How to make a book trailer.

In this age of intertubes connecting us all, online marketing for authors is paramount. Unfortunately, the skills needed to write are often not translatable into cross media advertising campaigns. Nor do we have the time to invest in learning digital editing software, or 3d rendering programs.

This can lead to book trailers that perhaps do more damage to the launch of a new book than good. I'm not going to point fingers, but this year I have seen so many trailers for books that honestly look like the authors made a powerpoint presentation and simply exported it as a movie. Some even use comic sans. Sigh.

And so I thought I'd have a go -- certain I could do better. But even with my 7 years experience as a media teacher, the best I could achieve was this:

I found the music at this site where the talented Kevin MacLeod gives away his tunes for people like me to use. But while I was happy with the timing of the text to the music, not only was the footage mostly stolen, but it was mostly unsuitable for what I wanted, which was to show a snippet of the fantasy land of my book.

I started to mess around with 3d modelling software, Vue, and Bryce and 3dsMax, but all these had a learning curve like Everest and I have never had patience for manuals. Besides, I was in the middle of editing my book, and that was where my energies needed to be spent.

So I emailed my ex-student, Alex Perrin, who had done some test artwork way back when I was playing with book cover ideas. I had put the single image render of the "White City" in the above test trailer, and I wanted to know if it would be possible for me to get the 3d model he had made so that I could play with some animations.

This is where Alex offered the biggest favor I have ever received; he said he'd be happy to have a go making the entire trailer himself. See Alex was in my senior art class in 2010, but he is now studying computer graphics at university, and my book trailer would be the perfect thing, he said, for his portfolio.

What could I say but "Yes please"

So to finally get to the point, the answer to the question, "how to make a book trailer?" is simple.

Get a professional to do it for you.
And here is the result of handing Alex the above trailer that I made, and saying, "See what you can do."

I think you will all agree, it is a little bit of an improvement. Here is Alex's site. I have a feeling he'll be doing more of these in the very near future.

Please share this video and "like" it everywhere you possibly can. With this trailer, and the book launch next week, I think it is safe to say that the push to sell this book has officially begun.

Here is a youtube link.



  1. Bravo on the trailer! It looks great! And yeah, I get I could botch something like that up a great deal! lol.

  2. Argh, the torture of dial up. Took the best part of an hour to see both. Small wonder I've never actually seen a book trailer before today!

    They both look really nice, but the first does feel a little ... full. If you get my meaning.
    Still, you've sure more courage than I in trying to do one for your own novel. ^_^

  3. I thought they were both awesome, but yes, I see the improvement. Congrats on your release! The book looks awesome, and I'll definitely pick one up! :)


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