Saturday, June 16, 2012

A stellar debut for North Bay Nipissing Life and some, ahem, bragging

Ok, I have to do a little bragging for a moment. I apologize in advance for making you roll your eyes and skip through to a more interesting non-bragging blog, but when a short story you write gets published in the debut issue of a slick new magazine, ya gotta share the news, know what I mean?

The magazine is North Bay Nipissing Life and it just hit newsstands in North Bay (a city about four hours north of Toronto, depending how fast you drive). Our company, Metroland North Media, started a weekly community newspaper there almost a year ago called North Bay Nipissing News and it's been doing extremely well. Readers are excited about the comprehensive community news coverage and the casual vibe. Advertisers are starting to realize that it's the paper everyone's reading and are responding accordingly. All in all, things are looking up, which is why Metroland decided to launch a slick quarterly magazine to supplement the News and provide a vehicle for celebrating the people of the area in a more in-depth way.

I designed the magazine, laid it out and made it pretty so I'm proud of it for those reasons but I'm extra pleased to have one of my short stories in the magazine. The caveat is I WORK for the magazine so it's not like the editorial heavens opened up and said, "You are the best writer known to man and we must print your story." No, it was more like I asked the editor if he was interested and he read it and said, yeah, okay. Also, I didn't get paid.

STILL. The editor has very, very strong opinions on certain things. If he didn't like my story, it wouldn't have been published. So I'm hanging on to that knowledge and celebrating it.

Kiosk is a perfect story for NBN Life. Kiosk is a ghost town in that area, about halfway between North Bay and Mattawa. You've heard me blog about it before – Dave and I go there every spring and every fall to do some fishing and camp in Algonquin Park. What used to be a lumber mill town is now nothing but ruins within the park. Which is great if you're an outdoorsy person who loves camping and loves nature, but is heartbreaking if you're one of the people who used to live here.

"Claire" is one of those people. She runs a bakery out of her log home just north of the park. She makes and sells amazing, almost legendary, butter tarts and delicious pies with crust just like my mom's. She also makes jams, jellies and sells coffee to everyone who goes by. Claire (I hope I am spelling her name correctly) grew up in Kiosk. For her the story of its demise is pure sadness. It was with people like her in mind that I wrote the short story Kiosk and year or so ago. The original story is posted here on my blog.


Gotta love that byline!

Second page spread of the story. The old photos are from Kiosk.

Last page of the spread. In case you can't see the tiny yet IMPORTANT
photo of the girl in the blue sweater, I've blown it up bigger for you, below!

That photo was taken during our honeymoon trip to Newfoundland. I love that place. Yup, chubby bare toes in a mag.
Yup.

The cover.

The masthead. Look Mom, that's ME! :)
































***

As an aside, today is a sad day for the people of the Muskoka community. We are mourning the death of Gillian Brunette, a much loved local writer who used to work for the Huntsville Forester and freelanced for many of our other publications. I can't believe cancer managed to claim her. She had such incredible enthusiasm for life, such indomitable energy and she will be missed. Today is her "Celebration of Life" and, in Gillian's case, it is a perfect term because she lived her entire life like it was a celebration. We'll miss you so much, Gillian, and in your own wise words and sunny English accent, "BLOODY HELL."


24 comments:

  1. Congratulations on having your story published. That is so cool!
    Now I see why you've stayed with the same job for so long. Being a graphic designer has always seemed to me to be a great creative and challenging opportunity. Does this mean I have to start making "nice" comments now? Seeing as how you may have more readers interested in reading your blog and all. :)

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    1. YES you totally have to make nice comments now. Sheesh!!!!
      (You always make the nicest comments, Rubye!)

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  2. Well done, Cathy! So proud of you, getting a story 'in print' and under the nose of the local population! Who knows where that will lead.......!

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    1. Fame and FORTUNE hopefully!!!!! Thanks Sue!

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  3. Cathy, that is awesome!!! Wow, the layout looks amazing. Congratulations.

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  4. You laid out and designed the magazine AND had a story printed in it...Whoohooo...yippee....Good goin' girl.

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  5. Woot! Congrats on such lovely work, the visual and the literary.

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  6. KUDOS. That means exceptional, and I'm shouting. It's great to love your job. You must love it even when it irritates to, to keep pushing through to a successful conclusion. Well done.

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  7. Well done, indeed, Cathy. A published short-story writer and "designing woman." Powerful combination.

    And aren't editors all alike? They don't like to pay. "This is your chance to be published; you should be thankful for that." Ever heard words like those?

    Hope you keep writing and keep having fun in the process.

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  8. Well done! You must be so excited.
    We were in Muskoka and drove along the river. I kept checking mailboxes, and looking for familiar faces, but didn't see anything that clicked.
    Time is so short.
    cheers from Perth

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  9. The bragging rights here are well-earned, no question! I'm really pleased you included photos of the mag's layout, which looks terrific--and the mag is a terrific home for your touching short story. Thanks for all, and congrats!

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  10. Congratulations and great job on the magazine and article!!!! Sorry about your friend though.

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  11. Well, ahem, this is freaking AWESOME! A huge congrats and, wow, what a layout. Very pleased for you, and proud, too.

    I hope Gillian's Celebration of Life honored her, and brought some healing to you and others who will miss her. Peace...

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  12. I am so sorry about your friend. BUT hello... WHOO HOO!!! Yeah! Go you! I may just even have some cake on your behalf...

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  13. Congrats! That's so cool It looks great! I hope you're giving yourself a big pat on the back for this, and congratulatory hugs from the Rock.

    And for Gillian, how nice to have a 'celebration of life.' That's how it should be.

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  14. Congratulations!!!! I would be bragging too! What a nice spread!

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  15. Oh Cathy, what a heart-warming story! I love, love, love your short stories. Please put them all together in a book someday soon!

    karen

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  16. Whoa, congrats!!! Brag away!

    I'm very sorry to hear about Gillian Brunette.

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  17. Stellar graphic art and fiction unite! (Now there's a dream.) Incredible achievement... well done, lass.

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  18. Congratulations Cathy, I'm doing here a happy dance for you!

    Evalina, This and that...

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  19. Congratulations Cathy - that looks terrific and it's wonderful to see your story in print! ^_^

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  20. Beautifully done Cathy! And if you can't brag to your blog family, who can you brag too? Well done!! The graphics/ lay out are especially nice, and seeing your name in print? Amazing.

    Also, I am so very sorry about the loss of your friend. Cancer is the "C" word I don't ever like to speak. It's claimed way too many of my friends and family members to give voice to it.

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  21. Congrats, Cathy! Woohoo! It's beautiful-looking.

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  22. Staid overnight in Nipissing on the way to and from Alaska.
    the Ol'Buzzard

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