FAQ

Get your questions answered and learn about PictureYourBook's process, pricing as well as where we will post your book trailer and the file formats we will deliver.

Book Trailer Frequently Asked Questions

A book trailer is a short video – ideally 1-3 minutes (due to viewer attention spans) – that tells readers enough to make them want to buy your book.

A book trailer is NOT a book talk or an interview with the author although it can incorporate these elements. A trailer IS a promotional piece designed like any TV commercial or movie preview (a.k.a. movie trailer) to draw customers.

In essence, a book trailer is a story about a story - your book’s story - and should convey the fundamental nature of your book.

A book trailer can be as creative as any commercial or movie trailer in the way it conveys your book. Some trailers tease and give an impression of the book. Others include the author telling why they wrote the book. Most straightforwardly communicate the core of the book. There are documentary style trailers, animated trailers, movie type thriller trailers, text-driven trailers, MTV style trailers, and so on.

Book trailers engage readers in a variety of ways including author authenticity, humor, mystery, pathos, tragedy, heroism (overcoming challenges), realism, cosmic mythos, enchantment (land or times), or a quest (for treasure, knowledge, truth, etc.).

For examples, we suggest you look online at books you like and find some trailers you like.

A trailer can play an important role in your book’s marketing campaign to:

  • Spread the word about your book with a movie preview-style video.
  • Tell buyers where they can purchase the book.
  • Announce freebies such as:
    • a newsletter
    • free download of sections or chapters
    • limited time offers e.g. bookmark, T-shirt, mug, a signed book plate, etc. with a book purchase
  • Build recognition and credibility for your name and brand.
  • Refer readers to your website, blog, Twitter feed, LinkedIn page, Facebook page, YouTube channel, and/or your other social media connections.
  • Publicize your other services such as speaking or teaching.

If you want to provide video footage, that is fine. And yes, we do have a stock library that we use. We can also hire or recommend videographers in many parts of the U.S. However, a video shoot raises the cost. With our state-of-the art editing equipment, we can tell an effective story with animated drawings, graphics, or photographs.

Keep in mind: Editing can add movement (both energetic and subtle) and animation to images (photos or drawings), graphics, or text to tell your book’s story just as effectively - and more cost effectively - than video.

Step 1: Plan

You fill out our questionnaire about your book and we will have a teleconference to answer any additional questions and set a plan for how your trailer will look and sound.

Step 2: Storyboard

We will translate the plan into a storyboard which will be blue print for creating the trailer. The storyboard will describe the picture and sound elements to be used such as photos, drawings, text, graphics, video, animation, sound effects, and music. If there is VO (voiceover) the storyboard will include the script. You will approve the storyboard.

Step 3: Edit

We will assemble and edit the trailer. You will view the cut and tell us what changes you’d like. We will make the changes and send you a new version to review. This process – view and re-edit – will continue until you approve the final cut. Then we will add the music and you will approve the now completed trailer with music.

Step 4: Deliver

We will send you a file of your trailer (along with an image to include as your trailer title page) for you to post wherever you’d like. If you don’t have a webmaster for posting your trailer, for an added fee, we will post your trailer wherever you’d like.

See our Making a Trailer page for more information.

Please do. Send images (photos, illustrations, drawings), music, and video clips as long as you have the proper rights clearances and licensing. If you can’t obtain the legal rights, feel free to send audio or video to help us create the look and feel of the trailer you’re envisioning.

And we will need a hi res image of your book’s cover.

Our basic price is $1800, payable in stages. After our first consultation with you, if it’s agreed that your trailer will require paying others to create original music, video, audio narration, and/or illustrations (artwork, graphics, photos), this fee will rise. We aim to keep your costs low and the quality of your trailer high by creating motion or animation with images you provide, using our library of stock footage, and sourcing free music and sound.

You pay as each stage completes and you give your approval:

  1. Initial plan following teleconference on your Author Questionnaire - 1/3 total price.
  2. Storyboard – 1/3 total price.
  3. Video (complete cut with music) - 1/3 total price (final payment).

We'll send you:

  1. A top quality master file (MPEG4) for adding your trailer to a DVD, PowerPoint, or uploading to YouTube, etc.
  2. The HTML embed code required to make your trailer appear on your website, blog, emails, etc.
  3. 1280 x 720 MOV or MP4 or AVI file
  4. 640 x 480 MOV or MP4 or AVI file
  5. 320 x 240 MOV or MP4 or AVI file
  6. Up to 1280 x 720 JPG (trailer title page)
– Additional formats/codecs available on request.

We will post it on your website, on your YouTube Channel, and on your publisher’s website. For more customized distribution there may be an added fee.

We can post a file of your trailer on your Amazon Author page. To post on Amazon’s “Buy” page, you must use Create Space (Amazon’s publishing wing) to publish your book and make your trailer.

