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Building Hype, Movie-style.

Andre Mayer writes about trailers for books for
The notion of promoting a book like a movie might seem anathema to readers who feel that literature is too refined to borrow the garish devices of the film industry. Judith Keenan may well be the originator of the practice. In 1994, U.S. publishing house Hyperion was preparing for the stateside release of Amnesia, the debut novel by Canadian writer Douglas Cooper. Keenan was working at a PR agency in New York City at the time, when she came up with a radical idea. Taking advantage of Cooper’s theatre training, Keenan shot a three-and-a-half-minute short film of Cooper reading the text — dramatically, of course — underscored by music from Canadian singer-songwriter Jane Siberry. The clip was included in electronic press kits for the book and even aired in television reports about Cooper.