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Henry M. Robert

Den’s new book is among 400 nominees

How the best books will be chosen at the Forum of Publishers
7 September, 2017 - 09:41
Bohdan TYKHOLOZ

The 24th Forum of Publishers in Lviv is less than a week away. The preparation for this book fest is in full swing. In particular, the jury is racking its brains over how to fairly choose favorites out of the presented books in the traditional competition “The Best Book of Forum 2017.” There are also some innovations – this year’s contest has an updated concept of which the jury’s executive secretary Bohdan TYKHOLOZ told The Day:

“In the previous years, there was a big jury consisting of several dozens of people of various walks of life, such as academics, public activists, journalists, etc. They selected best book candidates. Then experts short-listed the candidates. Their opinion was representative, above all, for Lviv because most of them were residents of this city. There were sometimes complaints about the jury’s Lviv bias, when the publishing houses that emerged victorious were mostly from Lviv and the themes of publications were often connected with that city. In other words, there was only a western view of book publishing. I don’t know if this is bad, for the Forum of Publishers is held, after all, in Lviv. In all probability, it is no accident either. In a way, Lviv did for a long time and still does enjoy the status of Ukraine’s book capital.

“However, to achieve greater impartiality, we’ve changed the format of choosing the best books. This was also done to transform the very method of choosing winners from a purely statistical format, when many people express their opinion and then a special computer program calculates, into a dialogical format, when it is possible to converse and analyze.

“From now on, the jury will consist of three smaller juries in different regions: Lviv, Kyiv, and Kharkiv. The three Ukrainian cities will represent the opinions of the west, the east, and the center. Obviously, there will be some differences, but I am sure there will also be many things in common. The juries will sit in a much narrower circle. There will be only eight experts in each city, who will represent various expert communities. A regional jury will include the chairperson, a book person, a science person, a person of art, a person of the word, a person of deed, a person of education, and a person of the city.

“In this shape, they will be considering the competing publications and then short-listing the favorite books of their cities. Jury members will show up for the final session in Lviv on the eve of the Forum opening. Winners of the contest ‘The Best Book of Forum 2017’ will be selected by way of a dialog and, if necessary, a vote.

“The books will be assessed in 15 nominations, with one winner in each of them. Besides, each city will award a mandatory special prize – the Book of the City.

“About 400 books have already been submitted for the competition. This number is at the level of the previous years, and the list of publication is quite representative,” Mr. Tykholoz points out.

It will be recalled that the 24th Forum of Publishers in Lviv will be held on September 13-17. As the book fair’s general informational partner, Den/The Day will be spotlighting its most interesting events. Our newspaper will present at the Forum its new book The Crown, or Heritage of the Rus’ Kingdom on September 15 at noon. One can also vote for the book, which will undoubtedly draw a wide response, right now by clicking http://bookforum.ua/books/korona-abo-spadshhyna-korolivstva-ruskogo/.

By Dmytro PLAKHTA, The Day, Lviv
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