Okay, maybe I shouldn’t. More of a second pair of hands to those at your publishing house that already do so much to promote your book.
Maybe I’m that second shot of espresso, helping you go that extra few hours when your book comes out or is about to come or has come out and you need the extra energy, an extra push.
Maybe I’m your concierge. Tell me what you need help with and I’ll do everything I can to make it happen.
Call me content creator since I have the tools to help you create beautiful character posters, fun video teasers, or trading cards with quotes from your book.
I’ll be your social media strategist. Let’s together work to find ways to engage your audience online. Just like you won’t shove a book at a reader at book store, don’t force your book on readers online. Let them experience your book through online games, scavenger hunts, videos, and chats so they can make up their own mind.
The fun we’ll have is endless.
Today I wanted to talk about Vine and other similar apps.
Vine: I’ve mentioned it before in my Social Media 101 for authors post. I’m a huge fan and use it on shoots and at events.
Authors can do the same: shoot short little clips or even montages of your event, of opening up a new box of books, of saying hello even. The things you can do with it are endless. I’ve seen publishers use it even as mini book trailers. Great thing about it is that you can embed it on to your website or blog afterwards.
It’s a fun alternative to instagram where instead of still images you get moving ones.
For Android users, try Telly. It doesn’t function quite the same way as Vine where you can record montages but you can still use it to record, upload and share short videos of readings, day in the life, etc. Also look at Viddy because you can add instagram-like filters to it. Tres cool. Magisto is reallyneat too since you give it a whole bunch of photos and footage and it does with it what it pleases. You add an effect, and music,and bam! You get a montage of everything. Because Magisto has music over it, you won’t hear anything you record so that’s good for anything but Q&A’s or readings or any kind of messages where you want people to hear what the video has to say.
Make use of this apps at least a few times. Doesn’t have to be every day like some users but it’s an added way you can create extra content for you fans.
Have fun and be creative with it.
Got any suggestions or questions? Email me at vandsmedia[at]gmail.com
A lot of people know me for the book trailer’s I’ve done in the past and still do. From young adult to adult books, I’ve been scripting, shooting and editing my own trailers for 5 years now.
And while book trailers are a great way to entice readers and get them interested in your book there are other ways to use this visual medium to get your book more eyeballs.
Book trailers are usually the second impression (the cover being the first, of course) and it introduces readers to your book in a quick, visual way where they can find out the mood of your book, the story of your book and the characters of your book in a short amount of time. They don’t have to go search for the synopsis, or spend time reading it (though they will eventually) but instead can and should be hooked by your two minute video right then. They can find out if your book is for them, scary or cute, paranormal or dystopian or contemporary, and if they want to read it.
That said, doing a poor trailer for your book could turn readers away. You don’t want them to think your book is something that it’s not: cheap, old, uninteresting. So here’s a few things to keep in mind as you put together your own trailer to avoid that.
1) If you use photos make sure that they are all horizontal. The video format is a horizontal format so throwing in photos that are not the same shape or size as the “screen” can distract readers. Once their attention is pulled out from your video it’s very hard to get them back.
2) Avoid too much text. OR text at all. Go for voice instead. In fact you can find affordable voice over talent on voice123.com. Have them even audition for your project! Anytime you make the reader/watcher work for it you risk losing their interest.
3) Edit your photos so they match. You don’t have to have fancy editing software like photoshop to do this. Try picasa or any other online editing. When using stock images usually the are never done by the same photographer. Take them into an editor and adjust their contrast or coloring so it matches more.
4) Music. Stray from bad music. Spend time looking for music that really fits your book’s mood and feel. Try looking through stockmusic.net for affordable options.
5) Keep it short and unique. Keep it engaging. Look for new angles to tell your story. Don’t use your jacketflap. The readers will eventually get to that, instead tell another side of your character’s story, something they win’t get from the jacket flap, or just a POV from any one of your characters (or locations).
6) Have fun. If you have fun making it, the reader will have fun watching it.
When you’re done with it what do you do? Well don’t just dump it on YouTube. First put it on your email’ signature. Then share it with the bloggers on your blog tour. Link to it literally wherever you can. “Hey! Look! I have a book trailer.”
But before that, if you want to do a special unveil think about what fun way you can use to get people to it. A game, and interview, a hunt, a giveaway? There’s no limit.
