Frequently Asked Questions: 40th National Magazine Awards

[This post has been updated]

1. This year’s National Magazine Awards program has 25 categories (plus 3 special awards), down from 40 in 2016. Why did you eliminate so many awards?
Yes, this year’s NMAs are very different. Over the last few years, many people have told us that having so many categories diminishes the individual value of a National Magazine Award—and makes the NMA gala a very long show. The first NMAs (in 1977) had just 15 awards, and since then we’ve gradually expanded, mostly adding subject-specific awards. For our 40th anniversary we envisioned a new Strategic Direction for the NMAF with an emphasis on increasing the value and prestige of a National Magazine Award. A tighter awards program focusing on the unique forms (rather than subjects) of magazine creation is the result of a long and deliberative process. Plus, a program of 25 awards is more aligned with other prestigious awards programs like the Ellies and Oscars.

We know it’ll take some getting used to, but we hope you’ll agree that the new NMAs (and expanded DPAs) are a better and brighter reflection of the Canadian magazine and digital publishing landscape.

2. How did you decide to eliminate certain categories?
This year’s exciting new awards program is a reflection of the following processes:

  • Feedback from previous participants, nominees and winners;
  • A comprehensive survey of 2016 NMA judges;
  • An expanded Digital Publishing Awards program;
  • A blue-ribbon Advisory Committee, which studied various proposals and made recommendations to the NMAF. The committee consisted of:
    • Curtis Gillespie, NMA-winning writer, and publisher and editor of Eighteen Bridges.
    • Kim Pittaway, writer, editor, teacher and recipient of the 2016 Outstanding Achievement Award.
    • Danielle Groen, NMA-winning freelance writer and former editor at Chatelaineand The Grid.
  • A final discussion and approval by the NMAF’s new Board of Directors.

3. I used to enter written categories like Arts & Entertainment, Business, Politics, Society, Travel, etc. Where can I enter these stories now?
The new NMAs emphasize form over subject, so we encourage you to enter your work for Writing Awards based on your story’s form. Is it a Long-Form feature, a Short Feature, a Profile, an Essay, an Investigative piece, a Service piece, etc? Also, bear in mind that if your story was published in a digital format, it may be eligible for a Digital Publishing Award.

4. I used to enter visual categories like Fashion, Homes & Gardens, Still-Life Photography, etc. Where can I enter these stories now?
Many of these magazine stories may be eligible in the new category called Photography: Lifestyle. Also, in a move reflecting trends in Fashion & Beauty publishing, we have created a Digital Publishing Award for Best Fashion & Beauty Story. The DPAs have other categories that may be attractive for visual creators and publishers, too.

5. What else is new this year with NMA categories?
Editorial Package
is now an Integrated Award (it used to be a Writing Award), to better reflect collaboration by the entire editorial team. Former submitters in Best Single Issue may now submit to this category, too.

Single Service Article Package has been re-imagined as Service Editorial Package, again reflecting collaboration by the entire editorial team.

Submitters to Magazine of the Year will need to complete a comprehensive application form, highlighting their achievements over the past year in 4 criteria: Quality, Innovation, Impact, and Brand Awareness. We wanted to make the Magazine of the Year award more objective and evidence-based. And this year’s jury will expand from 3 to 5 judges, including at least 1 international judge. Submitters to the former award for Best Magazine Brand will recognize these criteria and are encouraged to submit for Magazine of the Year.

There’s a new, special award—the Foundation Award for International Impact—recognizing a Canadian who is making a significant contribution to a field of magazine journalism beyond the borders of Canada. The deadline to nominate someone is March 1.

Click to download the Complete Guide to Entering the NMAs

6. Who wins National Magazine Awards? 
NMAs are awarded to content creators. In Written and Visual categories, this means it is the individual writer, photographer, illustrator or stylist who receives recognition (and the prize money). In Integrated categories, the entire team of staff and contributors are rewarded.

7. What is the prize money?
A Gold Medal for a Writing or Visual Award includes a cash prize of $1000.

8. Where does my submission fee go?
The NMAF is a non-profit organization and all entry fees go towards prize money, the administrative costs of sorting submissions and facilitating the judging process.

9. Who is eligible for a National Magazine Award?
To be named as a creator on any submission, you must be a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident. Your work must be published in a Canadian magazine, print, online or tablet.

