Tuesday, March 24, 2015

YouTube for Bloggers and Authors

Happy Tuesday, good people of the blogosphere! Today, I'm gonna talk a little bit about You Tube and how bloggers and authors can use it to their advantage. Ready? Grab those pens and notebooks and let's get going!

You Tube. I bet most of you have watched a video or two hundreds of videos from this little channel, either via your Facebook feed or by browsing for something you were interested in, right?

Well, I invite you today to expand your horizons and look beyond browsing and watching; let's go into making.

If you've never made a video, you're not alone. There are hundreds of thousands of people just like you in the world who either don't have time or have no idea how to get started. So, first, I'm gonna walk you through a quick lesson on creating and uploading that video, then we'll get to how you can use the platform to your advantage (what you might consider recording to share).

You'll (possibly) need the following equipment:
  • Something to record yourself with (this can be an iPhone, iPad, computer camera, or other camera that captures video)
  • A video editing tool (on Windows, you have Movie Maker - FREE, and I'm not sure about Mac, but I believe they come with something similar)
  • An image editing tool (Paint will do fine)
  • A noise cancelling microphone or headset (if you plan to only speak)
  • This link for music (if you want to add some beats - these are FREE for YouTube use)
Now that you have those things, we're ready to create an awesome video. Here are the steps:
  1. Create a script (this is what you want to say once you're on camera) so you aren't stumbling all over the place
  2. Set up your recording device on a stable surface so there isn't a ton of camera shake (if you're only doing audio, this is where you strap on your headset or affix your freestanding mic to something)
  3. Get your screen grabs (if you're doing a walk-through to show someone how to do something, you'll want to go step-by-step through the screens - Use Ctrl+PrtScr then open Paint and use Ctrl+V to paste the shot in - be sure to save them with labels like Screenshot1_tutorial1, Screenshot2_tutorial1, etc...) You can skip this step if you plan to record yourself talking.
  4. Get to recording. Lay down all audio and video tracks now
  5. Open Movie Maker and create an intro section (it's pretty self-explanatory), then drop in the other images you plan to use and set their run times.
  6. Add your audio where you want it and tweak the video where necessary. Be sure and save your project often in case of a crash.
  7. Render it (again, it kinda walks you through it), and save to your hard drive.
  8. Go create a YouTube Channel.
  9. Upload your video, add tags, and click publish.
You're done!

I bet you're thinking: That's awesome, Jo, but what the hell do I have to record that people will give two craps about?

Everyone has a skill, and most people know something they can share with or teach others. If all else fails, read a portion of your novel so people can have a taste of it, or do a book review. You can also create a cool book trailer. Once you graduate from Movie Maker, you can get into more technical editors that might cost a little money, but produce studio grade results. But cut your teeth on something easy to use first.

Here are a couple of little videos I did with Movie Maker:

So, you can see the possibilities are there. Crafts, books, technology, marketing, allathat and more!

What are you waiting for? Get going!

Do you have a YouTube channel? Share the link!

Well, that's all for today, folks! Until next time, WRITE ON!



  1. I LOVE youtube! Here's my channel. Also, my 'steady surface' is my hand ;) Sometimes I use a tripod, but a lot of times I just sort of 'vlog' while holding the camera with my phone.


    1. I knew you were shaky for a reason. Lay off the coffee! ;) KIDDING!!! Hugs! Thanks for the comment, Kelly!


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