Call for Entries: 40th Anniversary National Magazine Awards

The National Magazine Awards Foundation is proud to present a bold new lineup of awards for 2017—our 40th anniversary of Celebrating Canadian Creators.

We are now accepting submissions. Deadline January 20.

This year’s National Magazine Awards will feature 25 categories structured to emphasize the unique forms and functions of magazine journalism. Writing and Visual Awards include a cash prize of $1000 to the Gold Medal winners.

“For our 40th anniversary year, the NMAF challenged itself to make our awards programs more valuable and more prestigious to Canadian creators. I’m grateful to our participants, partners and stakeholders for consistently reminding us how important the NMAF brand is as a leader in our industry, and for guiding us towards a stronger and better National Magazine Awards. We look forward to honouring your work this year, and establishing new benchmarks of excellence in journalism.”
– Nino Di Cara, President, NMAF

In most categories, there will be a maximum of 10 finalists determined by the jury, and the top two will win the Gold and Silver medals. All other finalists will receive Honourable Mention.
Read more about these awards and category definitions.

How and why did the NMAF decide to eliminate certain categories this year?
Check out our FAQ for all the answers.

GUIDE TO THE 40th ANNIVERSARY NMAs
Download our Guide to the 40th National Magazine Awards for a handy reference to categories, criteria, submissions guidelines, rules, deadlines and more.

FREELANCER SUPPORT FUND
Last month the NMAF announced a new program for freelancers to save 50% on entries to the National Magazine Awards. Find out more.

SMALL MAGAZINE REBATE
Magazines with under $200,000 in annual revenue may be eligible for the Small Magazine Rebate, equal to 1 FREE ENTRY. Apply by January 13. Find out more.

JUDGING PROCESS
The NMAF has announced changes to its judging process, including more robust criteria and scoring procedures, and an amalgamation of the two-tiered judging system for written categories.
Read about the new NMAF Judging Process.

Find out how to get involved as a judge for the National Magazine Awards and the Digital Publishing Awards.

Read about our new International Judges.

HOW TO SUBMIT
1. Review the Categories, Rules, FAQ, & Instructions
2. Register online at submissions.magazine-awards.com
3. Enter the details of each submission
4. Upload a PDF of each submission
5. Pay the required entry fees ($95 for most entries)
6. Courier hard copies (if required)

DIGITAL PUBLISHING AWARDS
Last month the NMAF announced an expanded program for the 2017 Digital Publishing Awards, featuring 22 categories recognizing excellence by the creators of Canadian Digital Publications, including online and tablet magazines. Submissions for the Digital Publishing Awards will open on January 2.

DEADLINES
January 13: NMA Early Bird Deadline
January 20: NMA Final Deadline
January 27: Magazine of the Year Deadline
January 31: Digital Publishing Awards Deadline

40th ANNIVERSARY GALA
We’ll be announcing the details of the 40th anniversary National Magazine Awards gala later this winter. Stay tuned right here on the NMA blog.

READY TO SUBMIT?
Click here and get started

Apply for the Small Magazine Rebate from the National Magazine Awards

The National Magazine Awards Foundation strives to ensure that the awards recognize the best work from all Canadian magazines. To help ensure a broad base of participation and support Canada’s diverse small and cultural magazines, we are offering one (1) FREE ENTRY to the National Magazine Awards to all magazines whose annual revenue is $200,000 or less. Enter once, and your second entry is free.

Applications are being accepted now. Submissions for the 2017 National Magazine Awards will open on December 1.

Why should you take advantage of the Small Magazine Rebate?

  • New Readers: Award-winning magazines attract new readers who are hungry for great stories.
  • Bragging Rights: Tell your readers and supporters that you are delivering the best and most credible content, recognized by your peers in the magazine industry.
  • Get Noticed: With a National Magazine Award, writers and artists find new audiences for their creative work.
  • Celebrate Your Creators: Editors, publishers and art directors have the opportunity to reward creative talent.
  • We Promote You: The NMAF works year-round to promote award-winning magazines and creators through mass media publicity, social media channels, newsstand promotions and more.

