Book trailers. Do they work? I’m not sure. I suppose it depends what they’re supposed to do. Film trailers are a different animal altogether – there’s already a whole range of images avaialble to take from the film; clips that can tease the audience with what to expect. Sound bytes and famous faces. They’re shown right before you watch . . . another film. Oh, and there’s the guy who sounds like he drinks acid laced with broken glass.
A book trailer, though? Text? I mean, Kindle and ibooks already make sample chapters available so that readers can settle down in their favourite spot and actually read them. So the intention of a trailer must be to pique interest in a different way, right? It’s another way to bring a book to people’s notice, so it needs to be immediate. Stimulating. Interesting. And, probably, over and done with quickly. It needs to capture the feel of the book within a few seconds and leave an image in someone’s mind. Maybe. Hey, waddooIknow, I just write.
There are any number of book trailers out there, some good, some bad and some great. I’ve seen a few that are quite long, with some gentle music, a few images with words fading in and out. I’ve seen some with actors – good and bad. And I’ve seen some that get right inside my head and leave an image that I remember. But I can put my hand on my heart and say I’ve never bought/read a book on the strength of a book trailer. So there.
But . . . ha, you knew there was a ‘but’ coming, didn’t you? You probably looked further down the post and saw it, right? So, well, yes, I’ve put a trailer together for DARK HORIZONS. It seems to be the thing to do these days. Anyway, it’s short and it’s supposed to capture something of the ‘feel’ of the novel. There’s no text from the book at all. No quotes. Just a brief intro and then DAN SMITH and DARK HORIZONS in yer face in large letters you can’t miss.
The question is, does it have any effect on anything?
- Chuck Palahniuk Going Overboard With 3 Porn-Spoof Book Trailers [Books] (gawker.com)
- Are viral videos the future of literary discussion? (theglobeandmail.com)