The NMAF is pleased to announce the lineup of categories for the 2020 National Magazine Awards. The revised program features 29 categories, including one brand new category. We’ve also re-named Best New Magazine Writer to Best Emerging Writer, making slight changes to the submissions and eligibility requirements. Check out the full details here.
Writing and Visual Awards:
Long-form Feature Writing: 6000+ *NEW*
Long-Form Feature Writing
Short Feature Writing
Best Emerging Writer
Illustration (including Spot and Photo Illustration)
Photo Essay and Photojournalism
One of a Kind Storytelling
19. Art Direction of a Single Article 20. Best Editorial Package 21. Art Direction Grand Prix 22. Editor Grand Prix 23. Cover Grand Prix 24. Issue Grand Prix 25. Publisher Grand Prix
Grand Prix: Best Magazine Awards
26. Best Magazine: News, Business, General Interest 27. Best Magazine: Service & Lifestyle 28. Best Magazine: Art, Literary, & Culture 29. Best Magazine: Special Interest
If you’re interested in submitting to the 2020 NMAs, note that the call for entries open on December 2nd, 2019 and closes on January 22nd, 2020. To save on fees, get your entries in by the early bird deadline of January 15th, 2020.
The NMAF is currently accepting nominations for individuals to serve on the juries for this year’s National Magazine Awards. Our website has all of the information on our judging process and how to be a juror. Interested? Send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with a few sentences outlining your professional experience.
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 mission;
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, Digital Publishing Awards, or National Magazine Awards: B2B;
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, Digital Publishing Award, or National Magazine Award: B2B yourself);
Journalist (print, broadcast, digital) with expertise in a particular field represented by one or more NMA, DPA, or NMA: B2B categories (such as photojournalism, service, arts & culture, fiction, poetry, etc);
Academic or industry leader with expertise in a particular field;
Professionals and leadersfrom related cultural sectors, including the visual arts (film and television), the literary arts (book writing & publishing) and the performing arts (theatre, music);
Bilingual: Not all of our judges need be bilingual, but all awards juries will have at least one bilingual member.
We welcome applications from individuals who bring different industry perspectives – from recognized leaders to celebrated emerging talents. We also aim for the judging panels to reflect our country’s diverse Indigenous, cultural, and regional communities.
Judging will take place during February and March 2020. For more information, or to nominate a peer to the jury, contact us at email@example.com.
We’re proud to have had some of the finest Canadian journalists and experts serve on our past juries.
It was such an enriching experience to be a judge for the NMAs. Being able to appreciate the work of my peers, and discuss their work with the other judges, made me feel like even more a part of the literary community that has supported and nourished me. — Alicia Elliott, award-winning Tuscarora writer from Six Nations of the Grand River, Brantford, ON.
Getting your hands on a B2B magazine can be tricky if you don’t belong to a particular profession. As an NMA: B2B judge, I had the pleasure of reading new publications and discovering the rich journalistic and artistic talent behind them. — Luc Rinaldi, senior editor, Pivot magazine, Toronto, ON.
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.
It’s a great honour to judge the NMAs and see some of the best magazine work happening in Canada. I love editorial design and it’s wonderful when some of the winning entries are small, independent publications that understand great design is integral to their success. — Fidel Peña, creative director and co-founder of Underline Studio, Toronto, ON.
Judging the NMAs allows you to keep tabs on industry leaders, validate someone’s hard work, and boost a worthy talent’s own career. It’s also an easy way to give back to a community that has given all of us so much. —Arjun Basu, senior vice president, Product at Bookmark Content and Communications, Montreal, QC.
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.
Serving as a judge for the National Magazine Awards, which I have done for at least ten years, is always a highlight of my reading year. It’s like receiving an engaging anthology of great writing by exciting emerging writers, masterful old pros, and hidden treasures. And you get the honour of choosing the best of a wonderful bunch! What could possibly be better? —Stephen Trumper, writer, editor, teacher, volunteer, Toronto, ON.
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.
Volunteering as a judge with the National Media Awards was a great experience, it really gave me a chance to see the depth and variety of voices being published in Canadian magazines right now, this flourishing of diverse perspectives and thoughts make right now a very exciting time for Canadian media. — Ossie Michelin, award-winning Inuk journalist and activist from the community of North West River, Labrador.
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.
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 December for awards honouring the best in Canadian magazines and publishing in 2019.
The NMAF is excited to embark upon the 2019 to 2020 awards season, and we’re looking for an excellent intern to tag along on the adventure.
We’ve crafted our internship to check all of the boxes: a flexible schedule (the majority of the work can be completed remotely), the opportunity to get an inside look at the Canadian media industry and the NMAF’s operations, and the chance to enhance your communications, publicity, and event planning skillset.
