Short film project

During the 2019 semester I will need to make a long and a short film in college. The short film comes first to teach us the techniques.

I propose to make a book trailer as this would be the most useful film for me in my profession as an author.

A book trailer is a recently invented way of interacting with books. The author / publisher makes a short trailer similar to a cinema release trailer. This can be embedded on the author’s website and / or released on platforms such as YouTube. The usual purpose is an advertisement; but enthusiastic fans of books have also chosen to make trailers for them. Provided the copyright holder is okay with this, they can release the trailer. I recently upgraded the space available to my website by buying space to go with my domain name. So I will now be able to host trailers and podcasts.

Here are some trailers I enjoy viewing for science fiction books. While a trailer may be made for any genre, SF books seem to lend themselves to the medium.


This one is a fan made trailer for Wool by Hugh Howey. Wool looks at a community living in a giant underground silo after an apocalyptic event. Conditions are basic and stairs feature largely.


Here is the official trailer for the same book, which is due to be filmed.


And the official German version.


I also enjoy this take on the matter: author Daniel Arthur Smith has made a trailer for his own book which uses the concept of Hugh Howey as a symbol of independent authorship in a world where all books are now written by Artificial Intelligence.

Hugh Howey Lives trailer is a techno approach which uses as touchpoint the fact that Howey is a keen yachtsman. He also published independently which is why this best-selling SF author is a good choice.


SF author Andria Stone has two book trailers for her first two novels. Edge of the Future above.

Edge of the Stars is the second book.   I asked Andria how she made the trailers but she said she found someone on to make them. This is a site where professionals are available to make one-off projects for those who don’t have the skills or equipment.

What I notice all these have in common is strong, themed music in the background and vibrant imagery. The scenes and text carry drama and introduce characters, and the challenges may be stated but the resolution is not. So this looks like Act One and maybe Two of a three-act play. The viewer needs to go buy the book to see how the conflict is resolved.

The book covers are generally shown at the end of the sequence. Some trailers show the author, and they may give a quote from reviewers or a blurb about the book other than the bones of the plot (best seller etc.)  I tend to think that too much text is not good as the lines get disconnected.

I also notice that standards are high and if I’m to display this book trailer as an advert, it had better be good.

Possible inclusions:

I take all my own book cover photos. I still have the originals and my husband has made the book covers to my specification. This means I could show the photo and gradually merge it with the book cover.

I can make the trailer for my SF series. The film can be up to five minutes, giving lots of time. I need to show three to five minutes of original film content. I can introduce the concept and setting. I have lots of photos of London. They don’t show aliens though.

I would need a mockup of London’s Eye headlines.

I will need something to suggest hacking. A technothriller usually has strings of 1 – 0 digits on display. Computer users would work for hacking or the news office, and I filmed some at the VR / AR Meetup.

Suitable dynamic / futuristic music. Try The Last Microt as I like it. And I have used it on my podcasts. Need Creative Commons.

I have lots of nice quotes from other authors.

My current blurbs:

In a future where giant corporations run countries, all British Space Mines has to fear are journalists and hackers.
Donal and Myron are their worst nightmare.
When people from offworld races open ethnic restaurants in London, they meet a lot of opposition.
Donal and Myron are their best friends.
The London’s Eye zine has vacancies.
What do you think happened to their other reporters?

Donal, an Irish lad, and Myron, a Cockney-Jamaican mix, meet aged seventeen as book reviewers and trainee journalists. Before long they’re onto the hottest stories in London.

In their future, Stansted Airport has been converted to a space shuttle base and Londoners are recruited to mine the asteroids.

While exploring the other planets, we found that they were all inhabited. Now those people are coming to Earth and looking for work. They’re also opening ethnic restaurants in central London.

Befriending immigrants makes Donal and Myron unpopular with some, while their investigative reporting lands them in trouble with wealthy organisations, criminals and the Home Office. Their romantic prospects are compromised. But you can’t keep a good team down, especially when they report for London’s Eye, and they’ve got every book ever digitised at their disposal….


“If you enjoy suspense stories with science fiction twists, I believe you will find Dining Out Around the Solar System by Clare O’Beara to be your five-star cup of tea.”
D.S. Kane, author of Swiftshadow, DeathByte and Greynet in the ‘Spies Lie’ series.

This story is complete in itself and is followed by DINING OUT WITH THE ICE GIANTS and DINING OUT WITH THE GAS GIANTS which are standalone reads within the series Dining Out Around The Solar System.



Zine ad for British Space Mines is Hiring!

Zine item Mine Shuttle Accident

London shots – Eye. Big Ben would be good but currently under scaffolding.

Headline – Jupiter’s bought the Dome.


Thames – Greenwich, Cutty Sark

Estuary bombs headline

Tower Bridge
Tower Bridge

College: Filming


Short film: Book trailer

Dining Out Around The Solar System.

Will need:


Book covers.

Mockup of zine headlines

Footage in London


Free to use music.



Phone camera

Final Cut Pro on Apple Mac

Already have VR clips on GDrive. Should get more next Meetup.

List of places to visit

Greenwich, Big Ben, Eye, City, try to get on top of Walkie Talkie building or Shard restaurant. Local sights like Globe, Covent Garden.


Long film: Disability access

Featuring Allan

Will need:

Footage in Dublin

Footage in London

Photos like wheelchair at RDS



Free music  Creative Commons – several pieces.


GoPro-alike as a real Go Pro is expensive

Phone camera – lenses


Final Cut Pro on Apple Mac

List of places to visit

London trip can be in Reading Week.

Need to book flights and hotel and Stansted Express.

Steps taken:

Booked flights, hotel and Stansted Express.

Purchased Crosstour Action Camera with accessories and card. To be delivered; coming via Amazon and An Post Address Pal.

Viewed a few Youtube videos on how to assemble, set up and use camera.

Started filming Allan leaving the house to go to college, stand at bus stop, on my phone. Discovered that a clip is almost unusable without a tripod.

Started looking out for Creative Commons music on clips. I can credit the creators.

Reading Digital Film Making, Save The Cat, and The Guerilla Film Makers Pocketbook, textbook on how to use Final Cut Pro.

The guerilla film makers advise making a call sheet of where to shoot which scenes each day.


Short film:

Made a good demo presentation on the college Mac with Final Cut Pro. This uses my one minute film of Dublin and I will just need to drop in new footage. As this is one minute, I can proceed to make trailers for the next books too and call it a series trailer when they are all joined. This will use three or four minutes of actual film footage so that seems like a reasonable workaround. I used a music clip from Youtube, titles, news ribbon graphics.

I have asked on YouTube if I can use a good song; also visited his computer professional website and filled out contact form asking the same question. In case I can’t use it I will make a second version using a royalty free tune.

More interesting ones,

Ansia Orchestra, free to use, Gas Giants

Royalty Free Zone, Dragon Castle

Could use sounds of fireworks on start of Ice Giants.


Planet Mercury


Equipment update:

The Crosstour Action Cam arrived, got it working with a phone app.  I got a mini tripod for my phone/ action cam. Also our old tripod works with the camera.

Will need extra battery pack.



Make a storyboard for each film.

Make a call sheet for our filming of scenes in London.

Make a shot list for each scene.

As my short film is so short I will need each shot to fulfil two or more roles.

Need to keep a list of which locations I have filmed.



The headlines for the first trailer so far:

Title: Dining Out Around The Solar System

Start: In a future where giant corporations run countries…

And migrant workers come from other planets…

British Space Mines is Hiring!

Mine Shuttle Accident

Jupiter’s Bought The Dome

Stowaways From Saturn

Planet Mercury Restaurant Opens

Neptune! Estuary Bombs To Be Cleared

Death Caused by Caffeine

British Space Mines Scandal


End: A Dublin hacker teams up with a London reporter

The future of journalism… is dangerous

Book cover


Second book:

Title: Dining Out With The Ice Giants

Start: In a future where migrant workers come from other planets…

Saved From London’s Flood

Bank Payments Hacked

Uranus Girl On Dating App

Flu Vaccines Nearly Gone

Neptune Saves Thames Barrier

Pluto Goes Underground

Bond Star Mistri Dies

Drug Company Revelation


End: A Dublin hacker teams up with a London reporter

The future of journalism… is dangerous

Book cover



Third book

Title: Dining Out With The Gas Giants

Start: In a future where summer in the city means riots….

And migrant workers come from other planets…

Abandoned City Mansions

Protest Against British Space Mines

Students Vs Drones

Coffee Crisis – Imports From Mercury

Saturn Conquers Royal Ballet

Riot At The Dome

Andes Avalanche – Race To Rescue


End: A Dublin hacker teams up with a London reporter

The future of journalism… is dangerous

Book cover


Fourth book

Title: Dining Out On Planet Mercury

Start: In a future where a phone box is an office…

And migrant workers come from other planets…

Death in Kensington

Murder Suspect From Mercury

Crammed In To Cricklewood

Last Minute Election Row

Botnet Influences Votes

Desperate Measures In Aussie Drought

Knife Attack On Reporter

End: A Dublin hacker teams up with a London reporter

The future of journalism… is dangerous

Book cover


Wrap up: Join the adventure in the series

Dining Out Around The Solar System

by award-winning author Clare O’Beara

If you enjoy suspense stories with science fiction twists, I believe you will find Dining Out Around the Solar System by Clare O’Beara to be your five-star cup of tea.

DS Kane, Author of Swiftshadow, Greynet, DeathByte in the Spies Lie series.


All may be subject to change!

Next I will write about our adventures in London where I was also filming a long film about disability access with the help of my husband.

You may also be interested in:

Filming in London

Producing my short films with the help of YouTube

Editing and producing short films – with a cast of thousands




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