How to Write an Online Bio
Which three words would you use to explain your personality to a stranger?
If you could only think of “human with face,” or “professional needs job,” you’ve come to the right place. Learning how to write a bio is not easy; defining yourself in a few words even less so. But never fear—you can do it! Taking a few minutes to think about what you’re about isn’t just a great writing exercise, it’s a clarifying moment of personal development. Here are a few ways you can get started on your professional, website, LinkedIn, or short bio.
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How to write a short bio
When most people think of online bios, they probably can readily name a few common short bio examples first. Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest all have space for a short description of who you are and what you do. And you should make the most of the 1-2 lines you’re afforded here. Keep your social media bios short, sweet, and only filled with the most important things a stranger should know about you, such as:
- Your current role
- Your ultimate goal
- Your biggest achievement
How to write a professional bio
Professional sites like LinkedIn , AngelList, or a speaker bio on an event site all have space for a bio or summary section. For each of these, you’ll probably want to write a mid-length description of both your current role, professional aspirations, and biggest achievements. Professional bios allow you to go into a bit more detail than short social media bios, especially on LinkedIn. It’s generally a good idea to include:
- Your current role or professional tagline
- Your company or personal brand
- Your goals and aspirations
- Your 2-3 most impressive and relevant achievements
- One quirky fact about you (if it’s appropriate to the site)
What to include in a bio at work
Writing a bio for your company’s website, HR system, or Slack instance? Be sure to give your coworkers a sense of both your professional expertise—and your personality!
You should include anything you’d include in a professional bio in a bio for your company, but don’t be afraid to personalize it with a few personal details. Have a hobby you love? A favorite book? A professional hero you look up to? Add them to give your coworkers a sense of who you are before they work with you.
What to include in a bio on your website
The “About” section of any personal website can be a slog. A drain. A hassle. You’ve already created a whole website about yourself, so it can be difficult to muster the strength to write that final description of who you are and what you’re about.
But never fear! Your website bio doesn’t need to be complicated, it just needs context on who you are and what you’ve done. This is an open, larger space, so you have room to list a few accomplishments and give context on why they’re important. You can also add a short paragraph about who you are outside of your nine-to-five. For this type of bio, you may also want to include a contact form or email, to help prospective clients, employers, or collaborators get in touch. If you do, be sure to include a clear call-to-action for your reader to contact you.
A bio template to use and customize
Even after you understand different types of bios, it can be difficult to get started. The words may not be flowing, you might not fully understand how your professional bio will be used, or you might just be stuck. Never fear! Here’s a bio recipe you can use across most sites.
- Your first and last name: Start by writing your name. That wasn’t so hard!
- Your company or brand: If you have a consulting firm, a brand you use for your side hustle, or a company you currently work at, list that next.
- Your current function: What do you do for work? You can either list your current title or a short, descriptive phrase about your role here.
- Your north star: People reading your bio will also want to get a sense of who you are. Listing your overall goal, values, or a statement that describes your ethos will help them get to know you, even in short bios.
- Your top three accomplishments: Especially in professional bios, you’ll need a few accomplishments to show off what you’ve done in your career. Choose the top two or three large milestones from your career (no more), and put them next.
- Your cute closer (optional): This may not be necessary in a shorter bio for Twitter or Instagram. But for a website or similarly professional bio, you may want to add a sentence describing who you are outside of work.
- Your contact info (optional): Depending on the site, you may also want to include an email, contact form, or another easy way for readers to reach you. List this information at the end of your bio.
4 quick tips on writing a bio
Even with all of this information on how to write a bio, it might still be difficult to write about yourself. Even for the most confident person, self-promotion can be exhausting. But never fear! There are a few ways you can keep your “about me” writing on point—without pulling your hair out.
Tip #1: Don’t overthink it
Bios are usually formulaic—and that’s OK! For most professional bios, LinkedIn summaries, and speaker bios at events, you won’t need to stray from the norm too much to stand out. Even adding an adjective that shows your personality or an unusual accomplishment can make your bio different from the crowd. You don’t need to create the next Between The World And Me to write a killer bio.
Tip #2: Remember your worth
Writing a bio on a site like Twitter, Instagram , or LinkedIn can be daunting because there are already so many fantastic bios (and people!) out there. But don’t fall prey to bio comparison. Your story is only yours to tell, and it has value. Focus on staying authentic to your truth, and don’t worry about others’.
Tip #3: When in doubt, borrow
Bios can be repetitive, sometimes even tedious. So if you find a structure you like and think sounds unique, borrow it! You should never copy a person’s bio—after all, it’s their story, not yours—but you can mimic the structure if you’re feeling stuck.
Tip #4: Get writing help
You’re not alone in your quest to create a bio that stands out. Grammarly is here to help you choose powerful adjectives , clean up hedging language , and make your bio stand out.
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BrandYourself Blog | ORM and Personal Branding
11 Tips On How To Write A Personal Biography + Examples
We’ve all been there: agonizing over how to write a bio that doesn’t sound too self-promotional or fall flat with modesty.
“What is a biography?” you may ask. A bio is a piece of work that details a person’s life. In addition to basic facts, like education and employment, it is meant to portray their lived experiences as well.
Writing a biography that’s professional and actually sparks interest can be tricky. And optimizing it for greater visibility in search engines can make your job even harder.
In many cases, your personal biography will define your first impression online when you’re Googled by:
- A potential employer or client before an interview.
- Someone at a networking event who wants to learn more about you.
- A potential client or customer looking to get more info before working with you.
And when someone finds your social media profiles, personal website, or company bio page, your bio will be there to greet them.
It can make or break whether someone wants to take the next step and work with you.
So it’s important to make it count.
1. How to write a bio about yourself that checks all the boxes.
When it comes to writing a personal or professional bio, there are a few items that are standard to include. While a bio may not have all of these things, if any of the following apply to you, then they should be included. Use the following bullet points to write out a list of information about you. From there, you can draw info from each line item to start crafting your bio.
- Your current role
- Hometown/Current place of residence
- Work experience
- Education history
- Special skills & attributes
- Professional accomplishments
- Personal accomplishments
- High-level personal goals & aspirations
- High-level professional accomplishments
- Hobbies & pastimes
- Personal passions
- Awards or Accolades
- Press Mentions
- Miscellaneous (What makes you unique!)
Starting with a list ensures you won’t leave anything out.
2. Introduce yourself… like a real person.
This is one of the most important pieces of understanding how to write a personal biography. Always start with your name.
When many people start learning how to write a bio, they skip this important part. People need to know who you are before they learn what you do. Remember that your most important details should go in the very first sentence.
Keep the first sentence short and sweet, either by describing what you do at a high level or going into more detail about your specific role. Aim to describe yourself in a way that’s professional…but also human.
3. Watch your word count.
When you start writing a bio about yourself, determining the length may seem like an afterthought – something that just happens once you stop typing. However, it is something that you need to think about before you start writing – and your ideal word count may shift depending on your primary focus.
From an SEO perspective, the more words you use in your personal bio, the better. If you are filling in the bio section of a profile, find out the word or character limit – that’s how long your bio should be. If you are writing the bio on your personal website, the longer, the better. Plan to write 500 words – minimum. If you have 1,500 to 2,000 words in you, that’s even better.
From a branding perspective, you may have a different take on the length of your bio. Perhaps you would prefer to keep things short and sweet or don’t feel the immediate need for a 1,500-word count. If so, that’s fine too. Cater your personal bio to your goals. Start small. The length suggestion can change based on your situation and ultimate goals.
