When it comes to book trailers, less is more! After all, if you’re an author, you want to use that trailer across all your social media platforms and in digital ads to tell people about your book. If you’re a reader looking for a new book to read, you want the trailer to capture your interest immediately and make you want to read the book. Animating a book trailer can be a great way to condense the essence of a book into a short clip. Here are some animated book trailers from different genres that get the job done in less than a minute.
Clocking in at 55 seconds, this trailer animates static photo images and text with different background effects and transitions to maintain visual interest. In a short amount of time it manages to set the tone while introducing the characters, setting, and plot of the novel.
The animation in this 43-second trailer seems simple since it’s largely static images and moving text. However, the light animation of the already sinister images enhances the tone of this scary book series, as do the animated text effects.
If you don’t count the extended end card that appears after the trailer, this trailer really only lasts about 30 seconds, not 40, but we’ll keep it here anyway. This trailer has much more animation, yet it still manages to introduce the characters, setting, and major conflict in even less time than the previous examples.
While text animations do most of the heavy lifting to get the story across in the opening of this 30-second trailer, the cloudy background and the final pan down give us a sense of place and, in the end, character. It’s a strong image on its own, but it’s also the image on the cover of the book, which means readers are more likely to recognize it if they see it in a bookstore later.
In only 23 seconds this trailer quickly establishes that the book has been highly praised and won awards.
At the same time, the animated artwork gives us a hint of the story’s tone and that it’s about a girl. Like the previous trailer, this one relies heavily on the cover artwork, making sure it is the imagery that sticks with viewers.
Now we get into the really short trailers! We’ve included a few different examples to show how much can be accomplished in only 15 seconds. Remember, less is more!
A little goes a long way in this 15-second trailer. It features a great tagline that gives us a sense of the story, and the subtle text animations betray a sense of foreboding, like something isn’t quite right. It piques our curiosity, making us want to know more.
This 15-second trailer doesn’t say very much, but after the success of the movie Bird Box, it doesn’t need to. It quickly identifies that this is the Bird Box author’s newest book and then shows us the book jacket art with the new book’s title. The subtle animations along with the music help set the eerie tone.
With just a bit more animation of the artwork and the transitions, this trailer is just as flashy as some longer trailers—and it’s only 15 seconds long. With just a little bit more text than the other 15-second trailers we get an idea of the characters and the stakes of their story.
Have you seen an awesome book trailer shorter than 60 seconds? We want to know! Share it with us in the comments.
Megan Barlog loves great stories, be they books, movies, TV shows, or anything in between! She has studied both creative writing and screenwriting, and worked for both a library and a major NYC publisher. When she’s not writing a novel or screenplay, she’s probably out for a run or binge-watching something on Netflix.
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