Prettying the Package: Boost Your Bio

Having a dynamic front cover and engaging back cover is vital for success (which = s-a-l-e-s).  What about your author bio—the one you have on your blog/website and the one you’ll have in your book?  (They should be different.)

While a bio would encompass information on your resume, it shouldn’t read like one; it should be well-crafted and appropriate for the “venue”.  For example, the bio on your site would be more detailed than the one included in your book.  You’ll want a super brief one, too, for social media sites.  Make sure they’re informative yet interesting; let’s not have readers do the zzzzzzzzzzzzzzz thing.  You’ve just finished some great writing; make certain that bio is equally great.

Ensure your bio reflect your writing.  Consider your audience and voice.  What sort of impression are you looking (hoping) to convey?  If you haven’t (yet) been published, it’s perfectly all right to state this.  Just keep it short and sweet.  Remember: we all have to start somewhere.

Many people write bios in first person.  Opt for third; it should sound objective rather than subjective.  And what would you start with?  How about your first/best writing accomplishment, your literary achievement(s)?  If you have a lot, pare them down: highlight the cream of the crop.

Tell us about what you’ve written—books, articles, short stories, poems, posts.  If you’ve received awards or five-star reviews, or completed an internship, let us know.  And if you have a degree that’s relevant to your writing/blogging career, add it.  Feel free to include any first-hand experiences that augment credibility.

Particulars you probably don’t want to add (unless they’re truly pertinent to your writing/career): where you were born and/or reside, parental or educational info, travel or personal experiences.  Be factual, to be sure, but be you.  Give your bio personality.

If you’re funny, show off your wit.  If you’re writing a series, detail book features or quirks.  There’s nothing wrong with adding call-to-action buttons for followers/readers to sign up for a mailing list or enter giveaways.  And by all means, include links if applicable.

As I’ve often said: do your due diligence.  Take a gander at the bios of other writers and bloggers.  Get a feel for what works (and, again, what doesn’t).

Ask friends and family, and followers for feedback.  If you belong to a writing community, request input.  I follow the SPF Community and the advice/support that marvelous group provides is constructive and encouraging.

Lastly, a photo will be required for your book, blog/website, and social media (among other things).  Go for a good, professional-looking one.

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