10. I’m a freelancer. Can I enter my own work? 
Yes! Not only can you submit your own work, but you may also be eligible for our new Freelancer Support Fund, which allows freelancers to submit their first two (2) entries at the discounted rate of $50 per submission.

11. What is a magazine?
The NMAF’s guiding principle for magazine publishing is that the publication, whether print, tablet or website, must self describe as a magazine; be editorial in nature (that is, it must have and submit a clear editorial mandate); be the product of an editorial process; and be published regularly.

12. In which category is my work eligible?
You decide which of the NMA Categories is best suited to your work. Most written and visual work may be entered in more than one category except where specific restrictions are stated. (There is a separate fee for each individual entry.) The judges—not the NMAF—will determine whether your entry is appropriate to the category’s definition.

13. Who are the judges for the NMAs?
In composing its judging panels the NMAF strives for diversity of geography, language and expertise. Judges are recognized experts in a particular field of magazine publishing, editing, design, content creation and business, and may have an expertise in a subject relevant to a particular category. Read more about the Judging Process.

14. How many judges evaluate my work?
Submissions in written categories are evaluated by separate English- and French-language juries for each category, and each jury receives identical scoring procedures and criteria. Each jury is composed of a diverse panel of 3 experts. Submissions in visual, integrated and special award categories are evaluated by juries of 3-5 members, one or more of whom is bilingual.

15. What are judges looking for?
Judges in written categories look for excellence in writing style, content, overall impact and successful engagement of the intended reader, as well as the entry’s relevance to the category’s definition. Judges in visual categories assess the aesthetic as well as the practical concerns of each entry, evaluating the functionality of the visual material and its appropriateness to the category, to the text it accompanies and to the magazine medium. Judges in integrated and special categories follow the guidelines of each category’s definition. See the NMAF’s Judging Process for full details.

16. Do the juries know who the submitter is on an entry? [UPDATED]
No. Judges do not get to see who submitted an entry (e.g. if it was a magazine editor or a freelancer).

17. What happens if a category does not receive enough submissions?
For categories with 15 or fewer submissions, the NMAF reserves the right to name only 5 finalists and a single overall Gold winner. If not enough submissions are received to provide a legitimate competition, the NMAF reserves the right to cancel that category after submissions are complete. In the event of a category cancellation all submissions fees will be refunded in that category.

18. Are full-book entries eligible in written categories?
In most cases, entries in written categories are open only to individual articles. However, in the case where the entire issue of the magazine constitutes a single article (such as a listings issue), that issue may be eligible as long as it fits the category definition. The NMAF reserves the right for its judges to determine whether a full-book entry is eligible. The integrated category Editorial Package is specifically open to a collection of articles on a related theme in a single issue. Where the entire issue of a magazine consists of a single editorial package, that entire issue may be eligible in this category.

19. We’re a small magazine. Is there a special offer for our entry fees? 
Yes! The NMAF offers a Small Magazine Rebate to print and digital magazines with an annual revenue of under $200,000. Deadline to apply is January 13. Read more here.

20. Are there categories just for digital publications? 
Yes. While written and visual content published online or in tablet editions is eligible in most NMA categories, there are also 22 categories specific to digital content in our Digital Publishing AwardsSubmissions for the Digital Publishing Awards open on January 2. Deadline: January 31.

21. Can I submit work that was commissioned for a print magazine but published online?
Yes, any story published by a Canadian magazine, whether published in print or online, is eligible for a National Magazine Award.

22. What types of digital and web-based magazines are eligible for the NMAs?
An eligible digital publication may be a magazine website, tablet edition or publication, or an online-only magazine. Review the Eligibility and Rules for clarification.

23. What exactly is meant by a Magazine Website?
A Magazine Website may be either the companion website of a print magazine title or an online-only publication that self-identifies as a magazine.

24. What exactly is meant by a Tablet Magazine?
A Tablet Magazine is a publication that produces a complete issue of a magazine but distributes it digitally on a tablet platform.

25. How do I submit an individual entry that appeared in a tablet edition?
A PDF of the entire entry is required for all submissions and you will be prompted to upload your PDF in the online submission form. Please upload an original PDF, not a snapshot taken from the tablet edition and subsequently converted to a PDF.

