Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Sophia Knightly Talks About Book Trailers & Her Latest Book ~ Heart Raider

I can't tell you how lucky I am to have Sophia Knightly here today to talk about book trailers.

BREAKING NEWS:  Sophia's latest book HEART RAIDER released today!!  Excerpt will run Saturday on this blog.

I've known Sophia through Scriptscene RWA for a while now, and when she announced her Sold On You book launch party, I had to sign up.  Then I saw the trailer and I was SO envious.  It was funny, (love her Grandmother!) and immediately I wanted to make mine as funny as hers. The music, oh yeah, the music, I wanted that as well.

So I struggled trying to emulate the feel I got from hers.  Sexy, fun, tantalizing.  It made me want to read the book, which is the purpose of a book trailer, right?

But all I did was struggle.  Mine you, I'm a screenwriter as well as a novelist so why was this so dang hard?

First off, mine book was a romantic suspense, Sophia's book a comedy…does that tell you something? Duh!

She has also made trailers for Grill me Baby and Wild for You.

Grill Me, Baby:
Wild for You:
Sold On You:
Hold on tight, here is Sophia …

LA: Why book trailers? People ask me all the time, why go to the trouble to make a book trailer?

SK: Hi Leslie – Thanks so much hosting for me here with such a warm welcome! Making book trailers is one of my favorite things to do because it’s creative and fun, and it’s the perfect combination of two mediums I love best--books and movies. When I’m writing a book, I’m present in it, watching the characters in action and listening to them speak. Combining the images, copy and background music, or score, into a video trailer, gives a snippet of the entertainment that I hope will tempt a reader to read the whole book.

LA: On your credits , you have @Entertaining Interludes at the very end. Do they create the trailer for you? Or is @Entertaining Interludes you?

SK: Entertaining Interludes is me!

LA: If it's you, what program do you use? Hard to learn how to use it?

SK: I use Windows Live Movie Maker, a program that came with my computer. It’s a basic program, and it’s relatively easy to learn. I start by coming up with a series of scenes and captions that give a gist of the story, then I add the images and search for the music. The most time-consuming part is finding the right music to convey the mood of the story.

LA: you have awesome models…including the one playing your grandmother. Are they all friends, neighbors etc.? Or did you have to pay for models?

SK: Thank you, Leslie, that makes me so happy! For the models, I used a combination of stock photos and family photos. Cover model icon Jimmy Thomas portrays Marcos, and he personifies the hot wealthy bachelor to a T. My daughter Gigi played Gabriela and the grandmother was played by my mom. I was giggling so much shooting pictures of my mom as she hammed it up for the camera that I had to do several retakes to get a good shot of the exact expression I wanted.

LA: I've been very cautious about using faces on my covers and in my trailer(s) because I don't want to influence someone's imagination as their reading the book. Yet, I loved seeing the faces on your trailers. Thoughts about faces?

SK: I love seeing faces on covers and book trailers because when I write the book, I see my characters clearly. I think having them on covers draws the reader in before they even start reading the book. For that reason, choosing the right images for book covers is painstaking, but so rewarding in the end. I get very excited by the creative part of the process.

LA: Thoughts on lengths for trailers. I've seen some that run over two minutes. Mine is a hair over one minute. The reason I made mine short? I polled people and they said they got bored.

SK: I’ve heard the same thing. It’s important to keep it short, but I like to give enough scenes to tantalize the viewer.

LA: You're very active on FB, what about Twitter? What do you think social media does for connecting READERS to you? Do you think it helps sell your books?

SK: I’m far more active on Facebook than Twitter. I enjoy the social interaction and have met many new readers this way. I really enjoy chatting with readers, and it has definitely led to more book sales. I don’t interact nearly as much on Twitter, because I’m not on it all day and it’s easy to miss all those tweets. I prefer the visual connection of Facebook. It’s fun to share pictures and see everyone else’s pictures and updates. When I’m writing a book, I try to limit my Facebook time, but it’s hard.

LA: Does that type of social media work better for you than your website for gaining readers?
SK: I do most of my interacting with fans through Facebook. My website is a broader platform where readers can visit to read excerpts and reviews of my books. I try to keep it updated to correlate with what I post on Facebook, especially giveaway contests and launch parties. I have a newsletter sign-up page on my Sophia Knightly Facebook author page and another one on my website for updates and giveaway contests, which I love to run.

LA: Buy a Book, Save a Smile. I love the idea of this charity (better word?.) How can other authors, including myself, become involved?

SK: Buy a Book, Save a Smile was a campaign I ran when I had reached a milestone of 35,000 books sold of my Tropical Heat Series books. It’s one of my favorite charities because with one reasonably priced operation of $250.00, the physicians at the Smile Train can change a child’s disfiguring cleft palate into a beautiful smile…and it changes the child’s life forever in a good way. Anyone can get involved or make a donation through the Smile Train website at

LA: What do you think of Digital Indie/Self Publishing? Trend or flash in the pan? Do you have a reading preference, digital vs. paper?

SK: I think indie publishing is here to stay, and I believe it’s the most empowering venue for authors today. I love every aspect of having control over my books that includes creating the book cover, writing and editing my books, composing the blurb and launching a unique marketing plan for each book.

I also love the immediacy of putting the book in readers’ hands as soon as it’s ready. Indie-publishing is a time-consuming business, because one has to do it all, but it’s also been the most wonderful way to connect with readers all over the world, and the possibilities keep growing. I’m currently working on having my books recorded in audio form to provide another avenue for reading enjoyment..

These days I mostly read on my Kindle, but I have to admit, I prefer holding the book in my hands. I often buy a print version of a digital book I loved so I can go back and enjoy reading it in print.