HOW TO APPLY
Download, complete and return this application form to us by email no later than January 13 (the sooner you submit, the sooner we can let you know you’ve been approved).

Submit your entries to the National Magazine Awards via the Online Submissions Form (opens December 1, 2016 and closes January 20, 2017); you must pay for your submissions in full (by cheque or credit card using PayPal).

We will send you a rebate cheque or refund your PayPal payment for one entry (lesser value of the two entries if the fees are not equal), no later than February 15, 2017.

Eligibility – Small Magazine Rebate

  • Annual revenue includes all operating revenue as well as grants, subsidies and funding from foundations, associations or corporations.
  • Small Magazine Rebate applies to the Early-Bird entry fee only; applicants who submit at the regular rate will receive their rebate at the Early-Bird rate.
  • Small Magazine Rebate applies to magazine submitters only; not to individual (freelance) submitters. However, freelancers may apply for the Freelancer Support Fund.
  • All magazines must comply with the NMAF’s Rules & Eligibility for entering the National Magazine Awards.
  • The NMAF reserves the right to deny the Small Magazine Rebate to incomplete applications or those applicants found to be in violation of the rules.

Apply for the Small Magazine Rebate today. Deadline for applications is January 13. Find out more at magazine-awards.com/small-mag-rebate.

The Call for Entries for the 40th anniversary National Magazine Awards will launch on December 1. Later this week we’ll announce our exciting new lineup of awards for 2017.

Announcing the NMAF Freelancer Support Fund

For the 40th anniversary National Magazine Awards the NMAF is offering a special discount to freelance writers, photographers and illustrators who enter their own work for consideration.

The NMAF Freelancer Support Fund allows freelancers to submit their first two (2) entries at the discounted rate of $50 per submission.

The Freelancer Support Fund applies to entries for Writing and Visual Awards, for which there is a cash prize to the winning creator of $1000.

An eligible “Freelancer” is a person:

  • who is not a staff member of a publication whose work they are submitting, and
  • whose byline (as a writer, photographer or illustrator) appears on the work they are submitting.

When registering for the National Magazine Awards submissions process, all freelancers must register as an Individual (rather than a Magazine) submitter, in order to be eligible for the Freelancer Support Fund.

The Freelancer Support Fund applies to your first two entries. The regular rate of $95 will apply to any submission entered in addition to the first two.

The NMAF is a registered charity, so all fees paid for submissions are tax-deductible. There are more reasons than ever to enter your work for a National Magazine Award!

Submission open for the 40th anniversary National Magazine Awards on December 1.

Stay tuned for updates on this year’s new categories and judging procedures, to be announced soon.

Sneak Peek at the NMA40 Design

The National Magazine Awards Foundation is pleased to announce a partnership with Studio Wyse for the creative design of the 40th anniversary National Magazine Awards. Art Director Vanessa Wyse and her team are the talent behind the new NMA40 logo, and will be creating the look and feel for the anniversary year creative, including the gala program and event material.

We are thrilled to have Vanessa overseeing the creative direction for our 40th anniversary. She’s an NMA winner and has a superb eye for design excellence. The NMAF is fortunate to have someone with such a great feel for Canadian magazine creation working with us for this milestone year.
— Nino Di Cara, President, NMAF

Vanessa has been nominated for 21 National Magazine Awards for her distinguished work at Chatelaine, Report on Business and, of course, The Grid. In 2012 she became the first Canadian art director in a dozen years to win the triple gold in Art Direction of an Entire Issue, Art Direction of a Single Article, and Best Magazine Cover. She has won 5 Gold Medals and 2 Silver Medals at the NMAs since 2004.

Check out StudioWyse.com for more.