26. How do I submit a full-book tablet edition for consideration?
This includes tablet magazine entries for Art Direction for an Entire Issue and Editorial Package. The submission form for these categories will require the iTunes URL to your magazine app. We request that the issue be made available for free or that a promotion code be provided. If judges are required to pay for content, the NMAF will invoice the submitter for the additional expenses.

27. Can online content really compete against print in written categories?
Yes. Judges in written categories look for excellence in writing style, content, overall impact and successful engagement of the intended reader, as well as the entry’s relevance to the category’s definition. Whether published in print or online, it is the quality of the work that counts.

28. Is a blog eligible for a National Magazine Award? 
Yes. Blogs may be eligible for a National Magazine Award provided they meet the category definition and the NMAF’s Eligibility and Rules. Also, blogs and blog content may be eligible for a Digital Publishing Award.

Is there something we didn’t answer? Contact us at
staff@magazine-awards.com

Ready to submit? Get started here.

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Call for Submissions: 39th annual National Magazine Awards

The 39th annual National Magazine Awards are now open for submissions at magazine-awards.com, recognizing excellence in Canadian magazine publishing in 2015.

If you’ve entered in the past, you’ll need to reset your password this year. If you’re new to the NMAs, click the option to register.

TOTAL AWARDS (39)
– 21 written categories
– 9 visual categories
– 5 integrated categories
– 4 special categories:
Magazine of the Year ]
Best Magazine Brand ]
Best New Magazine Writer ]
Best New Magazine Photographer ]

DIGITAL CATEGORIES?
This year the NMAF will offer digital categories as part of the new Digital Publishing Awards programStarting January 4 you’ll be able to enter your tablet, web, video, podcast, multimedia and other content in the Digital Publishing Awards.

Reminder: Written & visual content from digital and tablet magazines and magazine websites is still eligible in most NMA categories.

WHAT DO I NEED TO SUBMIT?
Before logging into the online submissions portal, make sure you have the following:
– name & email of the author/creator & editor/art director of each entry;
– title, date and publication of each entry;
– PDF of each entry (see instructions for PDF specs)
– statement of your magazine’s editorial mandate (max 300 words)
– form of payment (credit card or cheque)

Hard copies of entries are only required for the categories Editorial Package, Magazine Covers, Best Single Issue, Art Direction of an Entire Issue, Best Magazine Brand, and Magazine of the Year.

ENTRY FEES
For most categories, the entry fee is $95 if you submit by the early bird deadline of January 11. For large and full-book categories, the entry fee is $150. For Best New Magazine Writer and Best New Magazine Photographer, the entry fee is only $25.

SMALL MAGAZINE REBATE
Are you the publisher of a small magazine (under $200,000 in annual revenue)? You may be eligible for the Small Magazine Rebate to receive 1 free entry to this year’s National Magazine Awards. You must apply by January 11.

DEADLINES
– Early-bird deadline: Monday, January 11
– Final deadline: Friday, January 15

PRIZES
All Gold Medal winners in written and visual categories and some integrated categories receive a cash prize of $1000. Silver Medal winners receive $500. Winners of Best New Magazine Writer and Best New Magazine Photographer receive $500. All winners and finalists receive awards certificates.

CAN FREELANCERS ENTER?
Yes, freelancers as well as publishers and magazine staff members can enter their own work in the National Magazine Awards.

ELIGIBILITY & RULES
Review the NMAF’s Eligibility & Rules guidelines before submitting.

FAQ
Got questions? We’ve got answers.

WHAT’S NEW?
Enter the NMAs regularly? Not much has changed this year, except this.

FOUNDATION AWARD FOR OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT
Each year the NMAF recognizes an individual whose contribution to the Canadian magazine industry deserves special distinction. Nominations for the Foundation Award for Outstanding Achievement can come from anyone in the industry. There is no fee to nominate someone. The deadline for nominations is March 1, 2016.

CALL FOR JUDGES
There’s still time to nominate yourself or a colleague to judge for this year’s National Magazine Awards.

NOMINEES & WINNERS
Finalists for all awards will be announced by May 2, and the 39th annual National Magazine Awards gala will be held on June 10. The date of the Digital Publishing Awards event will be announced in the spring. Follow us on Twitter and on the Magazine Awards blog for news and updates.

