Best New Magazine Writer: Nominees for the 2018 National Magazine Awards

The nominees for the 41st National Magazine Awards have been announced, and we are excited to welcome Canada’s best writers, artists, editors, art directors, and more to the gala on June 1st. [Tickets]

Among the most coveted and special of the National Magazine Awards is Best New Magazine Writer. Each year our judges are tasked with choosing from an astounding array of passionate and intelligent creators carving their way into a rewarding career. The winner receives a cash prize of $1,000.

We are proud to recognize excellence by emerging Canadian magazine writers. Here are the nominees for Best New Magazine Writer:

HADIYA RODERIQUE

Screen Shot 2018-05-08 at 2.15.25 PM.png

Dating While Black
The Walrus

Hadiya Roderique’s examination of online dating details problems in our supposedly “post-racial” world. Looking to receive more messages on dating sites, Roderique gets extreme. With a hunch that the colour of her skin is the reason for so few messages, she has a white friend act as her body-double. Later, still curious, she photoshops her own skin lighter. Both cede more results. By using her own experience to ask big questions of the online dating industry, Roderique is able to point fingers where some may not want them to be pointed.

“Few writers have had a faster start out of the gate. With her broad life experiences—just ask her how she spends her weekends—Hadiya has much to contribute to Canada’s journalistic community.” – Samia Madwar, Managing Editor, The Walrus

Hadiya Roderique is a lawyer, writer, speaker and the co-host of Commons, a political podcast. She is also a Ph.D candidate in the department of Organizational Behaviour and Human Resources Management at the University of Toronto’s Rotman School of Management. Her research examines gender and racial diversity in the workplace.

JESSICA ROSE

Lost and FoundScreen Shot 2018-05-08 at 2.11.25 PM.png
Toronto Life

Jessica Rose tells an unpredictable tale of reunion in her piece “Lost and Found.” From the first thought of searching for her biological parents to the resulting relationships (and lack thereof), she takes the reader through painstaking waiting periods and surprising turns alike. The resulting piece is a master personal narrative that is detailed, relatable, and honest.

“We knew it was a story we needed to publish. When she filed her piece, we were delighted to discover that Jessica’s talents as a writer matched her aptitude for design. Her piece is lucid, lively and gutwrenchingly honest, packed with compelling characters and vivid scenes and candid self-reflection.” – Emily Landau, Senior Editor, Toronto Life

Jessica Rose is an editorial art director, visual storyteller, and artist. Formerly the art director of Tatler and Toronto Life, her graphic artwork has been featured in Elle Collections, Frieze, and The Sunday Times Magazine, where she is a regular contributor from cover artwork to illustrating a weekly visual column. She is currently the art director of Wallpaper* and the author and graphic artist of a design book about everyday objects for Lawrence King.

JUSTIN DALLAIRE

Fall from Grace
Screen Shot 2018-03-30 at 2.24.17 PM.pngUnited Church Observer

When Justin Dallaire read Don Hume’s letter to the United Church Observer detailing a drug addiction that began in his 60’s, he thought he would be writing a story of redemption. It turned out to be not so simple. When Dallaire visits Hume in B.C. a new story unravels. It is revealed the former minister still uses drugs on occasion, and Hume’s story seems to change by the day. What results is a complicated story of addiction, truth and salvation.

“In the hands of a less skilled writer, the story would have fallen apart of attempted to put Hume on trial. But Dallaire embraces the grey areas of Hume’s narrative. He used his subject’s confounding character and his own struggle to really know Hume as literary devices in his storytelling.”
– Jocelyn Bell, Editor and Publisher, United Church Observer

Justin Dallaire is a graduate of Ryerson University, where he studied journalism. He is currently a reporter at Strategy Online. You can read his work in the United Church Observer, the National Post, TVO and the Ryerson Review of Journalism

CHRISTOPHER ELLIOT

Screen Shot 2018-03-30 at 1.52.28 PM.pngWay, Way off the Rails in Mauritania 
Outpost

Christopher Elliot takes the reader along on a risky, dusty adventure in this recount of his travels in the Sahara. The story tells of his successful attempt at riding atop the iron-ore train of Zoureat. With expert detail, he is able to paint the world as he saw it and invite readers to see it, too. From Phil Collins and tea to the struggle to communicate in other languages and dialects, Elliot demonstrates how colonialism has made it to the desert but manages to keep and create its own traditions.

“Chris pitched this story to Outpost fully completed and submitted—it landed on our desk in a very professional order (concise, well written, limited editing). The photographs to accompany the story were also produced by him.”

– Deborah Sanborn, Editor-in-Chief, Outpost

Christopher Elliott is an Australian-Canadian writer and anthropologist. He served in the Australian Army and studied Arabic, French and anthropology to the master’s level before moving to the fjords of British Columbia. He has written on conflict and war crimes for the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, Small Wars Journal and the Sydney Morning Herald. His magazine feature writing on travel and the outdoors has appeared in Alpinist, Mountain Life and Outpost.

JULIAN BRAVE NOISECAT

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The Tribal Canoe Journey
Canadian Geographic

Since 1993, in conjunction with the International Year of the World’s Indigenous People, the Qatuwas, or “people gathering together,” has taken place annually. Now called the Tribal Canoe Journey, the trans-national voyage on the Salish Sea to “reclaim tradition and territory” has also been a way for the writer to relate to his father. Julian Brave NoiseCat uses personal and political anecdotes to tell this story of history and connection.

“I want to be an honest man and a good writer.” That’s the last line of Julian Brave NoiseCat’s website. There are few goals more laudable that the former, few more challenging than the latter. When it comes to his writing, however, Julian is well on his way.”

– Aaron Kylie, Editor-in-Chief, Canadian Geographic

Julian Brave NoiseCat works as a policy analyst at 350.org. You can read his work in The Guardian as well as the CBC, Vice, Jacobin, Fusion, HuffPost, Indian Country Today, The Marshall Project, Salon, High Country News, and Canadian Geographic. 


The winner of the National Magazine Award for Best New Magazine Writer will be announced on June 1st at the 41st NMA Gala in Toronto. The award includes a cash prize of $1,000.

Tickets are on sale now.

Check out all the nominees for the 41st National Magazine Awards.

Follow us on Twitter @MagAwards for all the nominations news and an awesome live feed on the night of the gala. #NMA18

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