enRoute, the Air Canada magazine published by Spafax of Montreal, won the gold medal for best in-flight magazine at the North American Travel Journalists Association (NATJA) awards announced earlier this month. The mag bested competitors like Delta Sky, U.S. Airways Magazine and Celebrated Living for the honour.
enRoute‘s popular “Canada’s Best New Restaurants 2013” guide, by National Magazine Award-winning writer Andrew Braithwaite, won a silver medal in the category culinary travel.
The magazine also took home a bronze medal for best travel series (“The Frequent Flyer” by Sarah Staples), and was a finalist in 3 other categories as well.
Two other Spafax titles won NATJAs. Fairmont Magazine won the gold medal for cover photo (“Big Bold Baku” by Gunnar Knechtel) and a silver medal, tied with enRoute, for culinary travel (“Perfecting Pinoy” by Remy Scalza). Experience Magazine won gold in the luxury & leisure travel category (“Fantasy Island,” by Neal McLennan).
In the category destination travel, the United Church Observer, the oldest continuously published magazine in North America, based in Toronto, won a silver medal for “Camels and Karma” by Peter Johansen.
In the byline travel column category, Vancouver’s Georgia Strait magazine won the gold medal for “Gondola lifts lazybones high above Squamish” by Carolyn Ali.
Check out all the NATJA winners here, which include triumphs by Canadian newspapers including the Winnipeg Free Press, Montreal Gazette, Vancouver Sun, Canadian Jewish News, and Metro News Toronto.
Off the Page is back. In the latest installment of our popular interview series, we chat with National Magazine Award finalist and freelance writer Arno Kopecky, author of The Oilman and the Sea, shortlisted for this year’s Governor General’s Literary Awards.
NMAF: You’re an intrepid magazine journalist. We’ve read your reporting from Iceland and Columbia and others in The Walrus, from Beaver Lake in Alberta Views, and recently from the British Columbia coast in the Reader’s Digest story “The $273 Billion Question,” for which you were a finalist for a National Magazine Award this past spring. How did you get started on this journey to a freelance magazine writing career, and what do you find personally or professionally rewarding about it?
Arno: Intrepid? Thanks, but groping in the dark is usually how it feels. I studied creative writing at the University of Victoria, and when I graduated in 2002 I realized I had no idea how the world worked, let alone how to write about it; so, on Bertrand Russell’s advice, I travelled. Moved to Spain and got a job teaching English, and after two years I’d learned (barely) enough Spanish to land a reporting internship in Oaxaca, Mexico. A string of magazine and newspaper internships followed: New York, Toronto, Nairobi. I was basically a professional intern for a few years. Somewhere along the way I started selling the odd story to various publications, and before long I was too old to be an intern, but the writing and travelling continued.
The thing I love about my “job” is what I think many journalists love, whether they travel or not: Writing gives us an excuse to meet interesting people doing interesting things. We get to join the conversation.
NMAF: The RD feature story appears to have led to an even larger project, your latest book The Oilman and the Sea (Douglas & McIntyre), which won the 2014 Edna Staebler Award for Creative Non-Fiction and is shortlisted for the Governor General’s Award. Was there momentum from your fascinating voyage up the BC coastline to the magazine article to the book, and how did your writing journey proceed?
Arno: Actually it was the other way round: the book contract came first. I pitched the idea to my then-editor at Douglas & McIntyre about two days after my friend Ilja Herb (whose photographs are in the magazine story and book) bought a 41-foot sailboat. We wanted to see the oil tanker routes proposed by Northern Gateway for ourselves, and it was clear from the beginning that the trip would generate tens of thousands of words, if only we could find a home for them. Douglas & McIntyre signed on early and gave us the reason we needed to pursue the expedition.
But Reader’s Digest signed on very quickly as well, and was hugely supportive from the outset. My editor there fought to get me real estate for one of the longest stories that magazine has published in recent history.
Two weeks after I got home from the sailing trip, D&M went bankrupt. Suddenly that Reader’s Digest feature was the only thing I had going for me. Thankfully, Harbour Publishing swept in to the rescue and resuscitated D&M, so that by the time my RD feature was on the stands I had a book contract once again. All I had to do was… write a book.
