The Importance of a Bio

Who? What? When? Where? Why?

Now you know how to ask a question. Lolz. But in all seriousness, writers need to know how to market themselves as such in a way that is interesting and concise. And this is where short bios come in. Biographies should stay between 50 and 100 words because the readers don’t care about your life story. They just want to know who you are and whether or not they should read something else by you.

Trust me, I have written some horrible bios in my time but I am getting better and they have become more concise. Plus, they make me sound less like a potato-shaped hermit and more like a serious writer and editor, which is the goal when it comes to these things. Don’t be upset if you are writing a bio and it reads like the bottom of a box of tissue paper, for me it was easier to write the bios of others than it was to write my own. Part of it was that I didn’t want to sound like an arrogant jerk and the other part of it was that I didn’t really feel like I had accomplished enough to write down. Whatever your dilemma is, you can do it!

One thing to remember that you should keep your bio updated. List any cool things you’ve done or something that is a major part of who you are. One fact I make sure to include in my bio now is that I am the co-founder of a writing circle for women of color. Something you may want to include is past publications, where you went to school or maybe even where you live if that offers you inspiration in any way.

Things you shouldn’t include in a bio:

  1. Favorite food

  2. How long you’ve been waiting to be published

  3. Acknowledgements (It’s nice to be thankful but this isn’t the place for it.)

  4. Quotes

  5. Hashtags

  6. Links (It looks unprofessional so just give the name of your website or say which social media sites you use.However, if this is strictly for an online publication it is okay.)

  7. First person (ALL bios need to be in the third person!)

Things you should include in a bio:

  1. Major achievement

  2. Day job (If you aren’t just a writer, what else do you do?)

  3. Previous publications

  4. Graduate degrees (no matter the field)

  5. Inspiration

  6. The genre you most often write in

  7. Personality (Readers want to get a sense of the writer so include something personal. Whether it’s the tone or the name of your pet, let’s get to know you a little.)

That being said, don’t try to fit everything within the 100 words that is typical of a short bio just give the items that are the most important to you.

Thanks for stopping by! I hoped this blog post was helpful to you in some way. If you liked it (or even if you didn’t) leave a message down below in the comments. Feel free to post any questions you have for me or book recommendations as well. I love hearing from my bookish family!

Furthermore, if you want to join my family of word nerds, follow this blog and check me out on Goodreads and Instagram. Who knows? Perhaps we can do a buddy read. Would that be something anyone’s interested in? Let me know!

And if you happen to be a woman of color who writes, regardless of age or location in the world, feel free to check out my Women of Color Writing Circle! It is a group created to encourage women of color who write or want to write and don’t know where to begin.

Happy writing!

Chyina

#writing #bookish #WomenofColorWritingCircle #writers #creativewriting #advice #books #WritingAdvice

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