Creating Book Talks and Book Trailers for Libraries

Creating Book Talks and Book Trailers

Just as movies advertise and promote the latest and greatest upcoming releases, you too can create and promote books by creating a book trailer. These are similar to a movie trailer and are designed to catch the viewers’ attention and spark an interest. “Coming to a nightstand near you!” book trailers are great because you can showcase something that has just been published or you can be retrospective and create a book trailer on a personal favorite.

These are really fun to make and are a chance for you to take all the skills you have learned from this book or from your other video projects and apply them.

Here are some tips and tricks:

1. The book trailer should be between 1 – 3 minutes.
2. Introduce the title, author and suitable age range of readers.
3. If possible, include a graphic of the cover page.
4. Give a brief overview of the book, but don’t give too much away as the whole point is for the person to pick up the book and read it. I just hate it when a movie trailer gives away the entire plot line.
5. Use your own voice and possibly a head shot when talking about the book.
6. It may seem obvious, but pick a book you have read and would love to do as your first book trailer. Your enthusiasm will naturally come through.

Write a script

Thinks about what you want to say and language you want to use. Remember that you are making a mini-movie so your script needs to have a beginning, middle and an end.


As always, create a storyboard. It is the perfect tool for laying out your ideas and getting your thoughts in order. I have covered this in the book. One thing I didn’t cover was thinking about music. Once you have your storyboard drawn out, start thinking about what kind of mood you want to create.


Here are a couple of sites where you can get royalty-free music pretty cheaply.

I have also found a site that provides free royalty-free music under the creative commons license:

Collecting images

Here is a great blog post on how to find images that you can use for free using the creative common license:

If you don’t want to read the article the go to the Google images page below:

and choose the Usage Right either labeled for reuse or labeled for reuse with modification and your search results will return images that you can legally use.

Lights, camera and action

So you have your script, you’ve storyboarded all your shots and you have picked out some images and music. You are ready to start filming.

Here is an example of a book trailer I created for “Keesha’s House”:

Here I have used stopped motion, inserted images and added my talking head

Here is another example I created for the Dan Brown book “Lost Symbols”:

Here is a book talk I created just using the camera attached to my computer. I have included this because the video is about creativity:

Other examples

Here is a collection of what other librarians are doing out on the web:

The Tear Collector – Patrick Jones


Stitches is my favorite trailer. The music, images and David Small’s voice are a perfect combination.

Absolutely Positively Not…

Teen Book Trailer Contest 2010


Here are some sites you might like to take a look at to get more ideas about book talks and book trailers:

Booktalk ideas


How to create your first booktalk

Booktalks – Quick and Simple by Nancy Keane

Book Trailer ideas

Create a book trailer

How to create digital book trailers

Make a book trailer for free!

Video Book Trailers “Coming to a Library near You”

Here is another  example I created

[youtube IKOKvQ98Ce4]

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