s when we started thinking about making the Review look less like a magazine and more like a book.
From a design standpoint, this made sense. We were starting to publish some much longer stories and Lee felt the long features would read better if we changed the design. So we shrunk the page size from the 8”x10” we’d been using for the first 10 issues to 5”x8”. We then doubled the length of the book to make sure it would still pack the roughly 35,000 words we’d been publishing in our previous issues. In the end, the adjustment made good business sense as well.
Feathertale is still a magazine of course, but our current issue (and our next one for that matter) does look a lot more like a book than a mag. I don’t know how that format will serve us on newsstands. We have one of the thicker spines out there right now, and I think we’ve got some pretty appealing covers but we don’t take up nearly as much space on the magazine rack. That said, our subscribers seem to be enjoying the new forma, which is encouraging. It’s also substantially cheaper for us to print the smaller layout and from what we’ve seen at festivals, people are more inclined to pay $10 (or even $15) for the new format. We’re under no pretense of being the first to come out at this size, but so far it makes sense for us.
NMAF: In addition to winning the National Magazine Award for Best Single Issue (for issue no. 9), Feathertale has also won NMAs for Humour and for Best Magazine Cover; remarkable achievements for any magazine, no less a young literary one. What impact have achievements like these made on Feathertale and its writers and artists?
Brett: The accolades have certainly helped us stay motivated, but this has never been a vanity project. Our first win for Best Magazine Cover of 2010 came as a shock, both to us and I think to others in our industry. That cover was really special to us. It was illustrated by a young artist in Oshawa named Dani Crosby. She had just graduated from Sheridan and didn’t have a huge portfolio when we handed her our magazine and told her to do as she pleased with it. There aren’t many magazines that will hand over that kind of opportunity to such a young and relatively inexperienced artist. When we won best cover, we were really just humbled and honoured to be recognized by our peers.
After our first NMA a lot of illustrators and writers who hadn’t really been looking at us started submitting work our way. It definitely helped us grow and added some more established voices to our ever-expanding list of contributors. I guess you could say that award helped us beef up subsequent issues, including Feathertale 9, which won Gold for Best Single Issue last year. I was surprised when we were nominated for that award as well and I was ecstatic when we won. I think what I’m most proud of about that issue is that we pulled it all together on a $7,000 budget. I can’t really explain how it feels to have published and edited a magazine on that kind of budget and then see it nominated alongside magazines that are easily 100 times our size.
Feathertale was probably the smallest magazine nominated for any awards last year, so to win one of the evening’s most prestigious was an unexpected honour, something Cathal Kelly (one of our frequent contributors) touched on when he tweeted that watching Feathertale win that NMA was, financially speaking, “like your home movies winning an Oscar.”
There were 37 contributors in that issue and each of them was integral to its success. I can’t speak for any of them, but I can say that I am extremely proud to have worked with each of them on that issue. I’m equally as proud of Cathal for picking up silver in the Humour category last year. We’ve always said we’re a humour magazine, and Cathal’s award and work helped validate that claim. He’s probably the most naturally gifted writer I’ve had the privilege to work with.
NMAF: You’ve spoken elsewhere about the early success story of Feathertale, where start-up funds from a successful anti-bullying comic-book venture seeded the start of the magazine, and support from Canadian arts funding has helped you grow. What lessons have you learned about publishing a literary magazine in Canada that might benefit other publishers, writers and artists out there?
Brett: The biggest lesson I’ve learned is you have to believe in the value of what you’re doing because you won’t necessarily see any benefit from your labours in your bank account. Canada is such a small market that it’s very hard to make a profit with this type of venture. Financially, Feathertale is subsidized by grant money and sales of Lee’s and my anti-bullying comic books. But aside from that, this whole thing survives on the passion of its creators. That passion comes and goes. There are times when each of us have wanted to run away from Feathertale but the longer we spend working on the project the more we realize that it’s like a child that deserves a shot at growing up and becoming a fully functioning adult. It has definitely grown up and matured, but it’s still not ready to feed itself or change its own diapers.
Publishing, especially in the 21st century, is a very fickle industry. Lee and I wandered into it without any real experience. We had some spectacular success early on with our anti-bullying comic books and have no regrets at having used that success to launch The Feathertale Review. We are fortunate to now have support from both the Canada Council for the Arts and the Ontario Arts Council. I think it’s important for every Canadian to understand that if the Arts councils ever pulled out of funding literary journals in this country the entire industry would likely die, or at least cease to print.
NMAF: Who is D’Artagnan, really?
Seriously though, he’s the blue monkey who appears on all things Feathertale. We used to think of him as our Alfred E. Newman or Eustace Tilley, but he’s become more than that. He’s our face in this world. What’s his story? Why is he blue? We’ve been asking ourselves those questions for a long time now but still haven’t figured it out.
Brett Popplewell is the editor of The Feathertale Review, as well as a National Magazine Award-winning writer — he won Gold in the category Sports & Recreation at the 2011 National Magazine Awards for “The Team that Disappeared” (Sportsnet). Follow him on Twitter @b_popps.
Images courtesy Feathertale.com and National Magazine Awards Foundation.
Submissions are now being accepted for the 2013 National Magazine Awards. Deadline for entries: January 15.
Since 1977 the National Magazine Awards Foundation has been recognizing excellence in the content and creation of Canadian magazines. Each year the Foundation grants more than $60,000 in prize money to award-winning writers, illustrators, photographers and other creators, and bestows the honour and industry recognition of a National Magazine Award to the publishers, editors, art directors and other staff of more than 75 nominated publications.
And although that may be reason enough to enter, many previous winners are happy to give us more.
Here are 10 other reasons why you should consider entering the 2013 National Magazine Awards:
1. New readers. Award-winning magazines attract new readers who are hungry for great stories.
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.
–Curtis Gillespie, editor-in-chief of Eighteen Bridges
2. Bragging Rights. Be able to tell your readers that you are delivering the best and most credible content, recognized by your peers in the magazine industry.
