December 29, 2014

On a Quest for the Mythical Tipping Point

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I think my last blog post was unconsciously in preparation for this one, because in it I discussed some of the difficulties I've wrestled with in regards to advertising, and it set the stage for me to reveal what I've been doing instead of writing.
I've been rather fixated in the last several years on finding that magical, mythical tipping point, where my work slides from obscurity into at least a modicum of success. If you don’t factor in a marketing budget, authors (indie and tradpub alike) have pretty much the same options, a tried-and-true formula. If you haven’t seen my tongue-in-cheek video on the hoops we jump through to get attention for our books, the link is here. That video, as goofy as it is, was the first thing, of all the things I tried, that put me on the map, which is how I realized sticking to the same old formula wouldn't lift me above the crowd.
I decided to do something different, but do it so well people would be impressed enough to like or share it (without me having to beg them to). So for the last couple of years, I've been working on a fresh new book trailer for the Xenofreak Nation series – but in the style of a movie trailer. I hope I've come close to achieving my goal (because there’s nothing like putting your heart and soul into something that thuds onto the scene).
In the event anyone would like to know how I made it, well, my methodology and resources are way too long to list here, but I’ll narrow it down to the basics:
DAZ Studio – free 3D software. Talented digital artists create the content to use within the software. That content is not free, but over time, you can build up a healthy library of figures, hair, clothes, props, scenes, lights and much more. The learning curve to produce something decent is steep, but as far as DIY 3D goes, it’s the best and cheapest option out there.
Digital Juice – royalty-free graphics, animation, stock footage and music. This is a subscription service, but the cost vs. what you get is a good deal, especially if you’re a video editor.
Adobe Premiere Elements – this is the downgraded version of Adobe’s movie making software, but it has all the features you need at an affordable price.
Adobe Photoshop Elements – same as the above except this is their picture editor.
So, with no further ado:

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