LA: Thanks Sophia for being here today and chatting about book trailers, indie publishing and how we can make a difference through the charity of our choice.


 Bestselling author Sophia Knightly loves to cook up hot romance and delicious humor in her feel-good stories. Whether it's romantic suspense, romantic comedy or chick lit, her books are fun and sexy contemporary romances that feature hot alpha heroes and strong, smart women. Her popular Tropical Heat Series books, Wild for You and Sold on You, have consistently been on multiple Amazon bestselling lists.

A two-time Maggie award finalist and a P&E Readers' Poll finalist, she believes in love-at-first sight and happy endings, and she always enjoys a good laugh. When not writing or reading, she finds pleasure in walking the beach, exploring museums, going to the theatre, enjoying good food, and watching movies.
One of her favorite pastimes remains simply watching people, especially those in love!

And here is the cover of HEART RAIDER...Come back Saturday for the Excerpt!!!!


Marooned together on Turquoise Bay, hot passion explodes between two unlikely lovers...and nearly destroys them.

Intrepid TV reporter Veronique Whitcomb is the last person reclusive billionaire Nick Cameron expects to show up on his doorstep in the wake of Hurricane Abby.  All grown-up with heart-stopping allure, she is far different from Ronnie, the tomboy he remembers fifteen years ago as her camp counselor. Yet enticing as she is, Nick just wants to be left alone. The burnt-out corporate raider has retreated from the cutthroat corporate world after a scandal he was falsely accused of nearly landed him in jail. Still reeling from his ex-wife's betrayal, Nick has no intention of falling in love, but keeping Ronnie at arms' length is proving impossible.

When it comes to Nick, Veronique doesn't understand the meaning of "No." He was her childhood crush, the gorgeous summer camp counselor who saved her from herself when she was a rebellious kid coping with an alcoholic, drug-addicted celebrity dad and an emotionally unstable mom. In love with him and unstoppable in her zeal, she is determined to vindicate Nick's name and alert him to criminal activity that if not stopped in time, could destroy him.

As danger and suspense builds, Nick must keep the head-strong Ronnie out of harm's way—and out of his heart—but how can he when she's raided his heart in a sweet and spicy way?


  1. Hi everyone! I'm delighted Leslie invited me here to talk about book trailers. Feel free to ask any questions about trailers, book covers, indie publishing, etc. I look forward to chatting with you!

  2. Sophia is one of my favorite authors and I'm so pleased we could tie in this post with her new release.

    And be sure to check out her Facebook page and like it, she's always posting fun information And wait until you meet Romeo. You have to go and see just who I'm talking about.


  3. Oh my gosh, what terrific trailers and the books sound fabulous as well. Squee: another author to add to my expanding to be read pile! Thanks LA, nice to meet you, Sophia!

  4. Hi Leslie and Sophia,
    Wonderful trailers. Wondering how long it takes you to make one and I'm sure you get better with each one made, but do you think it takes less time?
    Thanks Leslie, for introducing us to Sophia! Great blog!

  5. Thanks, Leslie Ann, for connecting us with Sophia, and thanks Sophia for your wonderful intelligence on book trailers. Pardon my ignorance as I know absolutely zero about constructing trailers, but where do you go to find "free" music to use for your trailers?

    Congratulations on all of the accolades you've been bestowed for your writing! Your latest release sounds delicious--I wish you the very best in your journey with it!

  6. Aw, thank you so much, Leslie! I'm happy you mentioned know how much he loves attention! :)

  7. Thank you, Theresa! If I work on the trailer full time, it takes anywhere from three to five days. The most time-consuming part is choosing the stock images and the music.

    The first time I made one, it took the longest because I was learning the software program. The next two took equal time. It gets easier, but doesn't necessarily take less time.

  8. T, I think what took me the longest was deciding on the element I wanted to be the crux of the trailer. Then I had to learn iMovie, which I love.

    I thought as a screenwriter, I'd have no trouble figuring out the movie. HA. I was just too close to it to see the broad picture.


  9. Hi Donnell, Yup another great author to add to your list. Do you want to make a trailer for your books?


  10. Hi Lisa,
    One of the things I learned is that royalty free doesn't mean cost free. Although I did find a site with free music. And used it on my trailer.

    And since music plays a huge part in the tone you're setting, it was great to find exactly what I wanted. I give Kevin full credit on trailer credits.

    Good to see you here.

  11. Love you Sophia, you're an amazing author!!

  12. Sophia, what a great post! I loved reading about the process of creating a trailer, and how much fun it can be. I viewed your trailers after reading the post. You brought your story alive. Amazing!

    Thanks for introducing us to Sophie, Leslie Ann!!

  13. BTW, Leslie, I loved your trailer, too. Very creative and artistic!

  14. LA, thanks for bringing us Sophia! I love the interview and Sophia's insights. Great trailer, too!

    Nancy Haddock

  15. Oops, I forgot to say the obvious.

    CONGRATULATIONS on your new release, Sophia!


  16. Thank you so much, Donnell! It's very nice to meet you too!

  17. Hi Mary! Thanks so much for your nice compliments. You're a sweetie!

  18. Thank you very much, Nancy! I'm so glad you enjoyed the post and my trailers. Thanks for stopping by!

  19. Hi Lisa,

    Thanks for your kind words! I'm not sure where to go for free music, but there should be some sites that offer free music. I bought mine at after going to many websites and listening to a lot of music.

    I'm happy you think Heart Raider sounds delicious - thank you! I loved writing this story.

  20. Hi Audra,

    That's so sweet of you! Thank you for saying the trailer made the story come alive. That's what I was hoping for. :)