So there it is. How to use video in the form of book trailers to help promote your book. In a nutshell. Tomorrow, I talk about other ways to use video to promote your book.
Got questions? Shoot me an “ASK” or an email. Want some help with your own plans? Shoot me an email, too.
I was recently listening to a photographer, Jasmine Star, talk about her social media approach and I got to thinking.
Social media for authors and bloggers is so different than probably most any other industry and the reason is not because we like to talk, but really because we are such a tight community, small, too. And therefore we are on a lot and we talk a lot and we share a lot.
Now this post might be redundant to many but for those new debut authors or aspiring authors wondering how they can use social media or how to better navigate the waters you’re already treading.
More people are on FB. Meaning if you want to have a discussion or let people know of your upcoming book, FB is a great place to do it. Your readers (prob not bloggers) have 50-100 followers on Twitter. But on FB they have maybe 300 -500. And because of FB it trickles down if shared, liked, commented on, etc FB is great for conversations because all the comments are in one place and everyone can see them in the thread. Have a cool photo or video? Share it on FB if you want people to talk about it.
MY favorite for it’s fast paced stream of conciousness-esque feel. It’s a place to share things from that single moment in time. Just had a really great Tuscan pizza? Have an opinion about a movie or book? That’s where you should talk about it. Most people will see it and move on. Most won’t reply to you. But that’s OK. Even though there isn’t a “like” button doesn’t mean we don’t like it. We do.
Twitter is great for people who just like to talk and share things and see what others are talking about. We’re human and curious and even though we might not engage directly we like to see what others are doing. Even as mundane as what you had for lunch.
Twitter is the place to connect with people and find common ground and get to know them. Ask for opinions, throw out ideas, link to cool things, engage your readers.
Like I said above, people like to see the day to day things you’re doing. Instagram is Twitter but with photos. You won’t get people having a discussion with you on Instagram but they will ‘heart’ it, and maybe say how cool it is, or how they wish they were there. Think of Instagram as your photo diary. I use this medium for events: instead of tweeting a quote by the author, I instagram a quote with a photo.
Use Instagram as often as you like. There’s no such thing as too much instagramming as long as it’s interesting and not redundant. Your dog might be really adorable but there is a 1 photo a day limit on pets. After a while they all look the same. Instead, try Vine (see below).
Think of it as a behind the scenes look into your life. What happens? Who do you meet? What are you eating, drinking, cooking?
It’s new, and for now only on iPhones. It’s a like Instagram but with videos. They are short, I think about 6 seconds or so, but a great way to share things in motion. I saw a lot of cool videos from fashion week. I use it for a look into shoots and events and concerts. My friend Shane Pang uses it as mini comedic episodes and it’s genius. Vine is neat, short and to the point, and there’s no limit on what you can do.
A blog and Twitter and Instagram all wrapped into one. It’s where teens are now and they reblog everything and anything that they like. It’s a place for fandoms. So share your own fandom experiences and likes, share your gifs from last night’s New Girl episode or just write a blog-like post about your upcoming event or book.
It’s the place to connect over TV and movies and books unlike the other social media platforms.
Like that big cork board in your office where you pin everything you’re inspired by as you get ready to write your next book, Pinterest is much the same.
You set up boards of different themes and pin things in that vein. Have an inspiration board for your WIP, post pics or quotes (did you know you can post quotes?) It’s a look into what inspires you and what you’re interested in. Don’t want to share too much? You don’t have to, Pinterest is ambiguous as it is fun.
Bottom line is: it’s not supposed to be a chore. It’s one thing I talk to my clients about when coming up with marketing campaigns: Have fun. be interesting but most of all be engaging. No one likes being sold to or talked at.
You don’t want to miss this!
This Friday at 6:30pm EST we’ll be chatting with the lovely author of the amazing, heartbreaking, moving and overall wonderful book, Code Name Verity.
We recently read it for book club and couldn’t stop gushing.
So if you want to join us, add me to your Google+ Circles, get your questions ready and mark your calendars! It’s going to be an exciting chat.
Check out the smexy trailer for YA author, Marlene Perez’s debut adult urban fantasy series, Strange Fates.
Want to know more?