It is immensely gratifying, on a professional level, when our team and contributors earn a National Magazine Award, or simply garner a nomination for that matter. It’s yet another measurement of how well we are serving our audience, based on the criteria for magazine excellence as determined by our industry peers.
–Patrick Walsh, editor-in-chief of Outdoor Canada
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.
–Pascale Millot, ancienne rédactrice du magazine Québec Science
3. Get Noticed. With a National Magazine Award, writers and artists find new audiences for their creative work and talent.
The NMA is a big award and I’m extremely grateful to have won it. I’m sure it has done quite a bit to promote my work and lift my profile as a documentary photographer. Above all else, I’m happy that this award brought the story to more viewers.
–Ian Willms, NMA-winning photographer
Winning the NMA gave me confidence in my writing, which I never really had before. [It] also got my work noticed. After I won Best New Magazine Writer, the essay was selected to appear in the Best Canadian Essays 2013 anthology, alongside some very successful writers. It is an amazing honour that I feel would not have happened without the National Magazine Awards.
–Sierra Skye Gemma, winner of the 2012 NMA for Best New Magazine Writer
4. Book Deal? Publishers take notice of award-winning work, and a National Magazine Award could be a step towards launching a book project.
The National Magazine Award was crucial into shifting [my] feature into a book project. After the magazine award, I received a few phone calls from literary agents, inquiring about the possibility of a book. I am sure the NMA helped [my agent] in the all-important pitch to book editors and marketing departments; to be able to say the idea had already garnered a Gold Award from the community of magazine journalists.
–Joshua Knelman, NMA winner and author of Hot Art
I got a lot of great feedback and everyone at the magazine was effusive and full of praise. It was very validating and it really encouraged me to continue the novel. Or it certainly put a skip in my step as I was finishing the rest of it: knowing that people had taken a peek at it and had approved.
–Heather O’Neill, NMA winner and author of Lullabies for Little Criminals
5. Find Your Next Job. Award-winning writers are better able to find new editors and publishers interested in their work.
The impact of this award was stunning. Here I was, writing from an isolated basement office in Vancouver, and all of a sudden my work is being recognized nationally. Personally, it was an unbelievable affirmation that the sacrifices I’d made to leave a twenty-year corporate consulting career had been worth it. Professionally, it was a game changer. The NMA nominations provided me with an entrée into one of the country’s top literary agencies. I met with and acquired [an] agent the day of the awards ceremony. In short, I believe that the recognition of the National Magazine Awards catapulted me from the ground floor of my writing profession to the penthouse suite.
–Carol Shaben, NMA winner and author of Into the Abyss
6. Promote Your Innovations. Magazines are growing, and we’re growing with them. The NMAF recognizes achievement in digital content creation and all other enterprising magazine journalism.
It’s a great honour to be recognized by peers who work across subjects and venues in journalism. It seems to be increasingly true that readers can expect good writing and reporting in many places—blogs, web pages, etc.—and it’s wonderful that the NMA recognizes that with its awards categories.
–Julia Belluz, winner of the 2012 National Magazine Award for Best Blog
Un prix est le couronnement de nos efforts, la reconnaissance qu’on a atteint notre objectif. Personne ne se sent obligé de lire un magazine pour être au courant de l’actualité. Les journaux, la télévision et les nouvelles en continu sur le Web nous livrent une rude compétition. C’est à nous, artisans des magazines, de proposer des histoires inédites, des angles nouveaux et surprenants pour nous rendre indispensables aux yeux du grand public.
–Catherine Dubé, lauréate et journaliste chez L’actualité
7. Build Your Confidence. Freelancing is one of the most challenging pursuits for an artist or journalist, and sometimes even lonely. Awards and nominations are benchmarks of progress.
Whenever I felt that I was hopelessly inept and dark voices inside were telling me to give up, I would defer to other people’s opinions (such as those giving out awards) and carry on. Of course the prize money is helpful in funding the next project, and it is good fun to go to the awards evenings. I don’t think anyone will deny that recognition from your peers is especially gratifying.
–Roger LeMoyne, NMA-winning photojournalist
The National Magazine Award was a vote of confidence that I was in the right line of work. We all need a thumbs-up from the world sometimes, as we toil away in the studio.
–Jillian Tamaki, NMA-winning illustrator
Winning that NMA was especially rewarding because the story was quite personal. As well, the story had been rejected by numerous magazines before AlbertaViews picked it up. That fact made the win even more gratifying, and dulled the sting from those rejections.
–Jeremy Klaszus, NMA-winning writer
8. Celebrate Your Creators. Editors, publishers and art directors have the opportunity to reward the creative talent that helps their magazines sell copies and connect with readers.
An award is useful for communicating to our stakeholders that we are successful. It adds momentum to what we do every day at the magazine… We create content to satisfy our readers, not to win awards. But it is our creators who get the awards and the cash prize, and for an editor, that’s an honour.
–Sarah Fulford, editor-in-chief of Toronto Life
9. Even a Nomination is a Celebration. We all start at the beginning, and just getting our work out there, and getting it noticed, is a step on the path to success.
As a young artist, it is a great honour to be recognized nationally, which in turn provides many assurances of support for my career. I was thrilled to be nominated for a National Magazine Award in 2009 even though I only received a honourable mention. Even with greater astonishment, [in 2011] I was called up on stage to receive the Gold award. An award not only provides charming publicity but it raises the standards in my work and, therefore, produces a wonderful opportunity to surpass my previous accomplishments.
–Selena Wong, NMA-winning illustrator
Awards are one way to measure whether or not what I’m doing on the page is working… Consistent nominations tell me that I’m continuing to do work that is recognizably among the best in the country.
-J.B. MacKinnon, NMA winner and author of The Once and Future World
10. Believe in What We Do. After all, magazines are the medium of creativity, passion and a deep engagement with our readers.
I think we should always believe in what we do. Successful magazine stories have that ‘wow’ factor, and with everything we do we try to achieve that. You know that story matters, that content matters. If you believe you achieved success then you should enter the National Magazine Awards, because then you’ll know if your peers agree; that it made them say, ‘wow.’