“Studio Wyse has a long history with the NMAs and are thrilled to be involved in celebrating 40 years of editorial excellence. For this years visual direction we went back through the archives and took design cues from when the NMAs were established in 1977. We couldn’t resist the fun, colourful and quirky nature of magazines in this era. We built the design around Philip Kelly’s font, Pump, drawn for Letraset around this time, which had the perfect amount of character and sophistication for this special anniversary.”
–Vanessa Wyse

The NMAF is getting ready for a huge year celebrating Canadian creators. We’ve announced our Call for Judges. And coming up on November 16, it’s Winners’ Circle–a networking event exclusively for NMA winners and nominees. RSVP to attend.

Stay tuned for updates on what’s new this year, and the Call for Entries for the 40th anniversary National Magazine Awards.

International Judges: 40th Anniversary National Magazine Awards

In a first for any Canadian publishing awards, the National Magazine Awards Foundation (NMAF) is helping to raise the profile of Canadian creators on the international stage. As outlined in our 2016-17 Strategic Initiatives, the NMAF will be introducing more judges from the international magazine community to help recognize and honour the work of Canadian creators.

Joining us for our 40th anniversary National Magazine Awards will be a fresh roster of international editors, art directors, writers, publishers and more, with experience at publications such at The New York Times, Monocle, Rolling Stone, Good Housekeeping, Bloomberg Businessweek, Quartz and The New Yorker. This initiative aims to put Canadian-made work directly into the eyes of some of our industry’s top experts, helping to give recognition to Canadian creators that extends beyond our borders.

The NMAF is thrilled to announce the following international judges for the 40th anniversary year, with more on the way.


jane-francisco

Jane Francisco is the editor-in-chief of Good Housekeeping at Hearst Magazines, and was previously editor-in-chief of Chatelaine, Style and Home, and Glow Magazine.


adam-sternbergh

Adam Sternbergh is a contributing editor at New York magazine and Vulture, and the former culture editor of The New York Times Magazine. His first novel, Shovel Ready, is a future-noir thriller about a garbageman-turned-hitman set in a dystopian New York City.


kevin-delaney

Kevin Delaney is the editor-in-chief of Quartz, a digital business publication of Atlantic Media, and was previously the managing editor of WSJ.com, the Wall Street Journal’s website.


emily-nussbaum

Emily Nussbaum is the television critic for The New Yorker, and in 2016 won the Pulitzer Prize for criticism. Previously, she worked at New York for seven years, editing the Culture Pages (and creating the Approval Matrix) and writing both features and criticism.


david-michon

David Michon is an editorial and creative consultant and a print and radio journalist based in London, UK. He was previously an editor at Monocle, Winkreative and Icon magazine.


gillian-dobias

Gillian Dobias launched Monocle Films for Monocle magazine and has directed video and radio productions for CBC’s The Journal, PrimeTime News, On The Arts and Fashion File, as well as for the BBC.


laurie-kratochvil

Laurie Kratochvil is a photography dealer and appraiser, as well as a consultant on visual projects that include magazines, books, the internet and film. She began her career at the Los Angeles Times as a photography editor, spent 12 years as photo editor at Rolling Stone Magazine, and has also worked with In Style Magazine, Self, O the Oprah Magazine, Bloomberg Personal, Men’s Health and Essence.


jeremy-keehn

Jeremy Keehn is the features editor at Bloomberg Business Week, and was previously the editor of NewYorker.com, digital director of Harper’s, and senior editor at The Walrus.


todd-falkowsky

Todd Falkowsky is the publisher of The Canadian Design Resource, the main connector and exporter of brand Canada, and the founder and creative director of Citizen Brand and Motherbrand. He is also a professor of architecture at the Politecnico in Milan, Italy.


antonio-de-luca

Antonio de Luca is the lead product designer & Upshot art director at The New York Times. He is also co-publisher and art director of Self Publish, Be Happy. He was previously the creative director of The Walrus.


jessica-rose

Jessica Rose is the art director of Wallpaper at TIME Inc, based in London, UK. Previously she was the art director at The Sunday Times and Toronto Life.