“The NMAF internship is a great opportunity for anyone starting out in the media, publishing, or PR industry. I’m really grateful that I’ve been able to make some excellent contacts while working for the NMAF” – Krista Robinson, 2016-17 intern
Day-to-day, the intern will assist with administrative tasks—you’ll help us sort submissions, and prepare for one of Canada’s most esteemed cultural events—the National Magazine Awards gala. You’ll also have the opportunity to make a great first impression on writers, editors, publishers, and other members of the industry, making this internship a one-of-a-kind experience for anyone interested in the field of magazine writing or publishing.
“I think the internship broke down the industry into bite-sized pieces and made it seem less daunting. Working with a small team helped me see how other small editorial and similar teams manage to produce all that they do. Overall everyone I spoke to/ emailed/ interacted with were pleasant and excited about making quality Canadian magazines. (…) Working with the NMAF introduced me to countless future editors, co-workers, and collaborators.” – Stephanie Philp, 2017-18 intern
Applications are due September 18th, 2019*. Here is the full job posting. When submitting your application, please be sure to include a cover letter, resume, and reference letter.
For the NMAF’s most up-to-date news, follow us on Twitter and visit us on Facebook.
* Please note that the application deadline has been extended to September 23rd, 2019.
Our team is proud to reveal the Canadian creators who won Gold and Silver medals at this year’s National Magazine Awards. The gala was held at the Arcadian Court in Toronto, and was hosted by NMA-winner Omar Mouallem.
MAGAZINE GRAND PRIX
Nouveau Projet took home the prestigious, 2019 Magazine Grand Prix award. A six-time consecutive finalist in this category, Nouveau Projet had also won this coveted title in 2014. The judges cited the magazine’s risk-taking spirit and impressive scope: “Consistently ambitious, Nouveau Projet brings a fresh look and stimulating content to its examination of francophone society. Their team has crafted a great system that allows for clarity and variety, and they masterfully orchestrate all the things that make magazines a pleasure to read.”
BEST MAGAZINE AWARDS
In each of the four Best Magazine Divisions, judges selected one gold winner from the three nominees. The gold winners are:
Best Magazine: News, Business, General Interest
GOLD: Nouveau Projet HONOURABLE MENTION: The Walrus, Toronto Life
Best Magazine: Special Interest
GOLD: Up Here Magazine HONOURABLE MENTION: Fete Chinoise, U of T Medicine
Best Magazine: Service & Lifestyle
GOLD: Cottage Life HONOURABLE MENTION: Elle Canada, FASHION Magazine
Best Magazine: Art, Literary, & Culture
GOLD: Esse arts + opinion HONOURABLE MENTION: Canadian Art, The Site Magazine
BEST NEW MAGAZINE WRITER
From four talented, promising nominees, Max Binks-Collier was awarded the Best New Magazine Writer title for “Distant Relatives,” published in Maisonneuve. The jury had this to say of Max’s work:
““Distant Relatives” is a suspenseful, in-depth exploration of medical malpractice and the institutional complicity that allowed it to happen. With his thoughtful interviews and extensive historical research, Binks-Collier pulls readers in and keeps them hooked all the way through.”
Honourable Mention went to Jennifer Thornhill Verma (Maisonneuve), Anais Granofsky (Toronto Life), and Mugoli Samba (The United Church Observer).
EDITOR GRAND PRIX
For the second year, the Foundation presented the Editor Grand Prix award to a senior-level editor who demonstrated a high degree of excellence, making an outstanding impact on their magazine. Alison Uncles of Maclean’s was the proud recipient of this year’s award.
PUBLISHER GRAND PRIX
The Publisher Grand Prix award recognizes a publisher whose brand best delivers on their editorial mandate through numerous platforms. From the three nominees—Canadian Geographic, Inuit Art Quarterly, and Toronto Life—Ken Hunt publisher of Toronto Life received gold. In their discussion, the jury put it thusly: if you live in Toronto, you know Toronto Life, and as Toronto is growing, Toronto Life is growing with it.
FOUNDATION AWARD FOR OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT
Linda Spalding—an acclaimed writer and a longtime editor of the literary journal Brick—was presented with the 2019 Foundation Award for Outstanding Achievement. At the gala, she was introduced by Laurie D. Graham, who remarked that “Linda provides a model of how to do this publishing work with emotion as well as intellect. She sprouted in Brick the seriousness and irreverence that has come to be the magazine’s guiding ethos.”
Top-winning magazines include:
Magazines winning one Gold Medal include: Air Canada enRoute, BESIDE, esse arts + opinions, LSTW, Prairie Fire, Québec Science, Ryerson University Magazine, Sharp, Taddle Creek, Title Magazine, and Up Here Magazine.