The first in a line of three exciting new urban fantasy novels blending elements of Greek myth and forbidden romance against the backdrop of Minnesota’s magical underworld.
Brooding, leather jacket-wearing Nyx Fortuna looks like a 20-something, and has for centuries now. As the son of the forgotten fourth Fate, Lady Fortuna, he has been hunted his entire life by the three Sisters of Fate that murdered his mother.
Fed up and out for revenge, Nyx comes to Minneapolis following a tip that his aunts have set up a business there. His goal to bring down his mother’s killers and retrieve the thread of fate that has trapped him in the body of a twenty year old unable to age or die.
But when a chance meeting with the mysterious, dangerous and very mortal Elizabeth Abernathy throws off his plans, he must reconcile his humanity and his immortality.
For more info on the author & her books: www.marleneperez.com
In case you missed our last book club chat with the lovely Kat Rosenfield, you can watch our hilarious video chat. I apologize for the glitches, I apparently have issues with cables and talking like a normal person.
Thank you so much Kat for being such a trooper and spending your SAt night with us. It was a blast!
Okay, I lied, It’s more then 12 but I couldn’t help myself! I loved so many books this year!
Seventeen-year-old Ismae escapes from the brutality of an arranged marriage into the sanctuary of the convent of St. Mortain, where the sisters still serve the gods of old. Here she learns that the god of Death Himself has blessed her with dangerous gifts—and a violent destiny. If she chooses to stay at the convent, she will be trained as an assassin and serve as a handmaiden to Death. To claim her new life, she must destroy the lives of others.
Ismae’s most important assignment takes her straight into the high court of Brittany—where she finds herself woefully under prepared—not only for the deadly games of intrigue and treason, but for the impossible choices she must make. For how can she deliver Death’s vengeance upon a target who, against her will, has stolen her heart?
Once upon a time, an angel and a devil fell in love and dared to imagine a world free of bloodshed and war.
When Ruby woke up on her tenth birthday, something about her had changed. Something alarming enough to make her parents lock her in the garage and call the police. Something that gets her sent to Thurmond, a brutal government “rehabilitation camp.” She might have survived the mysterious disease that’s killed most of America’s children, but she and the others have emerged with something far worse: frightening abilities they cannot control.
Now sixteen, Ruby is one of the dangerous ones.
When the truth comes out, Ruby barely escapes Thurmond with her life. Now she’s on the run, desperate to find the one safe haven left for kids like her—East River. She joins a group of kids who escaped their own camp. Liam, their brave leader, is falling hard for Ruby. But no matter how much she aches for him, Ruby can’t risk getting close. Not after what happened to her parents.
When they arrive at East River, nothing is as it seems, least of all its mysterious leader. But there are other forces at work, people who will stop at nothing to use Ruby in their fight against the government. Ruby will be faced with a terrible choice, one that may mean giving up her only chance at a life worth living.
Surrounded by enemies, the once-great nation of Ravka has been torn in two by the Shadow Fold, a swath of near impenetrable darkness crawling with monsters who feast on human flesh. Now its fate may rest on the shoulders of one lonely refugee.
Alina Starkov has never been good at anything. But when her regiment is attacked on the Fold and her best friend is brutally injured, Alina reveals a dormant power that saves his life—a power that could be the key to setting her war-ravaged country free. Wrenched from everything she knows, Alina is whisked away to the royal court to be trained as a member of the Grisha, the magical elite led by the mysterious Darkling.
Yet nothing in this lavish world is what it seems. With darkness looming and an entire kingdom depending on her untamed power, Alina will have to confront the secrets of the Grisha…and the secrets of her heart.
Sixteen-year-old Adelice Lewys has always been special. When her parents discover her gift—the ability to weave the very fabric of reality—they train her to hide it. For good reason, they don’t want her to become one of the elite, beautiful, and deadly women who determine what people eat, where they live, how many children they have, and even when they die.
But Adelice is forced to into this powerful group, and she must learn to navigate the dangerous politics at play. Caught in a web of lies and forbidden romance, she must unravel the sinister truth behind her own unspeakable power. Her world is hanging by a thread, and Adelice, alone, can decide to save it—or destroy it.
It’s been several generations since a genetic experiment gone wrong caused the Reduction, decimating humanity and giving rise to a Luddite nobility who outlawed most technology.