4. Write your biography in the third person.
This is one of the most common steps that you may struggle with when learning how to write a bio about yourself. While it can feel strange to talk about yourself in the third person at first, there are some very clear benefits from doing so:
From an SEO perspective, writing a bio in the third person allows you to include your full name throughout the bio. This lets search engines know that this lengthy, original, and well-written piece of content is about you . While making it clear that this awesome work is about you is important when it comes to search engine optimization, don’t let speaking in the third person become too much of a good thing.
Never overuse your name when writing a bio or include it in a way that seems unnatural. Instead, use your name when it is appropriate. By dropping your name too frequently, search engines may think that the article looks suspicious/spammy – or isn’t written very well.
5. Write a story, not a list.
When writing a personal bio, it can be easy to fall into the trap of rattling off accomplishments, but that’s what your resume is for. Your bio should go above and beyond your awards and get to the core of who you are and what you’re about.
Now, that may seem like a tall order, but with a bit of planning, you can pull it off. You can understand how to write a bio from a technical standpoint, but looking at it through this lens will help be your guideline going forward. Ask yourself questions like, “Who is your audience?” or, “What are the main takeaways for your reader?” and “What events in your life best illustrate those main points?”. Turn your biography into a story that engages the reader.
Those who have mastered the steps of how to write a bio spend a lot of time doing this. If you approach writing a bio like a story, you’re giving yourself the opportunity to differentiate yourself from others and truly connect with the reader.
6. Edit ruthlessly, analyze with free tools, and update constantly.
Your online bio is the authoritative source for you. That means that it needs to reflect you in the best light possible. This also means that it should be kept as up-to-date as possible. The proper action plan for how to write a bio is never truly finished because of this.
A lengthy, well-written, and regularly updated piece of content is like search engine gold. So when you complete your initial version of the longer personal bio that you will use on your website, know that you’re not finished.
As you gain more experience or perhaps shift your professional focus, include these changes in your bios. And keep asking other people that you trust to take a look at your main bios to edit them. Writing a bio is an ongoing process that you should never ignore for too long.
Read your bio aloud to yourself, use free editing tools like the Hemingway app , Slickwrite , or any other number of free resources that will help you write a great bio about yourself that keeps readers interested.
7. Link to your work.
Regardless of your profession, it’s likely that you have samples of your work that are pertinent to the audience reading about you. In addition to being an introduction to who you are and what you do, let your personal bio act as a marketing tool. In case you need some ideas, see this good real estate marketing teamwork where you can draw ideas. Many people want to learn how to write a bio effectively, but they don’t spend enough time learning how to use it as a promotion.
You can do this by including links to your product, company, or service. Avoid doing this in a heavy-handed way since nobody wants to read a direct sales pitch when they’re trying to learn about a human being. Mention the product, company, or service in a way that helps you tell your own story in a natural way.
These links should enhance and illustrate what you’re already describing yourself. This shouldn’t be a distraction or take anything away from the main thrust of your personal narrative.
If you have a lot of work and accomplishments to choose from, be selective! Highlight work that’s impressive, relevant, tells your story and makes you proud.
If you don’t currently have much to link to within your personal bio, don’t worry.
Start by learning more about personal branding . Make a note in your calendar, planner, or journal that this is something to work on outside of creating your personal bio. But don’t let this fall by the wayside. Set some time aside in the next few weeks to actively work on fixing this.
Whether it’s writing an article on your company’s website, submitting a post to a site that’s related to your industry, or finally getting your passion project’s website live… do it! And once that is live, get the most out of it by linking to it in your bios. Look to other professionals in your field who have a well-developed online presence for inspiration.
8. Don’t forget to share your contact information.
Even if you have a contact page on your site, or perhaps widgets on your website that link to your social media sites, make a point to include the most direct mode of connection at the end of your personal bio. This could be your email address, a link to your contact page, or a link to your LinkedIn account. When it comes down to it, understanding how to write a biography aids you in creating new and valuable connections.
By including this type of information at the end of your bio, you’re not only letting your audience know how you prefer that they get in touch with you but directing them to another hub that lets them learn even more information about you (if you so choose). Give some thought about what you want your audience to do after they have just been introduced to you through your personal bio.
9. Write a bio for all of your different profiles.
As you build your online presence, you will need different versions of your bio. They’ll vary in length depending on where you place them. So to start, don’t feel like you have to fit your entire life story into one bio.
It’s important to have multiple versions of your bio for two main reasons:
- From a Search Engine Optimization (SEO) perspective, unique content helps your profiles and websites rank better in search results. Why? Because search engines like Google want to provide a broad range of information, not content that seems plagiarized (even if you just plagiarized yourself).
- From a branding perspective, it’s helpful to have different versions of your bio at the ready for different platforms. For example, your Twitter bio will be very short due to character limitations, but your LinkedIn bio (called your summary) can be longer.
Both of these reasons fit into the bigger picture of managing your online presence. A lot goes into this process, which is why we put together this comprehensive online reputation management guide .
10. Use an online tool to ensure the bios on all your profiles are well-branded and optimized to rank high in search engines.
Understanding how to write a bio is a lot easier when you have a little help. At BrandYourself, we’ve built reputation management software that walks you through building an impressive online presence.
It includes a useful personal bio analyzer that helps you ensure your bios across all profiles (LinkedIn, Twitter, About.me, your website, etc.) are well-branded and optimized to show up as high as possible on Google. Just submit your profiles and quickly find out which bios need improvement.
If you want to analyze the bios on your own profiles, create a free account now . Just submit your main profiles, then click “optimize” on each one to see a list of ways you can improve them – including enhancing your personal bio.
11. Get help from an expert.
Sometimes you just need a second pair of eyes on your personal bio – or you can have a specialist write it for you. That’s part of the larger reputation management services we provide at BrandYourself.
If you’re interested in working with one of our in-house reputation specialists, we can help. As part of your kickoff strategy session, we’ll help define the most powerful way to talk about yourself, position yourself effectively against others in your industry, and ensure your bios are working for you across all your online profiles and websites. Our reputation specialists understand the ins and outs of how to write a bio that helps you achieve your goals, and it’s one of the first things they go over with you.
To learn more, check out our reputation management services here . Otherwise, don’t hesitate to check out our other blog posts as you continue your journey in building your brand. And if you don’t want to miss out on similar tips and tricks in the future, just scroll up and subscribe.
Personal Biography Examples
1. noah kagan.
Read Noah’s full bio .
This is a good biography example that does a lot of the things we’ve mentioned well. Noah links to his work, writes with a friendly style, and even connects the reader with the people he works with.
The reason why we’re highlighting this bio, though, is that Noah makes it easy to get in touch with him via email. So many biography examples that you might find will include links to social media accounts only, which is fine. However, if you want to build up a fast connection with someone who just found you, email is the way to go.
Not only that, but because he wrote this bio in a fun and conversational style (the little mention about taco gift cards), it actually encourages people to reach out. Noah is great at building connections with people, and this biography example is no exception.
2. Katerina Jeng
Read Katerina’s full bio .
The biography example from Katerina Jeng illustrates how to introduce yourself like a real person while demonstrating professionalism at the same time. Katerina covers her background, useful traits, current work, and hobbies – all while keeping things light and conversational.
The balance in this bio example can be tough to replicate, but it’s worth exploring if it fits your writing style.
Going too casual or stuffy can leave a bad impression professionally and won’t give you the best possible opportunity to stand out. This is a good example of how to write a bio that does both.
3. Barack & Michelle Obama
Read the full bios .
On Barack and Michelle Obama’s page, you can find textbook biography examples that show you how to write your bio in the third person without making it awkward to read. So many people struggle with this, so hopefully, these bio examples will make things easier by seeing it in action.
