15
   

I need your input, if I have to write a biography -

 
 
Linkat
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Apr, 2009 01:52 pm
@roger,
Unless of course you were born at a very old age then that wouldn't work.

0 Replies
 
mismi
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Apr, 2009 01:54 pm
@ossobuco,
I'm sorry to hear that Osso.

Thank you - if I don't try, I will always wonder. You never know unless you try - I have my doubts - but wouldn't it be great if someone did like it?
0 Replies
 
Butrflynet
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Apr, 2009 02:10 pm
http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/114392/writing_your_author_biography.html

Excerpt:

Quote:
Although this might be difficult for some writers, author biographies should always be written in the third person. In other words, you would say (about yourself): John Smith was born in Easely, South Carolina, and now resides in San Diego. Never write your author biography in first person - it sounds unprofessional and will mark you as an amateur. Besides, who wants to read an author biography that says, I was born in Kentucky and I really hope you enjoy my book?

Where You Live

Your author biography should state where you live and where you're from. For example, if you were born in Houston, Texas, say so. However, if you live in a small town that no one is likely to have heard of, it is acceptable to say that you live in the closest major city. I live in Katy, Texas, which is twenty miles west of Houston, so my author biography states that I live in Houston. Your readers will want to know where you live, especially if you write novels based in your hometown.

Previously Published Works

Always include any previously published works that are relevant to the current work. For example, if you have written a book on beginning photography and you've published several articles in Photography Magazine, then you would include the titles of those articles in your author biography. However, if you've only published articles in Parenting, you should leave those out. Publishers and readers only want to know about previously published works that have to do with what you're writing now in your author biography.

Goals & Aspirations

You don't need to include your desire to have ten kids and forty-two grandchildren in your author biography, but your goals as a writer are perfectly applicable. For example, if you are hoping to write novels for young adults, you should put that in your author biography if it is relevant to your current work. Relevance is the key to your author biography; write things that are interesting to readers and publishers of the book or article you are trying to place.

Education

If you have an education, say so, especially if it includes a Master's Degree or a Ph.D. Although all writers are not well-educated, it certainly won't hurt if you are, and be sure to include the school from which you graduated. It is not, however, necessary to include your G.P.A. or the types of clubs and organizations with which you were involved. Listing the name of the school and the type of degree earned is sufficient for your author biography.

When You Have No Credits

If you've never published anything before, don't say so; simply don't mention your publishing history. It is much better to leave it out than to draw attention to the fact that you are a new and amateur author. Instead, focus on your education, your professional experience or other endearing qualities. Leaving out your publishing history might lead the publisher or reader to assume that you are inexperienced, but saying it flat-out will let them know you're unpublished.

Be Brief

An author biography doesn't need to be six pages long; in fact, it shouldn't. Keep the author bio to a few paragraphs - five at most. If you're not sure exactly what it should look like, read some of the author biographies included on the dust jackets of your favorite books at home. You'll find that they are all pretty similar in length and context, which is how yours should be.

Writing your author biography shouldn't be a major undertaking nor a source of undue anxiety. If you really don't think that you're up to the task, as a fellow writer friend to do it for you. He or she can interview you based on the information required for your author biography, then format it into a few paragraphs for you. This is a much better option than worrying about it for months, and you might find that the biography comes out better that way.


http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/23016/how_to_write_an_authors_bio.html?cat=7

Excerpts:

Quote:
Writing the Bio

So here's where we actually get down to it, step-by-step.

1. Your Theme - What is the theme of the work that you're writing the bio for? If it's your body of AC articles, you'll want to look for what your overriding subject matter tends to be. If it's for a novel that you're submitting, brainstorm the individual pieces that make up the plot.

2. Your Expertise - Speaking to the theme of your work, what expertise do you have? A non-fiction writer who is creating books for teachers would be much more effective concentrating on experience they've had working with teachers, degrees and certifications that they've obtained, and success that they've had than listing who they live with and how many pets they have. You want to let people know why your work is worthy of their attention.

