Book videos don't have to be two or three minutes. You can say a lot in just a few seconds, especially if you use the right words and images.
Last month, I told you the things you shouldn't do. This month, we're going to focus on what you need to get started and where to find those things, most of which are free or low-cost.
You will need high quality images. One of the best places for free images is Pixabay.com. There is not attribution required, and you can use them commercially. If you want to spend some money, though, Deposit Photos has fabulous images as does Fotolia. But, focusing on free, you can find some at www.stockfreeimages.com and http://www.freeimages.co.uk/ (although this one does require credit).
You will need an editing program. Windows Movie Maker works fine, and most video editors allow a thirty-day trial so I would encourage you to download one, give it a try for a month and see if you like it. You can always delete it and try another one. I use Corel Video Studio Pro and Cyberlink PowerDirector. There is also Adobe Premiere, Pinnacle Studio Ultimate, and more. You can find the top ten list by PC Magazine here.
Of course, you'll also need music and/or sound effects. Maybe you even want to use voice over. One of the best places to find voice over artists is www.fiverr.com. You can listen to samples, and, if your text is short enough, may get what you need for only $5.00 (plus Fiverr's small fee).
For free music (although you should still attribute it to the artist), try Incompetech or Purple Planet Music.
Now that you know where to start looking, take some time to go through the images and the music. You want to choose carefully to create the best video possible.
I'll be back soon to go over some of the logistics behind creating a video.
Book videos are expensive, but they are also beneficial. They can help spread the word about your book in a way a tweet or a Facebook post can't because today's society is visual. Millions of viewers watch videos every day, and you increase the chances that people will learn about your book with a high-quality video.
Before you begin putting your first video together, there are some things you should know and some things to avoid. That's what this first post is about. We'll get into the actual creation in upcoming posts.
1. Don't use red text on a black background. It looks amateurish, and it's difficult to read. It's best to avoid colored text unless your book is a children's book or is about humor. Stick to black and white which is much more professional.
2. You don't need an expensive video editor to create a high quality video. Windows Movie Maker or iMovie will work just fine.
3. There are free video editors online that will allow you to make a video; however, most of them will brand your videos with their logo unless you pay for the removal of the branding.
4. You can still make a great video even without video clips. Images work fine if you use them properly.
5. You cannot use songs from your favorite artist in a video that is going to be used to promote your book. That is copyright infringement and can get you in a lot of trouble.
6. You cannot use clips from movies, television shows, or plays in your video. I have seen some videos that have used scenes from popular television shows, and although the videos are quite good, it is also copyright infringement. And both the video creator and the author can be sued. Before you ask, yes, I've seen the music videos, too, that fans put together to celebrate their favorite onscreen couples. The difference is they are not creating the videos for profit. Your book video is to help sell your book, and you cannot imply celebrity endorsement or use a celebrity's image, likeness, or clips of their work to promote your book.
7. There is such a thing as too much detail. Using the entire book description in the body of your video is, most likely, too much information. A video should be all about the visual aspect, not the reading aspect.
8. You can create a book video for little to no money, but if you do have some to spend, you can make an even better one.
Next week, I'll go over what you need to get started and where you can find what you need. Until then, why not go to Youtube and take a look at the different book videos to get an idea of what you do and don't like?
I was so fortunate to be able to create a series video for Zee Monodee's Corpus Agency ladies. I really enjoyed creating the video, and I'm grateful Zee trusted me with bringing to life her idea!
My thoughts, experiences, challenges, and goals. Right here. At least once a week or so. Oh, and opinions, too. Those will definitely come in. Join me!