Manitoba Moods

My singularly favourite professional project that I am most proud of is Manitoba Moods Magazine. It was published for three years under Ed Schreyer’s NDP Administration in the early 1970s.

The idea of doing such a thing had been perking in the back of my mind for several years already while living in Lincoln, Nebraska where I edited Nebraskaland Magazine. That was a good job, but I longed to be back in my home province.

One night, while talking with my father-in-law Ed Dowling about my dream, he asked:

“What are you going to call it?”

“Manitoba Moods,” I said without hesitation.

I went to the kitchen to find an empty corn flakes box and began cutting out letters for the title. That’s how it started.

Within the year I was up in Winnipeg being interviewed by Ken Goldstein, Schreyer’s Executive Assistant. I was plugged into the Tourist Branch with a new title they found for me – Supervisor of Creative Publications. My boss, Samia Friesen, brought news from the Premier’s office that the magazine had been given green light.

My staff and I put it out quarterly. There were three writers – Vic Pasta, Jill Hames and Laurie Redman. The three photographers were Colin Hay, Cory Kilvert and Simon Popov, a new Canadian from Russia. We worked hard and partied often, not caring what our superiors might think.

The magazine fell victim to politics. In a mid-70s election, Conservative Sterling Lyon became the new Premier. His platform had been cutbacks. Manitoba Moods was seen by his advisors as a frivolous expense and was killed.

Something inside me died as well so I quit the job. That was the best magazine Manitobans ever saw.

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