2013 Five Best Things on Widbook – By Jr. Bellé
Several events happened this year inside Widbook‘s clouds: many books rained, tools struck like lightning, and a literary sun shown its outline beyond the mountains of letters and pixels. I have read at least three Widbooks every week. I was awake, watching this break of dawn, so I can attest to the fact that the quality of works is improving by stellar measures. There is no certainty on my Top 5 List below, it was a subjective judgment guided my experience on the site, my perusal of its writers and chats with other readers. I ranked my two favorite new tools, the author who I most enjoyed reading, and two books, one in poetry, one in prose.
New layout and new shelves
Everything is working better on Widbook. The team is working hard to fix problems and create new tools and features. They are also improving what was already working well, as is the situation of the Home Page. Now it’s better organized, less chaotic and more dynamic, with the “Suggestions” shelf. You should try to personalize it. The “Top Writers” shelf is another nice idea, even though it still needs to be improved, especially regarding disclosure of criteria, or perhaps criteria is a tool that could be slightly customized.
The first method of rating was decidedly simple: five stars, you pick how many the book deserves. But that was not enough. Now we have four categories to complete: creativity, content, layout and cover. These details matter. Now authors can gain better insight into what is good and what is bad in the book. Now readers can easily find nice works. The “Curated Rating” is also a good new tool. We know about the subjectivity that surround an analysis of a book, but a qualified view of a work has massive potential to encourage new writers.
Best Poetry Book: Awakening, by Ajay Shukla
The poetic piece by Ajay Shuka from India, the book “Awakening”, was the best book of poetry that I read on Widbook in 2013. An observation: side by side with “Leaving the Picture” by Zoran Zlavic, Shukla wrote a sort of narrative poetry, a hard and tricky genre, and did a great job. It is sensitive and the poet shows mastery in dealing with the sources and challenges of poetry. It’s a long book, so take a breath and enjoy every page.
I read many really good books on Widbook this year, so the decision was not simple. I finally picked one of the most easy books to read, funny, graceful and well-narrated. “Mars Inc.” is not that long, 67 pages, and most of them can make you laugh. Angus used a simple story to build deep characters that made the book strong. I really recommend it.
Best Author: Zoran Slavic
He has 15 published books, six of them on Widbook. His prose is strong, but in my view, his poetry is the best of his literature. Gabriela Loschi (PR Manager and Editor at Widbook) interviewed Zoran in August, when his book “Leaving the Picture” was chosen as Book of the Week. This book was written in 1996, but only in April 2013 was published it here on Widbook. I spent a nice time reading this guy in 2013, and I hope I can read more and more in 2014.
By Junior Bellé. Bellé is a Brazilian journalist and Widbook curator, who has been writing on Widbook’s blog weekly in 2013 with tips and tools to help your writing.