A blog about the amazing things teenagers do, about writing for teens, books for teens, and occasional forays into my world and the world of publishing.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Wolf Trailers

Yesterday while I celebrated the launch of my little blog, (I treated myself to a licorice tea between laundry loads), my mentor, sounding board, crying shoulder, and darling sister-in-law, ANGELA MORRISON, celebrated the launch of her second book, SING ME TO SLEEP. She began her official release in London, Ontario (that's Canada, not England), with the family of the boy who inspired her to write the story and with AMABILE, the amazingly talented youth choir featured in her book (and also in the book trailer, but more about that later).

I won't review SING ME TO SLEEP here except to say it's an awesome, beautiful, sweetly-sad, satisfying read. Check it out. You won't be disappointed.

I couldn't be with Angela, except in spirit, so I spent the day doing the next best thing--meeting another incredible author, KIRBY LARSON. (Kirby's visit to my kids' school will be the topic for another post.) Interestingly enough, Kirby Larsen was a writing teacher for an author named Ann Gonzalez who was my writing teachers. And that segues nicely (shameless plug alert) into another part of my life and writing I wanted to post about.

First, I have another mental health related confession to make...I see visions. Okay, before you hit the little x in the corner of this post and write me off as a nut job, let me explain. Besides being a mom/blogger/aspiring novelist I do BOOK TRAILERS. "What is a book trailer?" you might ask, or "Why do I care?" or even, "Why am I still reading this when I have homework to do, dinner to cook, or reruns on the CW to watch?"

For those of you that are scratching your head (and not reaching for the mouse and/or the remote control) I'll enlighten you. A book trailer is a lot like a movie trailer--showing you all the best parts, ruining the best jokes, making the plot look way more interesting than it usually is. (Oh, wait, that’s movie trailers. A book trailer would never do that.)

Simply, a book trailer is a short video that introduces and promotes a book. Do a search on "book trailer" on YouTube and you'll find a bunch of them. They're all the rage. Seriously. Go look. I'll wait...

Saw a few? Any good ones? Okay, back to me. Since I have a degree in broadcasting, doing a book trailer seemed like a natural way to help my friend and writing teacher, Ann Gonzalez, promote her book. And hence I started to see visions--visions of what scene would pique a reader's interest and best sum up the book, and visions of how I could use book trailers to further my own writing career. (I know I promised this wouldn't all be about me, but I am writing this, so I get a few shameless plugs, right?)

So with way more fanfare than necessary, I introduce another part of my life...MY BOOK TRAILERS. The first is for RUNNING FOR MY LIFE, by ANN GONZALEZ--a story about a girl dealing with her mother's metal illness. The second is for THE RING by BOBBIE PYRON, about a girl boxer, (I got to hang out with some very tough girls at the Tacoma Boxing Club for that one.) And the third is for SING ME TO SLEEP by ANGELA MORRISON, it features a beautiful song written by Angela and sung by the real Amabile choir. (See how I tied everything back to Angela and the beginning of this post? Nice circular plotting on my part.)

My trailers are at jen18wolf on YouTube.

Later, I'll post the entire first scene from SING ME TO SLEEP, the way I shot it. I couldn't fit the whole scene into a two minute trailer.

Now that you've watched my trailers, (and a bunch from YouTube), I’d like to know...what do you love or hate in a book trailer? (Feel free to be kind/brutal with mine.) Do they give a good idea of what the book is about? Do you think they're a good way to promote a book?


  1. The Compulsive Reader did a great review of SING ME TO SLEEP here:

  2. Book trailers: I'm not sure I'm a big fan. So many are just the cover plus some cover text, the same stuff I can read on the back of the book or at Amazon (sigh. Yes, I should frequent indie book sellers...).
    I also don't like trailers to show me their pictures of the main characters. So often, those pictures don't match the picture I have in my head.
    I do like the trailers, like for THE RING, where you can tell the words come from the actual book, not just the blurb copy. Before I pick up a book, I like to either have a strong recommendation, or a feel for the voice of the characters. Trailers that actually use dialog from the book give me that voice. I'd never have picked up a book about girl boxing but THE RING's trailer makes me want to.