Both of these bios do a great job of not going overboard and varying the kind of third-person mentions you can include. This makes your biography more natural to read while still ensuring that it has the best chance of being seen when someone looks you up.
4. Darren Rowse
Read Darren’s full bio .
Using ProBlogger as a biography example for our tips is a perfect fit. When you check out the page, you’ll see that Darren wrote this bio to be comprehensive but also lead viewers right into his offerings (very smart).
He is mindful of his word count and makes sure to expand a bit more after he’s done talking about his background by continuing into what he’s working on now. This biography is a perfect example of how not being too brief can help the bio you wrote rank well in search engines while also catching the reader up if it’s their first time hearing of you.
5. Tim Ferriss
Read Tim’s full bio .
Tim is a master at promoting his work, and when he wrote his bio, he took full advantage of the opportunity.
Throughout Tim’s bio, he seamlessly links to his work, credentials, social media accounts, and books he’s written. If you had never heard of him before, he makes it quite easy to get up to speed and find out about his work.
One thing we like about this biography example is that he alternates between lists and paragraphs to help break things up. So many times, people write their bio as an extremely dense and text-heavy monster that ultimately never gets read fully. If you give the reader a break (especially in this age of skimming), more will be consumed in the long run.
6. Pete Kistler
Read Pete’s full bio .
Pete’s bio works in both his personal & professional story. Instead of being just a list of facts, it includes the story of how he was mistaken for a drug dealer in Google — and how it became the turning point in his career that led to BrandYourself .
Thank you for your post. A bio accompanied with a powerful and enticing resume are your two most important sales tools.
When presenting these documents you only have on chance, first impressions count. Your blog goes a long way in creating the correct image with a bio.
This info was very helpful. Is there any info on creating a health bio?
Thanks for the input. One way I was able to create my own personal brand was by using a new website called personavita.com. it was really helpful in bringing all my thoughts ideas and accomplishments together. It builds credibility and others can validate my work. You can also create different Bios based on who you are showing it to. ( Future/existing employers, family, friends etc.) I think it really sets me apart.
Thank you for the tips. Being in the process of publishing my first book I’ve had to generate a bio and despite the fact that I call myself a writer I had a tough time with it. This site has given me a much better feel for the whole thing. Keep an ey on my site for the updated version.
I had the same problem lol I call myself a writer, author but this at first was so freaking difficult to write until I found this web site to break it completly down to like what first grade level for me. lol now it makes so much since. I’m glad we got it. 🙂
I know more much than the bio rules of the kindes of the people
Thank you. These tips are easy to follow and I didn’t know about the 3 bio rule! I really enjoyed the breakdown of the other bio and used that to help me get started writing mine.
Thanks this was nice and simpe and easy to use.
Thanks! As a novice this was really helpful.
Thanks for posting this tool to the web. Over and over again, I recreate the wheel college course after college course and more recently for my introduction into the civilian arena. I am more confident now that I have this standardized method of writing bios in hand. Army Strong!
@Craig: Thanks, glad you loved it!
@Martin: Absolutely! Your bio is one of the most powerful tools to control first impressions. It’s got to pack a concise and serious punch.
@EASanders: The principles of bio writing apply to all fields. Think about what you’ve done that is noteworthy, and say it in as few words as possible 🙂
@Tim: Good luck with your book, Tim!
@LaKaye: I’m glad both of my bio articles could help. Sometimes it takes inspiration from other people to compellingly talk about ourselves.
@Rose: Thanks for the kind words!
@Martie: We’ve got a bunch of other excellent articles on resumes, cover letters, interviews, etc. if you’re looking to work on your entire career toolkit.
@Sapp: Great! The beauty of your bio is that once you consciously sit down and write it once, then you have a strong foundation that you can tweak for the rest of your life.
– Pete Kistler CEO, Brand-Yourself.com @pete_kistler and @brandyourself
Go get ’em tiger!
Thanks for Guding ….. Wonderful tips..Thanks a lot
hi thanks so much for this wonderful guide. am so grateful.
great article – thanks for the tips! you guys rock!
The tips are so helpful . Thanks
thank you for the tips
great tips it helps me alot….
Thank you for this amazing and helpful tip.
supper is ready yum, come and get your biscuits!
tips are very useful. thank you so much
The best I’ve see yet
thank you so much this will really help me get in to the film fest from cruisinwithkenny
useful tips for me
thanx helped me alot
That’s what I looked for . Thanx for that ♡♥
if you want to make a biography you need to know all about you ,family , and friends so you can write a biography
Really good information…especially the getting feedback part. While we may not want to hear it, we NEED it sometimes. Good friends who know what they’re doing can be very valuable in this situation.
So many things I wouldn’t even consider. Thanks for the tips. They are timely, since I am just going through a total rebrand!
You raise a good point, in fact you are ‘fixing’ something right now. You are adding your unique perspective as an ‘innovator’ in the information age that can assist other unlikely writers to get branded and ranked. Maybe it would be a great idea to answer questions in Quora, Yahoo Answers and the like. That can be your links to your ‘works’.
Nice article. thanks for share.
Surely in your many years of experience there are some good/funny/genius problems/solutions or stories you’ve lived or caused. Share them. 🙂
Thanks! TIps #3, #5, and #6 were especially helpful for me. I also find useful this article on how to write a biography so I recommend reading it as well. I also find really helpful suing samples. At least, it’s really helpful for me!
Thank you so much for this great blog. You wrote lot of valuable information about how to write Personal Biography . I like your post. I agree to all of your points that you have mentioned.
For me, the key to this article is section 6. Anymore, I DON’T think the expectation is a list of your accomplishments. I think the people who make the decisions based on biographies are looking for something different, a way to truly distinguish one person from another. A list says one thing about a person–a STORY says something much different. It SHOWS you are creative. A story gives you a lot of flexibility and opportunity to qualify yourself; a list is often reduced to a quantity. Dylan makes an excellent point about ‘sources’ or achievement; in a technician’s role, resolution can be rote, but my experience is solving problems presents lots of opportunities to get creative. David also makes an outstanding point: even if you truly don’t have anything that qualifies as an accomplishment, in this day and age, there are numerous ways to create demonstrable achievement. I believe that’s what the Gig Economy is all about. Dave mentions two specifics; there are dozens more opportunities. This could be an important consideration if you have been stuck for a while in a job that TRULY sucks. I’ve been in those. Then, the story REALLY comes in handy–’cause you don’t have to dwell exclusively on work related stuff. Never hurts to show people you are compassionate, or generous, or kind.
Comments are closed.
- Sep 3, 2020
How to Write a Professional Bio, With Examples and Templates
This post last updated on September 3, 2022.
Which three words would you use to describe yourself? Most of us have been asked this question, and many of us have fumbled through it awkwardly.
Coming up with a personal description can be daunting. But there are times when it’s essential - whether we’re updating our LinkedIn profiles, blogging for Medium or creating a business website of our own.
In this post, we’ll go over how to write a bio, step by step. To help guide you, we’ve also included a handy template, along with some professional bio examples for your inspiration. With these resources, you’ll find that writing a bio is much easier than you might think.
What is a bio?
Before you learn how to write a bio, you should have a clear understanding of what it is and why you need it.
In the world of literature, a personal biography can span the length of an entire novel, like Nelson Mandela’s Long Walk to Freedom or Malala Yousafzai’s I Am Malala . In the online world, however, a bio is a short paragraph in which you introduce yourself. Typically, people place bios on the About Us page of their professional website, as well as on their social media pages and other networking platforms.
