Book Trailers!


I love book trailers! As a reader, I enjoy watching them. They can give me a feel for the genre, tone, and theme of a book. Really good book trailers can hook me, just like the first page or back cover blurb of a well-written story.

As an author, I love making them. Authors are always thinking of creative ways to find their readers. We create promotional images to post all over social media. We write blogs–like this one–and have contests or give talks. And some of us make book trailers too!

When I make a book trailer, I begin by pulling out important elements and symbols from my story. Then I search for images and music and brainstorm phrases that can best convey mood and theme. To put it all together, sometimes I use Animoto because they have premade styles. You simply add your pictures and text. But I would also like to have more control over my video. I haven’t found the perfect video maker yet.

If you make book trailers, please share in the comments what program you use. And tell me why you like it.

Several books at Catholic Teen Books have book trailers, including mine. You can check them all out by clicking on the links below. Enjoy!

Rightfully Ours by Carolyn Astfalk

8 Notes to a Nobody by Cynthia Toney

Treachery and Truth by Katy Huth Jones

I am Margaret by Corina Turner

Books by Amy Cattapan

Books by Leslea Wahl

Books by Theresa Linden

I hope to soon have a book trailer for my next book, Standing Strong. If you want to be one of the first to see it, make sure you are signed up for my author newsletter!




Back to School Giveaway at Shower of Roses!


Have you ever visited Shower of Roses blogspot?

This site is packed with tons of fun for Catholic families!

  • Arts & Crafts
  • Book Lists
  • Feasts & Seasons
  • Home School
  • Lap Books
  • Little Flowers Girls’ Club
  • Party Time
  • And More!

To celebrate the upcoming school year, Shower of Roses is hosting a giveaway each Friday for the rest of August, featuring educational products and books.

This week’s Back to School Giveaway is sponsored by Catholic Teen Books. Two winners will win six books each! Stop by and enter to win!







Fatima – Extremely Relevant Today


All the violence, hate, and sin in the world is getting me down: the global and bloody persecution of Christians, human trafficking, the killing of the innocent, racial division, and violence perpetrated to suppress freedom of speech.

I want to offer hope with this post, to recommend a most powerful spiritual weapon, suggest a book for our times, and share new Rosary meditations.

padrepioPadre Pio once said that the Rosary is the weapon for these times. It is, after all, a meditation on the mysteries of our salvation: the life, death and resurrection of Our Lord. St. Pope John Paul the Great, and many other saints, encouraged us to pray the Rosary every day. Our Blessed Mother said that we can do more in one day of intense prayer than in years of discussion.

Remember the victory in the battle of Lepanto in October of 1571? Greatly outnumbered, the Christian defenders held off Turkish invasion through the power of the Rosary.

And what about this victory: On the anniversary of Fatima, in Austria, May 13th, 1955, 700,000 prayed the Rosary and the Soviets mysteriously left their country.

Visit Signs & Wonders if you want to see other amazing victories related to praying the fatima-book-coverRosary. Get inspired! We need to take up this powerful spiritual weapon today.

Here is the book I recommend for our times:

Catholic author Jean M. Heimann recently released Fatima: The Apparition That Changed the World

You might know something about the dramatic events that took place in Fatima 100 years ago. But in this book you’ll learn more. It not only recounts the apparitions and introduces you to the Fatima children, it contains over fifty beautiful illustrations and a timeline, setting the visions in context with historical events.

This 5-star book is available as an ebook or hardcover. I’ll be getting my copy soon.

I want to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Our Lady’s appearances at Fatima. And I want to encourage others to pray the Rosary. So I present these meditations which weave the messages given at Fatima with the joyful mysteries of the Rosary. We need to heed Our Lady’s messages now more than ever.

The Annunciation

In the fullness of time, the Angel of the Lord appeared to the Blessed Virgin Mary and announced that she would conceive by the power of the Holy Spirit. Mary consented to God’s will and the Word was made flesh and dwelt among us.

In 1917, in a small village of Portugal called Fatima, the Angel of Peace visited three shepherd children: seven-year-old Jacinta Marto, her nine-year-old brother Francisco, and their cousin ten-year-old Lucia Dos Santos.

The Angel prepared the children to receive the Blessed Virgin Mary and taught them how we should all pray: with fervor, attentiveness, and by showing reverence to God.

“Make of everything you can a sacrifice and offer it to God as an act of reparation for the sins by which He is offended, and in supplication for the conversion of sinners.”

As the Blessed Virgin said “yes” to the Angel of the Lord—and Christ came into the world, so let us say “yes” to Our Lady and let the peace of Christ spread through the world.

The Visitation

In this mystery, we think of our Blessed Mother’s love for others as she went out of her way to help her cousin Elizabeth in her time of need. Our Blessed Mother continues to go out of her way for others. At Fatima, she delivered a message in our time of need to help and guide the world to peace and salvation.

Our Lady appeared six times between May 13 and October 13. At a time when war and violence had torn civilization asunder, God sent His Mother with a message for every man, woman, and child living in our century.

“If My requests are granted,” Mary said, “there will be peace.”

In imitation of her selfless love, let us fulfill her requests for prayer, reparation, and consecration so that sinners may be converted and peace may come into our world.

The Blessed Nativity

Our Lord was not born in a palace. He did not come into the world in glory and grandeur for all the world to see. He came into the world secretly, first in the heart of Mary. Then he was born in a manger and only the shepherds and three Wise Men knew.

While the Messages from Heaven are for the world, the world does not welcome them. So Heaven confided Our Lady’s message to the three children of Fatima.

“Men must amend their lives, and ask pardon for their sins.” Our Lady insisted, “They must no longer offend Our Lord, Who is already so much offended.”

The world does not welcome the messages of Our Lady any more than it welcomed Christ at his birth. But you are here today because you have heard and welcomed the messages at Fatima. Let us do all we can to answer Our Lady’s call.


Faithful to their duties, Mary and Joseph took the baby Jesus to the temple to offer him to God, according to the Jewish law.

Sr. Lucia once explained that many people think penance implies great austerities, so they become discouraged and continue in lukewarmness and sin. Then she said Our Lord explained to her:

“The sacrifice required of every person is the fulfillment of his duties in life and the observance of My law. This is the penance that I now seek and require.”

Let us imitate St. Joseph and the Blessed Mother by faithfully attending to the duties of the Christian life: loving our families and helping others in need, especially the most vulnerable, the children in the womb.

The Finding in the Temple

Jesus was only twelve years old when he remained behind in Jerusalem. Not knowing where he was, Mary and Joseph experienced great anxiety. After three days, their sorrow turned to joy when they found him in the temple. Our Blessed Mother did not understand but she humbly accepted the will of God.

No matter the trial or how dark the world becomes, let us imitate the love, humility, and trust of Our Lady by helping others and by heeding her messages. She repeatedly emphasized the necessity of praying the Rosary daily, of wearing the Brown Scapular, and of performing acts of reparation and sacrifice, including the first Saturday devotions.

Our Lady let the children know that “Jesus wishes to establish throughout the world devotion to my Immaculate Heart.”

Please pray the Rosary. And feel free to share these meditations. If you feel inspired to create Fatima Rosary meditations for the Luminous, Sorrowful, or Glorious mysteries, please share them with me!