Writing a bio isn't as hard
as you think. Okay, maybe it is, but not if you have an idea of what to put in
it. If you're a new writer and getting ready to pitch at a conference, you need
a bio. So, here's a handy dandy list of ideas.
Start with your name. I
know, basic, right? But someone might be tempted to use JK Rowling's, so I
thought I'd mention it.
Write the bio in third
person. Put on your PR executive hat. It's easier if you pretend it's someone
else you're writing about.
If you've figured out your brand, it's got to be
uniquely yours, include it. Another writer branded me early in my career, and
because Southern-fried fiction
described what I write, I used it.
Have you had some interesting jobs? Use them. I listed mine as "fodder for fiction." Caution: using your college job as laundry assistant, isn't exactly interesting no matter what you found in the hockey team captain's pockets.
If you don't have any
bylines, contest wins (or finals), then use your associations. Think like a doctor. They slap their "Member of ASPS"
all over the exam room walls. Use any professional writers association you
belong to. "Member of ACFW" etc. shows you're serious about your
career. And if you serve on the board of your writers group, list it.
Are you part of a blogging
group? Mention it. Blogging means actively writing. Has it won any blogging
awards? That's sure worth a mention.
Do you have an unusual hobby? Are you a Pooktre artist? List it, especially if your character does the same thing. If you've been a finalist,
in the top 3, or been the lucky winner of a contest, include it.
Do you help judge
contests? List them.
Always add where people can find you. It also shows that you have an Internet presence. In other words, platform.
Have more than one version of your bio. I have several or varying lengths. Some include my books, some don't. It depends on where I'm using it.
Don't forget to edit your bio once you start getting
published. And this is why I recommend writing articles for well-known blogs
and online magazines. They may not all pay, but if they print your article,
it's a publishing credit.
See? It's not so hard to
come up with a bio. Do you have anything unusual in your bio?
Ane Mulligan writes
Southern-fried fiction served with a tall, sweet iced tea. She's a novelist, a
humor columnist, and a multi-published playwright.
She resides in Sugar Hill, GA, with her artist husband, their chef son, and two
dogs of Biblical proportion.