NMAF: Your approach as a writer to the complex debate about the Northern Gateway pipeline could be characterized by journalistic curiosity, a sense of adventure (to say the least) and perhaps a sense of responsibility, at least with respect to seeking out grassroots perspectives in places such as Bella Bella, Kitimat and others. Was there a particular place or event in the evolving process that made you think, This is the heart of the story, this will grab the reader’s (and editor’s) attention?
Arno: The Great Bear Rainforest–as the north and central coast of British Columbia is known– was itself the thing that captivated me from the outset. In some ways it’s the story’s central character. Here’s this Switzerland-sized labyrinth of whale-jammed fjords and evergreen islands on BC’s north and central coast, the biggest chunk of temperate coastal rainforest left on earth, that also happens to be one of the oldest continually inhabited regions on the planet–Heiltsuk, Haisla, Haida, Gitga’at and many other coastal First Nations have called this place home since the last ice age. I’m not sure how many Canadians are aware of its existence. The fact that oil tankers are now poised to navigate through those waters for the first time was, in some ways, just an excuse to talk about this teeming, volatile, amphibious zone, the likes of which happen not to exist anywhere else on the planet.
NMAF: What is the significance to you of being nominated for or winning awards for your work, whether National Magazine Awards or others? Is there (or do you foresee) a measurable impact on your career?
Arno: I heard a debate on CBC a while back as to whether there weren’t too many awards in Canada’s literary scene these days; that may well be true, but it doesn’t feel so when you get a nomination yourself. It’s become a cliché, how hard it is to make a living at writing, and anyone who wants to give writers a few bucks and some attention-grabbing praise has my everlasting gratitude.
That said, it’s hard to measure what the impact is on your career. Doors crack open, but you still have to push through; money comes, and then it goes. I guess for me personally, insecure hack that I am, the psychological boost that comes with an award is its most lasting aspect. Recognition helps put the self-doubting demons to rest, and it can be called on to subdue them when they inevitably reappear.
Arno Kopecky is the author of The Oilman and the Sea, which is nominated for a Governor General’s Literary Award (to be announced next Tuesday, November 18) and won the 2014 Edna Staebler Award for Creative Non-Fiction. He is also the author of The Devil’s Curve: A Journey into Power and Profit at the Amazon’s Edge. Follow him on Twitter @arno_kopecky.
NMA winners headline shortlists for GGs, Writer’s Trust, Giller Prize
New book by Arno Kopecky investigates anti-mining activism
More Off the Page interviews with NMA winners
From the National Magazine Awards archive:
The $273 Billion Question, by Arno Kopecky
Reader’s Digest, Honourable Mention, Science, Technology & Environment, 2013
The Only Risk is Wanting to Stay, by Arno Kopecky
The Walrus, Honourable Mention, Investigative Reporting, 2011
The sad news reached us recently of the passing of Mark Anderson. Mark was an accomplished and enthusiastic magazine journalist who won three National Magazine Awards for his work in Explore and Outdoor Canada.
We read his work in a number of other Canadian magazines, including Financial Post Magazine, Listed, Report on Business, MoneySense, Canadian Geographic, Reader’s Digest, Cottage Life, Ontario Nature and Canadian Business.
His editor at Outdoor Canada, Patrick Walsh, former president of the National Magazine Awards Foundation, talked to us about Mark’s enduring legacy.
For us at Outdoor Canada, Mark was the complete package—an incredibly gifted storyteller with the added bonus of being a highly accomplished angler. Not only did he win major awards for his feature writing, he also earned laurels for his fly-fishing expertise, competing in both national and international competitions. Mark leaves a major vacancy in our stable of writers, and all I can say is we are so thankful we had him on our team when we did.
Mark was indeed one of Canada’s best fly fisherman. The Canadian Fly Fishing Championships awarded him its Lifetime Achievement Award earlier this year.
In one of his best-known stories for Outdoor Canada, “Requiem for a River,” Mark travelled to Quebec’s Rupert River, famous among anglers for its exquisite natural beauty and genetically unique brook trout, the summer before it was dammed as part of a massive hydroelectric project in the province. The story showcased Mark’s rare gifts as an inquisitive and thoughtful writer and conservationist.
