First off, let me make it clear that I am not referring to a professional author profile for editors, publishers, etc. I’m talking about that section ‘about the author’ which you will find on websites such as Amazon, Goodreads, Barnes & Nobles, etc. These profiles are not meant to impress anyone. Hmmm… that sounded wrong. Of course, you want to impress readers but not in the same manner as you would impress a possible employer. Let’s be honest here: readers don’t care if you were the editor-in-chief of your high school newspaper. And I certainly don’t want to see where you went to high school. Writers seem to get author profile and resume confused. Personally, I think my resume is pretty impressive. I’m also fairly positive that absolutely no one who reads my resume will run out and buy my books.
But how are you supposed to write an author profile that gets readers to one-click your book? Here are just a few tips and tricks.
Don’t be too serious. This advice flies in the face of all the other articles you’ve read out there. That’s because those articles are focused on you writing an author profile in order to find an agent or publisher. Readers aren’t impressed (at least I’m not) when an author profile includes information such as: which made it clear he was predestined to serve a role in literary excellence. Obviously, you don’t need me to buy your book because you are already excellent. *Gags*
Don’t include information that isn’t relevant to your writing. I may be a lawyer, a business owner and a former police officer, but guess what? Potentially readers don’t give a darn – unless your background is somehow relevant to your writing. Do you write legal thrillers? In that case, I want to know you have a legal background.
Use the right tone. There’s nothing worse (okay, there are a lot of worse things but you get my drift) than reading a hilarious author profile and then discovering that an author’s books are anything but funny. What? Why did you get my hopes up? *pouts*
Showcase your writing. An author profile is a great opportunity to show off your writing guns. If you write thrillers, thrill potential readers. Write mysteries? Try to infuse your profile with a bit of mystery.
Spell check, spell check, spell check. Nothing turns a potential reader off more than a profile with typos. Sure, you’re only human, but you need to get this one paragraph perfect.
Verbosity. In case you haven’t noticed, everyone is busy, busy, busy. And attention spans are the shortest they’ve ever been. Don’t use five words to say something you can say in one or two.
What do you think? What attracts you to an author? What sort of author profile makes you check out an author’s books?