–Carole Beaulieu, editor-in-chief of L’actualité
The deadline to submit Co-financing applications is Tuesday January 7.
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 January 7 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 January 7. (The final submissions deadline is January 15.)
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? Magazines that have been approved for Co-financing must pay their submissions fees in full when they submit.
The NMAF will notify all successful applicants by email as soon as possible and not later than January 31, indicating how many submissions are approved for Co-financing. The Co-financing will be disbursed as a refund once all submissions are received and verified; not later than March 31, 2014.
Co-financing applications are available here.
For the 37th year, the National Magazine Awards Foundation is looking for the best in Canadian magazine publishing. Submissions are now being accepted for awards in 48 categories, recognizing excellence in the creation of written, visual, digital and integrated Canadian magazine content. Cliquez ici pour la version française.
Early-Bird Deadline: January 10, 2014
Final Deadline: January 15, 2014
What’s New This Year?
The NMAF has created a new category this year—Infographics—rewarding an original creation of data visualization produced by a magazine, print or digital. Entries may consist of a single infographic or a series of related infographics appearing in a single article. Read more
We’ve Moved – Again!
When you’re sending in your hard copies–after you complete the online registration–be sure to note our new address:
2300 Yonge Street, Suite 1600, Toronto, ON, M4P 1E4
Digital Magazine Publishing
Content from Magazine Websites and Tablet Magazines is eligible in most categories, including dedicated digital categories Blogs, Editorial Package: Web, Online Video, Magazine Website of the Year and Tablet Magazine of the Year. Read more
Off the Page appears regularly on the Magazine Awards blog. Today we catch up with writer J.B. MacKinnon, winner of 11 National Magazine Awards and author of The Once and Future World (Random House Canada).
NMAF: In an essay titled “A 10 Percent World” (The Walrus, September 2010), you argued that humanity’s vision of an idyllic past is myopic; that in seeking to temper the impact that we have on our environment, our purpose “is not to demand some return to a pre-human Eden, but rather to expand our options”; that “our sense of what is possible sets limits on our dreams.” What did you mean by expanding our options beyond the limits?
J.B.: “A 10 Percent World” looks at the natural world of the historical past—a much richer and more abundant state of nature than we know today. We’ve largely forgotten this more plentiful world, and that limits our sense of the possible.
Yes, it’s depressing to find out that grizzly bears used to live on the Canadian Prairies and they don’t any more, or that Vancouver waters were home to a year-round population of humpback whales that were all slaughtered by 1908. But if we aren’t aware of these facts, then the absence of the bears and the whales seems normal. When we do become aware of them, we’re able to set a higher bar for our vision of what nature can be.
NMAF: That essay won a National Magazine Award in 2011. What impact did the magazine publication and the award have on your decision to pursue a book project, resulting in your recently published The Once and Future World?
“A 10 Percent World” was that initial foray into the depths. The story had an impact on readers, and when it also won a magazine award I was able to move forward on the book with a lot more confidence.
NMAF: You’ve been a professional writer for more than a decade, with 11 National Magazine Awards (and 31 nominations). What role do Canadian magazines play in your career, and what significance do you put on winning awards?
J.B.: I became a writer during the largely overlooked great recession of the early 1990s, and the limited opportunities of that time made a deep impression on me. Fortunately, a few Canadian editors took a chance on my work, and I’ve been able to build from there. But I’m always trying to sharpen my teeth—to push toward deeper themes or better writing. It doesn’t always work, and I appreciate that Canadian magazines are still giving me chances. They don’t always expect me to show up with all my t’s crossed and i’s already dotted.
Awards are one way to measure whether or not what I’m doing on the page is working—the awards themselves matter less to me than the nominations. Consistent nominations tell me that I’m continuing to do work that is recognizably among the best in the country. Actually taking home a gold or silver is a much less predictable matter. Of course, when it happens, well… it never gets old, let’s say that.
J.B. MacKinnon is the award-winning author of The Once and Future World, The 100-Mile Diet and Dead Man in Paradise. His writing has appeared in great Canadian magazines including Explore, The Walrus, This Magazine and more. He was the writer for the documentary Bear 71, which explores the intersection of the wired and wild worlds through the true story of a mother grizzly bear. Discover more at jbmackinnon.com.
At the National Magazine Awards Foundation we are getting very excited about the upcoming year, our 37th recognizing and rewarding the very best in Canadian magazines. We’ll be announcing our call for entries next week. Here are the important dates for the coming year:
Off the Page appears regularly on the Magazine Awards blog. Today we catch up with Sierra Skye Gemma, winner of the 2012 National Magazine Award for Best New Magazine Writer.
[This post has been updated to include the new deadline for the Prism International Creative Non-fiction contest deadline: Dec 5.]
NMAF: Earlier this year you won the National Magazine Award for Best New Magazine Writer for a story called “The Wrong Way” (The New Quarterly), a personal essay and critical meditation on the stages of grief. Tell us a bit about how you developed this story and why you decided to submit it in the annual non-fiction writing competition from TNQ?
Sierra: The Wrong Way came out of an assignment in a Creative Non-fiction course with Andreas Schroeder. I had never written a personal essay before and when I started I wasn’t even sure what I wanted to say. Not exactly, anyway. I looked up Kübler-Ross’s Five Stages of Grief because I thought it would explain my experiences. I thought I could structure my essay according to the stages, but I realized that Kübler-Ross’s theory didn’t apply to my life at all. My essay then developed as a sort of antagonistic call-and-response with conventional grief theories.
I sat and wrote it in two sittings, straight through from beginning to end. I didn’t move things around after that and I barely edited it. That said, I had bits and pieces of it already written. Little vignettes that I hadn’t known what to do with before, like the story of buying my son the fish and aquatic frog. I had also taken extensive notes when my sister died and I wrote down lots of dialogue. Maybe that sounds weird; maybe not, if you’re a writer. But what do you do with a short “scene” between siblings that, when read on its own, seems to make light of the death of another sibling? Well, I guess you build an elaborate home in which it can live. The Wrong Way was that home for many of my disjointed experiences with grief.
