Happy Wednesday, everyone.
I know you are completing all those awesome writing challenges for the upcoming conference. Trust me, you don’t want to miss out on the amazing gift basket that has your name written all over it. Ok, Ok…might have your name written all over it.
Today’s writing challenge (drum roll please) is to write your author bio.
What? You are not jumping for joy like these over caffeinated people?
You’ve spent a lot of time on your manuscript. You’ve written several copies, edited, rewritten, and polished. If you haven’t done so already, you might want to tackle the somewhat daunting challenge of writing your author bio.
Often, it is the first thing an editor or agent will see. You want it to be spot on and perfect, right?
But, what does that mean exactly? What do you want your bio to convey? What must be included?
We’re writers and illustrators. We have creative minds. Condensing our work into one paragraph or about 12 sentences should be easy, right?
WRONG! (at least for me- you might be much more brilliant)
First, you should determine the audience for your bio. Authors tend to have more than one depending on the audience. For our purposes, I want you to keep it brief, but informative.
A general rule of thumb is that the bio should be written in third person.
Now, let’s get to the meat of the bio- How do you want to seem? Brilliant, funny, compelling, and relatable- of course. Oh, and qualified!
1. Introduce yourself:
Seriously, write your name and any memberships in professional writing organizations (hint-SCBWI). Make sure to include anything that gives you credibility. If you are a teacher, a librarian, you have special experience that makes you an expert on the subject you are pitching/writing.
2. Make yourself relatable:
Add details that make you seem familiar and likeable.
3. Add your history and professional accomplishments:
Make it brief, no more than three credits. List your major accomplishments and awards. You don’t want others to lose interest. So, not too heavy on the resume type information.
4. Don’t forget to include your contact information:
How will an editor, agent or publishing house get in touch with you?
Don’t overload your bio with URL’s, though.
Now, try it out. Write a few bios for different audiences. Imagine how prepared you will be.
That is, if you’ve perfected your query letter, synopsis, book jacket, bylines, proposal, etc….
The list goes on and on!
And for all you talented illustrators in our area, Chieu has the following:
Is it time to update your illustrator postcard with all the great work you’ve done over the winter? Or maybe come up with a fresh design to send out for the spring? This challenge will hopefully get your creative energy flowing. Sketch out a new look for your postcard that will wow the art directors and editors! If you wish to share your drawings, please send them to chieuurban(at)gmail(dot)com.
Happy writing and drawing-