Poetry and Pain, as told by NMA winner Patrick Lane

“The outward pain and the inward pain. If you learn the inward pain inside you, you’ll grow as a human. Fine poetry gives us a look at the inward world.”

That’s esteemed Canadian poet and two-time National Magazine Award winner Patrick Lane, speaking to a class at the University of Toronto last week, on why we read poetry.

Mr. Lane, who won an NMA Silver in 1986 for his poetry in Canadian Forum and a Gold award in 1988 for his poetry in Border Crossings, recently published a new collection of poetry, aptly titled The Collected Poems of Patrick Lane (Harbour Publishing).

According to the article in the Toronto Observer, he also offered the students a few witty reflections on the legacy of Steve Jobs (“The person who invented the [birth control] pill… changed the course of history more than him”) and how he once delivered a baby in a logging camp (“Next thing I knew I was holding a slippery football shape in my arms”).

NMAF welcomes 4 new members to its Board of Directors

The National Magazine Awards Foundation (NMAF) is pleased to welcome four new members of its Board of Directors for 2011-2012:

Gary Campbell is the Executive Producer of TorontoLife.com, the digital portal of the award-winning Toronto Life magazine. In 2010 he was nominated for two National Magazine Awards for Digital Design and Digital Magazine of the Year.

David Hayes is a National Magazine Award-winning freelance writer whose work has appeared in Report on Business, Toronto Life, The Walrus, Chatelaine, Saturday Night and other publications, and he also teaches advanced magazine writing at Ryerson University’s Continuing Education program.

Sarah Moore is Managing Editor at More magazine, where she was nominated for a National Magazine award in 2009, and was formerly Senior Editor and Managing Editor at Today’s Parent.

Brian Morgan is Creative Director of The Walrus and formerly worked as Editorial Designer at Saturday Night and Deputy Art Director at Maclean’s. A three-time National Magazine Awards nominee, he won Gold in 2009 in the Best Single Issue category.

New members are nominated and approved by the NMAF Board of Directors for two-year, renewable terms.

Charles Oberdorf remembered

On a day when his friends and loved ones will gather at Glebe Road United Church in Toronto to honour the life of the late Charles Oberdorf, we take a moment to recollect how the Canadian magazine industry knew him back in June, 2008, when Charles was presented with the NMAF’s Foundation Award for Outstanding Achievement.

Charles, who passed away on September 16, served for nine years on the board of directors of the NMAF and was board president in 1993-1994. He was also twice a National Magazine Award winner for his writing, and was known to many in the industry as an editor, columnist, consultant, volunteer, teacher, mentor and friend.

As an editor and a writer, he always hewed to the best traditions in magazine journalism, enriching the lives of Canadian readers and setting an example for Canadian journalists.
–John Macfarlane

As a teacher, writer, volunteer, mentor, manager and friend, he touched more people in the Canadian [magazine] industry than seems possible for one guy.
–D.B. Scott

Charles has always been a fighter, for what I believe are all the right reasons – justice, equality, quality.
–Jessica Ross

Everyone has two or three truly effective teachers: Charles is one of mine.
–Martin Zibauer

[Charles] has performed his duties as an educator with his usual good humour, considerable charm, kind mentorship and impressive vocabulary.
–Margaret Webb

I don’t know how to express this other than to say he simply “got it” when so many others didn’t.
–Catherine Osbourne

When I think about Charles, the first thing that pops to mind is his distinctive, rolling laughter – the delight of a man connecting his fine mind with ideas and other people.
–Penny Williams

[E]verywhere he has worked, he has been a civilizing, sophisticated influence in the office and on the page.
–James Chatto

I found Toronto Life’s Epicure column so clever, so wonderfully literary. I marveled that someone could do this. I soon learned it was a fellow named Oberdorf.
–David Hayes

I’ve seen him take a room of desultory people and have them all wanting to be editors by the time he sits down.
–Gwen Dunant

Charles is a sophisticated writer; a thoughtful editor; a specialist in a magazine staple – the fine-living subjects of travel, design, food and wine; a man with a keen intellect and curiosity who has a knack for finding stories that engage; a magazine-lover.
–Stephen Trumper

Colleagues have been depositing more of their fondest memories of Charles over at the Canadian Magazines blog.

[Photo credit: Eugene Beck]

Canzine Festival is this Sunday

The annual Toronto Canzine festival–a celebration of zine culture aimed at young and innovative magazine creators and enthusiasts, but of course open to all–is coming up on Sunday, October 23 from 1-7pm at the 918 Bathurst Centre (so named for its address, 918 Bathurst Street).

Organized by two-time NMA-nominated magazine Broken Pencil, the festival lineup includes an array of fun, crowd-pleasing events such as speed pitching (contestants have two minutes to pitch a book proposal to a panel of judges), author readings and a panel discussion on mental health and zine making. See the full line-up on the Pencil website or on Facebook.

And hey, the Vancouver Canzine edition is also on the horizon, November 13 at the Ukrainian Hall.