I submitted the essay to The New Quarterly’s Edna Staebler Personal Essay Contest because Andreas Schroeder told me to submit it to a contest (and not through the slush pile of regular submissions); he thought the essay was good enough to win. The New Quarterly’s personal essay contest seemed like the obvious choice. The lesson here? Always listen to Andreas Schroeder.
NMAF: What was the significance for you as a young writer winning that contest and then the National Magazine Award?
Sierra: Winning both the contest and the NMA gave me confidence in my writing, which I never really had before. Winning the NMA also got my work noticed. After I won Best New Magazine Writer, the essay was selected to appear in the Best Canadian Essays 2013 anthology, alongside some very successful writers. It is an amazing honour that I feel would not have happened without the National Magazine Awards.
NMAF: As a writer and also an editor of PRISM International, a literary magazine published by the Creative Writing Program at UBC, you are in a good position to survey the landscape of Canadian literary arts. What are the challenges and rewards of devoting yourself to this industry?
Sierra: I think the greatest challenge to being an editor of a literary magazine (or a writer for that matter) is money. There is not a lot of money in literary magazines. Small lit mags live and die by the decisions of the Canada Council for the Arts and the various provincial Arts Councils. They live and die by the seemingly small financial decisions of their staff. They live and die by their contest entries and subscriptions and by the ebb and flow of their donations. Editing and managing a literary magazine is not a career for the lazy or the extravagant. It takes a lot of careful, cautious, and sometimes tedious work to keep a literary magazine alive.
That said, it is so emotionally rewarding. I have been a reader for the past two Creative Non-fiction Contests at PRISM and I will be a reader again this year. The emotional rollercoaster that this work has taken me on is intense. You feel the author’s highs and lows. I’ve cried and I’ve laughed until I’ve been in tears.
Although I’ve also read for other contests and other magazines, it is PRISM’s Non-fiction Contest that really makes it worth it for me because the stories are real and they matter. They matter to the author, who is risking so much to share; to the readers with whom the stories will resonate; to the editors, who have the responsibility for creating the long list and the short list; and to the contest judge who has to make the toughest decisions.
Our Creative Non-fiction Contest deadline is coming up on
November 28th [Update: December 5] and I can’t wait to start reading again!
NMAF: What are your immediate goals as a writer, and what are you working on these days?
Sierra: This summer I received a grant from the Social Science and Humanities Research Council of Canada to perform research for a novel set in 1950’s California. I spent three months in northern California—taking notes, visiting museums and farms, interviewing seniors and experts, and exploring the countryside—so my research is nearly completed.
I’ve been meaning to finish my outline and start writing, but I’ve been a little distracted by another project that I have been working on for over a year: a humorous and irreverent parenting book that I’m co-writing with blogger Emily Wight. We have completed our non-fiction book proposal and one sample chapter, but I’d like to get a few more chapters done before I launch into the novel.
Sierra Skye Gemma is an award-winning writer and journalist working towards an MFA in Creative Writing at the University of British Columbia. Aside from the National Magazine Award for Best New Magazine Writer, this year Sierra was also honoured with the first-place award in creative non-fiction in Rhubarb’s Taboo Literary Contest, a long-list nod in House of Anansi’s Broken Social Scene Story Contest, and a BC Arts Council scholarship. She is an executive editor of PRISM international, western Canada’s oldest literary magazine. Her work has been published in The New Quarterly, The Vancouver Sun, Plenitude, and elsewhere. Follow her on Twitter @SierraGemma.
The National Magazine Award for Best New Magazine Writer
Meet the finalists for Best New Magazine Writer
A Writer’s Guide to Canadian Literary Magazines
Your Guide to Fall 2013 Canadian Magazine Writing Contests
More Off the Page interviews
The Canadian photographer, now based in New York, won the Gold National Magazine Award last year in Portrait Photography, for “Never Left Art School” (a series with Douglas Coupland) in Montecristo magazine. He was previously a finalist for the Best New Visual Creator award in 2010, for “A Man Called Cope” (Report on Business).
The exhibition, “Pictures,” is on display until December 21.
From the O’Born Contemporary site: Working within portraiture and documentary photography, Peckmezian attempts to leverage the analog-digital divide, producing work that draws into relief the enduring value of analog processes in our new digital-dominated photographic landscape. He recently completed his BFA in Photography from Ryerson University in Toronto, and is represented for commercial and editorial work by Stash. His photographs have been published in Prefix Photo, on the cover of Report on Business and Function, and have been selected for inclusion in Flash Forward, touring internationally.
This year the Canadian magazine industry will celebrate the 37th annual National Magazine Awards. Submissions open on December 1 for awards in 48 categories, and we are looking for volunteer judges to serve on our juries for these categories.
Each year the National Magazine Awards Foundation relies on the generously donated time and expertise of over 200 volunteer judges, who sit on three-member peer juries for our written, visual, integrated and special awards.
Ideal candidates should fulfill one or more of the following criteria:
- Editor, art director, publisher, web editor or other staff member (past or present) of a Canadian magazine, whether or not your publication participates in the National Magazine Awards (naturally you cannot serve as a judge in a category where your magazine is entered, but potentially in other categories);
- Freelance or staff writer, illustrator, photographer or digital creator, where a significant portion of your work is in Canadian magazines (especially if you have been nominated for or won a National Magazine Award yourself);
- Journalist with expertise in a particular field represented by one or more NMA categories (such as health, business, science, sports, travel, lifestyle, food, finance, poetry, etc);
- Bilingual (obviously not all of our judges need be bilingual, but all written categories are judged by both unilingual and bilingual juries, and most other categories include one or more bilingual members on their juries).
To submit yourself or a colleague as a candidate to judge, please contact the NMAF at staff [at] magazine-awards.com. Please include your name, contact information and a brief bio or summary of your expertise.
Have you ever attended the National Magazine Awards gala? Do you love it? Do you think it could be even better? What are the most important elements of this once-a-year gathering of the Canadian magazine industry?