Magazines winning one Silver Medal include: Geist, Report on Business Magazine, The Malahat Review, The Maritime Edit, The Site Magazine, Toronto Life Stylebook, and University of Toronto Magazine.
Highlights of the 42nd annual NMAs
Mathieu Lachapelle of Dînette Magazine captured three awards for his photography work, winning Silver for Portrait Photography and winning both Gold and Silver in Lifestyle Photography.
Anthony Oliveira is a 2019 two-time Gold winner in Long Form Feature Writing and Essay, for his piece “Death in the Village” published in Hazlitt.
The Walrus swept the Illustration (including spot and photo illustration) category: “The End of an Empire” by Sébastien Thibault won silver, while “Bad Code” by Cristian Fowlie took Gold.
Writing & Visual Awards
In the 17 creator-focused categories, Gold winners received a $1000 cash prize. The gold and silver medalists are:
Long-Form Feature Writing
GOLD: Anthony Oliveira, “Death in the Village,” Hazlitt GOLD: Brett Popplewell, “Final Edition,” The Walrus
GOLD: Omar Mouallem, “It’s the End of the World as We Know It,” Title Magazine SILVER: Emily Landau, “I, Tanya,” Toronto Life Stylebook
Short Feature Writing
GOLD: Christopher DiRaddo, “Austin or Bust,” Air Canada enRoute SILVER: Matt Williams, “Jeremy Dutcher’s Gift for His People,” The Maritime Edit
GOLD: Kamal Al-Solaylee, “Points of Departure,” Sharp SILVER: Lisa Bird-Wilson, “Clowns, Cakes, Canoes: This is Canada?” Geist
GOLD: Anthony Oliveira, “Death in the Village,” Hazlitt SILVER: Larissa Diakiw, “Secrets Are a Captive Country,” Hazlitt
GOLD: Alison Motluk, “Hallway Health Care,” Toronto Life SILVER: Martin Patriquin, “Warning Signs,” The Walrus
GOLD: RJ Edwards, “Loose Time,” Taddle Creek SILVER: Christine Higdon, “A Prayer for Ursula in Open D,” The Malahat Review
GOLD: Mathieu Lachapelle, “La brume de l’Oregon,” Dînette magazine SILVER: Mathieu Lachapelle, “Au cœur des nuages,” Dînette magazine
GOLD: Gwen Benaway, “A Body Like a Home,” Hazlitt SILVER: Meaghan Rondeau, “Half-Thing,” The New Quarterly
GOLD: Ben Ladouceur, “The Green Carnation,” Prairie Fire SILVER: Terence Young, “The Bear,” The New Quarterly
GOLD: Katrina Onstad, “Mr. Robot,” Toronto Life SILVER: Malcolm Johnston, “Born to Run,” Toronto Life
GOLD: Mélissa Guillemette, “Où vont les déchets électroniques ?,” Québec Science SILVER: Mark Pupo, “Where to Eat 2018,” Toronto Life
GOLD: Cristian Fowlie, “Bad Code,” The Walrus SILVER: Sébastien Thibault, “The End of an Empire,” The Walrus
GOLD: Grant Harder, “Tremors,” Maisonneuve SILVER: Mathieu Lachapelle, “Dompter le roc,” Dînette magazine
Photo Essay & Photojournalism
GOLD: Kamil Bialous, “That Which Does Not Burn,” Cottage Life SILVER: Stephen J. Thorne, “Citizens of War,” Legion Magazine
One of a Kind Storytelling
GOLD: Michael Friscolanti, Jason Markusoff, and Kyle Edwards, “ ‘It was the last time we saw him:’ An oral history of the Humboldt Broncos bus crash,” Maclean’s SILVER: Martin Patenaude-Monette (Martin PM), “Le bonheur en transition,” Nouveau Projet
Art Direction of a Single Article
GOLD: Studio Wyse, “Keeping Memories Alive,” Ryerson University Magazine SILVER: Carey van der Zalm,“Body, Space & Object,” The Site Magazine
Best Editorial Package
GOLD: “WWI Commemorative Issue,” Maclean’s SILVER: “Autumn 2018: The Cities We Need,” University of Toronto Magazine
Art Direction Grand Prix
GOLD: Eliane Cadieux, “Issue 05: What does our future with nature hold? | Numéro 05 : Quel avenir sommes-nous en train de bâtir ?” BESIDE SILVER: Jean-François Proulx,Balistique, “Nouveau Projet 13,” Nouveau Projet
Editor Grand Prix
GOLD: Alison Uncles, Maclean’s
Cover Grand Prix
GOLD: “Pay equity,” Maclean’s SILVER: “Blood in the Air,” Report on Business
Issue Grand Prix
GOLD: lstw issue #3, lstw SILVER: Nouveau Projet 14, Nouveau Projet