SCRATCH online gets facelift

SCRATCH magazine has been publishing Columbia Basin youth writings and more for 10 years, and has now relaunched its website to suit 2012.

After 10 years of publication, Columbia Basin Trust is re-launching SCRATCH magazine’s online presence just in time for the second issue of the year to hit the streets.Michelle d’Entremont, SCRATCH editor, said the new interactive website launched on October 16 and budding writers will have new challenges and opportunities handed to them. “That website was kind of out of date and wasn’t really working,” d’Entremont said. “Websites these days are definitely a key contact point.”Now the new website is cleaner and has removed the account features to be in step with modern technology. SCRATCH is now providing more guidelines for youth who would like to submit something, but aren’t really sure what to write about or photograph. “We put together some more structured writing prompts,” d’Entremont said. Now youth will be asked to submit a collection of three photos, which d’Entremont hopes will get them thinking more about their photosgraphy. “We get so many photos, it’s fabulous,” she said. SCRATCH magazine is available in print and online. It has always been in PDF form, but is now in a new fancy 3D edition that can be flipped through, zoomed in on and read like a real magazine. The magazine has come from humble beginnings. It was born out of Columbia Basin Trust’s annual youth conferences when the attendees asked for a forum to have their voices heard and their work published. “they wanted an opportunity where they could share and have a tool to connect with each other,” d’Entremont said. SCRATCH was the result of the discussions had at a youth conference 10 years ago. The first 10 issues were printed in newsprint. There are two editions a year printed, and although d’Entremont holds the title of editor, youth go through the many submissions to select which pieces get printed in the magazine. The youth are paid for their submissions and d’Entremont hands out invaluable feedback and works with each writer to improve their craft. “Those young writers get a really great experience,” she said. “This gives them a chance to have a real working experience outside their education.”The age group is usually age 14 to 29 years old, and d’Entremont said the younger end of the scale are big on submitting poetry. “It definitely provides an opportunity for them to work on something they’re passionate about,” she said. One of the biggest draw for the youth submitting their work is seeing their name in print – and then the paycheque that follows. “We see and hear the excitement when they get published,” d’Entremont said, adding that it’s not all about the youth, either. “People of all ages get a chance to see what youth in the Basin are passionate and caring about.”The latest edition is being printed right now, and will hit the streets next week. It features updates from the projects started at this year’s youth conference that was held in Kimberley in May. “I’m always excited to get a new issue,” d’Entremont said. Information about SCRATCH and the online edition is available online at cbt.org/scratch/. Visit the CBT Youth Facebook page for more.

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