AJAs 2018 Finalists


Date Aired or Published April 25, 2018
Media outlet where first aired or published: Atlantic Books Today
Name of Program:
If co-produced, list partner:
Location: Halifax
List awards, grants:
Running time (TV/Radio):

Short explanation of the story and how it developed:

The story was a look at the status of independent bookstores in Atlantic Canada, showing that counter to popular belief, the small bookstore is far from dead. If anything, they are booming, with several new ones opening in the past year, as community hubs. Book retail entrepreneurs are finding creative ways to do things Amazon and Chapters can't, particularly as creative community hubs and gathering spots for the literary minded. We needed an image that was emblematic of that business model. Enter Sheree Fitch, beloved children's author with a unique business model for her colourful, beautiful store in remote River John, Mabel Murple's Book Shoppe and Dreamery, named and envisioned after her popular children's book character. The store, photographed by Sarah Baker-Forward on its opening day, provided the perfect image for our story and spring issue.

Resources of the newsroom (money and time) available to complete the story:

It was a fairly seamless process; Sheree Fitch was thrilled to have her store featured and provided the image. Baker-Forward was also pleased to have her work featured. Our managing editor and designer looked through several hundred photos of the store taken on the day of its grand opening, as well as at photos of other independent bookstores featured in our story. The one we chose jumped out and fit beautifully with our overall cover lines for the issue and proved a universal choice with our cover committee.

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