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National Magazine Award Finalists Unveiled

Sixty-six publications were nominated in 24 categories, and 26 magazines earned multiple nominations.

MAGAZINE OSCARS: The American Society of Magazine Editors unveiled its list of finalists for the 2014 National Magazine Awards, and the nominees were the usual suspects — although there were a few surprises. The gala, which will take place on May 1 at the New York Marriott Marquis, will honor 66 publications in 24 categories, including Magazine of the Year. Last year, that honor went to New York magazine, which is up for it again, and will vie for the title against The Atlantic, Bon Appétit, Esquire and Fast Company.

This story first appeared in the March 28, 2014 issue of WWD.  Subscribe Today.

Asked whether New York is more likely to be a one-hit wonder or the first magazine to repeat in the category, editor in chief Adam Moss chuckled, and added: “At this moment, honest to God, it’s just exciting to be in the final five.”

Perhaps that’s a bit of false modesty, as New York led all magazines with nine total nominations in categories such as General Interest Magazines, Design, Photography, Web Site and Reporting.

Moss said the breadth of nominations is what made him the proudest. “We will have a party afterwards, and win or lose, we get drunk,” he offered.

Following New York’s nine nominations were National Geographic, The New Yorker and Wired, each with six. Bon Appétit received five nominations, while GQ and Harper’s Magazine both received four.

Between ski runs on the slopes of Jackson Hole, Wyo., Bon App’s editor in chief Adam Rapoport said he, too, would “get really drunk” with his team, but only if his magazine takes home awards. Last year, the food-centric title was nominated for six but didn’t bring any home.

Other notable nominees included GQ, Harper’s Magazine, National Geographic, New York and Wired for General Interest. Essence, Glamour, Martha Stewart Living, Real Simple and Sunset will battle it out for Service and Lifestyle.

For Design, honorees include Bon Appétit, Esquire, Martha Stewart Living, New York and Wired, while Style and Design magazine nominees were AFAR, Bon Appétit, Garden & Gun, Harper’s Bazaar and W.

Nominees for best reporting included The Atavist for “The Sinking of the Bounty,” by Matthew Shaer; Harper’s Magazine for “The Way of All Flesh,” by Ted Conover; The New York Times Magazine for “The Dream Boat,” by Luke Mogelson; The New Yorker for “The River Martyrs,” also by Mogelson; Outside for “Nineteen,” by Kyle Dickman; Rolling Stone for “Jahar’s World,” by Janet Reitman, and The Texas Observer for its two-part series by Emily DePrang called “Crimes Unpunished” and “The Horror Every Day.”

Photography nominees included Bon Appétit, National Geographic, New York, Vogue and W.

Although 26 magazines received multiple nominations, there were some newbies. On the digital side, first-timers included The Atavist for Multimedia, Video and Reporting; The Daily Beast for Multimedia; Pitchfork for Web Site; Slate for Web Site and Columns and Commentary; Tablet Magazine for Columns and Commentary, and The Verge for Video.

For print, first-time finalists included The Hollywood Reporter, Landscape Architecture and Pacific Standard for General Excellence; Modern Farmer for General Excellence and Magazine Section; Road & Track for Magazine Section, and The Verge for Video.

Janice Min, editorial director of The Hollywood Reporter, said that the nomination was “a very pleasant surprise,” considering the trade publication’s “short three-year turnaround.”

Part of Min’s focus has been to broaden THR’s audience so that the magazine could sit with consumer magazines, and the editor said ASME’s nomination reflects that evolution. Either way, Min said she’s just happy that the media community has recognized a publication that’s 3,000 miles away.

“I’ve sat through a lot of awards shows. I’m just going to show up,” Min said, adding that she’ll try not to “make any faces” when the winner is ultimately revealed — a trick she’s learned from all those years in Hollywood, one would presume.

Then there’s Joanna Coles’ Cosmopolitan, which proves that good things come to those who wait. The magazine received its first ASME nomination in 25 years, which came in the Personal Service category for the story “The Cosmo Guide to Contraception.” The article is up against stories from GQ, for its guide to dating (perhaps there should be an online link to the Cosmo story?); Money; Health; Los Angeles, and Southern Living.