Elliot North has always known her place in this world. Four years ago Elliot refused to run away with her childhood sweetheart, the servant Kai, choosing duty to her family’s estate over love. Since then the world has changed: a new class of Post-Reductionists is jumpstarting the wheel of progress, and Elliot’s estate is foundering, forcing her to rent land to the mysterious Cloud Fleet, a group of shipbuilders that includes renowned explorer Captain Malakai Wentforth—an almost unrecognizable Kai. And while Elliot wonders if this could be their second chance, Kai seems determined to show Elliot exactly what she gave up when she let him go.
But Elliot soon discovers her old friend carries a secret—one that could change their society … or bring it to its knees. And again, she’s faced with a choice: cling to what she’s been raised to believe, or cast her lot with the only boy she’s ever loved, even if she’s lost him forever.
Inspired by Jane Austen’s persuasion, For Darkness Shows the Stars is a breathtaking romance about opening your mind to the future and your heart to the one person you know can break it.
In the violent country of Ludania, the language you speak determines your class, and there are harsh punishments if you forget your place—looking a member of a higher class in the eye can result in immediate execution. Seventeen-year-old Charlaina (Charlie for short) can understand all languages, a dangerous ability she’s been hiding her whole life. The only reprieve from oppression is within the drug-filled underground club scene. There, she meets a beautiful and mysterious boy who speaks a language she’s never heard, and her secret is almost exposed. As the violent clashes between the totalitarian monarchy and the rebel forces escalate, it becomes clear that Charlie is the key to something much bigger: her country’s only chance for freedom from the terrible grip of a deadly regime.
A few series that are over that were some of my fave reads:
Cassel comes from a family of curse workers—people who have the power to change your emotions, your memories, your luck, all by the slightest touch of their hands. Since curse work is illegal, they’re all criminals. But not Cassel. He hasn’t got the magic touch, so he’s an outsider—the straight kid in a crooked family—as long as you ignore one small detail: He killed his best friend, Lila. Now he is sleepwalking, propelled into the night by terrifying dreams about a white cat. He also notices that his brothers are keeping secrets from him. As Cassel begins to suspect he’s part of one huge con game, he must unravel his past and his memories. To find out the truth, Cassel will have to outcon the conmen.
Lena Duchannes is unlike anyone the small Southern town of Gatlin has ever seen, and she’s struggling to conceal her power, and a curse that has haunted her family for generations. But even within the overgrown gardens, murky swamps and crumbling graveyards of the forgotten South, a secret cannot stay hidden forever.
Ethan Wate, who has been counting the months until he can escape from Gatlin, is haunted by dreams of a beautiful girl he has never met. When Lena moves into the town’s oldest and most infamous plantation, Ethan is inexplicably drawn to her and determined to uncover the connection between them.
In a town with no surprises, one secret could change everything.
Times are hard in the mountain city of Fellsmarch. Reformed thief Han Alister will do almost anything to eke out a living for himself, his mother, and his sister Mari. Ironically, the only thing of value he has is something he can’t sell. For as long as Han can remember, he’s worn thick silver cuffs engraved with runes. They’re clearly magicked—as he grows, they grow, and he’s never been able to get them off.
While out hunting one day, Han and his Clan friend, Dancer catch three young wizards setting fire to the sacred mountain of Hanalea. After a confrontation, Han takes an amulet from Micah Bayar, son of the High Wizard, to ensure the boy won’t use it against them. Han soon learns that the amulet has an evil history—it once belonged to the Demon King, the wizard who nearly destroyed the world a millennium ago. With a magical piece that powerful at stake, Han knows that the Bayars will stop at nothing to get it back.
Meanwhile, Raisa ana’Marianna, Princess Heir of the Fells, has her own battles to fight. She’s just returned to court after three years of relative freedom with her father’s family at Demonai camp – riding, hunting, and working the famous Clan markets. Although Raisa will become eligible for marriage after her sixteenth name-day, she isn’t looking forward to trading in her common sense and new skills for etiquette tutors and stuffy parties.
Raisa wants to be more than an ornament in a glittering cage. She aspires to be like Hanalea—the legendary warrior queen who killed the Demon King and saved the world. But it seems like her mother has other plans for her—plans that include a suitor who goes against everything the Queendom stands for.
A Few Honorable Mentions: