Session Sneak Peek: Jeannette Hanna on Branding

Brand strategist Jeannette Hanna literally co-wrote the book on branding in Canada. Ikonica tells the story of Canada thorough the evolution of its brands, from the Hudson’s Bay Company to Canadian Tire. And Jeannette ought to know what she’s talking about: she’s been helping Canadian brands succeed since her early days as founding partner in a top Toronto design firm.

Today, Jeannette and her longtime partners run Trajectory, a new firm that brings together brand strategy and design to help organizations and clients engage with their audience to find success — whether it’s an NGO, a big business, a small start-up, or a municipal government. Trajectory’s client roster includes the Art Gallery of Ontario, the Scotiabank Giller Prize, and the Toronto Pan Am Games.

We tend to attribute the word “brand” to the packaging, advertising, and selling of things. It’s a Mad Men pitch, right? Well, it’s not quite so simple.

“There is good reason to rail against the manipulative, uber-consumption ethos that many product brands have tried to cultivate in the past,” says Jeannette.

“Brand is one of those ‘catch-all’ terms, like design or innovation, that has become so ambiguous that it’s a barrier to communication rather than an asset.”

But once you’ve cleared that barrier, brand is a conversation about value, about ideas and relationships that are deeply rooted in a culture.

“The need to have a sense of purpose in business that guides decisions at all levels — how to treat employees, the nature of products and services that you provide, how engaged (or not) the enterprise is in its communities and its social responsibility — is not fatuous. That’s the brand narrative that matters, whether you’re a bank, a barbershop, or even an editor.”

In her session, Jeannette will talk not only about your brand as an editor, but how you can contribute to the engaging work of brand strategy, design, and implementation.

“We are in the midst of a fascinating new age of cross-media publishing which holds enormous possibilities for the profession. Editors need to actively promote their value in this rapidly evolving ecosystem,” says Jeannette. “I hope the conversation will spark some compelling brand possibilities for participants.”

Jeannette Hanna’s session “Do You Speak Brand? Learning to Love the Lingo!” is on Sunday, June 8, at 10:15 AM. Register for Tracking Change: e-Merging Methods and Markets to join in the conversation.

Senior Editors: These Sessions Are for You!

Editors come to the EAC conference each spring with different skills and varying levels of editing experience. This weekend-long event offers dozens of sessions on a wide range of topics, whether you’re a novice editor or a seasoned veteran.

This year we have six exciting professional development sessions for senior editors that are sure to improve your already-stellar skills. We consider senior editors to be editors who have experience in the topic or the background to discuss a new topic at a higher level. Editors who have already mastered the fundamentals will find these sessions informative, challenging, and sure to incite some “a-ha” moments.

In Subcontracting: Options, Opportunities, and Risks, moderator Michelle Boulton leads a discussion on partnering with other freelancers, specifically focusing on how to get started and how to manage your new business model successfully. Panellists Elizabeth Macfie and Elizabeth d’Anjou reflect on their experiences and share their knowledge.

Working as an in-house managing editor? Need a little help staying organized? Then this session is for you. Brooke Smith moderates Working as an In-house Managing Editor, and Robert Steckling and Tracy Torchetti provide insight into how to address work-related challenges and keep sane.

In Unconference: The Senior Editor’s Roundtable, Iva Cheung moderates a free-flowing, information-sharing discussion, where everyone is welcome to contribute. The Saturday session provides an opportunity for editors to pitch ideas about a topic to discuss in depth on Sunday. This session is not to be missed!

Editors often work alone, so when collaboration is needed, we may find it a bit challenging. Christine Hastie discusses five ways people can work together and six factors that determine success. Join her at Collaboration: A Key to Success in the Publication Process and learn how to become a valuable contributor to team projects.

Rosemary Shipton, Sue Earl, and Tammy Burns discuss the changes in editorial services, including tighter schedules and fewer phases of editing, in Dirty Editing: The Collapsing Editorial Process. This in-depth session will focus on how the changes affect editors, the quality of our work, and the future of publishing and communication.

Ever have to edit material that can’t be marked-up? In Advanced Acrobatics: Tips and Tricks for PDF Mark-up, Adrienne Montgomerie takes attendees into the world of technology and demonstrates how to mark-up just about anything, be it via a Mac, a PC, or even a tablet.