The NMAF is currently accepting nominations for individuals–whether based in Canada or abroad–to serve on the juries for this year’s awards programs. Come join the great tradition of recognizing achievement by the creators of Canadian magazines and digital publications.

Please contact us at staff@magazine-awards.com to nominate yourself or someone you’d like to recommend. You can also find more information about our Call for Judges here.

Call for Judges: 40th Anniversary National Magazine Awards

The National Magazine Awards Foundation is getting ready to honour the best in Canadian magazine and digital journalism at the 40th anniversary National Magazine Awards and 2nd annual Digital Publishing Awards. The NMAF is currently accepting nominations for individuals to serve on the juries for this year’s awards programs, and join the great tradition of recognizing achievement by the creators of Canadian magazines and digital publications.

One of the reasons I volunteer as a judge for the NMAs is that the process is very well organized, completely transparent and fair. I really enjoy the discussion with my fellow judges. It’s collegial, and I almost always learn something. And every year I discover a few outstanding new writers who have produced great work. That’s a gift.
Kelly Toughill, Director, School of Journalism, University of King’s College, Halifax, NS

Ideal candidates should fulfill one or more of the following criteria:

  • Internationally renowned journalist, editor, designer or other expert with an interest in supporting the NMAF fulfill its new strategic mission to Celebrate Canadian Creators wherever they publish.
  • 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 or Digital Publishing Awards;
  • Freelance or staff writer, illustrator, photographer or digital creator, where a significant portion of your work is in Canadian publications (especially if you have been nominated for or won a National Magazine Award or Digital Publishing Award yourself);
  • Journalist (print, broadcast, digital) with expertise in a particular field represented by one or more NMA or DPA categories (such as health, business, photojournalism, science, service, politics, fiction, poetry, etc);
  • Academic or industry leader with expertise in a particular field;
  • BilingualNot all of our judges need be bilingual, but all awards juries will have at least one bilingual member.

Judging will take place during February and March 2017, and the NMAF is currently hard at work revising our judging procedures and awards criteria thanks to your feedback and participation in our surveys and working groups. We’ll be announcing our new Judging Procedure soon.

Contact us at staff@magazine-awards.com for more information and to nominate someone to the jury.

The NMAF is proud to have some of Canada’s most respected journalists and experts serve on its past juries.

stevesI judge for the NMAs because I want to give back to the magazine industry and contribute its health. It also gives me the chance to see where other magazines in the country are having their successes.
Steven Sandor, Editor, Avenue Edmonton, AB


The NMAs focus on creators, the people who are create the work that makes everything else possible. Given all of the challenges that creators face in earning a living, participating in a process that recognizes and rewards their efforts is, I think, important and valuable work.
Kim Pittaway, former editor, Chatelaine, and journalism teacher, Dartmouth, NS


I think the NMAs themselves are a valuable measure of the accomplishments of Canadian magazine writers and editors. As to the process, we were given sufficient time and a workable structure both leading up to and in the conversation itself. My fellow judges offered interesting insights into the work considered and the process was both engaged and congenial.
Kim Jernigan, former editor, The New Quarterly, Waterloo, ON



I enjoy being part of any process that involves visual communication. It helps me to learn more about my work as well as connect with others in the industry.
Brent Morrison, Art Director, Swerve magazine, Calgary, AB


I enjoy the process because it gives me the opportunity to contribute both individually and collectively. Entering my own scores for each entry validates the time I spend reviewing and assessing each submission; discussing my assessments with the other judges during our conference call provides the opportunity to weigh the value of those assessments against the opinions of other industry experts and (on occasion) to argue in favour of work which I feel may have been undervalued.
Dawn Chafe, Executive Editor, Atlantic Business Magazine, St. John’s, NL



