I Made My Own Book Trailer!

Sara as a Publisher

It’s been a few weeks since the Phi Alpha Pi cover reveal and I wanted to share my experience making my own book trailer. Since the cover reveal, I’ve also made one for the first anniversary of Modern Persuasion.  Both trailers are at the end of this post.  Here’s what happened, what I’ve been learning, and what this means in the future.

Sara as a Publisher

Phi Alpha Pi’s Book Trailer

I’ve shared some of my frustrations with trying to find a book trailer videographer.  Those that made unique products charged a lot for very little and those that seemed reasonably priced and left me lacking with the uniqueness and appropriateness of their product.  There wasn’t any common ground and it was frustrating me.  Then I remembered two things: I did extensive video editing in High School thanks to the career path I wanted at the time AND I have a MacBook with iMovie!  I decided I would give it a try and see if I could make my own trailer.

First, I took the script and concept I had given to the person I had originally hired to make the trailer.  I knew what types of video and still shots that I wanted to be included. I used stock photo sites to find both images and videos.  I spent about $170 in total, but I’m creating a small library of content that I can use based on my needs.  I probably won’t need to spend that much again and I eventually expect to have the library I need when I want to make more trailers.  I was concerned about the copyright violations on music I planned on using.  I found music I liked, but it was very expensive and would probably get flagged on YouTube (which the music on the original Modern Persuasion trailer did).  I learned that YouTube has a MASSIVE collection of music that free to use and won’t be flagged.  I heard a lot of music that’s often used on the YouTube channels I like, so I know it’s common to use this music.

Learning iMovie was not as difficult as I thought it would be.  I’m still figuring it out, but laying out the clips and music was easy enough.  I struggled with the text over images/video.  There is also plenty I didn’t learn because I didn’t need it yet.  It was so simple to use, especially compared the “tech” we used when I was in high school.  In those days we had to do a lot more work to edit video and then there were star wipes.  Side note, I was tempted to put those in, but I’m saving them for a very specific book that takes place in the late 90s.

In case you didn’t see it at the time, here’s the Phi Alpha Pi book trailer:

Modern Persuasion’s New Book Trailer

I decided, to get more comfortable with iMovie, I would make another book trailer for Modern Persuasion.  Since it got a new cover, it needed a trailer that matched the cover.  This time, instead of buying images, I played with my Canva account and made a cute little graphic that I added the different lines of text too.  It gave me the chance to make a graphic with things I’ve already paid for and had at my disposal. The key being that I can make my own trailers on my own for no money or I can build a small library for future videos.

What does this mean for the future?  Obviously, I’m going to be making more book trailers for my books.  Look out for one about A Little More Modern Persuasion.  It’s a good chance for me to try new skills, especially since an audiobook is going to be in production soon and I have a horror story collection in development (Kraulaak!).

I also realized that, after years of watching YouTube like television, I’m ready to develop my own channel.  It might be the next phase of this blog!  I have a bunch of ideas and the next thing to do is make certain features to make the videos a bit more interesting. There is an idea for a series that I’ve been playing with that would work well as a video series.  For now, there are going to be some videos about my adventures in the world.  There’s the New Orleans trip, my next Miami trip, and anything else that happens through the rest of the year. I also think there will be some videos helping people learn how to use some things to support authors (not just me!)

The best part is that these skills can be used in my library work!  OK, that’s not the best part, but it’s pretty nice to be able to use all these skills for both my jobs.

What kind of videos do you think I should make?  Do you like the book trailers I’ve made so far? Tell me in the comments!


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