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Date: Wed, 02 Jul 2008 12:30:29 +0100
Subject: The Whole World 4

*Revised trailer!*

Special thanks to Ole, Joann, Mary D., Pamela and Eva for comments. The
concensus is that music is necessary, so I’ve adapted acordingly:

I’d love any feedback.

As to Joann’s question about how people find book trailers:
At the moment, mostly on an author’s website or myspace page, or the
publisher’s website. The hope is that a really good trailer will go
“viral,” meaning that people will start passing it (or its link, at
least) around the internet, attracting new readers. So far, I haven’t
seen this happen. Some clever vids have made the round of blogs that
writers read, but I haven’t known there to be much effect on readers. At
this time, they’re more gifts to readers who are already interested, and
tools for generating interest in-house at one’s publisher. Maybe it will
also help generate interest with buyers; that is, the people who choose
the stock for bookstores. The chain buyers are extremely powerful, and
anything that helps them understand the tone and quality of a book helps.

As to Mary D.’s comment about adding a final slide that gives more a
sense of the plot, and what the central “mystery” is: good point! It’s
something I’m still thinking about. So many trailers are repeats of the
blurb text (the paragraph on the back of the book), and I wanted to do
something that would be additional to the blurb text, not repetitive of
it. I’ve been focussing on this being a taste of the text, and an
opportunity to *see* Cambridge. I’m leaning toward the trailer content
as is, and the website providing the other info. Still, there will be
viewers coming to the trailer without knowing anything about the book,
and I should consider that. Hmmm.

*More fun research:*

Cambridge’s Centre for Mathematical Sciences is a gorgeous modern
complex. I adore it. It has fabulous curves and towers, and a rooftop
covered in grass that students can lay out on on warm days. I’m not the
only one who hangs out there just for the architecture: I asked a
student studying there how I could get to the roof, and she admitted she
had no idea. She studies modern languages, not maths, and only hangs out
here because the modern languages building is so ugly! 🙂

So, I asked someone else: I’m a local novelist who writes books set in
Cambridge, and I’d love to get up on that roof. How would I go about
doing that?

And she handed me her security pass, asking only that I bring it back
when I’m done exploring!

What a grand day that was, finished off with a lecture by superstar
theoretical mathematician Penrose, speaking on what there might have
been before the big bang. I sat right behind Stephen Hawking. The
content was interesting, but the aspect that held the most charm for me
were the overhead projecter slides. No sophisticated powerpoint here!
These were handwritten transparencies that Penrose had made himself,
using all different colors of pen, and full of emphasis markings and
decorations, like the scribblings of a fourteen year old girl 😉 You
know what I mean–underlines and curlicues and “flash” lines encircling
important words. It was delightful.


From “Envoy” by Billy Collins, a message to his just-published book:

"stay out as late as you like,
don't bother to call or write,
and talk to as many strangers as you can."