Becoming a book trailer addict

Book trailers are a lot of fun, bringing a new and more visual element to the works of fiction and non-fiction. And there’s certainly a precedent thanks to the movie business. I don’t know about you, but I’m hooked on watching movie trailers. I will head over to yahoo movies or trailer addict and check out what’s coming up. In some cases, the trailers might be better than the movies! There is certainly an art to them. Of course, for a writer, the trailers also offer a dose of inspiration because one gets to dip into several stories and come away with what’s most exciting about them.

A trailer boils a movie down to its core elements. Book trailers aren’t quite on the same level, perhaps, but they are still a lot of fun to watch.

One of my favorites is the trailer for LEVIATHAN by Scott Westerfeld. This is more of a Young Adult novel, but it has some wonderfully inventive steampunk and World War I elements.

For a more “homemade” trailer, you might check out the SHIVER trailer over at Maggie Stiefvater’s site. Looks like it was put together in her writing studio, which adds to its charm.

Recently, I decided to create a couple of book trailers of my own. My budget is considerably smaller than Westerfeld’s, I’m sure, so in the spirit of DIY I thought I would give it a whirl with a little help from Corel.

The result was a trailer for WINTER SNIPER and DELMARVA LEGENDS AND LORE. I used a somewhat different approach for each one. I’m happy with how they both turned out, but I will let you be the judge.

If a trailer generates a bit of interest in one of the books, that’s all to the better. I think they do capture, visually, some of the excitement in the books. For DELMARVA LEGENDS AND LORE there is the excitement of discovering local history. WINTER SNIPER is more about the thrill of the story surrounding a plot to assassinate General Eisenhower. I used text and images to capture some of that.

Ultimately, of course, I hope that someone might be curious enough to pick up one of the books and give it a read. DELMARVA LEGENDS AND LORE is available only in print from History Press, while WINTER SNIPER is an ebook from Intracoastal.

Both books are for very different markets and very different readership. Yet I think the “stories” they contain are visually exciting enough for a book trailer.

One by one, as I get time, I will try to create trailers for my other books. It’s just one more job that authors have to take on these days, I suppose, but it does help one think about the visual story at the core of a novel or nonfiction book.

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