The National Magazine Awards Foundation relies on the feedback and support of its stakeholders to fulfill our mandate to promote and support creators in the Canadian magazine industry.
Thank you for your time! Click here to access the survey.
It’s that time of year again to say a huge THANK YOU! to the subscribers, readers and supporters of the Magazine Awards blog. Our mission has always been simple: to recognize and promote National Magazine Award winners, celebrate the magazines who publish them, support the industry that sustains them, and foster a community with the readers who love them.
To mark our second anniversary, here’s a look back at the highlights of the past two years:
- 308 posts;
- 50,000 page views;
- 30,000 unique visitors;
- Over 2900 subscribers via WordPress, Twitter & Facebook;
- A new National Magazine Award digital Gold Book (following up on last year’s eBook app);
- News, updates & announcements about hundreds of NMA winners;
- 16 (and counting) former National Magazine Award winners profiled in our popular Off the Page interview series;
- Our seasonal guides to Magazine Writing Contests: Fall, Summer & Winter/Spring;
- A sweet subscription deal, up to 50% off digital subscriptions to NMA-winning magazines;
- Our awesome NMA gala smash reel video;
- And, of course, the 36th National Magazine Awards coverage!
Plus our ongoing coverage of hot magazine industry topics like books written by former NMA winners, other awards & opportunities in the magazine industry, cool magazine covers, magazine-related events, and more.
Thanks for your support over these past two years. And now, on with the blogging…
This Friday, September 20 in Toronto Canadian Dimension magazine is hosting an evening with Pulitzer Prize-winning American journalist Chris Hedges.
A former 15-year foreign correspondent for The New York Times, winner of the Amnesty International Global Award for Human Rights Journalism, and author of a recent cover story in The Walrus, Mr. Hedges is the author of the new book The World As it Is: Dispatches on the Myth of Human Progress.
He famously sued the Obama administration last year over the constitutionality of the National Defense Authorization Act, and won.
Tickets for the Toronto event are available but nearly gone. A note on the site states that a few tickets are on sale via EventBrite or at Another Story Bookshop (315 Roncesvalles Avenue in Toronto).
Canadian Dimensions is an independent Canadian magazine with a global focus, founded in 1963 in Winnipeg. In 2005 it was nominated for a National Magazine Award for “The Battle for Canadian Universities.”
On Thursday, September 26 [Update: at 2:30pm] in Toronto the National Magazine Awards Foundation (NMAF) will host an industry Round-Table discussion concerning its policies on magazine eligibility and its judging process. All stakeholders and representatives of participating magazines are invited attend, but must RSVP not later than Friday, September 20.
Agenda: The NMAF has proposed two general topics for discussion and feedback; however, we also invite attendees to table other questions, concerns and ideas regarding the policies, procedures and roles of the NMAF in the magazine industry.
- Magazine Eligibility: What defines a magazine and who may participate in the National Magazine Awards?
- Digital Magazines & Content: Is the NMAF serving the needs of the industry and representing relevant creators?
Participants: Members of the NMAF Board of Directors and Judging Committee will join industry representatives for a 90-minute open discussion. Ideal participants will fulfill one or more of the following criteria:
- General familiarity with NMAF’s operations, stakeholders and roles in the Canadian magazine industry;
- Prior service as an NMA judge, particularly judges who’ve participated in multiple years and/or multiple categories;
- Interest in / experience with being involved with the broad issues of the NMAF and the Canadian magazine industry at large;
- Working in / knowledge of digital magazine production or digital aspect of the magazine industry;
- General seniority or prominence in the industry;
- Representation from a variety of participating magazines, magazine companies, and geographic regions of Canada.
Participants from outside Toronto may attend via teleconference. Participants in Toronto are encouraged to attend in person.
Those interested to attend should please contact NMAF Special Projects Manager Richard Johnson not later than Friday, September 20.
Email: richard.johnson [at] magazine-awards.com
Confirmed participants will receive a detailed agenda and other event information by Monday, September 23.
Make your summer reading the National Magazine Awards digital Gold Book. More than forty magazine stories and visual spreads representing the Gold winners from the 36th annual National Magazine Awards, available FREE for your computer or mobile device.
Including National Magazine Award-winning work by these Canadian literary and visual artists:
Caroline Adderson, Dave Cameron, Karen Connelly, Craig Davidson, Sierra Skye Gemma, Jessica Johnson, Tom Jokinen, Peter Ash Lee, Angus Rowe MacPherson, Greg McArthur, Leah McLaren, Conor Mihell, Jonathan Montpetit, Alison Motluk, Mark Peckmezian, Graeme Smith, Emma Teitel, Chris Turner, Jeff Warren, Sam Weber and more!
With stories from Canada’s best magazines, including Adbusters, Avenue, Azure, Canada’s History, Canadian Notes & Queries, Eighteen Bridges, Explore, Geist, Maclean’s, Maisonneuve, Reader’s Digest, Report on Business, Sportsnet, The Feathertale Review, The Grid, The New Quarterly, The Walrus, Toronto Life and more!
Congratulations to all of this year’s National Magazine Award winners, and happy summer reading to all!
At the 36th annual National Magazine Awards gala last week, the Gold Award for Best Magazine Cover went to Adbusters, for the cover of their 100th issue, entitled “Are We Happy Yet?”
Why the judges picked this cover: “It resonated loudly and immediately on all counts, with its tight connection between the striking cover image and the solitary cover line. An instant classic… [it] challenges one of the primary goals of advertising–to stimulate desires–and implicitly answers its own question. At once strong, direct, incisive, compelling and complete: a brilliant magazine cover.”
The Silver award for Magazine Covers went to Maisonneuve.
Congratulations to all the winners of the 36th National Magazine Awards.
Meet the NMA Finalists for Magazine Covers
The National Magazine Awards Foundation wishes to thank Claire Dawson and Fidel Pena, their team at Underline Studio, and photographer Colin Faulkner for creating and executing the look and feel of this year’s National Magazine Awards.
