How to Make a One Minute Book Trailer

Since I started writing my fantasy novel I have had to pick up quite a few things on my own.  The latest being how to make a book trailer.  Having a degree in film helps, but I was still unsure if it should be like a film trailer conveying scenes from the book, or something else entirely.  So I went on YouTube and searched YA novel book trailers.  There were many playlists to choose from.  So I picked one and spent an afternoon watching trailer after trailer until I had an idea what to do.

I didn’t have to shoot scenes from the book, but I needed to write something that would give a hint as to what goes on in the book.  I decided to shoot my main character describing the fantasy world where the book takes place.  She does this in a voiceover.  I know,  a couple of weeks ago I went on and on about how horrible voiceovers are.  But remember, I said commentary was acceptable.  She is describing a fantasy world while walking through the real world.  Towards the end there is a suggestion that the fantasy world isn’t all it’s cracked up to be.

I just used a regular digital camera to shoot it.  I would have loved to have a HD camera to use.  And a DP (director of photography for the uninitiated) to design the naturally lit shots.  Because I didn’t have a fancy schmancy camera and matching lights, I shot this entirely outside.  But it was perfect for the tone I was going for.  I made sure to get multiple takes and angles of each shot.  My lovely actress had never acted before so she was unfamiliar with the repetition.  But I assured her it was best to make sure you got everything and got it right before you went home to edit.  I wasn’t even sure if I was going to use every angle that I shot.  But I wanted to have choices.  

And it’s a good thing that I did get all of those angles because I needed each and every one.  After shooting the scenes outside, we went inside to shoot the voiceover in GarageBand.  Because I didn’t have a microphone (and we were recording in the basement) I got an echo on the voiceover.  But I kept it because it went with the tone of the trailer.  I edited in iMovie and got my music from (Thanks Mrs. Kaye Writes for suggesting this site!)  I shot it, edited it, and uploaded it all in one day.  Below are the fruits of my labor: