Your bio should include the basics, like where you live and a short mention of your family life. Readers like to feel a connection with their favorite authors, and the basics show you as someone to whom they can relate. But what else should an author bio include beyond that? Let us show you how to write an author bio in ways that connect to your audience and your work and establish you in the industry for years to come.

My Story typed words on a vintage typewriter. Close up.

The importance of a writer’s bio

Striking a balance between providing the context of your life in which your book came to be without it is essential to understand the material reflects the importance of a book writer’s bio. In other words, your biography shouldn’t appear so large that it diminishes your work, but at the same time, the result is also informed by your bio. 

The book you’ve just written was probably informed by the life you’ve led, making them interconnected. An author’s biography is critical because, after all, everything the author writes is filtered through their life experiences. However, some say an author’s bio should never factor into understanding and interpreting their work. So, how to achieve that balance? 

What to include on the back cover of a book

It’s more important for your author bio to be interesting than accurate. The author’s hobbies aren’t mentioned explicitly, but you get a livelier and more exciting picture of her active language. And when her genre is action-packed crime fiction, including her love of museums, birding and baseball seem too slow-paced. Leaving out some hobbies and interests can also give you content for revising your author bio for the next book or for using in other online marketing efforts (like on social media!). 

Your bio needs to be (mostly) relevant to your book’s genre or subject matter. Rather than saying which prestigious places of employment are in your past, why not say how a particular aspect of them inspired your writing? On the flip side, if you’re a fantasy author with a Ph.D. in mythology or folklore or a history professor who writes alternative historical fiction, that’s relevant and should be highlighted—just not too much. Only enough to lend credibility.

Businessman using computer

Author bio template 

Again write in the third person. Keep to about 250 words. You can use this bio to give to people introducing you in public speaking and signing events, so make sure it’s lively and will sound good read aloud. You’re aiming for a style similar to book jacket copy. The purpose is to make yourself sound professional as well as attractive. A bio is all about making yourself stand out. Follow this template:

  1. Whatever Might Make You Newsworthy
  2. Work History
  3. Where You Live
  4. Education
  5. Life Experience and Hobbies
  6. Travel/Exotic Residences
  7. Writing Credentials/Prizes
  8. Family: Use Discretion Here.
  9. Performing History
  10. Your Online Presence