I start working my way down the shoreline, all heavy brush and treacherous deadfalls, and when I break out into the open a half-kilometre later, I’m in for a shocking sight: clear-cut as far as the eye can see. It’s the slash Freddy Jolly warned us about, Hydro-Québec’s relentless drive to denude the banks of the Rupert in preparation for the coming flood. After three days surrounded by raw wilderness, it’s a dismal, depressing scene.
The story won a National Magazine Award for Travel writing in 2008 and was also nominated in Sports & Recreation. You can read the entire story here from the National Magazine Awards archive.
A Celebration of Mark’s Life was held at Algonquin College’s Observatory lounge on Sunday, October 26. Donations are being accepted in Mark’s name to Algonquin College Foundation’s Mark Anderson Memorial Bursary, via CanadaHelps.org. Mark’s obituary appeared in the Ottawa Citizen on October 22.
Photographs by Theodore Smith for Outdoor Canada. Special thanks to James Little and Patrick Walsh.
The National Magazine Awards Foundation (NMAF) is pleased to announce the winners of the 37th annual National Magazine Awards.
At this year’s gala on June 6, presented by CDS Global and hosted by humourist (and award-winner) Scott Feschuk, the NMAF presented Gold and Silver awards in 47 categories representing the best in Canadian magazines from the year 2013.
Complete list (PDF) of all winners
Full-text of all nominated and winning articles
La version française
SPECIAL AWARD WINNERS
Magazine of the Year
Sponsored by RBC Royal Bank
Magazine Website of the Year
Tablet Magazine of the Year
Best New Magazine Writer
Sponsored by Reader’s Digest Foundation
Foundation Award for Outstanding Achievement
Top Winning Magazines at the 37th National Magazine Awards:
|Report on Business||3||2||16|
|United Church Observer||1||1||2|
See the complete list of winners at magazine-awards.com.
INTEGRATED AWARDS – GOLD WINNERS
Best Single Issue
Tenth Anniversary Issue
Report on Business
How Much Does a Street Cost?
Editorial Package (Web)
Canada’s Best New Restaurants
Single Service Article Package
Calendrier de l’avent
Words & Pictures
Sponsored by CDS Global
WRITING AWARDS – GOLD WINNERS
Arts & Entertainment
Rebel Without Applause
Best Short Feature
Jamie Bradburn, Kevin Plummer, David Wencer
Sponsored by Accenture
This Little Piggy Went to Market…and the Farmer Lost Money
Report on Business
Sponsored by Impresa Communications Ltd.
Editorial Package (Print)
Sponsored by Canadian Society of Magazine Editors
Marine Corniou, Dominique Forget, Joel Leblanc, Raymond Lemieux, Chantal Srivastava
In The Chair
Little Brother Magazine
Health & Medicine
First Do No Harm
Jane Rodmell, David Zimmer
Best Flavour Ever
Assemble ingredients. Pause dramatically.
One Martyr Down
One of a Kind
The Marineland Dreamland
Liz Windhorst Harmer
Politics & Public Interest
The Kingdom of Haymour
Science, Technology & Environment
Sponsored by GE Canada
Losing the Hooded Grebe
United Church Observer
Service: Health & Family
Lest We Forget: The Shocking Crisis Facing Our Wounded Veterans
Vive le poisson éco!
Service: Personal Finance & Business
Sponsored by Manulife Financial
The Hand-Me-Down Blues
Sports & Recreation
La machine à broyer les rêves
VISUAL AWARDS – GOLD WINNERS
Art Direction of an Entire Issue
Sponsored by The Lowe-Martin Group
Art Direction of a Single Article
Not in the Age of the Pharaohs
John Van Der Schilden, Photographer
Brittany Eccles, Art Director
Juliana Schiavinatto, Stylist
Vanessa Craft, Beauty Director
Petra Collins, Photographer
Jed Tallo, Art Director
Corey Ng, Stylist
Pastels Take Shape
Homes & Gardens
Martin Tessler, Photographer
Paul Roelofs, Art Director
Nicole Sjöstedt, Stylist
Magazine Website Design
Photojournalism & Photo Essay
Sponsored by CNW Group
Report on Business
The Elite Yellow Peril
ABOUT THE 37th ANNUAL NATIONAL MAGAZINE AWARDS
More than 500 members of the Canadian magazine industry—publishers, editors, art directors, writers, photographers, illustrators, circulators and more—joined esteemed sponsors and other guests at the 37th annual National Magazine Awards gala on June 6, 2014, at The Carlu in Toronto, presented by CDS Global.
