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Sunshine State Book Festival

Information About Author Videos

Festival Dates

The festival will open to the public January 30, 2021, and booths will remain online until June 30, 2021.



Authors retain full ownership of their videos while granting the Sunshine State Book Festival (SSBF) non-exclusive rights to use the video on the festival website, SSBF YouTube channels, and for festival promotion.

This year the Sunshine State Book Festival will be a virtual event. Instead of meeting you in person, visitors will watch your video. Introduce yourself as an author and give a brief discussion about what you write and your latest book. You may wish to read a short selection from one of your books. Maximum length of the entire video cannot exceed 15 minutes. Shorter is okay.

You may record your own video or have someone do it for you. Typically, recordings have to be edited to produce a quality finished product. Resources to help you record and/or edit videos are listed under Help?

Video Content

Videos must feature the author speaking. Book trailers containing only text and images will be rejected.

During live readings, authors often show photos or illustrations related to their books. If you have a capable video editor, feel free to interweave these into your video presentation.

Please note that the festival cannot accept any video in which a child appears. Non-photographic illustrations of child characters from your book are permitted.

It is recommended that you do not include music in your video unless you are the composer and own the song’s copyright.

WAG does not practice censorship; however, please respect that a wide range of readers will visit our site. If your books contain strong language or racy scenes, we suggest you avoid selecting those passages to read in your video.

If you already have a suitable video on your website or YouTube, that’s fine. But we need a copy of the actual video file. A link to a website won’t do. Also, make sure the existing video meets the quality and technical specifications given below.



If any of this seems beyond your technical know-how, contact one of the resources listed below.

If you hire someone to produce your video, make sure you retain the right to grant permission for the festival to use it.

Here are contacts who provide video recording/editing services:

Allison Durham Photography Fill out her contact form, and she will be in touch.

Jolene’s Web Designs and More

Bill Friz of Bearded Brothers Events will shoot and edit your video. Call him at 352-339-4640

Software Only

If you make your own recording, you’re going to need to edit it. Here are some resources:


Corel VideoStudio Pro

Quality Assurance

Festival visitors are likely to randomly click videos of various authors. A video of poor technical quality by even a single author may cause a viewer to abandon our site. Therefore, we have minimum standards for audio and video quality:

• No shaky videos—use a tripod

• Author must be well-lit from the front—no strong backlight or deep shadows; also avoid glare from mirrors or your glasses.

• Videos must be landscape mode. phone

• Audio must be clear and easy to hear. Disruptions such as coughing, barking dogs, and fire trucks must be edited out.

• Remove any segment of the video where you were interrupted or started over.

Video Do’s & Don’ts

In this YouTube video, Sunny Lenarduzzi provides tips on how she made her own video recordings and errors she’s learned to avoid. Sunny is not affiliated with the book festival, but her video covers several of the bullet points listed under Quality Assurance.

After recording, Sunny edits her videos to clean them up. If you choose to record your own, you will need software to do the same or someone to do it for you. See the list of resources under Help?


Technical file specifications

Duration: Minimum length 3 minutes, maximum length 15 minutes.

File Format: All videos must be in the mp4 format (the file extension is .mp4)

File Name: The video file name must include the name appearing on your book cover. For example, Jane Doe publishes under the name Jon Dragon. Her video must be named: jon_dragon.mp4 or jondragon.mp4.

Orientation: Videos must be in landscape mode.

Size and resolution: 1280 x 720 @ 720p is preferred, but HD (1920 x 1080 @1080p) is also accepted.

Submission: Do not email video files. They are too large for email servers. Transfer instructions will be sent to you when you register for the festival.

Deadline: Videos are due within four weeks of submitting your registration application.