• Margaret McGriff

How to Use Video as a Fiction Author

Updated: May 17


How to Use Video as a Fiction Author

Now I'm going to be like a thousand percent honest -- me and video don't have the best relationship. I've done videos for my day job as being on camera is part of the job description but to say that it's my absolute fav? Not really. (I like podcasting way better!) But that's one of the beautiful things about content marketing. You don't have to do stuff you don't like!


However, if you love doing video or you're on the fence and not sure exactly how video fits into your writer business, then keep reading!


Why Video Does So Well on Social Media

We are seeing it more video every day because it's super popular and does very well on social media. YouTube is actually the second biggest search engine with Google being the first. I personally use YouTube for a lot of things such as catching up on late shows and get motivated to start my day. You can use videos on many different levels and on many platforms. Another reason why video does so well is that as a person who watches this type of content, you feel like you are personally connected to the person on the screen, even if you may never, ever, ever meet them. But if you've watched them every you get to see where they live and work, making it feel like you know them in real life. And when you feel as if you personally know someone, you're more invested in reading their books or booking their services.


So video is a great medium for sharing content, sharing your brand, sharing your story, and connecting with your ideal reader.


The Types of Video Content You Can Create as a Fiction Author


So here’s a quick rundown of the type of video content you can create a fiction author:

· YouTube Videos

· Facebook Live Videos

· Instagram Live Videos

· IGTV for pre-recorded videos

· Book Trailers that can be posted on social media platforms

· Videos ads on social media


So now that we know what our options are, let's explore some ways that we can use it in our writer business.


Give a Behind-the-Scenes Look at Your Writing Process

One way fiction authors can use video is to give a behind the scenes look at your writing process, whether you’re drafting or going through revisions. You can actually talk about the process, show your marked-up manuscript, and give updates on your progress. Popular YA fantasy author Adrienne Young has amazing IG Story videos where she walks through her entire editing process. She shows fans her writing calendar with deadlines and, her thought process of how she goes about it. It’s fascinating especially for fellow writers because we can learn from her. It’s fun for readers to see because we get to see how she crafts such amazing stories.


Show Off Your Personality

Another fantasy author with great videos is Sabaa Tahir. That girl knows how to use a filter on IGTV. She talks about her books, what's happening in the news, or what’s going on in her life (complete with fun stuffed animals by the way!) Her videos are really cool to watch! While her are very serious and epic in nature, you see her and she's so fun! As a reader, I really connect with her which makes me even more of a fan (I’ve read every single book of hers, follow her on social religiously, and share her content!) So use video to show off yourself and connect with people you know, whether they've read your book or not.


Educate Your Community

On the flip side, you can do videos that are meant to educate readers and writers in your community. You can do regular video interviews with other authors in the community, asking them questions about their writing processes, what they struggle with and their best tips for writers. I recently saw a video from author and YouTuber Jenna Moreci where she did a great interview with an author about their first-year writing full time. Many writers like us all want that dream of being able to just write full time and make that our sole job. Hearing about the struggle they both encountered both financially and emotionally was very eye-opening to me. Other ways you can educate your community includes doing regular videos that tackle common writer problems, the publishing process, or even on things you wish you knew before querying agents.


How to Figure Out What Types of Videos to Create

There are so many more ways you can use video that we could be here all day! But in the end, what you ultimately choose to create will be determined by the big three:

· Your Story

· Your Brand

· Your Ideal Reader


The videos you create have to fall in either one (or preferably all) of these buckets. If you create video content that doesn't resonate with your tribe and deliver the results you want, it will discourage you and would be an ultimate waste of time. So ask yourself:

· Is this video going to help me share my story in a way that connects with what I do?

· Does it strengthen my brand?

· Does it show what I want to be known for?

· does it connect with my ideal reader? Is this something they're even going to enjoy watching?


All right, now it’s your turn! Do you plan to use video in your writer business? What are your video content ideas?





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© 2019 by Margaret McGriff