Ah, the magazine cover. How we love the way you capture the consumer's attention. How we love critiquing the efforts of our competitors. And how we love the mixture of art and science often required to create a stunner. Well, undercover cover lovers rejoice, for The Maggies have been shipped in from the UK and entries for the inaugural New Zealand competition are now open.
Since its inception in the UK two years ago, the awards have proven to be extremely popular within the UK magazine industry and also with the hoi polloi, who eventually vote online to decide on the best covers. In the most recent awards (the supreme gong was won by a GQ cover featuring Sienna Miller), 40,000 consumers voted for their favourite, an increase of 33 percent on the 2009 event. And it is hoped that local publishers and the public will be similarly enthused.
The initiative is run by iSubscribe, the country's "number one online magazine and subscription company", and it's supported by the Magazine Publishers Association and StopPress. NZ Post are also onboard as the major sponsor (what don't those generous folks support?) and a television partner is also on the cards.
The categories include Fashion, Health and Beauty; Food and Wine; House and Garden; Lifestyle; Science, Technology and Nature; Specialist, Business and Trade; Sports; and Youth/Pop Culture. And you can enter your cover here. The covers that go on to be judged by the public (there are only 60 days to go until voting kicks off) will first be shortlisted by a panel of industry folks, including MPA big cheese John McClintock.
But it's not just about ego points. It's also for charity. The Maggies will be supporting Cure Kids, an organisation founded over 30 years ago to address the lack of research into life-threatening childhood diseases and conditions. Publishers will be encouraged to donate $200 for every entry and every member of the public who votes will receive a $5 voucher for a subscription. iSubscribe will then donate a further $1 out of its commission for every for every sub purchased with the voucher.
You can find out a little bit more about the event at www.themaggies.co.nz/publishers. And if you're in need of some inspiration, check out some of the winners from the UK competition in 2009 and 2010.
Hopefully the StopPress entry will find favour with the judges and receive plaudits from the public.