The Reading Corner is a place where books of all genres are examined and reviewed. Comments, questions and disagreement are welcomed. Grab some coffee and a comfy chair and make yourself at home.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Leaves & Flowers and the concept of a book trailer

I love this comic so much.

I'm updating about my literary journal/magazine again. You'll get used to it, I promise. Or you won't, and either way it's not really my problem. I think this is interesting, and I think it translates into the blog, so read it, love it and click on ads. Put me through school that way.

Anywho, I got my first submission (aside from one I got from a Power of the Pen student of my mom's, I don't think I can count that one although I'll probably include it)! The submission was of two poems, previously written that nonetheless still fit the prompt (which you can read here). The first submitter was the lovely Lydia, who runs a website called The Little Fluffy Cat. I'm not sure what it's about, because I've only been looking at it for like 20 seconds, but it seems pretty cool to me. Check it out, give her props for being the first one to get stuff in!
Awesome stuff, I must add (I'm sure I'll be saying that a lot, but seriously, I really like these poems! I can't wait to publish them!!!!)

I love those words, too -that I get to publish things and contribute to someone else's writing career. I can't pay these writers -they are just giving generously of their time and talent to some nobody who's setting up a small journal (which is also why I'm not asking for any kind of publication rights. I just want the opportunity to get work out there -I don't want any claim on it after that. All rights belong to the writer -I'll have a full post on this tomorrow when I have more time to devote to it).

Today I want to talk about book trailers.
Seriously, have you guys started seeing these? They're like little miniature movie trailers...but for books. What?

That is confusing to me. It's a book. Why are we promoting them via video? I get the whole viral marketing/use the technology as it's available, etc. but I still don't understand how that works. Is text being promoted or previewed in this way? No, not usually- for fiction, it's generally a synopsis of the story, although in cases like that bullshit book Find Your Strongest Life, it's testimonials from people who have read it/are in it/get brainwashed by the guy.

I've seen some good ones (click the fiction link, it'll show you one-I do actually want to read the book, but not because of the video). That's the part I don't get. These videos aren't really contributing any desire to want to read a book for me. I don't need a video to tell me why I should want to read a book. I want to read a book because I think it looks good, usually from reading a sample or the dust jacket/back cover.

My concern is, I think, that we might be relying too heavily on promotion of books to get the word out -by which I mean, if you need a video to promote a book, what's wrong with this book that it needs a video?? I realize how bad that sentence was -it's making a point. Roll with me, here. This is my immediate reaction to seeing a book trailer: why is this necessary? Who puts all of the time and effort into creating a high-quality trailer...for a book? And that is not in any way to mock or take down books -I think books shouldn't need that kind of leg up.

Then I look at the people around me and it all kind of hits home.

You want your book to have to get the word out any way you can, whether you're Neil Gaiman or Joe Nobody. If that means marketing by spending time on creating a video to promote a piece of written text, so be it. If people read it because of that, then hey. Go for it.

What are your thoughts?

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