Book Trailers – The Latest Obsession

Sometimes I think I like to look for new things to stress me out. This week it’s book trailers. If you don’t know what a book trailer is, it’s exactly what it sounds like. You know those trailers for soon-to-be-out movies that play before your “feature presentation?” It’s just like that, but for a soon-to-be-out book.

Here’s an example of an amazing one.

But not all are as professionally done. I’ve seen some that are homemade animation. I’ve seen some that are simply one scene with words printed over the top. A lot of them are fan made.

Here’s one for Stephenie Meyer’s The Host.

I’m stressing because when I mentioned to my family that I wanted to find a gorgeous 18 year old boy to let me film him coming out of the water, my daughter convulsed and my husband said he found that “very disturbing.” So how does one go about doing this? Particularly when your characters live in the water? Click Here to see what I’d love my book trailer to look like (minus the product placement).

Brilliant Idea! Get a high school or college-aged video production student to make a trailer for me! They’ve got to have an “in” with good looking boys, and they won’t sound creepy saying, “hey, would you mind stripping down, jumping in that lake, and letting me film you?”

Well, at least they won’t sound as creepy as me.

Has anyone had good luck making their own book trailer? I’d love to hear some DOs and DON’TS.



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3 responses to “Book Trailers – The Latest Obsession

  1. ahahahahaha! would it be more or less creepy than my husband (who is a photographer) asked some teen girls if he/we could photograph them fighting a grizzly bear naked for Kiss the Morning Star? lolllll!

  2. That mermaid commercial is awesome! Actually, I thought the fan-made by the lit student wasn’t half bad. Most of us can’t afford live action trailers, which can run upwards of 10k, so her effort is more in keeping with what’s most commonly done out there. The majority of live action I’ve seen winds up with stilted acting, and to me a series of well done stills and stock video is preferable. If you do go the live route, avoid that cheese factor by the less is more factor. In your awesome example of the YA, the acting doesn’t involve dialog, but simple tasks like typing, walking, or reading. Smart move.

    I’ve been making simple trailers for years (my latest:, and while they certainly aren’t $10k quality, I make them because people DO buy books because of it. Enough to make trailers essential? Certainly not. But if big names like Dean Koontz have trailers on YouTube (, it’s worth wondering why.

    I have no problem with the use of stills in place of hot guys emerging from the depths (but DEFINITELY send me the link when you get that done!). It’s the way images are put together with text, and how long the resulting trailer winds up, that can be a deal breaker for me. A little artistry and creativity goes a long way. Lots of trailers run 3-6 minutes long, often outlining the entire plot. 6 minute commercials don’t thrill most people. Get in, sell your product with a great hook and compelling imagery, and leave ’em wanting more.

    Good luck if you decide to make one! I did my own because I couldn’t afford otherwise, and wound up enjoying it so much I began studying FX to give them a little more zip. It can be an addictive hobby.

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