So, I had a video trailer made for my book Vibrations (you can see it here https://youtu.be/oR9YHbc7CVY). I have received several nice comments about it, but one question is asked more than any other when someone who has seen it comes face-to-face with me: “Was it really necessary to make a trailer?”
In a word, no. It wasn’t necessary. It may not even have been smart. That remains to be seen. Then why did I do it? I’d like to say that there was some grand scheme, some long-range secret plan, some brilliant method to my madness. I’d like to say that, but I can’t.
The simple fact is that I thought it would be kind of cool. When people ask what my book is about, now I can say, “Let me send you a link and you can see.”
In all seriousness, though, there were other reasons, of course. The coolness factor was a consideration, but maybe not the chief one. I tend to be a visual person, and I try to make my writing reflect that. I enjoy vivid descriptions that allow me to see things in my mind. Not too much detail, mind you, but enough to kickstart the imagination. Being visual, I enjoy snippets of video, clips put together in a meaningful way, but not something that tells me all there is to know. In other words, a movie trailer.
I have recently been guilty of paying way too much attention to the news, trailers, and (dare I say it?) gossip about the new Star Wars movie (The Force Awakens, out next month!). I can’t get enough. All the conflicting views and theories feed my imagination and fuel my anticipation of the film. The trailers give me just enough clips of the movie to whet my appetite and make me hunger for more.
By the way, no, I will not be fighting the crowds to get in on opening day. I have books to write, after all. I’ll see it soon thereafter, though. You can bet on that.
If the ad campaign, along with the gossip circuit that seems to have attained a life of its own, can do that for me toward Star Wars, it made me wonder. Could a trailer for my book generate some interest? Could it reach out and tap those visual people like me on the shoulder and say, “Check this out. You may like it,” perhaps resulting in someone trying out my book who may not have otherwise done so? It’s possible, but I’m not sure how probable it is.
In the end, it seemed like a fun thing to do. It wasn’t to get thousands of book sales, though it would be nice if that happened. It wasn’t just so that readers who have already experienced the story could see the core of the tale related in a general way in a new medium, though that was part of it too. It wasn’t only to try to lure other readers into taking a chance in reading my book, hoping they’d like it, even if I do hope that happens. It wasn’t solely because I wanted to see some actual video representing the story (though not exact scenes), despite the fact that I do get a kick out of it. And it wasn’t even to show it to my friends and family to feel like a big shot for just under the minute and a half it takes to watch it. It was all of these things, and none of these things.
Was it necessary? No, but it was another new thing in a long series of new things I have accomplished this year and I have to admit that I like the results. Sometimes we have to do things just to try something new even if it doesn’t have a potential tangible benefit. It’s the best way I know to grow. In that sense, I guess maybe it was necessary after all.