Thursday, November 19, 2009

To Trailer, or Not to Trailer

At Slate today, Troy Patterson casts his critical eye on the newest marketing phenomenon of the book world: filmed trailers. He writes that they are "but the latest reflection of the ways that such clips — 'book trailers' — can reveal the hopes and fantasies of readers, writers, and publishers alike." He then looks at a few trailers and dissects them, which we won't wade into here.

What leaps to mind is: What would a Godine book trailer look like? I can't help but envision us all set in the heyday of noir, Hitchcockian black and white, ducking planes on long dusty roads; but, then again, there is a whimsical side to the list as well — the Will Cuppy affect, let's call it. Slightly silly, "punny", occasionally inappropriate: yes, that's probably us too, despite ourselves. We've had books adapted to film before: In the Bedroom (2001) and We Don't Live Here Anymore (2004) were both based on fiction by Andre Dubus. Georges Perec wrote and produced several films. The femme fatale of Russel Hoban's Linger Awhile is a starlet stepping magically off the screen.

Still, no one sums us up and I am, as ever, open to the thoughts and ideas of our readers here.

1 comment:

  1. I believe trailers work only when they plumb the wells of a writer's motivation. I mean deep into the heart. Too many seem devoted to so much flash and heat rather than heart and real life.

    I've just completed writing the trailer to She-Rain, my southern novel launching nationally in March, 2010. I conceived it with a vow to draw from some of the book's inspiration. As we prepare to put it together with some original music by a great performer, Kevin Ahrens, look for it on the She-Rain blog, Facebook, and soon on I welcome all thoughts to

    Warmest peace,