This year, from nearly 2000 individual entries received nationwide, the NMAF’s 238 volunteer judges nominated a total of 376 submissions from 92 different Canadian magazines for awards in 47 written, visual, integrated and special categories.
The National Magazine Awards Foundation acknowledges the financial support of the Ontario Arts Council, an agency of the Government of Ontario, as well as the Ontario Media Development Corporation.
The NMAF thanks its corporate sponsors Accenture, GE Canada, Manulife Financial, RBC Royal Bank, The Lowe-Martin Group, Canadian Society of Magazine Editors, Penguin Random House and Reader’s Digest Foundation for their generous financial support of the National Magazine Awards.
The NMAF thanks its media partners Cottage Life Media, Impresa Communications Ltd., Masthead, Rogers Media, TC Media and Toronto Life for their generous support of the National Magazine Awards.
The NMAF thanks its event partners CNW Group and Media Vantage, The Carlu, Daniel et Daniel, Relay Experience, KlixPix and Michèle Champagne for their generous support of the National Magazine Awards.
The NMAF gratefully acknowledges all its suppliers and its contributors who donated gifts in kind to support the awards program. We thank them for their generosity, interest and expertise. Thanks also to our hard-working event volunteers.
And thanks again to our wonderful Master of Ceremonies, Scott Feschuk.
ABOUT THE NATIONAL MAGAZINE AWARDS FOUNDATION
The National Magazine Awards Foundation is a bilingual, not-for-profit institution whose mission is to recognize and promote excellence in the content and creation of Canadian print and digital publications through an annual program of awards and national publicity efforts.
For more information, visit magazine-awards.com and follow us on Twitter (@MagAwards).
Looking for last-minute stocking stuffers and holiday gifts? A subscription to an award-winning Canadian magazine is a great place to start. Magazines Canada’s digital newsstand offers subscription deals on dozens of great magazines. A literary magazine would make any lover of fiction, poetry and creative non-fiction squeal with delight.
After magazines, books are every reader’s favourite gift, so here at the National Magazine Awards Foundation we’ve compiled a short list of great new books, all by National Magazine Award-winning writers.
The Dogs Are Eating Them Now, by Graeme Smith
The winner of this year’s Hilary Weston Writers’ Trust prize for non-fiction, The Dogs are Eating Them Now is a comprehensive reportage of Canada’s role in the Afghanistan War, by 3-time National Magazine Award winner Graeme Smith.
The Once and Future World, by J.B. MacKinnon
Longlisted for the 2014 RBC Taylor Prize for Non-fiction, this powerful meditation on how we can re-imagine and restore the wilderness around us, by 11-time National Magazine Award winner J.B. MacKinnon, is a must-read for anyone who lives, works or plays in Canada’s great outdoors. (Read our interview with J.B. MacKinnon.)
Confessions of a Fairy’s Daughter, by Alison Wearing
In a compelling memoir about growing up with a gay father in 1980s rural Ontario, National Magazine Award-winning travel writer Alison Wearing weaves a moving coming-of-age story with the challenging social and political climate of the struggle for gay rights in Canada.
Walls: Travels Along the Barricades, by Marcello Di Cintio
Winner of the 2013 Writers’ Trust Shaughnessy Cohen Prize for Political Writing, this gripping collection of travel narratives and reportage from divided lands–Israel/Palestine, Northern Ireland, Cyprus, the U.S.-Mexico border, and more–is truly inspiring.
An Inconvenient Indian, by Thomas King
Once a National Magazine Award winner for Fiction in Saturday Night (1991), aboriginal writer Thomas King (Cherokee nation) tells a comprehensive and witty history of North America’s indigenous people’s encounters with Europeans.