Depending on your audience and goals, your bio can highlight your personal interests, your professional achievements or a mix of both. Here are some of the elements a bio might include:
Job title or workplace
University degree and other qualifications
Hometown or city of residence
Personal or professional goals
Mission statement and values
Skills and expertise
Interests and hobbies
The goal of writing a bio is to provide people with a snapshot of who you are. This is important for a variety of reasons, whether it’s drawing people toward your personal website or promoting your blog, attracting clients and business partners to your brand, or highlighting your achievements for job interviews.
How to write a short bio
The most effective online bios are both professional and concise. Here’s how to write a short professional bio that suits your website or brand:
State your company or brand name
Explain your professional role
Include professional achievements
Discuss your passions and values
Mention your personal interests
01. Introduce yourself
Begin your bio by stating your first and last name. If you’re writing in the third person, these should be the first two words of the paragraph. This makes your name easy for your audience to identify and remember.
02. State your company or brand name
Think about whether you want your bio to represent yourself on a personal level, or whether you’d like it to come across as more professional. If you have a personal brand or business - for example, a blog, freelance business or eCommerce site - be sure to mention your brand name at the beginning of your bio. Don’t be afraid if the name sounds simple or redundant. It’s perfectly fine, for instance, to say Mary Smith is the founder and CEO of Smith Digital.
Likewise, feel free to mention the name of another company or brand that you work for if you’d like to associate it with your professional accomplishments - e.g., Mary Smith is a consultant at Google and the founder and CEO of Smith Digital.
03. Explain your professional role
Next, briefly explain your current position. This is relevant whether you’re the founder of a company, a high-level specialist or a beginner in your field, and it can be similar to the description you have on your resume. Your website visitors won’t necessarily know what your job involves, so elaborating on your primary responsibilities helps paint a picture of who you are and what you have to offer.
04. Include professional achievements
In addition to explaining what your job entails, highlight milestones that make you stand out. Even if you haven’t won an award or gained external recognition, you can discuss ways in which you’ve contributed to your professional role and touch on new ideas or approaches that you bring to the table.
05. Discuss your passions and values
Once you describe what you do and how you contribute to your role, you’ll need to explain the why . This is one of the most important elements to focus on as you consider how to write a bio.
Think about the values and passions underlying your work, as well as your professional philosophy. What gets you up in the morning? What’s the driving force behind what you do?
You can also think of this part of your professional bio as a kind of mission statement. Perhaps your mission is to serve others, contribute to society, grow your expertise or learn new skills. Whatever your reasons, expanding upon these ideas can help your audience get a better understanding of what truly matters to you.
06. Mention your personal interests
The most effective short bios will not only focus on your professional experience, but will also touch on what you like to do in your spare time. Consider mentioning:
Side projects you’re working on
Transitioning to a more casual discussion of who you are outside of work is a great way to conclude your bio. This will present you as a more well-rounded person while making you relatable for your audience.
Professional bio template
As you go through the steps on how to write a bio, this handy template will help you get started:
Sentence 1: [Name] is a [job title] who [job description].
E.g., Lisa Green is an English teacher who teaches beginning to advanced literature courses for 10th and 11th grade students at Bloomfield High School.
Sentence 2: [Name] believes that [why you do the work you do].
E.g., Lisa believes that written and analytical skills are not only a fundamental part of academic excellence, but are also the building blocks of critical thinking in high school and beyond.
Sentence 3: [Name/pronoun] has [mention your achievements].
E.g., In addition to managing the English curriculum for the school, she runs an after school program where she works one-on-one with students.
Sentence 4: [Name/pronoun] is a [mention any relevant awards, training or honors].
E.g., She has also been nominated Teacher of the Year for two consecutive years.
Sentence 5: [Name/pronoun] holds a [insert degree] in [field of study] from [university].
E.g., Lisa holds a BA in Creative Writing and a Master’s Degree in Teaching from the University of Michigan.
Once you’ve filled in this template, put it all together into a single paragraph to create an initial framework for your professional biography. Note that you can shorten or expand upon this bio according to your unique needs.
How to write a bio, even better
As you write your bio using the professional template above, make sure to keep the following tips in mind:
Keep it concise: Your bio should be sufficiently explanatory, but it should also be short and to the point. A good rule of thumb is to keep each element of your bio - from your job description to your mission statement and hobbies - to about 1-2 sentences. That way, you’ll end up with a brief paragraph that holds your readers’ attention without rambling on.
Consider your audience: The voice and tone you choose for your biography largely depends on your audience and personal goals. If you’re looking for a job and are writing primarily for recruiters, you’ll want to use a serious, professional tone. On the other hand, if you’re creating an Instagram bio , consider using more casual, conversational language that reflects your personality.
Add humor: Relatedly, consider adding humor when appropriate. This is especially valuable if you’ve founded your own business or created your own website , as it can give you a distinct brand identity while helping your audience build a stronger sense of connection with your brand.
Link to your website: When writing a bio for a platform other than your own website - a social media page, another company page, or a guest blog or publication - remember to include a link to your website. This will help you promote your website while highlighting your professionalism and authority.
Adapt for different platforms: You’ll most likely need to adapt the length and writing style of your biography to suit different platforms. For example, you may place a longer bio on your website’s About page and a shorter one on your LinkedIn page. In these cases, use the same main principles for writing a bio while scaling down the most important elements.
By following these tips, you can create a powerful bio that helps you stand out in your field and allows your audience to get to know you better.
How to write a bio in four sentences or less
Really need to create a super short bio? We'd suggest following some of the tips above, just condensing them into less word for a short bio that still makes impact.
But if we really had to choose we'd say focus on - you, your professional role and company. That condenses everything that matters for bio into three sentences. Humor, creativity and uniqueness still all matter just use less words to convey them.
Professional bio examples
Now that you know the basics of writing a professional bio, here are some short bio examples to inspire you. You can use these examples as additional templates for guidance as you craft your own personal biography.
Like the creators of these examples, you can place your bio on your personal or professional website and, later, revise the structure for other online platforms.
01. Bristol Guitar Making School
Of all the professional bio examples, Alex Bishop’s content exudes passion. Strategically placing the bio on the About page of his small business website , he highlights his skills and explains why he finds his work meaningful. In particular, we love his description of why he chose to pursue guitar making:
“My passion as a guitar maker comes from a life-long obsession with making things. From a young age I have always tried to manipulate objects and materials in order to create something entirely different. I find that working with wood is a way for me to connect with nature. The simple act of shaping wood to make something functional or beautiful brings me endless satisfaction.”
He also lists his accomplishments and awards, adding credibility to his business and building trust among prospective clients.
02. Pei Jung Ho
Artist Pei Jung Ho’s brief professional description on her graphic design website is an effective example of a short bio. She concisely highlights her skills and experience, holding the readers’ attention while sticking to the essential details. Notably, she shows why her approach is unique and how it’s rooted in her cultural heritage, helping her stand out from other artists in the field. As she explains:
“Having been an art student for 12 years, I constantly explore various disciplines to broaden my own artistic pursuits, integrating a fine art background with design studies and illustration. My current areas of interest and exploration are my Taiwanese culture, human-centered design, and branding. I begin projects by thoroughly researching and then developing my ideas through creative thinking.”
03. Amanda Shields Interiors
Amanda Shields provides us with another effective bio example on her interior design website. Importantly, she spices up her bio by explaining how home decor aligns with her personal life and why it’s so close to her heart as a mother and entrepreneur:
"After working as a product designer for numerous retailers over the years, and after I had my first child, I decided to take the plunge and start my own home staging business…. Coincidentally, a month later I discovered I was pregnant with my second child. I loved the new challenges I faced as a new entrepreneur and mom and it didn't take long for me to discover that this was my calling…. I felt the need to expand my business and launch Amanda Shields Interiors as its own entity to focus specifically on residential interiors and design."
