How to make a book trailer video – part 1

I  told you once about my plans to create a book trailer video for The Murder Plague.

I wanted it great, but I also wanted it cheap, because I’m an unpublished author without an agent, getting by on the day job.

Production is underway.

Here’s how I got this far:

1. I decided to do it. This decision came after reviewing a couple dozen book trailers on YouTube and concluding, “That doesn’t look so hard.”

Well, some of them do. Some of them look every bit as flashy as high-budget movie trailers. As far as I can tell, those are produced by publishers, because someone’s putting a ton of money into creating sets, hiring professional actors and big film crews with lots of rigging. But others were simple yet quite effective. Of course, for the most part the expensive looking ones had 10s of thousands of views and the simple ones did not, but that wasn’t a universal pattern. I figure I’ll cross the marketing bridge when I come to it.

2. I wrote a script. My intention was a simple concept, something that could be done with a minimum of equipment, people and expense. In the end, it was easier than I feared.

3. I went to my local university with a film and electronic arts program and visited with a placement officer. He confirmed what I hoped, that they always have a few talented grads who are looking for easy side projects, to pay the rent. He took some notes on my proposal and put out the word.

4. I got three resumes by e-mail about a week later. They each were at least modestly accomplished video producers who had their own websites, displaying some of their work. One I thought was much better than the others, but I wanted to hear them out. So I contacted all three and arranged for meetings.

After the meetings it was clear to me that the one whose work I liked also was the one with whom I wanted to work. Another one pitched a counter proposal back to me that would have been far more complicated and far more expensive. The third stood me up.

Easy decision. Full Sail University film graduate Casey J. Porter, a former U.S. Army photographer who lives in Orlando.

5. After a few e-mails back and forth to clarify the project and the deal we agreed on a price and shook hands. Because I’m a bit naive I was thinking of a lower number but I recognize what he proposed was a good deal, because he’s a quality video producer, he knows what he’s doing and I feel like I’m going to get solid results.

Casey said he’d start setting things up this weekend and would get to work soon.

I’ll keep you posted.

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