Let the Eastern Bastards Freeze in the Dark, by Mary Janigan
Also on the long list for the RBC Taylor Prize, this investigation into the regional rivalry between Western and Eastern Canada over issues of energy strategy and economic policy is scintillating. Mary Janigan is a former journalist with Maclean’s and a winner of a National Magazine Award in 1992.
Little Ship of Fools, by Charles Wilkins
A story that began on an innovative rowboat attempting a first-of-its-kind crossing of the Atlantic Ocean and continued in the pages of Explore magazine, where it won a 2011 National Magazine Award, Little Ship of Fools, by one of Canada’s premier adventure writers, Charles Wilkins, is the complete chronicle of Big Blue, the record-breaking rowboat, and the incredible crew that propelled her across the sea.
Hellgoing, by Lynn Coady
The winner of this year’s Giller Prize as Canada’s best work of fiction, Hellgoing by Edmonton’s Lynn Coady needs almost no introduction. Lynn Coady is a 5-time National Magazine Award nominee, including this year for the story “Dogs in Clothes” (Canadian Notes & Queries), which is part of the collection Hellgoing.
The Sky is Falling, by Caroline Adderson
Caroline Adderson won the Gold 2012 National Magazine Award for fiction, for “Ellen-Celine, Celine-Ellen” (Canadian Notes & Queries). She is the author of three novels and several children’s books. Her work has received numerous prize nominations including the the Scotiabank Giller Prize longlist, the Governor General’s Literary Award and the Rogers’ Trust Fiction Prize.
Ablutions, by Patrick deWitt
Patrick deWitt won the Silver National Magazine Award for fiction in 2012, for “The Looking Ahead Artist” (Brick). Originally from Vancouver, he is the author of the critically acclaimed novel The Sisters Brothers, which won the Governor General’s Literary Award for Fiction and the Rogers Writers’ Trust Fiction Prize and was shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize and the Scotiabank Giller Prize.
The World, by Bill Gaston
Victoria native Bill Gaston won the 2011 Gold National Magazine Award for fiction, for “Four Corners” (Event). His short-story collection Gargoyles was shortlisted for the Governor General’s Literary Award and the Ethel Wilson Fiction Prize, and won the ReLit Award and the City of Victoria Butler Prize.
Easy Living Stories, by Jesus Hardwell
Jesus Hardwell won the 2010 Silver National Magazine Award for fiction, for “Sandcastles” (Event). The story was also short-listed for the prestigious Journey Prize and featured in the Journey Prize Anthology. He lives in Guelph, Ontario.
Ballistics, by D.W. Wilson
Born and raised in British Columbia, D.W. Wilson won 2008 Silver National Magazine Award for fiction, for “The Elasticity of Bone” (Malahat Review). He is the author of Once You Break a Knuckle, a collection of short stories. He was shortlisted for the CBC Short Story Prize and the Ethel Wilson Fiction Prize.
The Hungry Ghosts, by Shyam Selvadurai
Toronto’s Shyam Selvadurai won the 2006 Gold National Magazine Award for fiction, for “The Demoness Kali” (Toronto Life). He is the acclaimed author of the novels Funny Boy, which was shortlisted for the Giller Prize, won the Books in Canada First Novel Award and was a national bestseller, and Cinnamon Gardens, which was shortlisted for the Trillium Award.
Indian Horse, by Richard Wagamese
The winner of this year’s First Nations Book Award, Indian Horse, by Ontario Ojibway author Richard Wagamese, tells the story of the journey that Saul Indian Horse, a northern Ontario Ojibway man, takes back through his life, as he is dying.
The O’Briens, by Peter Behrens
Montreal-born Peter Behrens won the 2006 Silver National Magazine Award for fiction, for “The Smell of Smoke” (The Walrus). He is the author of the Governor General’s Literary Award-winning novel, The Law of Dreams, published around the world to wide acclaim, and a collection of short stories, Night Driving.
Submissions are now being accepted for the 2013 National Magazine Awards. Deadline for entries: January 15.