Questions? Contact staff [at] magazine-awards.com.

Good luck to this year’s entries. We look forward to recognizing excellence in Canadian magazine publishing from 2015.

National Magazine Awards Gala FAQ

 

Got questions about this year’s National Magazine Awards gala? We’ve got answers.

Answers to questions like:

  • Who can attend? (Short answer: Everyone.)
  • Who is hosting? (Long answer: Scott Feschuk.)
  • Are there discounts for tables? (Unfortunately no.)
  • Can I make special seating requests? (Yes, but hurry.)
  • Can I make special eating requests? (Ditto.)
  • Can judges attend? (Yes, but RSVP ASAP.)
  • What do I wear? (We call it “Cocktail Chic” and let you decide how to interpret.)
  • How do I find a drink when I need one? (We’ll make it easy for you.)

Complete answers to these questions and more on our National Magazine Awards gala FAQ. Contact us with any other questions or hail us on Twitter @MagAwards #NMA14.

Gala tickets on sale now. Early-bird deadline May 16.

National Magazine Awards: Early-Bird Deadline Tips

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

Other information:

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

More information:
magazine-awards.com
Ready to submit:
submissions.magazine-awards.com
Version française:
magazine-prix.com
Questions?
staff@magazine-awards.com

* 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.

Guide to entering Digital Content in the National Magazine Awards

This post has been updated for 2014

For the 2014 National Magazine Awards, original written and visual 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 categories.

Specifically, you can enter content from tablet editions in ALL written categories and ALL visual categories, and you can enter content from websites in ALL written categories except Editorial Package, and in ALL visual categories except Art Direction.

Check out the digital magazine section of our FAQ for more information.

There are also 5 Special and Integrated categories which are open specifically to digital content in Canadian magazines:

TABLET MAGAZINE OF THE YEAR
Open to: Any Canadian tablet magazine or tablet edition of a print magazine published in 2014.
Criteria: The award for Tablet Magazine of the Year will go to 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 11); $175 (regular by Jan 19)
Meet last year’s finalists
Last year’s winner
: Sportsnet
More info

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 11); $175 (regular by Jan 19)
Meet last year’s finalists
Last year’s winner: Macleans.ca
More info

EDITORIAL PACKAGE – WEB
Open to: Any original package of related or thematic editorial content produced by a Magazine Website.
Criteria: This award goes to the package of related online editorial content that 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 11); $120 (regular by Jan 19)
Last year’s winner: enRoute (“Canada’s Best New Restaurants“)
More info

ONLINE VIDEO
Open to: Any single video produced by a Magazine Website or Tablet Magazine.
Criteria: Eligible content must have been published during 2014, be clearly relevant to the magazine’s editorial mandate, and be part of an editorial process.
Entry Fee: $95 (early-bird by Jan 11); $120 (regular by Jan 19)
Watch last year’s finalists
Last year’s winner
: Maclean’s (“Boy Genius“)
More info

MAGAZINE WEBSITE DESIGN
Open to: Any Canadian magazine website (online-only magazine or companion site of a print magazine).
Criteria: This award will go to 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..
Entry Fee: $95 (early-bird by Jan 11); $120 (regular by Jan 19)
Last year’s winner
: The Walrus (TheWalrus.ca)
More info

The 2014 National Magazine Awards are open for submissions on December 1 at magazine-awards.com. The deadline for all entries is January 19. Enter by the early-bird deadline of January 11 and save.

A Brief Guide to entering Digital Content in the National Magazine Awards

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.
[Version française ici]

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 and rules and eligibility.

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 3 special categories if they meet the eligibility and category criteria.

CATEGORIES EXCLUSIVELY FOR DIGITAL CREATIONS
There are six categories open exclusively to content from either Magazine Websites or Tablet Magazines, or both:

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.

Magazine Website Design (formerly Best Digital Design): This visual category will reward a Magazine Website with the most successful and original overall combination of visual and graphic design elements with functionality and user experience.

Editorial Package—Web (formerly Best Multimedia Feature): This integrated category 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.

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.

Magazine Website of the Year: This special category is open to any Magazine Website 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.

ENTERING DIGITAL CONTENT IN OTHER CATEGORIES
Except where noted in specific category restrictions, content from Magazine Websites and Tablet Magazines is eligible in all National Magazine Awards categories.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Check out our Digital FAQ for more information about how we define digital magazines, how to submit content from tablet editions, how the judging process works, and more.

ABOUT THE PROCESS
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.

With any additional questions please feel free to contact us.

Visit magazine-awards.com to submit. The deadline is January 16, 2013.

[Version française ici]

National Magazine Awards > Frequently Asked Questions

This post has been updated for 2012. With the annual NMA submissions season about to begin on December 1, the NMAF is rolling out some answers to some general questions about the awards. If you have a question not addressed here, leave a comment or contact us. [Version française ici]

1. Who wins National Magazine Awards?
NMAs are awarded to content creators. In most categories this means it is the individual writer, photographer, illustrator or stylist who receives recognition and the award (and the prize money). In certain package and full-book categories the editors, art directors or a team of staff and contributors are rewarded. The magazine or website that published the winning work shares in the bragging rights and enjoys a spike in popularity. To search for past winners by year, category, individual or magazine, visit the NMAF Awards Archive.

2. What is the prize money?
A Gold NMA includes a cash prize of $1000. A Silver NMA includes a cash prize of $500. Where there is more than one creator named on a single winning entry, the cash prize will be split evenly between those creators. If there is a tie for Gold or Silver between two or more winning entries, both entries will receive a share of the stipulated cash prize. (When there is a tie for Gold in a categor, a Silver award is not given. If there are three or fewer nominees, then only a Gold award will be given.)

3. Where does my submission fee go?
The NMAF is a non-profit organization and all entry fees go towards prize money, the administrative costs of sorting submissions and facilitating the judging process.

4. Who is eligible for a National Magazine Award?
To be named as a creator on any submission, you must be a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident. Your work must be original (not stock or previously published in any form), commissioned by the magazine or website and published within the eligible calendar year. Magazine and websites must be a majority Canadian owned, publish at least two issues per year and meet Canadian magazine industry’s Code of Reader & Advertiser Engagement. See the NMAF’s Eligibility and Rules for full details before submitting.

5. What is a magazine?
The NMAF’s guiding principle for magazine publishing is that the publication, whether print, tablet or website, must self describe as a magazine; be editorial in nature (that is, it must have and submit a clear editorial mandate); be the product of an editorial process; and be published regularly. A print or tablet publication must be published at least twice per year. A magazine website must have been launched before December 1, 2012. All magazines must meet the requirements of the NMAF’s Eligibility and Rules.

6. In which category is my work eligible?
It is the responsibility of the submitter to determine which of the NMA Categories is best suited to your work. Most written and visual work may be entered in more than one category except where specific restrictions are stated. (There is a separate fee for each individual entry.) The judges—not the NMAF—will determine whether your entry is appropriate to the category’s definition. Any entry deemed by judges to be entered in the wrong category will be disqualified.

7. Who are the judges for the NMAs?
Each year the NMAF relies on the expertise of more than two hundred volunteer judges to evaluate and rank all submissions. In composing its judging panels the NMAF strives for diversity of geography, language and expertise. Judges are recognized experts in a particular field of magazine publishing, editing, design, content creation and business, and may have an expertise in a subject relevant to a particular category.

8. How many judges evaluate my work?
Submissions in written categories are evaluated in a first tier by separate English- and French-language juries for each category. A shortlist of top entries from those panels, proportional by language, goes on to a second, bilingual jury for each category. Thus by the time a winner is selected, six judges have weighed in equally on all finalists. Submissions in visual, integrated and special award categories are evaluated by juries of 3-5 members, one or more of whom is bilingual.

9. What are judges looking for?
Judges in written categories look for excellence in writing style, content, overall impact and successful engagement of the intended reader, as well as the entry’s relevance to the category’s definition. Judges in visual categories assess the aesthetic as well as the practical concerns of each entry, evaluating the functionality of the visual material and its appropriateness to the category, to the text it accompanies and to the magazine medium. Judges in integrated and special categories follow the guidelines of each category’s definition. See the NMAF’s Judging Process for full details.