Thanks also to Levi Nicholson of Biohazard Design for his creative direction of the gala program.
And thanks to the team at Relay Experience for their production of the gala including the multimedia show.
If you would like to order a copy of the 36th annual National Magazine Awards gala program please get in touch with us at staff[at]magazine-awards[dot]com.
The NMAF is also grateful to its suppliers and partners who helped make this year’s National Magazine Awards a success, including:
Printing: The Lowe-Martin Group
Translation: Rédaction Charles Girard, Inc
Publicity: Smitten Creative
Event Photography: Dean Bradley
Outstanding Achievement Portraiture: Nigel Dickson
Event Exhibit: National Sign, Inc.
Volunteer Coordination: Erin Klassen
News Release Distribution: CNW Group
Chartered Accountants: Beckett Lowden Read
Catering: Daniel et Daniel
Flowers: San Remo Florists
Venue: The Carlu
Master of Ceremonies: Zaib Shaikh
Additional thanks to Gary Campbell, Nicolas Dagenais, Paul Dallas, Avary Lovell, Noémi Mercier, Jordanna Tennebaum and our event volunteers. And of course to all of our sponsors and partners, our judges, our staff and board of directors… thank you for your support of the National Magazine Awards and the Canadian magazine industry.
And to all who support Canadian magazines and their creators: Thank you from the NMAF.
Opening Module of the 36th National Magazine Awards, June 7, 2013. Sponsored by Ontario Media Development Corporation (OMDC).
Creative Direction – Xavier Massé; Animation – Matthew Hemming; Artwork Preparation – Joana Ferret; Music – Bustafunk; Remix & Foley – Joshua Hemming.
Tonight the National Magazine Awards Foundation (NMAF) presented the winners of the 36th annual National Magazine Awards at a gala this evening in Toronto at The Carlu, presented by CDS Global, and hosted by Canadian actor Zaib Shaikh. Gold, Silver and Honourable Mention awards were presented in 47 categories, after the NMAF’s 250 volunteer judges evaluated 2000 submissions from nearly 200 Canadian consumer magazines.
Renowned Canadian editor, teacher and mentor Stephen Trumper was presented with the Foundation Award for Outstanding Achievement.
Top Winning Magazines at the 36th National Magazine Awards:
|Report on Business||
|Canadian House & Home||
|The Feathertale Review||
HIGHLIGHTS OF THE AWARDS
The article “Building with the Brigadier” (Report on Business) by Greg McArthur and Graeme Smith—about the SNC-Lavalin investment in Libya—was the most celebrated individual article of the 36th National Magazine Awards, winning two Gold Awards, in Business and in Investigative Reporting, as well as Silver in Politics & Public Interest.
The Gold award for the best Magazine Cover of the year went to Adbusters for their fast food satire “Are We Happy Yet?” by Will Brown and Pedro Inoue. “Issue 45” of Maisonneuve by Anna Minzhulina took the Silver award.
The new online literary magazine Hazlitt, in addition to winning Magazine Website of the Year, also took the Gold awards for Magazine Website Design and for best Online Video, the latter for the first installment of their interview series “Pagelicker 01: Irvine Welsh.”
Journalist Catherine Dubé of L’actualité won her eighth National Magazine Award with a Gold in Service: Health & Family, for “Faut-il interdire le cellulaire à l’école?” – one of six Gold awards won by L’actualité, the most of any magazine.
Journalists from L’actualité also won Gold in Politics & Public Interest (“Jason, le missionaire de Harper” by Alec Castonguay); in Service: Personal Finance & Business (“La guerre des retraites est commencée” by Annick Poitras); in Profiles (“L’étoffe d’un premier ministre?” by Noémi Mercier); in Photojournalism & Photo Essay (“Au coeur d’Attawapiskat” by Renaud Philippe); and in Spot Illustration (“Papa souffre, moi aussi” by Gérard Dubois).
The Grid led all publications with 7 total awards, including 5 Gold Awards: in Editorial Package: Web for their feature “Are You Going to Eat That?”; in Single Service Article Package for “The Grid Guide to Getting Hitched”; in How-To for “The Grid Guide to Buying a Condo”; in Creative Photography for “Truckin’ A!” by Angus Rowe MacPherson; and in Art Direction of a Single Magazine Article, for “Chef’s Guide to Toronto” by Vanessa Wyse.
Corduroy, an independent style and fashion magazine based in Toronto, won Gold for Art Direction of an Entire Issue (“Issue 10”) and in Fashion (“ten covers x ten models”), with art direction by Peter Ash Lee.
Writer Chris Turner led all individuals with four nominations and won Gold in Travel for “On Tipping in Cuba” in The Walrus. Mr. Turner has now won nine National Magazine Awards.
The Walrus won 6 total awards including 4 Gold: in addition to the Travel category, also winning Gold in Illustration (“Apocalypse Soon” by Sam Weber); in One-of-a-Kind (“What Would Tommy Douglas Think?” by Tom Jokinen); and in Society (“Fade to Light” by Dave Cameron).
In Words & Pictures the Gold award went to “On Thin Ice” in Canada’s History, by Terry Mosher (a.k.a. Aislin), Mark Reid and Michel Groleau.
Writer Alison Motluk won Gold in Health & Medicine for her story “Is Egg Donation Dangerous?” in Maisonneuve. For Ms. Motluk this is her third National Magazine Award. The Montreal quarterly’s other Gold award came in the category Best Short Feature, for “Notes from the End of the War” by Jonathan Montpetit.
In Fiction the Gold went to Alberta novelist Caroline Adderson for her short story “Ellen-Celine, Celine-Ellen” published in Canadian Notes & Queries. Former Governor General Literary Award winner Patrick deWitt won the Silver for “The Looking-Ahead Artist” in Brick.
In Poetry the Gold winner was former Governor General Literary Award winner Karen Connelly for her poem “The Speed of Rust, or, He Marries” in Geist. Sue Goyette won the Silver for her series of “Fashion” poems in Prairie Fire.
