When I started going over my book trailer making resources, I realized Richard Byrne had already compiled the information. And his printable guide is pretty, too.
There are great resources for free video editing/creation1, general Creative Commons resources2, CC Audio3, CC Images4, and CC Video5. The resources I found are below, but definitely check out Richard’s guide.
So what do I have to say about making your own book trailer? It’s more of a plea.
Keep It Short
It’s a trailer, not a whole movie. Get me to want to read the book, not feel like I’ve already read it.
No Star Wars Crawl
Slapping huge blocks of text into a PowerPoint and adding occasional pictures does not make me want to sit through a whole trailer, much less read your book. Use few words and choose them well.
Keep It Legal
When you’re choosing your music and images, make sure you have permission to use them. Look into the available Creative Commons resources. Because it would suck to lose any profits on your book in a lawsuit for using 15 seconds of a U2 song.
Get More Eyes on It
You spent a lot of time and effort making your book the best it could be. And then after talking to your beta readers and critique partners and editor, you changed it. Consider doing the same with your trailer.
Know Your Limits
You don’t have to be a professional to make a great book trailer. One of my favorite examples of this is made by an 11 year old girl.
Did you watch through the credits?
Grace didn’t just act in the trailer and direct it. She wrote the script. And she composed and performed the music. Because Grace is amazing.
But maybe video editing doesn’t fall within the range of your expertise. Or you don’t have time. Or you just don’t wanna. That’s fine. When/If I get published, I will be paying someone to make my book trailer.
I like to think of it as helping the economy.
5Free Creative Commons Video www.archive.org/movies