3. Line One - Looking at your lists, you'll want to construct the first of 3 sentences for your bio. Line one usually highlights what degrees and certifications the author has (speaking to the theme, if possible). If you don't have a degree, show off the experience you have.

4. Line Two - The second of the 3 sentences in your bio should tell why you are writing the book/articles you're writing, or what prompted you to start writing in the first place. In other words, if you're writing that book on career and motherhood, you might have your second line read, "She is inspired to write for other women, to share her experiences and offer insight."

5. Line Three - Most author's bios are not more than 3 sentences in length. If they're more, it doesn't run past 4 sentences. Seriously, go count for yourself if you want to check. This last sentence is your spot to tell something more personal and/or professional than you have in the previous two. Many, many authors use this line to share the number of children, pets, and whatnot that they write around. The rest of the authors usually use this line to tell what other kinds of writing they've published.

6. Re-read - Go back through your bio and look at what you've jotted down. You might find it useful to go to the last page of a few books in your own shelves and see how it compares to the way your favorite author's bios are written. Then, make sure that the entire piece is written in 3rd person. Yeah, you're tooting your own horn here but you want it to look like someone else is tooting it for you.

Finally, here's a thought if you're not happy with what you're able to factually put into your bio: Write a fantasy one. Not for submitting, of course, but something that you can pin above your desk and look at. What would you like your bio to read eventually? Include the awards, the best-sellers, the degrees and certifications. Then, use this as your daily inspiration; how can you work toward achieving that dream bio today?
mismi
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Apr, 2009 02:32 pm
@Butrflynet,
This is good Butrflynet -

Quote:
When You Have No Credits

If you've never published anything before, don't say so; simply don't mention your publishing history. It is much better to leave it out than to draw attention to the fact that you are a new and amateur author. Instead, focus on your education, your professional experience or other endearing qualities. Leaving out your publishing history might lead the publisher or reader to assume that you are inexperienced, but saying it flat-out will let them know you're unpublished.


Shoot...endearing qualities is what I am going to have to go with here...300 words?
Not gonna happen...
0 Replies
 
Roberta
 
  2  
Reply Thu 9 Apr, 2009 02:48 pm
I have a book called Putting Your Passion into Print by Arielle Eckstut and David Henry Sterry. It was recommended to me by an editor. It contains lots of helpful info about getting published.

As for the bio, it says (in a nutshell) that you should make a case for why you are the perfect author for this book.
mismi
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Apr, 2009 02:51 pm
@Roberta,
Thank you Roberta - I am going to go to the library in a bit (we have to return some books) I will take a peek at it.

I think writing a biography is one of the hardest things I have ever done. It all feels so self-indulgent....blah!
CalamityJane
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Apr, 2009 03:17 pm
@mismi,
Think positive, mismi: expect your manuscript to be published!
Llet your husband write it for you and then just edit it, mismi.

Look here are some example bios
http://www.janegreen.com/index.php/about/
http://www.katemorton.com/default.asp?z=2
Izzie
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Apr, 2009 03:51 pm
@mismi,
OK " did a little digging coz I would have no idea about a biography " so....

Date and place of birth
Family information
Lifetime accomplishments
Major events of life
Effects/impact on society, historical significance
Your goal is to impress your reader!

As always, you’ll want to start off with a bang and captivate your reader.
It's a good idea to begin with a really interesting statement, a little known fact, or really intriguing event.

Considering that, you should avoid starting out with a standard but boring line like:

“Miss Dixie was born in Dixie in xxxx."

Try opening with something much more enticing. You’ll have to make sure your beginning is motivating, but it should also be relevant. The sentences will appear gratuitous if they don’t lead to a point, so the next sentence or two should lead in to your thesis statement, or main message of your biography.

Now that you’ve created an impressive beginning, you’ll want to continue the flow. Find more intriguing details about you and your work, and weave them into the composition.

Fill the body of your biography with material that gives insight into your personality.
Questions to consider in your biography:
Was there something in your childhood that shaped your personality?
Was there a personality trait that drove you to succeed or impede your progress?
What adjectives would you use to describe you?
What were some turning points in your life?
The final paragraph will summarize your main points and re-assert your main claim about you. It should point out your main points, re-name the person you’re writing about, but it should not repeat specific examples.

