Nearly twenty years ago I decided to stop asking Why Me? and instead start asking What If?
One by one I replaced negative emotions with those of a positive nature. Instead of wondering why I couldn't make everyone around me happy--and becoming despondent because nothing I did seemed to change them or their opinions--I started asking things like, "What if happiness really is a choice? What if it can be my choice, no matter what anyone else thinks or feels?"
Instead commiserating over why my extended family couldn't accept me for who I was and what I believed in, I asked myself, "What if I could choose my own thoughts and emotions based on what I know in my heart is right and true?" In short, "What if I accept myself for who I am?"
And, "What if I forgive, knowing that forgiveness doesn't mean acceptance?"
A few weeks ago when we started on the trailer for my novel I wanted to put my whole soul into it. I wanted a major production that would capture everything I tried to convey in the book. The result was over five minutes long. It took hours and hours to complete. It was okay...but it was long--longer than most people wanted to spend viewing a book trailer--wordy and choppy because I tried to cram too much into it. After reviewing feedback (thanks to all of you who emailed and gave your opinions--they were priceless!) and doing some major editing, it was better...but still bulky.
A friend gave me food for thought. She asked what--exactly--I was trying to say. How would I sum up the entire book in only a sentence or two?
My thoughts went back to my reason for writing My Gift to You. I wanted my main character, Trish, to discover something important about herself. I wanted her to discover her own inner strengths and worth--much like I had when I began to unravel my own life.
And so the trailer was edited yet again, this time asking only a simple What If? question that gets to the very heart of what the novel is all about.
I hope you enjoy the final trailer:
And for those of you who said you really loved the mid-length trailer, despite all its imperfections, I left it up as well. To see it, click here.