How To / Startup Life

How to Write an Author Bio

Hey all! I had the most amazing experience the other week. I got to meet a really amazing poet and writer from Austin, Texas. Her name is Karyna Mcglynn and you can find her at her website KarynaMcglynn.com. She is the author of a chapbook Scorpionica and a full-length collection, I Have to Go Back to 1994 and Kill a Girl,which won the Kathryn A. Morton poetry prize. She taught a class at my university and did a reading, and she is so awesome! In her class, she shared some valuable insight that I thought would help writers and business people alike: how to write an author bio.

I know that I fear writing about myself as I’ve said in my post on the personal statement.

It was especially hard when I got my poem published–my first publication–because I was among really awesome poets that had a long list of publications and accomplishments. I thought to myself should I make something up? Should I just use something from high school? What do I do? You want to know what I did? I wrote about my roommate’s cat and my beta fish Luther. I DON’T RECOMMEND THIS. I should have done what Karyna said to do…

She said, when in doubt, write a hipster bio. With the fear that I would be associated with that horrible term, I was skeptical when she first started describing it. However, she said that you don’t need to write a long elaborate bio to make yourself look better. Actually, if your bio is really short, you look more profound than the people who drone on and on about their accomplishments. Mystery is key.

Here are a few examples:

William Shakespeare is an English poet and playwright.

Ernest Hemmingway, ground breaking modernist American writer.

Myriah Castillo lives in Pittsburgh.

You don’t have to go crazy writing author bios or writing blog/twitter/facebook/company bios. People often don’t want to take the time or wont remember what you’ve said anyway until they invest in your writing. Let us remember that the success of your content comes from quality, not quantity. Don’t try to bulk up just to make yourself seem impressive.

Also, big shout out to Karyna for coming to Point Park and hanging out with some crazy poetry students.

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