What I'm reading: Your Saving Grace, by JL Wilson
Lately, every time I check one of my on-line groups, I'm seeing "Check out my book trailer". I'm still on the wrong side of the fence with these, I think, but with their increasing popularity, maybe I'm wrong (won't be the first -- or the last-- time). But to me, it seems strange to judge a written medium with a visual one.
Also, people seem enthralled with all the bells and whistles they can use, so they throw them all in there. Fancy dissolves, sparkling, bouncing text, backgrounds that obscure what you're trying to read. Why? If there are words on the screen, isn't the purpose to be able to READ them?
My take: When I want to read a book by an author I know and trust, I pick it up without the need of a 'sell'. I belong to the Mystery Guild, and they send a monthly catalog. I look at the blurbs. In the library or book store, I pick up a book and read the back cover copy, then read a page or two. If I'm shopping on line and have never read (or sometimes even heard of) the author, I go to the blurb, then read an excerpt.
I can't see that a 'movie clip' about a book is going to give me what I need to decide to buy. What I'm looking for is good writing. How does a movie clip let me judge that?
Then, there's length. Some of these go on for 5 minutes. I can usually tell within 30 seconds of reading an excerpt if I want to read the book. Why should I spend five minutes "reading" at someone else's speed? That reminds me of those old filmstrips in school. (Showing my age again--I'll bet most of the readers here have no clue what I'm talking about--think of it as an early precursor to PowerPoint.) I would always be done reading whatever was on the screen long before the little 'ding' said move on. If I click over to a YouTube clip and the time shows more than a minute, I'm gone.
Another pet peeve -- websites that open trailers as soon as you click to the site. If I'm browsing, odds are I'll have my iTunes going. Getting a jolt of someone's trailer music is an immediate turnoff. If you want to attract me as a potential reader, you'll do better to have an optional 'click here for trailer' button. Then again, Nora Roberts is advertising her books on television.
Maybe this is one more thing that makes me feel old. (Here's my idea of a clip worth my time -- and it's NOT a book trailer, just something another "old" friend sent).
Do you go out of your way to check out trailers? Have you ever bought a book based on seeing a trailer? Did it live up to expectations?