By placing this content on her website’s About page, she provides potential clients with insights into her expertise and professional experience. She expands upon the choices she made along her career path, strategically making note of her achievements and acquired skills along the way.
Creating a bio for your website
As we’ve noted in the examples above, one of the most strategic places to put your bio is on your website. Whether the goal of your site is to start and promote your business , showcase your design portfolio or display your resume, including a bio gives your audience a glimpse into the person behind your content. It can also kickstart your professional growth . Show the world what you do, how you do it, and why it matters, and people will be drawn to your passion and inspired by your experience.
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How to Write a Short Professional Bio (With Templates and Examples)
First impressions count, even online. That’s why your professional bio is one of the most crucial marketing materials you’ll ever write.
Whether it’s on Twitter, LinkedIn, your online portfolio or employer’s website, your professional bio is the first thing people will read to understand who you are and what you do. What you highlight in it will affect how readers perceive you—as a job applicant, public speaker, author, entrepreneur, or whatever it is you do.
In this tutorial, you'll learn how to write a bio for a freelance business website, portfolio, or an employer's website. I'll share some helpful professional bio templates and bio examples that'll make the process even easier. Plus, I'll quickly discuss what to do when using your bio with a resume.
Benefits and Uses of a Short Professional Bio
Short professional bios are gaining more popularity, not only because people’s attention spans are getting shorter but also because more platforms are favoring the shorter format. Twitter, for instance, has a 160 character limit on user bios. Author bylines on many websites are limited to two to three sentences as well, while LinkedIn doesn’t show your whole summary unless the user clicks “ show more. ”
Bios, in general, don’t have a strict word-count, as it depends on the media or platform used. In general, however, a ‘micro bio’ is usually two to three short sentences, similar to those in Twitter and website bylines, while a short bio may have about 100 words or three to five short paragraphs.
Where to Use a Short Professional Bio
- ‘About the author’ section at the back of your book
- LinkedIn summary
- Author byline in your website or guest posts
- Speaker One Sheet
- ‘Meet our Team’ or ‘About us’ page of your employer’s website
The options listed above are where you can use a short professional bio as it's written. But you can also re-purpose or customize your bio for in-person events, such as:
- As an elevator speech on networking events
- When someone introduces you as a speaker for an event
Short professional bios are hard to write because of their importance and word-count limitations. Writing about what makes you worthy of other people’s attention, while making sure you don’t sound pompous is like crossing a tightrope.
While there are many ways to write a bio, from professional to light and humorous, the good ones all follow a similar format that’s easy to follow if you've got all the needed information. Read the step by step instructions and follow along using the short bio template below.
Professional Bio Template A: Corporate Bio for Employees and Applicants
Name is a your job title at Company Name , where Name action verb (e.g. coordinates, leads, trains, develops, or creates) what you do (e.g. videos, books, SaaS programs, or mobile apps), including sub-niche 1 or different task you do , sub-niche 2 , and sub-niche 3.
Name has accomplishment 1 (e.g. worked with big brands such as, exhibits at, won XYZ awards), and accomplishment 2 , among other distinctions in the field. Name helps your target employer’s industry (e.g. marketing agencies, IT companies, or hotels, etc.) to appropriate action verb + goal or problem you can solve because of your professional skills (e.g. for IT support professionals you may write “troubleshoot software and hardware issues to ensure all systems are operational both for your clients and internal employees”).
Name is a hobby 1 , hobby 2 from city or state you live in . Please email your email address or go to your website domain and link to contact Name .
Here’s what this professional bio template looks like filled-in:
“Lorie Smith is a Loan Officer at XYZ Bank, where Lorie processes loan applications from start to finish, including mortgage refinancing and educating clients about their different financing options. Lorie has worked with reputable real estate agencies, including ReMax, Century 21, and Coldwell Banker, among others. Lorie helps homeowners and new buyers secure a loan that suits their budget and goals. You can expect 100% transparency, no horror stories, and nasty surprises when working with Lorie. Lorie is a cat-lover and CMAS diver from Michigan. Please email [email protected] or go to ExampleDomain.com to contact Lorie.”
Professional Bio Template B: For Speakers, Freelancers, and Entrepreneurs
Name is a your professional title who helps your target audience to the problems or goals of your target audience .
Before starting a business or freelance work , Name worked number of years as a relevant job title 1 and a relevant job title 2. After a successful career helping sub-niche or branch of your target market 1 (e.g. fitness trainers, residential leasing agents, make-up artists, aspiring authors) and sub-niche of your target market 2 , Name now appropriate action verb (e.g. trains, coaches, advises) them on how to specific tasks you do for your target market.
Name enjoys hobby 1 and hobby 2.
Name is available for your type of work or output and private consultations. You can reach Name at phone number or email address .
Here’s an example of the corporate bio template in use:
Kate Hendricks is a Freelance Writer and Social Media Manager who helps finance professionals and Fin-tech startups build an audience and get more paying clients online. Before starting a writing business, Kate spent six years as a Bank Teller and Virtual Assistant for financial companies in the U.S. and U.K. After a successful career helping small banks and real estate agencies, Katie now helps them write marketing copy for their products and services. Kate enjoys trying new sports (archery, anyone?) and managing a small property rental business. Kate’s available for marketing and writing projects, as well as private consultations. You can reach Kate at [email protected]
How to Write a Bio
Now we’ll go into detail on how to write a short bio. The two templates above serve only as a framework, so feel free to add or delete some sentences as you see fit. Use the step-by-step instructions below as a general guideline for customizing the short bio templates above, or write one from scratch.
Step 1. Gather Information and Inspiration
Answer the questions below to gather the information you’ll need to customize your professional bio.
Who will read your bio? This depends on when and how it will be used. A bio for a freelance designer’s website should be different than the one used in your employer’s website, even if you've got the same job function in both cases. Your employer won’t appreciate you for soliciting work using their website. Write one bio per target audience.
What does your audience need to know? For employees or job applicants, recruiters will need to know your professional experience, skills, and academic background. For entrepreneurs, this refers to the products or services you offer, and how they make your customer’s lives easier.
What do you want your audience to know? This isn’t directly about your skills, products, or services. It’s about the underlying feelings you evoke in the people working with you. For instance, an accountant’s clients will want to work with someone trustworthy. Trainers, meanwhile, are sought after for their patience and creativity in interacting with students.
What’s in it for your readers? Specify the problem or goal your audience can accomplish with your help.
What’s your story? Tell a story about how you came into your current work to show readers what sets you apart from other professionals. You can also write about your core values or why you’re in that business.
What do you want them to do? State how you prefer readers to contact you.
Gathering all this information before you start writing prevents writer's block. But if that doesn’t work, try searching for bios of people in your industry to get some ideas. Take note of the phrases or words you like, so you can use them later (with some editing) in your own bio.
Step 2. Start with Your Name
Write your name at the start or first sentence of your bio so people will immediately realize what they’re reading.
Step 3. Explain Your Business or Occupation
Just like a cover letter or resume, your business or occupation should be mentioned early on to get the reader’s attention—or give them a chance to stop reading in case you’re not the one they’re looking for.
Your job or business should be clearly explained in the first two sentences of your short professional bio. Don’t leave this to latter paragraphs because it might cause some readers to lose interest.