Having been involved since the 1980s, as a board member, president (1991) a member of a special review committee (Strategic Speculation) and a frequent judge, I have a real investment in the event. What I like most of all is the emphasis the awards have nurtured of rewarding the effort of individual creators (rather than the publications, which get to bask in the reflected glory anyway.) Some no longer seem to value, or understand, this. But it is one of the things which makes the MagAwards special.
D.B. Scott, publisher, Canadian Magazines blog, Cambridge, ON


I enjoy the chance to dive deep into excellent work that I might have missed the first time around. It’s also a chance to (literally) cast my vote for storytelling that serves the reader and the material, not just the reputation of the writer or magazine.
Susan Catto, editor, Hello! Canada, Toronto, ON


The NMAF is a bilingual, not-for-profit, charitable organization whose mission is to foster, recognize and promote editorial excellence in Canadian publications. Submissions will open in November for awards honouring the best in Canadian magazines and digital publications in 2016. The 40th anniversary National Magazine Awards gala and the 2nd annual Digital Publishing Awards soiree will be held in the spring of 2017.

For more information, please contact staff@magazine-awards.com.

NMAF Announces New Strategic Initiatives & Board Members

[This post has been updated.]
The National Magazine Awards Foundation (NMAF) is pleased to announce a number of important changes and new initiatives as we get ready to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the National Magazine Awards and an exciting new year for the Digital Publishing Awards.

At its AGM and meeting of August 30th, the NMAF Board of Directors approved a new strategic plan that will ensure the National Magazine Awards and Digital Publishing Awards continue their important role in recognizing and celebrating Canadian creators.

These changes are designed to maintain and advance the NMAF’s 40-year status as the gold standard of creative excellence and the pinnacle of professional achievement for award recipients. Specific initiatives include:

  • Refining the categories of the National Magazine Awards to a more focused number of awards;
  • A reformatted awards event to facilitate more conversation and networking;
  • Introducing a more rigorous definition and criteria of the Magazine of the Year award;
  • Expanding the Digital Publishing Awards;
  • A more streamlined judging process for assessing English and French submissions in the same category;
  • Enhancing the national footprint of the awards through more regional events and closer collaboration with regional institutions outside of Ontario;
  • Being more inclusive of the diversity in Canadian magazine and digital publishing;
  • In a first for any Canadian publishing awards, raising the profile of Canadian creators on the international stage, by:
    • recognizing the excellence of Canadian contributors to international media, and
    • introducing judges from the international magazine community.

The NMAF invites all members of the Canadian magazine industry—whether you regularly participate in the awards or not—to join us in this process, whether volunteering to serve on the board, committees or working groups; volunteering as a judge; or simply providing your input on how the NMAF can best serve Canada’s magazine and digital creators. Get in touch with us at staff@magazine-awards.com.

NEW BOARD MEMBERS
The NMAF is pleased to announce that Nino Di Cara has been elected Board President for a two-year term effective August 30. Mr. Di Cara is the Executive Vice-President, Content Marketing, at Bookmark (formerly Spafax), and previously held senior titles at Rogers Communications and TC Media.

Mr. Di Cara has been elected with a broad mandate to spearhead new strategic initiatives for the NMAF, as well as to engage and work collaboratively with the Foundation’s stakeholders—creators, publishers, judges, partners, sponsors and more—to build on the NMAF’s core mission to Celebrate Canadian Creators.

To help achieve this exciting agenda for 2017 and beyond, the NMAF is pleased to announce the first wave of new additions to its board:

JoAnne Caza is a member of the Mercedes-Benz Canada executive team. She heads up the Communications and Public Relations department which is responsible for several of the marketing activities at Mercedes-Benz Canada. She is the company’s spokesperson and the PR aspect of her job includes day-to-day media relations on a corporate front as well for all of Mercedes-Benz’ brands.

