Producing content through blogging or book publishing is a job worth bragging about since turning words into masterpieces is a skill only a few of us possess.
Content that you give to your audience is the digital mirror of your thoughts and when you achieve a high level of recognition in the writing business, people that enjoy your content on the regular deserve a proper introduction to their favorite online writer. That introduction that is used to showcase bits of your personality and expertise is called an author biography.
An author biography summarizes your life story, details about your work and personality, with the purpose of helping you bond with your readers, and gain their trust. Readers will surely get to know some aspects of you through your work, but there are a lot more things to be discovered. Things such as credentials, your previous achievements, work accomplishments, interesting details about your personal life, etc..
If you only knew how much your readers crave to find out more information, you would be surprised, and wouldn’t think twice about sharing it through your biography!
But you have to keep in mind that writing a kick-ass author biography definitely belongs to a “different” category of content, and as such requires a more delicate approach.
What that approach should be, is exactly the topic of this article!
Why you need to write an author biography
An author’s bio is only one or two paragraphs long and it includes some of your basic info. Therefore, if you throw in a few facts about yourself, some accomplishments mixed with a joke or two, you will be done writing it in no time, there’s nothing more to it. But even with an author bio being so simple, there are multiple things you can achieve with it, that is if you write it in the right way.
An author’s bio can easily be what makes the difference between deal or no deal. How? Well, your reputation and personality are the key factors that will influence someone’s decision whether to purchase something you sell, subscribe to your newsletter, follow your work, and so on. And while reading a large amount of content can be difficult and time-consuming, going through a few short sentences that make up your bio is an easy way for people to get a sense of your reputation and personality.
It’s well-known that you need to create a bond between you and your readers because that is the only sure way to make them come back for more, and an author bio is something that can help you in achieving exactly that.
Without it, you’re just a random person on the internet typing thousands of words that are alluring readers. But with a bio, your writing excels to a more personal level on which readers can actually tell who they are listening to.
It provides free marketing
Advertising yourself/your brand is a must if you want to survive in any industry. It can give exceptional results in terms of sales, traffic, brand recognition, and etc. And although most marketing strategies require you to spend a few bucks, having a great author bio is a strategy that will be absolutely free.
How to write a killer author biography
The importance of an author biography is undisputed and you can be sure that those few sentences can make a huge impact
For those of you that don’t already have an author bio and those who want to spice up their existing one, we have prepared the top 10 tips for writing an incredible author biography. So sit back, grab your beverage of choice and pay close attention to the information we are about to give you!
1. Start with a byline
The moment a reader scrolls down to your bio, the first bit of information they see should be concise and direct, something that is often called a byline. A byline should contain your introduction to the audience, your line of work, contact info, and title. Usually, it can all fit into about 50 words (give or take a few) that give the readers all the relevant info right off the bat, make a proper opening, and evoke the curiosity encouraging them to keep reading.
2. Keep it short
The first obstacle you might encounter while writing your author bio is the length you should aim for. It’s true that your readers want information, but boring them with hundreds of words about your personal experiences, dentist appointments, achievements, etc is a big no-no.
Your goal is to avoid overvaluing yourself by pointing out every little step that brought you to success and making extensive reports about your daily routines. Keep it short, clean, and simple with 150 words being the top limit that you should not cross. At first glance, it might seem like a strict limitation, but when you get into the details and put everything on paper you’ll realize that it’s just enough to hit that sweet spot.
3. Build credibility
Doing a background check on a writer is something that you’ve surely done yourself at least a couple of times. And it’s not a bad thing since you need to be sure that he/she is actually capable of passing down knowledge in a field that you’re researching/learning about. As a writer, you have to convince your audience the same thing about yourself. This can be done easily, through a killer bio, in which you must include your achievements that are responsible for the quality of your work, academic accomplishments, completed courses, previous success, and so on.
Play around the possibilities, but without going overboard. Your goal is to appear credible, reliable and someone who’s opinion is worth listening to. State facts related to your niche and point out the relevant facts that add actual value.
4. Write in the third person
This step can’t be stressed enough since that top or flop move is made right here. Ditch the “I” thoughts and replace them with “he/she”. It might not seem like that big of a deal, only a few pronouns here and there, but it’s so much more than that. If you take a look at other professionals in the writing business and investigate their bios, you won’t find a single one written in the first person. Why? Because writing in the first person radiates with beginner vibes which is the exact opposite of what you want to give off.
It may be a little awkward referring to yourself as “he/she” or by your first/last name, but when you see the end result it will all make sense.
5. Mention your previous work and website
Talking about your previously written books, award-winning publications, or something of similar significance, and following it by linking to your website is a win-win situation. Not only will you turn your biography into gold, but you will also make it the perfect discrete advertising channel. This can all be done simply and elegantly, within one sentence which should be just enough to make a statement without giving off any cockiness.
6. Display a good author photo
Attaching a good photo in their bio is something that tends to be forgotten by many authors when they are creating it. Since people are visual beings and they bond much easier with images rather than text, this should actually be considered as one of the most important aspects of an author’s bio that should never be left behind.
To get a great image hiring a professional photographer is a good idea, especially since you can then use the image in few different formats and for multiple purposes (bio, book, merchandise, CV…). When posing for it, don’t go with a serious facial expression, but something approachable, professional, and fitting to your niche.
7. Not everything needs to be mentioned
If you’re publishing your very first book, first of all, congratulations! It surely is a big deal and I know that you can’t wait to hand out all of the party hats that you’ve prepared, but your readers don’t necessarily need to know that it’s your first time publishing.
The emotions you evoke, the results that you deliver, the knowledge that you pass on, that’s what the readers are looking for, nothing else. In your bio, there is no room for insecurities, explanations, and everything else in-between, only information on who you are and why your worth paying attention to as a content creator.
8. Enrich it with your personality
Even if you include in your bio all that we mentioned thus far (achievements, work, success, etc.), you are still at the gates of boredom. That’s when you need to slip in some of your personal preferences that may not be related to your work.
They will not only lighten up your biography but also add a note of relatability to it as well. Think about what sets you apart from the rest and include that in your bio, because if you don’t, it will have at least 80% similarity with every other author bio in the world.
9. Write multiple versions
It may seem a little overexaggerated and there will probably be a few eyebrows raised after I say this, but creating multiple biographies is a must. Different versions of your biography will work better for different platforms. Your book, website, CV, guest posts, social media accounts…all of these will need your bio and you have to make sure that you have an appropriate version of it for every occasion.
In addition, writing multiple versions is a good way of creating the ultimate biography. Chop all of them up, merge the best parts, correct any mistakes, and enjoy the flawless final product.
10. Update it because time will take its toll
Just like your phone, computer, tablet, and basically every other device requires frequent updates in order to meet the latest versions, the same rule applies to your bio. Think about what your life looked like a year or two years ago? A completely different story, isn’t it? Over the years you’ve completed countless assignments, made so many achievements, and changed plenty of habits that heavily influenced your personality.
Completed a course or two maybe? You could’ve even graduated. All of those bits have their part in your bio which is why it’s extremely important for you to always keep it fresh and updated since there is always more room in it to talk about all the progress that you have made.
Summing things up
Writing an author bio isn’t that difficult of a task if you put a little effort into it and follow a few guidelines.
Start strong with a convincing first sentence in which you introduce yourself and your qualities that make you unique. Don’t focus solely on bragging about your accomplishments, but also point out what value you can bring to your readers. Pick out the best aspects of your personality and show them in an entertaining, and different light.
All in all, if you follow the 10 rules we talked about in this article, your author bio should generate incredible results. So stop wasting any more time, focus, and start typing!