Some professional bios replace job titles with value proposition statements, which explain the problems you solve for your target market and why people should choose you over your competitors. While it’s attention-grabbing, it may be confusing for some of your readers. For instance, your value proposition might be to increase website traffic organically, but it’s not clear whether you can do that because you’re a Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Specialist or a Content Marketer. Both occupations can increase a website’s traffic, but the reader might be looking for a particular skill set—SEO, blogging, or something else. So, use a value proposition if you want to stand out, but don’t forget to mention your job title. Here are some tips to help:
Step 4. Add Personal Interests and Other Humanizing Details
This is a subtle way to show the reader that you’re a real person. If you've got something in common with your reader or a fascinating hobby, that may prompt more readers to contact you.
Avoid humor, unless you’re absolutely sure that whoever reads your professional bio will appreciate it. This will depend on the media or platform where your bio is published, as well as its intended audience. Avoid sounding too cynical of yourself, as it may come off as fake. Intimate or embarrassing details about yourself should be kept secret, no matter how funny or attention-grabbing it is, as you never know how people might react.
When not traveling, Mark enjoys practicing for marathons, going on hikes, and planning for the next adventure with the wife and kids.
Step 5. Contact Details and Call to Action
End with your contact information and a simple call to action asking people to get in touch with you. Phone numbers are totally optional, but email is a must. Feel free to replace your phone number with a link to your website.
Short bio examples that follow the above guidelines:
Here’s the bio of a Full-stack Engineer :
And the micro bio of an author for his author page on Amazon:
Tips for Writing a Concise Yet Appealing Professional Bio
Even with the guidelines and templates above, writing a professional bio can be quite an undertaking. I know it was for me when I first wrote the about page of my website. Use the writing tips below to write an authentic yet confident-sounding bio that you can be proud of.
1. Get Real
Realize that a professional bio is meant to make you look like a confident and skilled person. You’re not bragging. Just write about who you are and what you can do.
You’re doing a service by telling others what you can do for them. If they need someone with your skills and they find your bio, that’s a win-win. That person will look at you as a solution, not a braggart.
2. Show, Don’t Tell
The same concept applies when writing resumes. Use action verbs and always include quantifiable or specific accomplishments when possible. Instead of claiming you’re a genius developer, write about the groundbreaking programs you created.
3. Short Bios Are Like Movie Trailers
Movie trailers only show the exciting and intriguing scenes of a movie, right? The same goes for a professional bio, especially the short and micro formats. You may have tons of accomplishments in different areas of your career or business, so it’s important to pick the ones that will make your readers “ ooh ” as they read it. Perhaps you’ve been awarded top designer in your company two years in a row, and your work has been featured in a local magazine for artists, as well as several podcasts with a small audience. Leave out the podcasts without brand recognition, and if you really have to, ditch the company award as well. This doesn’t mean that the other accolades aren’t worthy; it’s just that you need to conserve space for other information.
Using Your Short Bio With a Resume
If you're having to submit your professional bio to a website, you may also be asked for a resume--especially if you're being featured or being considered for position.
If this happens to you, your resume needs to be as professional as your short bio. The quickest and easiest way to make sure that your ga-analytics#sendElementsClickEvent">resume makes the right impression is to use a resume template. Here are some ga-analytics#sendElementsClickEvent">top-notch resume templates to consider:
Write and Revise
Professional bios are meant to be updated every now and then. So, don't worry if the first one you write after reading this tutorial isn't as perfect as you hoped it would be. You can always revise your current corporate bio, or write a new one next time someone requests it.
Editorial Note: This content was originally published in 2018. We're sharing it again because our editors have determined that this information is still accurate and relevant.
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20 of the Best Professional Bio Examples We've Ever Seen [+ Templates]
Published: October 13, 2022
Your professional bio is not only relevant when applying for jobs, seeking new clients, or networking — it also gives the world a brief snapshot of who you are and your professional ideals.
To help you author one that packs a punch, we’ll teach you how to write a professional bio and leverage professional bio templates with the best professional bio examples we’ve ever seen to draw inspiration from. Skip to one of these sections if you know what you're looking for:
What is a professional bio?
Professional bio templates, how to write a professional bio, best professional bio examples, short bio examples, how to write a short bio, tell us a little about yourself below to gain access today:.
A professional bio or biography is a short overview of your experience. Professional bios usually include details about education, employment, achievements, and relevant skills.
Purpose of Professional Bios
A bio tells an audience who you are, and what you've done, and also hints at what you are capable of doing. It can help potential employers, fans, or customers get a sense of your personality and what you stand for.
That may be hard to achieve without a starting point. Below, we've included professional templates to expedite the process of writing a great resume bio.
When it comes to professional bios, keeping your message honest and to the point is best practice. So how do you go about writing one that will effectively market you and your brand?
This is where a professional bio template comes in. By sticking to a predetermined format, all you have to do to begin is fill in the blanks with your most relevant career information. These bio templates will guide you on where you should place your:
- Occupation or Job title
- Passions and goals
- Skill set and expertise
- Work history
Of course, while there is no one-size-fits-all template for a professional bio, these templates are a quick way to start building out your long or short bio before customizing it to your liking. But before choosing your bio template, there are some key elements to include to make sure yours is effective.
It's important to tailor your professional bio to your goals and the people you want to reach for it to be effective. For example, say you're looking for a job. Your professional bio should give recruiters a peek at your career accomplishments and experience.
But what if you've recently published a book or are applying for a grant? In those situations, you might want to highlight organizations you support or funny anecdotes.
Recent graduates can benefit from a well-written professional bio. It can help you communicate how your life experience makes you a great candidate for the roles you're looking for.
To structure your professional bio so it stays true to these objectives, try out our 80+ downloadable professional bio templates — for both short and long-form bios — to start composing a bio that makes a mark:
Download a free, editable short professional bio template.
Download a free, editable long professional bio template.
What should a professional bio say?
Your professional bio should be as unique as you are. That said, there are a few items you'll want to include to make sure that your readers get the information they're looking for.
Your bio should include important professional roles and achievements. It's also valuable to add passions, personal interests, and how you bring your values to your work. Finally, your bio should give your readers a chance to get to know you. So, it should reflect your personality.
First-Person Bio vs. Third-Person Bio
While first-person bios are quite common, third-person bios can be more effective in formal situations.
Your decision to write your professional bio in the first or third person depends on whether you’d like to leave a more personable or assertive impression. Both approaches can be effective when you tailor them to your goals and the audience you are writing for.
The most important thing is to be clear and concise and tell your story in a way that connects with your reader.
Writing a First-Person Bio
If you want to build a personal brand, writing in the first person can be a great way to connect with your audience. When you write a first-person bio, use "I" or "me" statements to make yourself relatable and approachable.
Here's one way to write a first-person bio: "I’m a freelance writer specializing in small business content. I’ve worked with companies in a variety of industries, from home care services to fine leather goods." By speaking in the first person here, you take a more personable approach to connecting with a client or brand.
When you write a first-person bio you're telling your story directly to your audience. This shows them that you crafted your bio with your personal experience and opinions.
There are a few things to remember that can make your first-person bio great.
Try not to start every sentence with "I."
Showing instead of telling is a great approach.
For example, check out this short professional bio example below. Instead of saying "I love to write." She says "Writer. Bad but enthusiastic dancer." Instead of talking about writing, she creates a vivid picture and shows her sense of humor.
Remember that you know yourself better than anyone else does.
Adding some back story to your bio can help create a context for the roles and successes you're writing about. This bio from Mark Levy is a great example.
Focus on useful details.
These are quick facts about you that can quickly show someone new who you are and what you stand for.