Derek Finkle is the founder of Canadian Writers Group which represents independent Canadian writers, and which aligned with Parcel, a brand strategy and communications design firm, in 2016. He is the former editor of Toro magazine, contributing editor of Saturday Night, and a National Magazine Award-winning writer. He is the author of the book No Claim to Mercy, an examination of the troubling Robert Baltovich murder case. No Claim to Mercy won the Crime Writers’ Arthur Ellis Award for best non-fiction and was named a Notable Book of the Year by The Globe and Mail.

Tom Gierasimczuk is an award-winning journalist and media executive with a proven record of developing effective multi-platform, editorially driven marketing strategies that engage audiences and infuse brand communication with purpose and utility. Tom has built media properties for clients ranging from WestJet Airlines to Microsoft while working in senior leadership roles with Canada’s largest media and communications companies including Rogers Media, Transcontinental, Canada Wide Media and Yellow Pages, where he was Publisher and GM of Vancouver magazine and Western Living.

Peter McNeil is the National Director of KPMG Enterprise and a marketing executive with over twenty years of experience providing leadership and strategy to both start-ups and major Fortune 500 brands. He specializes in Global Brand Building and Management, Marketing Programs, Partnerships & Alliances, Marketing Strategy, People Management, Public Relations, Digital Media, Business Development. He has previously served as Chair of the Board of Directors of United Way of York Region.

Raf Katigbak is Creative Lead at Virtue, the agency arm of VICE. He started at VICE as a columnist in the magazine in 2004, eventually becoming the Canadian editor of the publication, and then Senior Editor of the ‪VICE.com website. Over the years, he’s produced engaging, multi-platform content including documentaries, photo essays, and field reports, and written stories for a variety of publications and companies including The Montreal Mirror, En Route, and ALDO.

Dan McPhee is Head of Media Platforms at Google Canada. He is a trailblazing sales and marketing strategy thought leader, specializing in helping organizations capture market share while improving their bottom line. Combining deep business knowledge with a complete understanding of today’s consumer, Dan transforms business units into profitable market leaders that know how to win, and win the moments that matter.

Erin Millar is the Co-Founder and CEO of Discourse Media. She is an author, public speaker, magazine writer, and former president of Canadian University Press. She has reported from 15 countries around the world and her work has been translated into 34 languages. She teaches journalism at Quest University.

Our new electives join an existing NMAF Board of Directors that includes:

  • Liana Bell, CA, CPA, Partner, Clark-Henning LLP (Treasurer)
  • Joyce Byrne, Publisher, Avenue Magazine (Past President)
  • Julie Cailliau, Editor-in-Chief, Les Affaires
  • Christopher Frey, Toronto Correspondent, Monocle
  • Curtis Gillespie, Editor, Eighteen Bridges
  • David Hayes, Freelance Journalist
  • Judith Pereira, Senior Editor, Report on Business
  • Marnie Peters, Associate Vice-President, Public Relations, Royal Ontario Museum
  • Paul Roelofs, Creative Director & Publication Designer, Vancouver Magazine & Western Living
  • Terry Sellwood, former President, Cottage Life Media (Executive-At-Large)
  • Melony Ward, Publisher, Canada’s History & Kayak
  • Lisa Whittington-Hill, Publisher, THIS Magazine

MORE TO COME
We are humbled by the fact that, according to feedback from our stakeholder surveys, Canadian magazine publishers and creators continue hold the NMAF brand in the highest regard as a not-for-profit, charitable organization that facilitates trustworthy, inclusive and transparent awards programs that reflect the strength and breadth of magazine and digital publishing across Canada.

We encourage all Canadian publishers, editors, art directors, staff and contributors to join us as we celebrate the 40th anniversary National Magazine Awards and the 2nd annual Digital Publishing Awards.

The NMAF will provide regular updates this fall regarding strategic initiatives and changes to its awards programs.