book trailer for Get Lucky

Get Lucky is a novel about many different things, but one of them is sisters.

I have two sisters, myself–I’m the middle one–and so I know a lot about the subject.

Here’s a book trailer I made using my mom’s Super 8 home movies of us as children.  The redhead who’s working so hard on her cartwheels is my big sister.  The blondie scampering all around is me.  And that sweet little baby with those gorgeous big eyes is my little sister.

I cannot watch this video without tears coming to my eyes.


And I have written quite a bit about these videos–both in essays and fiction.  Here’s an excerpt from Everyone Is Beautiful when the main character’s mother sends her their old family home movies in the mail:

I was mesmerized by the movies, there in the living room.  Sam was still on my hip, and the boys were still in the kitchen.  I suspected they’d found the boxes of maxi-pads and panty liners that I’d bought at the store and were now sticking them to every surface in the kitchen.  But it was okay.  Wasteful, but okay.  Sometimes I was willing to shell out a box of maxi pads for a few minutes to myself.

I watched the DVDs for almost fifteen minutes.  I saw my parents bringing me home from the hospital, my mother cradling me in a yellow blanket, my father holding me on his lap and reading the paper.  I watched our first cat, Liberace—a pet I only remembered from pictures.  I hadn’t seen these movies in years.  When we were younger, back before the Super 8 projector broke, we used to make popcorn and watch them on the wall of my parents’ bedroom.  I don’t remember once ever feeling sad or melancholy or lost during those movie nights.  Back then, it was just fun. We’d tease each other and throw popcorn at our old selves.

Now, the movies had me in tears.  Of course, the timing wasn’t great.  And the company that had transferred the reels to the DVDs had added a wistful musical score that really emphasized the passage of time and how all things fade and die.  And the flickering, ethereal quality of the images made it my childhood seem so dated, so vintage—it was as if it existed in a past so distant that I’d never be able to reach it again.  Which, of course, was true.

–Katherine Center, Everyone Is Beautiful

It really is amazing how the past disappears.  I can remember what it felt like to be that little person, but I can’t, of course, be that person anymore.

And the tension between what you lose as you leave your childhood behind and what you gain as you grow up and become your own person really captures my imagination.

And as for my sisters, the close childhood I spent with them remains to this day the standard I use to judge all closeness.

17 responses to “book trailer for Get Lucky”

  1. detes says:

    Whata a fun video to launch the new web page……

  2. Ninotchka says:

    “And as for my sisters, the close childhood I spent with them remains to this day the standard I use to judge all closeness.”

    I’m the youngest of 7. 2 boys, 5 girls. And now the mother of 3 girls. This touched me deeply. I mean, exactly.

    • Oh, I’m so glad you liked it. Three girls is awesome! There’s something magical about 3! Thank you for your lovely comment. I always love to see your red shoes!

  3. LLH Designs says:

    Priceless. Fun for me to see your little sis as a baby! I love your last line. I totally get that and couldn’t have said it better.


    • Been reading about food additives and thinking about you this weekend. Here’s the last article I read: “MSG Causes Obesity, Lesions in the Brain.” …You may be seeing MUCH more of us at the Farmer’s Market!

  4. Colleen Toporek says:

    Love this little movie! I’m going to walk into Barnes & Noble and buy Get Lucky in hardcover tomorrow. Cannot. Wait.

    Okay, I have a slightly odd request: I have been collecting your song suggestions (“Too Much Coffee” from this video; “Lady” by the Commodores; and “Quand le Marche” by Bense; did I miss any?). I want more. How about a Katherine Center playlist for spring? Think about it…

    • I’m reading your blog right now!! The post about grammar V. voice is awesome. I LOVE the way you write and always have. “All parts of a sentence should work together, like the limbs on a deadly zombie.” Brilliant.

      And I’m totally planning to sign up for and DJ my own station. I have a lot to say to the world, and if I can say it via Barry White, all the better.

  5. Gordon Center says:


    I love you.

    Congratulations on the new book going on sale today. You are beautiful and amazing.

    All my love,

    – Gordon

  6. Planet Mom says:

    Priceless. Endearing. Unspeakably sweet. Thanks for sharing such a delicious chunk of childhood with all the world. Best wishes for Get Lucky!

  7. Rhonda says:

    The music by Danielle Sansone is wonderful! I am downloading the album tonight. Thanks so much for introducing me to her fabulous voice and sweet words. I want so much for my daughter to grow up hearing and speaking sweet words that edify. Best of luck with your new novel. I only met you once at the Beckoning of Lovely event at Blue Willow Bookshop, but you seem very genuine.

  8. Hollee Temple says:

    Congratulations, Katherine! Your new book is going to be my first “fun reward reading” when my own is done on June 1st. I wish you all the best with what I know will be another big hit! Enjoy your moment — you deserve it. (And the comment from Gordon is too sweet.)

  9. So wonderful, Katherine. You get deep into the heart of it – what we’ve lost, what we didn’t even know we had, the preciousness and innocence of it, the relationships that made us who we are, how we are, even now, so much the same essence as we were then…Can’t wait to read Get Lucky. You are inspiring! All best wishes.

  10. Julie says:

    holy smokes– amazing to see the old footage! why don’t we all still use super8?? isn’t it funny how those age differences were such a big deal around middle school?

    • I know! Age differences are a big deal when you’re a kid. And then you get older, and none of it matters. Crazy! And I do wish we all still used Super 8. I wish real life were Super-8!!

  11. Nam Kannan says:

    Nicely written piece. Keep up the top job you’re doing.

  12. Julie Cameron says:

    I think I had an outer body experience the other day at the library…somehow this book just leapt off the shelves into my hands and it was like some form of divine intervention. I am 35 year old stay at home mom with 2 crazy boys. Reading this book was like reading the mirror image of my life. Everybody is Beautiful made me laugh out loud, weep, and I even found myself reading excerpts to my husband and friends. I loved this book…it was truly a gift to read. Please keep writing you have such a wonderful gift.