Recently I signed up my indie publishing company, Dark Helix Press, to be a vendor at FIYAHCON, a virtual convention centering the perspectives and celebrating the contributions of BIPOC in speculative fiction. (I’ll be speaking about publishing there too, will release details when I have them.)
At FIYAHCON the vendors are setting up a virtual table on a platform called AirMeet which I have never used before. One of the items I needed to upload was a video and I don’t have any book trailers for Dark Helix Press. In the past I made a book trailer for The Undead Sorceress which was ok, but with new tools available, making a trailer now is much faster than ever before! The concept of making a trailer is the same to make any video for social media, once you learn how to make on video, it’s a skill which can be used for lots of creative fun!
The trailer I made below took about three hours, because I was fiddling with fonts/colors/layout and made some custom graphics for the Dark Helix Press Threadless Shop merchandise because I wanted “clean cut” items that would “pop out.” I had to use a graphic editor to do that (did it quick and dirty with the free Paint.net graphic program) because video programs have limited graphics editing capabilities. Note I had $0 budget, but the video looks pretty good for zero dollars!
Steps used to make a book trailer:
- List out what you want to put in each “slide” which is really a short video. Pretend it’s a PowerPoint and on each slide think about what message or text you want to convey.
- For the Dark Helix Press video, it’s pretty much an ad, so each slide is about a product.
- For the Undead Sorceress book trailer, each slide was telling the reader hints about what the book is about.
- Find videos for each slide. There are a couple of sites you can download free videos, such as Pexels, Pixabay, Mixkit, etc. We used Pixabay.
- For one video we wanted 14 seconds, but the shot we downloaded was 10 seconds, so we extended the video time by slowing down the speed of the footage.
- If you are adding extra graphics to the video, you will need to clean up with a graphics editor such as Paint.net, Krita, Adobe Photoshop, etc. We used Paint.net.
- Pick a program to compile the videos – Canva, Filmgora, iMovie, etc. We used Canva.
- Upload the videos into the program, add text, music (we used the music provided in the program) and graphics.
- In some of the programs you can modify the layout and animate the graphics/fonts.
- Upload onto Youtube and publish.
- Read carefully on the sites where you gathered graphics, videos and music. Some of the licenses ask for attribution in lieu of payment and there may be restrictions on use.
I hope this information was useful to you! After you do it once, the subsequent videos will be easier next time!