Happy Monday!!!  Hope the weekend was fun. 

Today’s post is about book trailers.  YouTube is full of them…all designed, supposedly, to make you WANT to read a particular book.    But, I have found that most of the trailers I see fall short of that goal.  So I thought I would talk about what makes a GREAT book trailer…

For me, making a trailer is a great lesson in understanding the emotional aspects of your book, forcing you to pinpoint one of the major emotional elements present in the voice of your book.  The trailer, then, should be designed to pull that same feeling from the viewer, compelling them to rush out and read the book.

Let’s say you wrote an action-packed, fast paced YA novel.  You’ve identified terror as a major “feeling” element in the book.  The trailer should utilize music and pictures that, when woven together, pull that same emotion from the viewer.

Okay, now that you’ve identified the major feeling you want your trailer to represent, you now need to fnd the elements – music, visual effects, words – that will develop that emotion for the viewer.  This part is a lot like painting…you need to layer the elements together, creating in multi-media format what you created with words in your book.  Take a look at this one, and you’ll see what I mean…

Don’t you just want to read the book now.  Okay, so this trailer was done professionally,but similar results can be accomplished on a DIY basis with a little hard work and a LOT of time.

Windows Movie Maker will provide the basic movie making software.  You will need to find material that does not violate copywrite laws.  This can prove to be tricky.  However, creative commons licences often enable you to use a large variety of music and pictures as long as appropriate credit is given.

A few other points to keep in mind:

  • Pay attention to the music.  This was the hardest part for me.  I utilized Shockwaves.com and paid for the music in my trailer.  It cost a little more, but the result was well worth it.
  • Play around with the effects of your pictures and the speed at which they flash across the screen.  Use these things to match the pacing of your story.
  • Keep the overall time of the trailer right around 60 to 90 seconds.  Think of it like a commercial.
  • Be creative – it is okay to be a bit theatrical, as long as the feelings match those of your book.
  • Make it as professional looking as you can.  This takes time – so be prepared to speed HOURS to make that 60 sec clip.
  • Once it is done and your happy with it, USE it.  What’s the point in taking the time if you aren’t going to use it.

And since this is about book trailers….here’s mine.  Enjoy…

So, have you made one?


One thought on “Marketing Monday: Book Trailers

  1. It’s interesting that you blogged about this today. I’ve been working on putting mine together. I’m writing the music for mine, and that should be done this week.


    I’ve started shooting some of the video for it, but piecing it together is a lot more complicated. Pulling out the emotions, using the correct phrases to get your point across. It’s almost as complicated as writing a query.

    Hopefully I’ll have mine done soon.

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