First of all, before we get to ‘The Making of’ here is the trailer:
The Thwarted Plan
You may recall that last year I was planning a field trip to Cornwall. There was going to be a Cornish language weekend. Whilst on location, I was to film and take photographs for the trailer and launch about to happen.
And then …. Yes, the world situation altered, and the project was put on the back burner. As things to turned out, it brought about something special that I would not have otherwise have had the pleasure of experiencing.
First, the Cornish language weekend happened online. It was tremendously enjoyable, and all from the comfort of my own nicely padded office chair and beloved desk.
Second, well, you’ll see. Well, if you want to make a book trailer about Cornwall from London, what do you do? You look for high-quality footage and stills shot by other people. I have three go-to websites for stock footage, but nothing there fitted the bill. There are paid stock photo sites with more choice, but not being quite as the Hollywood budget stage, I went to YouTube for ideas.
There I found exactly what I was seeking: El Dorado. Paddy Scott is a photographer, cameraman and filmmaker. His work is outstanding and in his film of Bodmin Moor, his love and appreciation for it’s beauty, from stark to lush, from harsh to tender shines through. Paddy had captured two magnificent pans of the landscape that would be perfect for the book trailer.
Anyone who has tried to record outdoors on the moors will now that filming smoothly is an art. Fortunately for me, it had been perfected by Paddy. I wrote, asking for permission to used a clip or two, and waited.
Road Movie and VistaVision
Next, to show Amanda’s progress from her endearing English village of Sunken Madley to Cornwall, I needed some driving-along-a-road footage. And not just any road: a Cornish road. Not just any Cornish road either. It had to be around Bodmin Moor. No easy task. However, once again, I found a photographer, Harry Mateman, who had made a delightful video of highlights of the Moor, including driving along the desired byways. I crafted a missive requesting his leave to use some of it, and waited.
Finally, I wanted some other sweeping vistas across the wild spaces of the Moor. Again I sought for buried treasure in the vaults of YouTube. There I found the very film created by Olly Parry-Jones.
I wrote and asked if I might use some choice sections and bided my time.
Who Would Say Yes?
Now, image permissions (whether stills or video) are a must, especially for a commercial venture such as a book trailer. Still, even for something informal, it is not only a legal necessity but a courtesy. Whether amateur or professional, the photographer has spent time and energy developing their skill, has outlaid the cost of equipment and transport, and above all brought their unique eye to bear upon the subject. That’s why we say please and thank you … if they say yes.
Over the years, I have had exceptional experiences with fellow photographers, but they don’t always respond. It might be that they don’t visit the internet site or platform on which you contact them to pick up messages, or they might not see the email you send. It might go into spam, or they might just be busy and/or have more important things to do. If I got two out of three replies, I would be fortunate indeed.
So… how many responded? All three! Within 24 hours, all had said ‘yes’ and two took an interest in the project.
I look forward to sending each of them a paperback as soon as they become available.
Sunny Side Up
Yes, here was the bright and shining silver lining to the postponed trip. I had a heart-warming experience I would have missed. And so I bring you the book trailer for Amanda Cadabra and The Strange Case of Lucy Penlowr, courtesy of these three kind gentlemen, and a list of others (in the credits at the end of the film) who make their work freely available for projects like this one. The genuine Cornish music, An Culyek Hos, in the soundtrack comes to us care of Nacnud, who posted his very own melodious performance on YouTube.
Launch Dates and Standalone Sequels
I hope you enjoy the movie. The book will launch as a Kindle edition this Saturday, 6th February. In celebration, Book 1 of the series, Amanda Cadabra and The Hidey-Hole Truth, will be available for free download from Amazon for just three days: Saturday to Monday, 6 – 8 February.
Just a note about the sequels, although there is an overarching storyline, each book has a standalone mystery, so you can pick and choose where to sample. Of course, it’s most fun if you start at the first one and ride through the series in order. If you’re new to the world of Amanda Cadabra know someone who’d enjoy a visit, please do take advantage of the free 72 hours over the long weekend.
Next time: launch report and … what next for Amanda, Tempest, her irascible feline and invaluable police contact, Inspector Trelawney?
PS If you want to start the series now:
Available on Amazon
Paperback and Kindle