Friday, January 8, 2010

Movie Maker: The Good, The Bad, & the Ugly

If you can't get the embedded video to work, you can watch it on Yahoo Videos at CLICK HERE.

My Sample Video Above:

And no, I don't really want to write a book to make money. Few new writers make a living selling their books. The narration just fit the stock pictures I had available. And I thought the story made the video a bit funny.

Why did I make this bad video?

I've been seeing a lot of press lately about book trailers. A book trailer is a little video that is basically a 'sales' or 'marketing' video to build interest in your book. Most of them are created on products like Movie Maker.

You upload the video or pictures, then add effects and narration.

With practice and a little cash, you get something cool to load up to YouTube to make strangers want to look at your book. Or do something free like I did and hope for the

I've never played with Movie Maker before. I'm not very technology oriented, what can I say? However I am stubborn as hell and that helps with technology.

So I started screwing around with Movie Maker. MM is supposed to be one of the easiest movie making programs on the market. And you know what? It wasn't that hard to do.

I struggled a bit getting the narration and music to play at the same time because I didn't understand that those items list separately but play together. It took a bit of tweaking to get the narration and music to line up together. I still don't quite have that right.

I'm still trying out different effects. I'm pretty sure I can do better with my timing and effects on the next go around.

Overall, I had a blast doing this.

Is my video ready for YouTube? No way.

But by the time my book is finished next year, I should be good enough with Movie Maker to make a few little trailers to push traffic. With more and more publishers pushing for writers to do their own marketing or additional marketing, I can't afford not to pay attention to book trailers.

I'm also now wondering if I should do some live readings for my poetry book coming out this summer? It's a thought. YouTube has changed the world, now hasn't it? Remember when writers got published and the publishing company did 80% of the marketing? Those days are gone.

If you want to be a success in the modern publishing world, you have to sell yourself and your book on your own.

So today, I've loaded my amateur attempt at making a video to this blog but I'm also going to link a few good book trailers from YouTube so you can see what it should look like. I don't want you to think my goofy practice video to be what a real book trailer is.

My video is just to show how easy it is. If I can do, you can do it.

And if you're great with technology or more stubborn than me, I'm betting you can do something fabulous for your book.

Good Book Trailers (Click the Links Below):

The Duma Key

Love Stargirl

So you have a video to show me?

Movie Maker
Ease of Use: 4 out of 5
Time: 3 out of 5
Technical Ability Needed: 2 out of 5



  1. It's not working Tirzah. It says "video not available". :( Oh! I was looking forward to watching that! Bum!

  2. It's working now - love it! (and your Kentucky voice). You are so real Tirzah. That's your strength!

  3. HI, I loaded up a backup link to the video. I feel I am who I am, just like Popeye.


  4. Love your accent and love the peotry reading idea. Depending on the poem, maybe you could use you artwork within the fil.

    Good stuff!


    from the desk of a writer

  5. Sorry - my keys keep sticking.

    That's 'poetry' and 'film.'