The story “Whale Rising” by Jeff Warren in Reader’s Digest was a double winner, taking Gold in Science, Technology & Environment and Silver in Essays.
Emma Teitel of Maclean’s won the Gold award in Columns. Ms. Teitel won Honourable Mention last year in the category Best New Magazine Writer.
Six of the ten finalists in the new category Blogs were from Maclean’s, with the blog “Science-ish” by Julia Belluz—a former winner of the National Magazine Award for Best Student Writer—winning Gold. Paul Wells won the Silver for “Inkless Wells.”
In Portrait Photography the Gold went to “Never Left Art School,” a series of portraits of artist Douglas Coupland by Mark Peckmezian for Montecristo.
The new French-language literary magazine Nouveau Projet won its first National Magazine Award for “Faux self mon amour” by Fanny Britt in the category Personal Journalism.
Eighteen Bridges gained ten nominations and won Gold in Humour for “The Hairs about our Secrets” by Jessica Johnson.
Toronto Life led all publications with 29 nominations, winning a Gold in Arts & Entertainment for “Something Borrowed” by Leah McLaren.
The new Globe & Mail magazine Globe Style Advisor won its first National Magazine Award, a Gold in the category Beauty for “Lady Obscura.”
Also winning Gold Awards:
- In Essays: “Precious Cargo” by Craig Davidson, Avenue.
- In Homes & Gardens: “The Healthy House” by Shai Gil and Karen Simpson, Azure.
- In Service: Lifestyle: “La mâle bouffe” by Sophie Marcotte, ELLE Québec.”
- In Sports & Recreation: “Into the Light” by Conor Mihell, Explore.
- In Still-Life Photography: “Of Steel, Flesh and Bone” by Adrian Armstrong and Adam Taylor, Sharp.
Visit magazine-awards.com for the complete list of winners and to download the commemorative 36th National Magazine Awards Gold Book.
The National Magazine Awards Foundation acknowledges the financial support of the Government of Canada through the Canada Periodical Fund of the Department of Canadian Heritage, as well as financial support from the Ontario Arts Council, an agency of the Government of Ontario, and the Ontario Media Development Corporation. The National Magazine Awards Foundation gratefully acknowledges its suppliers and its contributors who donated gifts in kind to support the awards program. We thank them for their generosity, interest and expertise.
ABOUT THE NATIONAL MAGAZINE AWARDS FOUNDATION
The National Magazine Awards Foundation is a bilingual, not-for-profit institution whose mission is to recognize and promote excellence in the content and creation of Canadian print and digital publications through an annual program of awards and national publicity efforts. magazine-awards.com
Have a ticket?
If you purchased a ticket and did not request it to be mailed, you can pick up your ticket at the Will-Call tables in front of the elevators at The Carlu. There are separate ticket tables for judges’ tickets.
Need a ticket?
Tickets are available for purchase at the door: $180 (table seats) / $110 (balcony/Round Room) including HST. Credit cards, cash and cheques accepted.
Not able to come?
Follow our twitter handle @MagAwards and #NMA13 for live tweets throughout the show. Keep it right here on this blog for a full recap of the awards and all the winners (sometime after 11pm ET).
The Master of Ceremonies?
Tomorrow we gather to celebrate excellence in Canadian magazine publishing at the 36th annual National Magazine Awards. [Version française ci-dessous]
“Content is King.” It’s a phrase we’ve heard time and again over the past few years. And while talking about it is one thing, investing in it is quite another.
What does Content is King actually mean in practice? To my eye, it means all of a magazine’s resources are dedicated to its highest priority: producing the best content possible. It also suggests that without this quality control, your chances of survival as a business are severely limited.
It doesn’t matter if your readership is 5,000 or 500,000. To believe Content is King is to commit fully to the work of the writers, editors, designers, photographers and illustrators—your most important assets—regardless of the scope of the budget.
The good news is that consumers will always be drawn to quality content. That may not be news in itself, but it is a sign that we are beginning to see the true result of that investment, be it monetary or intellectual. Ideally both.
It is that success that we’re here to celebrate. Take a look around you at tomorrow night’s gala. The people here care about content. They believe content is what really matters. Congratulate them. These are the people in whom we’ve put our collective faith, these talented creators who strive for excellence. Some of the nominees you’ve no doubt heard of before, and some are nominated for the first time, including Chez Soi, Globe Style Advisor, Hazlitt, Infopresse, Le Must, New Trail, Nouveau Project, Ottawa Citizen Style and Write Magazine.
I would like to offer a heartfelt thanks to the hard-working folks who helped get us here, including of course the staff at the NMAF: Managing Director Barbara Gould, Media Liaison and Special Projects Manager Richard Johnson, and Josh Penslar our Production Manager. I also want to thank the NMAF board of directors and the 251 volunteer judges who have chosen the very best of the 186 magazines who submitted the work of their editors, writers, designers, photographers and illustrators.
Finally, I’d like to thank everyone who contributed to the NMAF Digital Roundtable last fall and shared their industry knowledge. They helped us launch additional awards this year, including awards for Tablet Magazine of the Year, Blogs and Online Video, which honour excellence in digital magazine publishing.
So, welcome to—as one editor recently proclaimed in her Twitter feed—“the most magical night of the year.” I couldn’t agree more.
Mot du président: Douglas Thomson
Comment se traduit dans la pratique le principe du « Contenu souverain »? À mes yeux, cela signifie que toutes les ressources d’un magazine doivent converger vers la priorité la plus importante : produire le meilleur contenu possible. Cela signifie également que sans ce contrôle de la qualité, vos chances de survie, comme entreprise, sont gravement menacées.
Cela vaut, que vous ayez un bassin de 5 000 ou de 500 000 lecteurs. Préconiser que « Le contenu est souverain », c’est prendre l’engagement d’appuyer sans réserve le travail des rédacteurs, rédacteurs en chef, photographes et illustrateurs, vos meilleurs atouts, quelle que soit l’importance de votre budget.