We’ve got something for all senior editors at Conference 2014 — Tracking Change: e-Merging Methods and Markets. Our sessions will provide you with helpful information and a chance to mingle and network with your colleagues, so be sure to join us for these great professional development opportunities!

Literary Toronto and the Luminato Festival

Toronto is a city that’s never at a loss for words. Residents enjoy a lively literary scene — everything from poetry slams in dimly lit pubs to the glitzy, star-studded Book Lover’s Ball — and many of Canada’s most accomplished and celebrated authors call the city home.

Toronto has also attracted literary legends such as Oscar Wilde, Charles Dickens, Mark Twain, Sylvia Plath, and Ernest Hemingway over the last 150 years. For an in-depth look at literary Toronto (plus inspiration for walking tours), check out Greg Gatenby’s hefty tome, Toronto: A Literary Guide.

There is also a wealth of literature set in Toronto. Margaret Atwood has written several books with scenes in the city and within different decades. Alias Grace, for example, is set in the mid-1800s in the suburb of Richmond Hill. Michael Ondaatje’s In the Skin of a Lion, with its details about immigrant workers and the construction of landmarks such as the Prince Edward Viaduct, is set in Toronto circa 1924. Contemporary authors, including Andrew Pyper, Richard Wright, Dionne Brand, Carol Shields, Helen Humphreys, Kim Moritsugu, Robert J. Sawyer, and Sarah Dearing, have also set stories in this metropolis. Check out the Toronto Public Library’s website for a list of books divided by time period.

Speaking of libraries, Toronto has one of the busiest urban public library systems in the world: 19 million people visit its branches, and collectively borrow 32 million items each year. The Toronto Public Library’s economic impact on the city is as high as $1 billion annually. Toronto’s libraries are hubs for their communities, offering everything from ESL classes and entrepreneurship workshops to the occasional rock concert, comic arts festival, or film screening.

Toronto is also fortunate to host prominent literary events each year such as the International Festival of Authors, Scotiabank Giller Light Bash, and The Word On The Street. The city is also home to a wide range of writers’ groups and, of course, EAC’s Toronto branch!

Additionally, you are arriving in Toronto right at the start of the cultural event of the year: Luminato is Toronto’s Festival of Arts and Creativity. This annual 10-day celebration runs June 6 to 15 and takes place in venues across the city. Many of the events are free. For updates and listings, including music, visual arts, literary and educational events, visit the Luminato website.

Where to Eat and Workout near the Conference Venue

Enjoy the city’s culinary delights, from street eats to fine dining. Here are some of the options near the conference venue, listed by price range. (For more options, visit NOW Magazine’s guide or download the iPhone app — choose “Downtown” as the neighbourhood.)

$

Fran’s

This 1950s-style diner at Victoria and Shuter (just across the street from Li Ka Shing) is a Toronto institution. Choose from breakfast platters, “franwiches,” soups, and much more.

Urban Eatery

You don’t usually hear “food court” and “swanky” together, but the Toronto Eaton Centre has really upped its game with Urban Eatery, which is located on the lower level. This sprawling food court has the usual suspects like McDonald’s and Sbarro, but you’ll also find gems like Amaya the Indian Room, Urban Herbivore (vegetarian), Mucho Burrito, Liberty Noodle, and Big Smoke Burger.

Druxy’s

Druxy’s is the place for big salads with lots of stuff in them. It’s also famous (self-reported) for its delicious (verified) deli-style sandwiches. Just walk south on Victoria to Queen Street.

Mutual Street Deli

This mom-and-pop diner at Dundas and Mutual is no-frills but friendly. It nails the classics, like breakfast platters, hamburgers, and Reubens, and the prices are a steal.

Cool coffee shops

There are about a dozen Starbucks within walking distance of Li Ka Shing, but if you want a more refined brew, head to Rise Espresso at Dundas and Mutual, Balzac’s on Gould Street (in Ryerson’s Image Arts Building), Panera at Yonge and Gould, or Dineen Coffee Co. on Yonge near Adelaide.

Booster Juice

If you’re running late, why not grab a double wheatgrass Sonic Soy with a Warrior booster? Just a three minute walk from the conference venue.

Street food

Grab a $3 hot dog from the beloved cart at Ryerson University on Gould Street, or keep an eye out for Toronto’s trendy new food trucks, which offer everything from cupcakes and coffee to smoked-meat sandwiches and poutine (and we love their names: Fidel Gastro’s, Rome’n Chariot, and Mike’s Dog House, to name a few). There’s even an iPhone app to track their locations.