10. What happens if a category does not receive enough submissions?
Categories are offered on a trial basis when they are first introduced. If not enough submissions are received to provide a legitimate competition, the NMAF reserves the right to cancel that category after submissions are complete. In the event of a category cancellation all submissions fees will be refunded in that category.

11. We’re a small magazine. Could you help me with the submission fees?
Yes! The NMAF offers co-financing to print and digital magazines with an annual revenue of under $250,000 and that meet one of two circulations levels. Although as a charity we have a total fixed amount we are able to offer, there is no limit to the number of submissions a publication may enter.  The application process is simple and funds are allocated on a first come, first served basis. The deadline for applications is December 14, 2012. Read more here.

TABLET MAGAZINES AND MAGAZINE WEBSITES

12. What types of digital and web-based magazines are eligible for the NMAs?
An eligible digital publication may be a Magazine Website or a Tablet Magazine. All publications wishing to enter the NMAs must meet the requirements of the NMAF’s Eligibility and Rules.

13. What exactly is meant by a Magazine Website?
A Magazine Website may be either the companion website of a print magazine title or an online-only publication that self-identifies as a magazine. Content from magazine websites may enter most awards categories with some exceptions. See the list of categories for details.

14. What exactly is meant by a Tablet Magazine?
A Tablet Magazine is a publication that produces a complete issue of a magazine but distributes it digitally on a tablet platform. Like a print magazine issue it should be a static creation, as opposed to a website that is updated frequently. Tablet magazines may enter most awards categories with some exceptions. See the list of categories for details.

15. Are there categories just for digital publications?
Yes. The categories Blogs, Editorial Package–Web, Magazine Website Design and Magazine Website of the Year are open exclusively to magazine websites. The category Tablet Magazine of the Year is open exclusively to tablet editions. The category Online Videos is open to magazine websites and tablet editions.

16. How do I submit an individual entry that appeared in a tablet edition?
Written-category submissions require three (3) sets of photocopies of the entry no matter the platform of publication. A PDF of the entire entry is required for all submissions (in all categories) and you will be prompted to upload your PDF in the online submission form. Please upload an original PDF, not a snapshot taken from the tablet edition and subsequently converted to a PDF.

17. How do I submit a full-book tablet edition for consideration?
These include Tablet Magazine entries for Art Direction for an Entire Issue, Best Single Issue and Tablet Magazine of the Year. The submission form for these categories will require the iTunes URL to your magazine app. We’ll also require one of two things: either that the issue to be judged be made free to download or a promotional code (or similar) be included to ensure that the issue may be viewed by the NMA judges for free. This step is important – requiring judges to pay for tablet entries would be like asking them to buy magazines at the newsstand to evaluate print entries. Any full-book Digital Magazine entry that requires payment to be viewed will be disqualified. A PDF is also required for these categories; submitters may upload a PDF of just the cover of the issue.

18. Can online content really compete against print in written categories?
Yes. Judges in written categories look for excellence in writing style, content, overall impact and successful engagement of the intended reader, as well as the entry’s relevance to the category’s definition. Any article that meets these requirements likely will be received well by the judges, whether it was originally published in print or online. (All submitters in written categories, whether print or digital, must submit six sets of photocopies of their work in accordance with the submissions guidelines. Judges will have access to both print and digital (PDF) versions of all entries as well as the editorial mandate of the publication.)

19. Is a blog eligible for a National Magazine Award?
Yes. New this year the NMAF is offering a written category for Blogs, which is open to submissions from 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. A blog or collection of blogs produced by a magazine website may be a component of an entry in the categories Editorial Package–Web and Magazine Website of the Year.

20. Who are the judges for digital categories?
Juries for the categories open exclusively to magazine websites and tablet magazines are composed of 3-4 individuals at least one of whom is bilingual. Each judging panel evaluates its assigned entries and convenes by teleconference to determine the finalists and winners. Each panel consists of at least one digital publishing editor, one designer and one writer and/or publisher. Read more about the NMAF Judging Process for all categories.

21. When do the judges evaluate digital categories?
Juries for Magazine Website Design and Magazine Website of the Year have approximately one month (from mid-February to mid-March following the submissions deadline) to evaluate live online content before meeting to decide on finalists and winners. This means that the design and content of the websites that appear during this one-month window will form the basis for evaluating entries in these categories.