Monday, November 24, 2014

Making a Book Trailer in Power Point

I've just spent the last week and a half or so making a book trailer for Crow's Rest, and I wanted to share a video that was really helpful. My first attempt at the trailer used my own video footage (which means it's free, and no rights and permissions to get hung up later) but I wasn't completely happy with that. It felt too disjointed, since some of the footage ended up being more metaphorical than actually illustrative of the script.

So I looked around for some tutorials on Power Point (I'd never used the program before) and found this video very helpful

It walks you through animation, transitions, and even adding narration, in an easy-to-understand tutorial. He also includes instructions on how to format your presentation so that when you export it as a video, you'll have an HD-quality YouTube video. Even if you are familiar with Power Point, you may find some tips and tricks in here that you didn't know.

I watched it once, and then dived into my own slide show, and referred back to this video a few times when I got stuck. The process wasn't nearly as intimidating as I thought it would be, and if not for my creative perfectionism that led me to endlessly tweak the script and image choices, it would likely have only taken me a few hours to create a book trailer using this method. And now that I'm more familiar with it, I could see using this technique to create some vlogs or videos for schools to use.

I also wanted to share another tool that I used to create an original soundtrack for the trailer; it's an app called LoopStack. There are other, similar apps out there, but this one was free to try on Android (you pay $1.99 to unlock more expanded features, but it's still a bargain) so I gave it a shot. Pretty easy to use, once you get the rhythm of it.

I encourage everyone to give a try on a trailer for their book--working on the script alone makes you look at your story in a completely different way. Even if you never share it with anyone (we'll be doing a reveal on mine soon), it will definitely help you visualize elements of your story and characters in a new media.


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