Ramen

Toronto is crazy for ramen: bowls filled with steaming, salty pork-bone soup, chewy noodles, slices of pork, and assorted toppings. This Japanese comfort food is available at Santouka (Dundas, west of Church), Raijin (Yonge and Gerrard), Kenzo (Dundas west of Bay), and Sansotei (Dundas, west of Chestnut). Lineups are common at Santouka and Sansotei.

$$

The Senator

The conference venue is just a block away from Toronto’s oldest restaurant. This old-school diner is a popular place to have brunch, lunch, and dinner. The New York Times recently gave the restaurant’s revamped dinner service a rave review.

The Pickle Barrel

There’s something for everyone at this fun restaurant, near Yonge and Dundas at the Atrium on Bay. We love the brunch platters, but you’ll also find lunch and dinner fare, plus a menu of health-conscious selections by Rose Reisman. Pickle Barrel also offers a gluten-free menu.

Golden Thai

Head south on Church Street to find this beautiful gem of a restaurant, with its enticing flavours, extensive menu, and efficient service. Go for the lunch specials — the portions are generous, and the priciest option is still under $11.

Nami

This Japanese restaurant on Adelaide, just west of Church Street, stands out among Toronto’s many sushi joints because of its Robata Bar, or grill, but you can also enjoy sushi, hot pots, and more.

$$$

Papillon on Front

Casual French dining, about a 10-minute walk from the conference venue. Enjoy classics such as French onion soup and Crêpes Bretonnes, plus steak, duck, seafood, and pasta dishes.

The Sultan’s Tent

Enjoy the Moroccan cuisine, the exotic décor, and (awesome!) entertainment from belly dancers.

La Bettola di Terroni

The food and wine are simply divine at La Bettola, located at Victoria and Adelaide (south of the conference venue). Dine on antipasti, salads, pizzas, and more.

Trevor Kitchen and Bar

This (literal) underground hot spot on Wellington, west of Church Street, is a modern bistro with creative dishes like lobster and prawn spaghettini in cognac and chive sauce, and truffled goat cheese poutine with seared foie gras.

And in case you enjoy the Toronto fare just a bit too much, we’ve got your workout needs covered. Check out these nearby gyms to keep your abs tight and your heart pumping.

Pantages Hotel. If you have a room at the Pantages, of course you should use its swanky, complimentary fitness centre. Sneak us in, too, OK? Directions.

The Yoga Sanctuary. This popular yoga studio is a few blocks north on Yonge Street. The 10-minute walk is a nice warm-up before you land at this ultra-zen, third-floor studio. (Do you need yoga pants? Stop at Winners across the street, on College.) Drop-in sessions are $18. When’s savasana? Directions.

The Yoga Lounge. This studio at 103 Church Street, just a few blocks south of the conference venue, specializes in tension-melting hot yoga. Enjoy the spa-like atmosphere and emerge totally relaxed. Drop-in classes are $20. Directions.

GoodLife Fitness. If you prefer a classic workout with treadmills and weight machines, GoodLife is the chain of choice across the city. Directions. (Shortcut: cut through Toronto Eaton Centre to avoid exerting yourself on your way to the gym.) There’s another massive GoodLife at Yonge and Dundas, and another on Yonge just south of Richmond. All locations offer group classes.

Session Sneak Peek: David Hayes on Planning

Few of us plan our careers on passion alone. From an early age we’re taught to put together a plan, with detailed steps and milestones, to help us achieve our career and business goals—the infamous “5-year plan.” But imagine letting go of everything you’ve been taught, changing to a strategy of no long-term planning, and still achieving most, if not all, of your goals.

David Hayes, an accomplished and award-winning journalist, author, editor, and professor, has implemented what he calls a “No-Year Plan” for his highly successful and diverse career. David has written articles, essays, and reviews for well-known publications, including Toronto Life, Report on Business magazine, The New York Times Magazine, Reader’s Digest, Chatelaine, and so many more. He has also written, ghost-written, and edited numerous books, and in his role as a long-time journalism instructor, he has shared his knowledge to help others achieve their goals. Yet David will explain that he’s created this successful career without ever having a detailed strategy. He’s left himself open to take advantage of opportunities that he might otherwise have passed over, and as a result, he enjoys a fulfilling and ever-evolving career path.

