Friday, April 17, 2009

Behind The Trailer

Reaction to the Hottie trailer has been amazing. (The real one, I mean. Not the cartoon. No-one's even mentioned that.) Whenever people congratulate me on it, I, of course, take full credit. 
But I'm egoless enough to admit that just maybe Madison Meyer had a  little to do with it. In fact, she did such a knockout job, I'm making a one-time return to my former profession as a crack investigative journalist. 

Here's the q&a:

1)The most obvious question: tools of the trade. Mac or PC.

iMovie or Windows Movie Maker?

Mac. You know what they say, once you go Mac, you never go back!

Neither. I use Final Cut Express.

2) Where you you find the images? How long do you spend

searching for them?

Various royalty free image sites. Each image costs a small amount of cash, but it's a good way to keep away from copyrighted material. A lot of the time people I know will also give me permission to use their images, as well as various people online.

Finding everything to go in the trailer is the hardest part of the job. Every image is important, so it takes days to find everything to make the trailer just right.

3) How long does the actual trailer-making process take?

Depending on how busy I am with school and my part time job, usually around 1 to 2 weeks.

4)For writers like myself who didn't get their

first-choice song-- and i totally don't hate the one you

went with!-- can you explain the copyright issues involved

in picking music.

Picking music is the most difficult thing about the trailer. I always mix the music before starting the visual editing process of a trailer. The audio is the most important thing for timing and such...

Anyway I find a lot of my music on, where a lot of talented artists offer their music up as royalty free for people to use.

Other times I simply get permission from an artist to use their music. I also own CDs of royalty free tracks that I'm allowed to use in my videos.

5) How does a person get into this line of work? Was this

something you started off doing as fun and now it's 

grown into a business?

Definitely started out as fun, and still is! I've always liked movies, and as a result of being fifteen and without a license, there wasn't much for me to do but read a book and then imagine them as movies.

I've also always been interested in trailers and post production. Both my parents are editors and work in television, so I guess it's in my blood.

So I just started making a trailer and posted it on YouTube. The author of the book eventually saw it and wanted to pay me to make another one!

From there my business grew and now I get requested of all different ages from all over the world.

Now I'm graduating in a few months and going to college in the fall I know what I want to do with my education and with my life. It's been a great experience and it can only get better.

6) You have a fairly eclectic  archive of trailers. Lots of

different genres. What's your favorite kind to do? And

what's the type of book you haven't done yet but 

want to be asked to do?

My favorite sort of book trailer to do is action/adventure/suspense. Of course a lot of books cover that in one way or another, so I guess it doesn't really matter to me. I always try to do something different in every video, so I think every single trailer comes out original and fun.

7) Authors you most want to contact you and request a


Oh boy, that's a tough question. I've already worked with one of my favorite authors, Laurie Faria Stolarz, so that's one off my list.

Probably Ellen Schreiber, the author of Vampire Kisses, or Melissa De la Cruz, the author of Blue Bloods.

I'd also really like to work with Meg Cabot and Scott Westerfeld.

If any of you are reading this, send an email my way!

8) Is this something you see yourself pursuing as a career?

That's what I'm hoping for. I plan on attending SFAI in the fall and studying film and video while I'm there. I may continue with book trailers after college, but I'll be happy as long as I'm in editing or some sort of post production. I firmly believe that art school is the best path for me.

9) Have you given any thought to graduating from images to

live action?

All the time! It's been something I've wanted to do for a long, LONG time! Unfortunately, I don't have the resources or time at the moment to make that step. A lot goes into a live action trailer, like actors, equipment, props, location shooting, and special effects.

I'm thinking of attempting my first live action trailer this summer.

10) There's been some debate on other blogs about

whether trailers have any worth in terms of inspiring sales.

Do you have any evidence from authors you've worked with

previously that they've seen their book sales increase.

Well I haven't personally heard anything in terms of sales, but I do know that if it didn't work in selling the books, that the ideas of book trailers would have died a long time ago.

Once I started making book trailers on a regular basis, the number of subscribers on my YouTube channel skyrocketed-- now still growing at over a thousand. 

People like to see what's new, and from what I've heard from viewers, the trailers really make them want to read the book.

If you want to see more of Madison's work-- and you'd be mental not to-- check her out at

Not forgetting her You Tube channel:

1 comment:

Liviania said...

Cool interview! I've been meaning to post the trailer on my site. (It is far better than the cover.)