Have you ever been hit with the reality that as a writer, your fans want to know you? Yikes! Do you want to tell all to these readers? Do they need to know your mom collects Russian language books? Just how much do you need to say in a book bio?
If you read a bunch of these things or listen to them every month when a speaker is introduced at a meeting, you get to feel the rhythm and form of the creature. Let’s break it down and then create a fill in the blank document you can use.
First, your early years and geographic area you identify with. I’m a southern California native who loves animals and never realized I was creating stories when I played make-believe. I read a lot. I stepped on a rake and almost missed my First Communion. I learned to fear men at an early age. I was the fat kid in every class and group. I learned to make fun of myself or tell a joke before people made fun of me.
I’m pretty sure lots of people would have stopped reading at the end of the second sentence. Almost none of the information above has to do with me as a writer. The first two sentences work pretty well. But the rest can take a hike.
Next up, your writing history. I wrote fan fiction for several television shows and had a few short stories published in fanzines. I discovered Regency romances which finally gave me a universe I could write in without copyright issues. I entered several contests and actually won the seven of seven RWASD contest. I got great feedback and mentoring from one of the judges. But every other contest I have entered has been a disappointment.
How much of that is really vital to know about me? Maybe everything until the last sentence, but really, it can be much more streamlined. I’d probably not talk about the fanzine and the details about the contests. No matter what I say about past contests, I think they are a great tool for writers to utilize.
Now, your writing present. In other words, what works are available and what is coming down the pipe. I have a Regency romance series waiting on Book Three to be completed. That book is a little difficult to write, plus I have other pressing stories to get out. I am writing for and putting together the Autumn Winter Bowman’s Inn anthology and getting input on how best to make my characters in Crazy for trying to have more dimensions.
So, maybe I wouldn’t mention that Book Three is hard, just kind of a stay tuned for the exciting conclusion. Mention the anthologies that have been finished. Leave out Crazy for now.
Finally, where your fans can contact you. Remember, you will be writing this all in third person. Here is what I have on my About page:
She also writes under the pen name Roxanna Haley.
You can contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org
Or at any of the links below.
A smart friend and author suggested I drop the links to the bird blog and the Sparkyville humor blog. I haven’t done so on my blog page, but in the books, I have a much slenderer bio.
In conclusion, here’s a fill-in you might be able to use in the future.
(Name) is a member of (any writing clubs you have belonged to, especially if you held an office) and (conferences where you helped out enough to be on the program). She’s (or He’s) been both traditionally published by(Big Books) and is also Indie publishing. Her current WIP is the second book in the (Clever Title) series. (Or her upcoming publication is Name, the first in the Another Name series)
She read her first romance in (Pre K through College, pick one) and fell in love with love stories. She’s always had a vivid imagination and storytelling is her (first Girl Scout Badge? Happy Place?).
By education, she’s a (Registered Sex Offender? Runway Model?), however, she’s had a number of varied careers, such as: (Starbucks Barista, Call Girl, Call Boy, Gender Reassignment Counselor, used car salesman) and currently (lives in her grandparents’ basement with her parents).
Having raised her (exotic birds, sex-crazed children, armadillos), (Name) enjoys her life in (The Penitentiary, what’s left of the Virgin Islands, the back alley at Starbucks) while looking for new places to (exploit) and stories to write.
I’m sorry, my sense of humor ran away with me there. But I hope you get the idea. Be sure to revisit your bio annually in case things change. I used to say I lived with my husband, my birds, and my cat. The cat passed away and we got a dog.
Writing your bio is important and not as scary as you may have been led to believe. Just jump in and write it. You can always rewrite. Have fun with it, I always love funny bios especially in Romance Authors because I love humor in the stories. Thanks for reading, I’ll be back on Sunday.