Join David at the EAC Conference 2014—Tracking Change: e-Merging Methods and Markets on June 7 as he shares his outside-the-box perspective about planning.

Extending the Conference Experience

Conference 2014 is quickly approaching, with the early-bird deadline to register only days away. Besides providing the chance to see and hear the wonderful and informative guest speakers presenting this year, the conference also offers members the opportunity to exchange ideas and rub shoulders with other editors, while having fun in the exciting, vibrant city of Toronto.

There are, of course, a number of things to consider before the conference in June.

  • Unsure how to get to T.O.? One of the great things about Toronto is that you can arrive by air or by land. We have detailed information on the various means and packages available to arrive on time and in comfort from anywhere in the country.
  • Need a place to stay? Want that homey feel, complete with all the modern conveniences? Through our Beds for Eds program, local editors kindly offer to open their homes to welcome colleagues arriving from other parts of the province or country. Or would you prefer a statelier abode, one with room service? Whatever your preference, we’ve got you covered. Check out our accommodation recommendations, complete with a list of hotels in all price ranges, as well as contact info for those Toronto editors who are happy to billet a colleague.
  • Don’t know anyone at the conference? First time? Link up with a “conference buddy” and connect with other editors in small, informal groups. Make sure to sign up soon so you can learn more about connecting with each other prior to the conference. Once you’re in Toronto, you’ll meet regularly with your “buddy” to review the day’s events, impressions, etc.
  • Hungry for food and awards? We have many social events to keep you more than satisfied. To start, George Elliott Clark, poet laureate of Toronto, will open the conference reception with an overview of the role of editing in poetry. Also on the menu is the EAC Awards Banquet, where editors will be honoured for their great work and contributions to the art and science of editing, as well as their voluntary efforts to promote good writing.
  • Looking to broaden your experience during your trip to Toronto? Ontario’s capital city is a vibrant metropolis that offers a sophisticated urban environment with the small-town feel of distinctive neighbourhoods. Check out the EAC Toronto Experience page to find out more about the rich and rewarding experiences that await you!

Shop ’Til You Drop

Shopaholics, we hope you brought an extra suitcase—Toronto has an embarrassment of riches when it comes to covetable goods. While in Toronto for the 2014 EAC Conference, check out these shopping hot spots:

Toronto Eaton Centre

That would be the mega-sized shopping mall just west of the conference venue (just take Shuter Street to Yonge Street). The mall stretches from Queen Street to Dundas Street (it’s book-ended by subway stations) and has hundreds of stores offering fashion, shoes, beauty products, gadgets, and much, much more. Check out Urban Eatery, the massive food court on the lower level, for tasty multicultural eats, and browse the shop directory to see all the great shopping options.

Queen Street West

Take the Queen streetcar west—it’s a great ride if you want to see the city, but it’s also your shuttle to great shopping. You can get off a few stops past Bathurst and walk back. You’ll find loads of indie boutiques featuring all manner of gift-worthy goodies, plus artisanal bakeries, gourmet burger joints and hipster coffee shops. The closer you get to the Eaton Centre, the more chain stores you’ll see (like H&M, Zara, and the Gap). Check out the shop list before going so you don’t miss anything!

Yorkville and Bloor Street

Shop with the rich and famous! A hippie haven in the sixties, Yorkville is now a glossy hot spot featuring shops, restaurants, and high-end salons. It’s not all designer goods—I love the quirky gift shop Rolo (24 Bellair) and munching on panini sandwiches at Lettieri (Bellair and Cumberland), where the patio is perfect for people-watching, in a neighbourhood where people go to be seen. To get to Yorkville, take the subway to Bay Station, or walk west on Queen or Dundas to Bay Street and take the bus north to Bloor. For more information on the area and its shops, check out Yorkville and Bloor online.

Chinatown and Kensington Market

For seriously fun shopping, walk or take the Queen or Dundas streetcar west to Spadina and troll the shops of Chinatown. You’ll find everything from kitchenware to jewelry (plus, of course, pastries and all-day dim sum). Head a little farther west into Kensington Market, one of Toronto’s storied neighbourhoods. Home to a revolving door of immigrant groups over the decades, the market is now a humming, vibrant ’hood offering multicultural foods, vintage clothing, handcrafted gifts, furniture, and much more.