|Sara presenting on book trailers|
Sara Wilson Etienne went to college in Maine to become a marine biologist. But when research on leatherback turtles transformed itself into a novel, she realized that she loved fantasy more than fact. Though she didn't become a scientist (or, luckily, publish that first story) the craggy coastline and wild seas stayed with her and became the YA psychological thriller, Harbinger (2012, Penguin/Putnam).
Her book trailer for Harbinger is remarkable...
Now she's going to tell us what we need to know about doing one of our own! (Helping us short-cut the nine month learning curve she went on to make it.)
Remember that a book trailer is just one piece of bigger promotional picture
Your trailer must have a hook: you have to make your book trailer special if you want it to work for you.
Having no book trailer is better than having a bad book trailer.
The first question you need to answer is
Who is my audience?
If you write middle grade or picture books, the audience is going to be parents, teachers and librarians. If you are writing young adult, then your audience is also your readers.
Next, you need to figure out,
What are my resources?
Take stock of your money, skills, friends, family and community, locations...
Start with what you have when coming up with your concept and build from there...
Sara covered the many steps to create a book trailer - showing other book trailers to illustrate her points and letting us see examples from her own book trailer process - covering:
Tips for dreaming up (and solidifying) your concept
A, B and C plans
The first draft of her book trailer outline
Things to watch out for
Techniques to get a handle on your book trailer before you spend any money (like a lookbook and an anamatic)
and the answer to "How do you actually make this?"
It was fascinating to see version #4 of the Harbinger trailer, when the final trailer was version #16. She also shared her behind-the-scenes "making of" video, and answered the many audience questions.
The entire session was packed with useful and practical advice... and whether you were in the audience or not, in the upcoming SCBWI Publication Guide, you'll be able to read Sara's article on book trailers, which is sure to be indispensable!