One of this province’s best-known freelance arts journalists now has a permanent gig at Memorial.
St. John’s-native Joan Sullivan is the new editor of the venerable Newfoundland Quarterly, which is owned by the university and operates as a separately incorporated entity. She replaced Dr. Linda Whalen in January.
Ms. Sullivan is a well-regarded journalist with more than 20 years of experience. Her work has appeared in a number of publications including the Globe and Mail, the Telegram and the Current, and she has freelanced with CBC Radio.
She’s also a well-known member of the arts community in St. John’s as an actor, director and playwright, and is co-founder of the St. John’s theatre company The Open Actor’s Studio. She is also the author of Newfoundland Portfolio: A History in Portraits, which was published last August.
Ms. Sullivan said she’s delighted to join the Quarterly and is looking forward to her work with the publication.
“It is really the only thing like it in Newfoundland where you have a magazine and you have creative control, it’s really a thrill,” she said earlier this month. “The mission statement of the original publisher, John Evans, was to have a really good literary magazine of interest to Newfoundlanders at home and abroad and I think that’s a really good definition of what we’re still doing all these years later.”
The Quarterly has been in publication since 1901 and is one of this country’s oldest magazines.
Ms. Sullivan started her writing career as a student journalist at the Muse and is now completing her bachelor of arts degree. She said part of her goal is to increase the profile of the publication which currently has a circulation of roughly 3,000 copies per issue all the while featuring top-notch stories and photography.
“I would like to see the content become a bit more professional,” she noted. “I’ll do more writing, for example, and it will probably be more of a journalistic feature magazine. Getting our subscriptions up is definitely high up on the priority list. I think it’s a matter of getting people to know we’re here.”
Exploring this province’s rich and diverse history will continue to be a backbone to the Quarterly, added Ms. Sullivan who hopes to get more writers involved in the publication including Lisa Moore, Ed Riche and Wayne Johnston.
“The history of this place is the real anchor of the magazine,” she said.
The Newfoundland Quarterly is published four times a year. The magazine is currently in the midst of a subscription drive. All new and gift subscriptions, as well as all renewals or extensions, are eligible for a draw of an original oil painting by artist Jean Claude Roy to take place March 31, 2007. To learn more about the magazine, including its subscription rates, visit www.newfoundlandquarterly.ca.