You paid for it, you own it. Long may it live and help you and your book prosper!

eBook Frequently Asked Questions

An eBook offers another way to reach your readers, another market for your book. Barely two decades old, eBooks are still a new and growing format with their own sales cycles, boosters, and naysayers. While some in the publishing industry pit print books against eBooks, why enter the fray? Many readers use both formats to enjoy books. You can have two horses in the race and compete for the most sales.

People view eBooks in e-reader devices such as Amazon’s Kindle Fire or Barnes & Noble’s Nook or on their desktop / laptop computers using software like Apple’s iBook or Adobe’s Adobe Digital Reader or in their browsers using the Readium Chrome add-on. If the eBook is available as a PDF download, they can read them in their browsers or in Adobe Acrobat.

An eBook is a duplicate of your print book and contains text and perhaps static pictures and graphics. An enhanced eBook adds links, video, audio, and/or animation.

Slowly, as of September 2015. Children’s book and text books are doing the best but the hard truth is, the market is not there yet for most enhanced eBooks. We can’t wait to create them once it’s there but currently are advising clients to hold off until the new format catches on.

There are many reasons such as:

  • Better demonstrate your subject, e.g. by inserting a video of how to peel a tomato in an eCookbook.
  • Add characters to your fiction tale or a narrator to your non fiction book.
  • Show original interviews (audio and video), data sources, and other information that you can only talk about in a print book.
  • Make a book a more fun, immersive, and entertaining for children or adults with music, voice, or video.
  • Bolster the information in your book with animations, live talks, and other media.
  • Link to resources for further study.
  • Have readers hear a singer or an orchestra perform, not merely read a description of a performance.

Three big reasons:

  1. The market isn’t there yet for most books. Children’s books and text books are selling. Slowly.
  2. The technological delivery system to the various booksellers – Amazon, iBooks, B & N, Kobo, etc. - is not smooth or uniform. These booksellers have different software requirements, which make delivery cumbersome, time consuming, and expensive.
  3. The placement and size of video files – whether they’re embedded or hosted on a server pose another technical issue that needs to be solved before users can easily download books.

Step 1: PREP

You send your manuscript (as word doc or pdf) and book cover image to our secure Dropbox. We check the manuscript to make sure it’s complete, reformat it if it’s double-spaced, and import it into InDesign, the book designing software. We format your eBook manuscript for publication. You review and approve the eBook.

Step 2: PUBLICATION

We'll upload your completed eBook in the required format(s) to booksellers or websites – yours or your publisher’s - or wherever you need it to go.

Step 1: PREP

You send your manuscript (as word doc or pdf) and media assets (video, audio, photos, graphics, drawings, illustrations) to our secure Dropbox. We check the manuscript to make sure it’s complete, reformat it if it’s double-spaced, and import it into InDesign, the book designing software.

We also analyze all your media assets, improve them as needed for clarity and quality, and import them into InDesign. If needed, we will create videos, audio narration, and any other assets we discuss and agree upon.

Step 2: DESIGN

We design 2-3 sample chapters of your enhanced eBook so you can envision all its elements: book cover, title page, icons, fonts, style, A/V, graphics, animations, etc. You will review and approve the design.

Step 3: PRODUCTION

We create your entire enhanced eBook. You will review and approve it. We will test the eBook in various eReaders to ensure optimum performance. With your permission and if time permits, we will also test it with human readers.

Step 4: PUBLICATION

We upload your completed enhanced eBook in the required format(s) to booksellers or websites – yours or your publisher’s - or wherever you need it to go.

Please do. Send images (photos, illustrations, drawings), music, and video clips as long as you have the proper rights clearances and licensing. And we will need a hi res image of your book’s cover. If we need to obtain any original or stock media the price of your eBook will rise so we encourage you to provide as much as you can.

Our price ranges from $2-5 per 1000 words depending on the extent of your manuscript’s images, charts, and graphics. If you’re having us make trailer or a website in addition, we most likely can give you a package deal.

For an enhanced eBook the range would be based on the manuscript length as well as the number of amount of video, audio, and images involved and the scale would be $3-8/page.

You pay as each stage completes and you give your approval:

  • For an eBook
    1. Prep - 50%
    2. Publication – 50%
  • For an enhanced eBook
    1. Design – 33%
    2. Production – 33%
    3. Publication– 33%

We will post it to four places of your choosing such as Amazon, iBooks, B & N, and your website.

No but this is highly recommended. An eBook should have a different ISBN from a print book. An enhanced eBook should also have a different ISBN from a standard eBook. Why? Because each book format is a separate sales item and a distinct number enables delivery of the proper item. Additionally, distinct ISBNs are helpful for sales reporting. Your publisher will obtain your ISBN. If you’re self-publishing, click here for information on how to obtain your ISBN.

Assuming you have no other contract in effect with a publisher or other entity, you wrote it, you paid for it, you own it.