Ways to edit your YouTube video

Once you’ve created a video, the next step is to edit it (You didn’t think that you recorded a perfect video, did you?). While this may seem like a lot of extra work, remember that better looking videos receive more views and up-votes.

Begin by transferring your video from the camcorder or webcam to your computer, if necessary. Next, use video editing software to open your transferred video. Windows Movie Maker usually comes on PCs and iMovie on Apple computers, but there are other free options, such as Lightworks or MPEG Streamclip, as well as a number commercial software options, such as GoPro, Final Cut Pro, Premier Elements, and Power Director. Generally the more sophisticated the program, the more difficult it is to use; you may want to start with a simple program (such as Windows Movie Maker) and then move up to say Lightworks, which is more complicated by almost good enough for professional movie makers.

Among the editing you may wish to do to your video are adding clips, trimming clips, adding effects, and adding music.

Add Clips
This involves combining two or more different pieces of film into one. Usually you start with a base video and then adding additional videos (aka “clips”) to it. One common reason for this type of editing is if you want the same information – such as an opening title card or an end card with your website URL – on every one of your videos. You can record the clip once, keep it on file, and then add the clip each time you make a new video.

Trim Clips
Sometimes you have parts of a video that you don’t want included or you’re looking to shorten the running time. You then can cut or “trim” those parts of the video.

Add Effects
The quality of the video itself also can be adjusted in several ways, including:
• Fix lighting and color
• Stabilize shaky camera motions
• Apply slow motion
• Apply time lapse
• Rotate the view
• Apply filters
• Custom blurring
• Blur faces

Add Music
You also may wish to include music and sound effects during the video. Most editing software will let you select when the music/sound effects start and stop at specific points during the video.

After editing your video, you’re ready to upload it for viewing on YouTube. We’ll cover that in an upcoming entry.


My name is Rob Bignell. I’m an affordable, professional editor who runs Inventing Reality Editing Service, which meets the manuscript needs of writers both new and published. I also offer a variety of self-publishing services. During the past decade, I’ve helped more than 300 novelists and nonfiction authors obtain their publishing dreams at reasonable prices. I’m also the author of the 7 Minutes a Day… writing guidebooks, four nonfiction hiking guidebook series, and the literary novel Windmill. Several of my short stories in the literary and science fiction genres also have been published.