For example, say you're writing a bio for LinkedIn . You might be into playing Animal Crossing for your home right now, but does that hobby say anything about where you want your career to go?
If you want to focus on video games in the future, this could be the perfect addition. But if your interests lie elsewhere, you might want to include a hobby that's more relevant.
Writing a Third-Person Bio
Using third-person will make your bio sound more authoritative and objective. So, if you’re job searching in a formal industry, applying for grants, or trying to get published, you may want to stick to the third person.
For instance, when you write a third-person bio you may start with "Jasmine Montgomery is a Senior Hiring Manager at L’Oreal based in New York. She recruits across several business units to connect with the brightest talent from around the globe." By only using your name and pronouns to speak about yourself here, you are letting your title and skill set speak for themselves.
These bios create distance between the subject of the bio (you) and the reader, through a third person. This person could be anyone, but they usually speak in a tone that emphasizes their expertise. This means that third-person reviews can sometimes feel aloof or overly formal.
Ideally, your third-person bio should sound friendly but polished, like a message from a close colleague at work. Here are a few more tips on how to write a great third-person bio.
Write from the perspective of someone you know and trust.
It can be tough to write about yourself, so try to see yourself from the perspective of your favorite person at work or a mentor you trust. This can help you write from a position of authority without feeling self-conscious.
Show the reader why they should trust your opinion.
A professional bio often reflects a specific industry or niche. With this in mind, your text should include relevant details that people in the industry would know. At the same time, avoid jargon whenever you can.
Remember you're telling a story.
If you want a third-person bio, but you're used to writing in first-person, it may help to write it the way that's most comfortable for you.
Your professional bio is an important piece of writing, so it's natural for you to edit it carefully. In this case, you may want to edit your writing from both points of view and see which works best for your target audience.
Ready? Here's how to write a professional bio, step by step.
- Create an 'About' page for your website or profile.
- Begin writing your bio with your first and last name.
- Mention any associated brand name you might use.
- State your current position and what you do.
- Include at least one professional accomplishment.
- Describe your values and how they inform your career.
- Briefly tell your readers who you are outside of work.
- Consider adding humor or a personal story to add flavor to your professional bio.
If you’re anything like me, you probably don't think about your professional bio until you’re suddenly asked to "send one over via email." You have approximately one afternoon to come up with it so you scramble together a bio that ends up reading like this:
"Rodney Erickson is a content marketing professional at HubSpot, a CRM platform that helps companies attract visitors, convert leads, and close customers. Previously, Rodney worked as a marketing manager for a tech software startup. He graduated with honors from Columbia University with a dual degree in Business Administration and Creative Writing."
To be fair, in certain contexts, your professional bio does need to be more formal like Mr. Erickson's up there, but there are also cases where writing a personable and conversational bio can be a good thing. Whether you choose to go the formal or casual route, you should take the following steps to create a strong resume bio.
1. Create an 'About' page for your website or profile.
Before you can publish your professional bio, you need a living space for it. Here are a few to consider (some of these you might already have in place):
- Facebook Business page
- LinkedIn profile
- Instagram account
- Personal website
- Personal blog
- Industry website
- Industry blog byline
As you'll see in the professional bio examples below, the length and tone of your bio will differ depending on which of the above platforms you choose to be on.
Instagram, for example, allows only 150 characters of bio space, whereas you can write virtually as much as you want on your personal website — or even your Facebook Business page. But once created, this bio should represent who you are in the eyes of your audience.
2. Begin writing your bio with your first and last name.
If your readers don't remember anything else about your bio, make sure they remember your name. For that reason, it's a good idea for your first and last name to be the first two words of your professional bio. Even if your name is printed above this bio (hint: it should), this is a rare moment where it's okay to be redundant.
For example, if I were writing my own bio, I might start it like this:
Lindsay Kolowich is a Senior Marketing Manager at HubSpot.
3. Mention any associated brand name you might use.
Will your professional bio represent yourself, or a business you work for? Make sure the brand you want to be associated with is mentioned in your bio. If you're a freelancer, perhaps you have a personal business name or pseudonym you advertise to your clients. Here are a few examples:
- Lindsay Kolowich Marketing
- SEO Lindsay
- Kolowich Consulting
- Content by Kolowich (what do you think ... too cheesy?)
Maybe you founded your own company, and you want its name to be separate from your real name. Don't be afraid to keep it simple: "Lindsay Kolowich is the founder and CEO of Kolowich Consulting."
4. State your current position and what you do.
Whether you're the author of a novel or a mid-level specialist, use the next few lines of your bio to describe what you do in that position. Don't assume your audience will naturally know what your job title entails.
Make your primary responsibilities known to the reader, helping them paint a picture of who you are during the day and what you have to offer the industry.
5. Include at least one professional accomplishment.
Just as a business touts its client successes in the form of case studies, your professional bio should let your own audience know what you've already achieved. What have you done for yourself — as well as for others — that makes you a valuable player in your industry?
6. Describe your values and how they inform your career.
Why do you do what you do? What might make your contribution to the market different from your colleagues?
Better yet, what values do you and your colleagues share that would make your business a worthwhile investment to others? Start to wrap up your professional bio by simply explaining what gets you up in the morning.
7. Briefly tell your readers who you are outside of work.
Transition from describing your values in work to describing who you are outside of work. This may include:
- Your family
- Your hometown
- Sports you play
- Hobbies and interests
- Favorite music and travel destinations
- Side hustles you're working on
People like connecting with other people. The more transparent you are about who you are personally, the more likable you'll be to the people reading about who you are as a professional.
8. Consider adding humor or a personal story to add flavor to your professional bio.
End your professional bio on a good note — or, more specifically, a funny note. Leaving your audience with something quirky or uniquely you can ensure they'll leave your website with a pleasant impression of you.
It's important to follow the steps above when writing your bio, but don't obsess over any one section. Remember, the people reading your bio are suffering from information fatigue. If you don't hook 'em in the first line, you'll lose them quickly.
(P.S. Want to give your professional brand a boost? Take one of HubSpot Academy's free certification courses . In just one weekend, you can add a line to your resume and bio that's coveted by over 60,000 marketers.)
Why Good Bios Are Important for a Professional
Alright, I know what you may be thinking ... So what? It's just a bio. I mean, how many people read professional bios, anyway?
The answer: A lot of people. More importantly, though, there's no way to tell exactly who is reading it — and you always want it to be ready for when the right people come across it. And when they do, you want it to catch their eye. In a good way.
You see, while your resume is only useful for when you're actively applying for specific positions, your professional bio is much more visible. It can live on your LinkedIn profile , your company's website, your guest blog posts, your speaker profiles, your Twitter bio , and many other places.
And, most importantly, it's the tool that you can leverage most when you're networking.
Bottom line? People will read your professional bio. Whether they remember it, and whether it makes them care about you, is a matter of how well you present yourself to your intended audience.
So, what does a top-notch professional bio look like?
Below, we've curated some of the best real professional bio examples we've ever seen on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn, and the various websites where you might describe yourself.
Check 'em out, and use them as inspiration when crafting your own.
- Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie: Author
- Chima Mmeje: SEO Content Writer
- DJ Nexus: DJ
- Lena Axelsson: Marriage & Family Therapist
- Mark Levy: Branding Firm Founder
- Audra Simpson: Political Anthropologist
- Marie Mikhail: Professional Recruiter
- Wonbo Woo: Executive Producer
- Chris Burkard: Freelance Photographer
- Lisa Quine: Creative Consultant
- Nancy Twine: Hair Care Founder
- Trinity Mouzon: Wellness Brand Founder
- Alberto Perez: Co-Founder of Zumba Fitness
- Ann Handley: Writer and Marketer
- Rebecca Bollwitt: Writer
- Corey Wainwright: Principal Marketing Manager
- Megan Gilmore: Cookbook Author
- Van Jones: Political Commentator, Author, and Lawyer
- Sarah Haskins: Writer
- Bea Dixon: Feminine Care Founder
1. Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie : Author
Bio platform: personal website.