Ok.... that was off the www.

You have blurb on your www-mom site " I read that a while ago and I reckon you should use some of that. It’s excellent. Show who you are thru how you speak. You are naturally captivating Mis " you speak from the heart and soul and have so much humour in your musings as well as a fabulous spirit. Those qualities will shine thru.

Lastly " think positively about yourself when writing! We all know how brill you are - you have to believe it too.

No idea at all if that is any help " I yabber way too much! Wink
0 Replies
 
jespah
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Apr, 2009 03:55 pm
Hmm maybe look at the blurbs on some books you like, re writers you admire.

It can be a little humorous, need not all be business-like. E. g.

Mismi was born in 1984 but she wasn't really born until she became a mother, in 2005.

Thinking, thinking.

And thanks for the plugola, osso. Smile
0 Replies
 
mismi
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Apr, 2009 05:18 pm
@CalamityJane,
Thank you Jane - That is a brilliant idea. I will let the Prof. write it. Thanks!

Izzie - thank you- thank you- thank you. You are so sweet ((Izzie))

Great idea Jespah...I was going at it the "Mismi was born in" angle...and it was horrid..

I am feeling much more capable. I didn't find that one Roberta (I am in the county and our library is fairly new and fairly empty - though it is getting better!) But I found some others that gave me some ideas as well.
djjd62
 
  2  
Reply Thu 9 Apr, 2009 05:26 pm
my autobiography will start like this

"i was born just outside of wedlock, in the state of confusion, and raised by my mother who bored me."
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Apr, 2009 05:27 pm
@mismi,
Your library can order the book Roberta mentioned for you, Mismi. I know this since my husband used our county library to access a book that he was using as a basis for a screenplay. The county library in Marina del Rey, California got a book for him from somewhere in Ohio, and allowed him to keep renewing it.

Roberta, a published author, is she who must be obeyed, so I'd still try to find the book. Or, is that whom must obeyed? Jespah, who needs no introduction, is possibly our funniest writer.. and I can see there could be room for humor and warmth in a bio re your subject.

Hmm, does anyone ever give more than one bio?
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Apr, 2009 05:29 pm
@djjd62,
djjd62 wrote:

my autobiography will start like this

"i was born just outside of wedlock, in the state of confusion, and raised by my mother who bored me."


Ha ha ha ha ha!
0 Replies
 
mismi
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Apr, 2009 05:29 pm
@djjd62,
Liking that Didge....

I didn't know that! Awesome Roberta! I will go back tomorrow and ask if they can get it for me. Thank you Roberta...thank you Osso.
djjd62
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Apr, 2009 05:35 pm
@mismi,
i have to give credit where credit is due, but i can't remember who said it, it's been a fave saying of mine for more than 25 years
0 Replies
 
Butrflynet
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Apr, 2009 05:37 pm
@ossobuco,
Here's a link to the paperback version. Amazon has it for 10 bucks. It has 23 user reviews with 20 of them giving it a 5-star rating. Sounds like a good investment.

http://www.amazon.com/Putting-Your-Passion-Into-Print/dp/0761131221
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Apr, 2009 05:39 pm
@mismi,
Roberta is awesome. Behind the bluff bronx-onian exterior lies a good hard book editor - that is, difficult texts.
0 Replies
 
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Apr, 2009 05:42 pm
@Butrflynet,
That sounds like a good bet, Butrflynet. The book my husband ordered was written in the 1830's and didn't have many extant copies, at least at the time, and so the county library system was a major help.
0 Replies
 
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Apr, 2009 06:48 pm
you actually mean an extended resume.

Goals
EDucation
SKILLS
Certifications

Examples of your skills

Key examples (projects or products that reflect you best)

We usually put publications last
0 Replies
 
roger
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Apr, 2009 07:31 pm
@CalamityJane,
Now, that's a good idea. My best writing has come from multipage sprawling documents - after editing them down to perhaps three paragraphs, or thereabouts. Let him ramble.
0 Replies
 
 

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