Les consommateurs sont toujours plus avides d’un contenu de qualité, et c’est heureux. Il n’y a peut-être rien de nouveau à cela, mais on peut y voir le signe du véritable résultat de notre investissement, monétaire ou intellectuel. Idéalement, les deux à la fois.
C’est ce succès que nous célébrons cette année. Regardez autour de vous. Pour ceux et celles qui sont ici ce soir, le contenu est une préoccupation constante. Ils estiment que c’est d’abord et avant tout le contenu qui compte. Félicitez-les. C’est sur eux, des créateurs de talent qui visent l’excellence, que nous plaçons toute notre confiance. Vous reconnaîtrez sans doute certains des finalistes, mais d’autres sont en nomination pour la première fois cette année, dont Chez Soi, Globe Style Advisor, Hazlitt, Infopresse, Le Must, New Trail, Nouveau Project, Ottawa Citizen Style et Write Magazine.
J’aimerais remercier du fond du coeur ceux et celles qui, par leur travail infatigable, ont contribué à la tenue de cet événement, y compris, bien sûr, le personnel de la FNPMC : la directrice générale, Barbara Gould, l’agent de liaison et directeur des projets spéciaux, Richard Johnson, ainsi que Josh Penslar, notre directeur de la production. Je souhaite également remercier le conseil d’administration de la FNPMC et les 251 juges bénévoles, qui ont choisi, parmi les 186 magazines qui ont soumis les candidatures de leurs rédacteurs en chef, rédacteurs, concepteurs visuels, photographes et illustrateurs, ceux qui se sont démarqués par l’excellence de leur travail.
Enfin, j’aimerais remercier tous ceux et celles qui ont participé à la Table ronde de la FPMC sur l’édition numérique, tenue l’automne dernier, et qui ont partagé leur savoir-faire sectoriel. Ils nous ont aidés à inaugurer de nouveaux prix cette année, y compris les prix Meilleur magazine de l’année – numérique, Blogues et Vidéo en ligne, qui célèbrent l’excellence dans le domaine de la publication de magazines numériques.
Je vous souhaite donc la bienvenue à, pour reprendre les mots qu’utilisait récemment une rédactrice en chef sur son fil Twitter, « la soirée la plus magique de l’année. » Je ne saurais mieux dire.
The most prestigious award bestowed by the National Magazine Awards Foundation is Magazine of the Year. This year our jury nominated four titles from entries across the country in both official languages. The award for Magazine of the Year goes to the magazine that in 2012 most consistently engaged, surprised and served the needs of its readers.
There’s just one more week until the biggest night in Canadian magazines — the National Magazine Awards gala is Friday June 7 at the Carlu.
[INFO & TICKETS]
Here are this year’s four nominated magazines for Magazine of the Year…
1. Corporate Knights
Founded in 2002, Corporate Knights tirelessly works to shine a light on sustainable businesses and government practices through a mix of news, analysis, commentary, features and original research. Known for their much-anticipated rankings that measure the sustainability performance of various institutions, the magazine also follows the same environmental and social standards it celebrates. In 2012 it became the first business magazine to become a Certified-B Corporation. After the arrival of a new editor-in-chief and designer/senior art director, 2012 also saw a revitalization of the magazine’s look and feel. Over the year, Corporate Knights attracted top-notch freelancers and illustration talent as well as launched a new digital magazine app, enabling them to build their global subscriber base.
2. Cottage Life
Over the past 25 years, Cottage Life has had the chance to report on topics as diverse as cottagers themselves. In the magazine’s signature warm, light-hearted voice, it continues to inform, entertain and inspire with long-form features, profiles, integrated packages, service stories and engaging visuals and design. 2012 was no exception in realizing its mission to enhance and preserve the quality of cottage living. Both informative and fun, its 25th anniversary series was fruitful with highlights such as a commemorative essay series by renowned Canadians about beloved cottage activities and components, a feature looking into the future of cottaging (“2050: A Cottage Odyssey”), and many strong how-to and service pieces.
Cottage Life is nominated for a total of 10 National Magazine Awards, including for Best Single Issue, Words & Pictures, Single Service Article Package, How-To, Service: Health & Family, Homes & Gardens, and Art Direction of a Single Article. Discover more at cottagelife.com.
Now in its fourth year, UPPERCASE seeks to nurture and inspire the creative community with works sparked by design, illustration, photography and craft. Many subjects and contributors are subscribers first and the magazine works to promote the talent of its readership. Stocked in over 150 Anthropologie stores in North America, the magazine has continued to grow its subscriber base in Canada and beyond. In making a move toward theme-based issues, UPPERCASE has generated an eclectic mix of content while maintaining its sense of play and creativity, and its award-winning design continues to inspire its readers.
2012 a été une année particulière pour Urbania, trimestriel produit par l’agence de création Toxa. Chaque numéro porte sur un thème particulier, tel que l’hiver, les Parisiens, les anglophones, en mettant l’accent sur les gens et leur histoire. La publication s’est étendue à de nouvelles plates-formes numériques, à la télé Web et à des événements communautaires, courtisant la fidélité de ses lecteurs de façons inspirées et novatrices. Urbania est également nominé dans la catégorie Dossiers thématiques. Découvrir plus au urbania.ca.
2012 was a special year for Urbania, the thrice-annual magazine produced by the creative agency Toxa. Each issue had a special theme—Winter, Parisians, Anglos—focusing on people and their stories, while the brand expanded to new digital platforms, web-tv and community events, engaging its readers in spirited and innovative ways. Urbania is nominated for a total of 2 National Magazine Awards, including for Editorial Package. Discover more at urbania.ca.
Congratulations to the four finalists for Magazine of the Year. The winner will be revealed at the conclusion of the 36th annual National Magazine Awards gala on June 7 at The Carlu in Toronto. [INFO & TICKETS]
Meet the NMA Finalists for:
Art Direction for an Entire Issue
Photojournalism & Photo Essay
Best New Magazine Writer
Magazine Website of the Year
Best Single Issue
Tablet Magazine of the Year
Words & Pictures
And check out our Facebook page for more coverage of this year’s National Magazine Awards nominees!