Every now and then, you come across an app that evokes mixed emotions. On one hand, the app is stunning in its simplicity, unique in its approach, and a pleasure to use.
On the other hand, there's some anxiety. Will it catch on well enough to stick around? Even the anxiety, though, speaks to the quality of the app: if you didn't love it, you wouldn't care about its future.
Blookist wants to tell your story. The problem, as I see it, is that most already do this with apps they already use. Facebook is a prime example. If you travel, or go to a particular event, and you want to share that experience, you just upload some photos to Facebook.
There are better ways, though, and Blookist is definitely one of them. Instead of surrounding your story with the clutter of other news stories, status updates, ads, games, and all the other things you're inundated with when you open Facebook, Blookist gives you a place to let your stories stand on their own. It gives them room to breathe. The result is refreshing, beautiful, simple.
The premise is simple, too: to create a 'blook,' start by adding a cover photo, some tags, and give your story a name. That will be your story's cover page. Next, move onto the next page, choosing either to add a photo or an article. If it's a photo, the drag-and-drop interface makes it easy to upload them. If an article, the writing prompt is a simple, all-white, fullscreen editor with no frills. Just enter a title and start writing.
Keep going until you've told your story with as many articles and photos as you'd' like.
When you're finished, publish the story. Each blook, when viewed, shows photos in fullscreen (or sometimes side-by-side), with the caption you entered. The articles, too, are given the same respect. Scroll through each page with your keyboard's arrow keys or with your mouse, swiping from left to right.
Of course, exploration must also be front and center. You can browse blooks from the homepage, either by most recent or in the (I'm assuming) editor-picked "interesting" section. In a pleasantly surprising twist to the exploration aspect of the service, you can subscribe to blooks you find interesting. If a story you're subscribed to is updated, you'll be notified, giving the service an immersive, real-time feel.
Again, whether Blookist takes off remains to be seen. Is there a market for it? The experience falls somewhere between Medium and Cowbird. Many apps of this ilk have fallen by the wayside. Some, though, take a very simple premise, find that it catches on, and it becomes a standard way of creating a particular type of narrative. Storify fits that mold perfectly.
So, will Blookist fall into the former or the latter category? Only time will tell, of course, but it certainly wouldn't hurt if you all signed up for Blookist, and, if you find it worthy, sing its praises.
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