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie begins her professional bio with an invitation into her world. In just one sentence, she describes the depth and breadth of her body of work as it has been translated into thirty languages and several publications.
Along with her notable writing career, Chimamanda showcases her speaking career which introduces readers to a well-rounded view of who she is as a professional. From there, her bio seamlessly flows into her recent work and a glimpse into how and where she spends her personal time – the United States and Nigeria.
Finally, Chimamanda’s bio ends with a call to action to read a more detailed biography, giving the reader a choice to read the information available about her life and career.
2. Chime Mmeje : SEO Content Writer
Bio platform: linkedin.
A bio with a hook is sure to keep you reading. Chima Mmeje is a freelance SEO copywriter who’s "extremely good at one thing": helping companies rank for their target keywords.
By leading with a strong hook that aligns with her target audience’s marketing needs, she’s able to keep readers engaged.
In the body of her professional bio, Chima briefly lists her process at a high level, giving her potential clients a bird's-eye view of what they can expect when they book her services.
The simple call to action "Drop a message" in her email inbox is a casual invitation to learn more about her services.
3. DJ Nexus : DJ
Bio platform: facebook.
This New England-based DJ has single-handedly captured the Likes of more than 2,000 people in and beyond Boston, MA. And even if you don't listen to the type of music he produces, it's hard not to listen to his compelling Facebook bio.
For instance, consider his tagline, under "About" — " Quiet during the day. QUITE LOUD at night! " DJ Nexus tells you when he works in an awesome way. I got goosebumps just imagining a dance club he might play his music in.
DJ Nexus links his Facebook account to his personal website , where he has the space to tell the full story of his background. Here's a preview, below:
This is a terrific lesson for professional bios: Customers want to learn about you. Consider how you might also lead your Facebook visitors off your Facebook page and onto your personal website to learn more about who you are.
4. Lena Axelsson : Marriage & Family Therapist
Bio platform: industry website.
When it all comes down to it, your professional bio is no different from any other piece of persuasive copy — no matter where it lives. One of the most common mistakes people make is thinking of it as its own beast, separate from other pieces of writing. If you think about it that way, you're far more likely to write something painfully uninteresting.
When you sit down to write your professional bio and you're watching that cursor blinking on the screen, think about how you would introduce a blog post. You don't just dive right into the meat of the thing, now, do you? No. You start with an introduction.
The best bios are often concise (around 200–300 words), so you don't have a lot of room to play around. But a single sentence that tees your reader up and provides context for the accomplishments that follow could make the rest of your bio that much more persuasive.
Take Lena Axelsson's bio, for instance. She's a marriage and family therapist — a job where empathy and compassion are a big part of the job description. That's why she chooses to open her bio with a great introductory sentence: "When human beings experience trauma or severe life stressors, it is not uncommon for their lives to unravel."
Then, she goes into why she's passionate about her job, how she helps her clients, and how she caters her approach to each patient. The necessary educational information is left for the end after the reader has been hooked.
Your bio doesn't have to be super serious, nor does it have to start with a joke. This bio shows how you can capture your reader's attention by being empathetic and showing how that empathy shapes a valuable professional.
5. Mark Levy : Branding Firm Founder
Mark Levy is a small business owner who's taken a more traditional approach to the professional bio on his website — but in a way that takes care to speak to his intended audience.
What we love about his bio is the way he's set it up: On his business' "About" page, he's listed two biographies, which he's labeled "Mark Levy's Biography #1" and "Mark Levy's Biography #2."
Click here to see the full version .
Like Ann, Mark's given his readers two different options. The first biography is a "short version," which includes a combination of bullet points listing his credentials and a few short paragraphs.
The second is the "long version," which is actually even more interesting than the first one. Why? Because it reads like a story — a compelling one, at that. In fact, it gets really funny at parts.
The second sentence of the bio reads: "He was frightened of public school, loved playing baseball and football, ran home to watch ape films on the 4:30 Movie, listened to The Jam and The Buzzcocks, and read magic trick books."
Here's another excerpt from the middle:
Of course, the fantastic copywriting isn't a surprise, given that this guy wrote several books. But the conversational tone and entertaining copy let his quirky personality (and great writing skills) shine.
6. Audra Simpson : Political Anthropologist
With a classic take on the professional bio, Audra Simpson crafts a brief overview of her career in just a couple of paragraphs. The "why" behind her work is emphasized in the first half of her bio before transitioning to the way she carries out that work in practice.
The second half of her bio combines her bodies of work and the awards she’s won for each from the year 2014 to 2020. This subtle timeline gives readers a picture of her experience in the field of political anthropology without listing her resume in detail.
Audra’s professional bio is an example for those of us with several years of experience to communicate, but a strict word limit to write within.
7. Marie Mikhail : Professional Recruiter
Marie Mikhail checks off nearly every box for what makes an excellent bio. A professional recruiter, she expresses her "passion for recruiting" upfront, in the first sentence, while using that sentence to hook her profile visitors into a brief story of her background.
But there are a lot of recruiters out there, and Marie knows that. So, to differentiate herself, she closes the first paragraph of her bio by explaining that she likes "getting people excited about the things [she's] excited about." It's a well-put value proposition that sets her apart from the rest of the HR industry.
Marie Mikhail finishes off her bio by including a smooth mixture of professional skills, such as her Spanish fluency; and personal interests, such as podcasting and Star Wars (she mentions the latter with just the right amount of humor).
8. Wonbo Woo : Executive Producer
Wonbo Woo is the executive producer of WIRED's video content, and he has several impressive credits to his name. What does this mean for his professional bio? He has to prioritize. With this in mind, Wonbo opens his bio with the most eye-catching details first (if the image below is hard to read, click it to see the full copy).
Not only does Wonbo's bio start strong, but he also takes readers on a suspenseful journey through some of his most harrowing assignments — where he was when news broke and how he responded. You can see this quality below.
9. Chris Burkard : Freelance Photographer
If you're writing your bio but having trouble figuring out how to showcase your accomplishments without boasting, photographer Burkard's LinkedIn bio is a great example for inspiration.
Written in third-person, his bio tells a fluid story, starting with his ultimate mission — "capture stories that inspire humans to consider their relationship with nature" — before diving into more tangible accolades (giving a TED talk, publishing books, etc.).
Best of all, rather than using his bio as an opportunity to brag, he instead ties his talents into how he hopes to help others , writing, "Through social media, Chris strives to share his vision … and inspire [his followers] to explore for themselves."
I wouldn't necessarily be inclined to follow Chris if his bio had simply read "I post beautiful images" … but inspire me to travel? Now that's something I can get behind.
Lastly, he ends on a humble, sweet note, writing "He is happiest with his wife Breanne raising their two sons". Don't be afraid to inject some personal information into your bio — it could help you seem more approachable as a result.
10. Lisa Quine : Creative Consultant
Bio platform: portfolio website.
Although a picture is worth 1,000 words, a portfolio is quite different from a professional bio. While this might present a challenge for creative professionals who specialize in visual art to tell their stories, Lisa Quine quantifies her creativity to give her professional bio balance.
Throughout her bio, you’ll notice the number of murals she’s completed and a brief timeline of her career thus far which helps paint the picture of who she is as a professional.
Lisa’s bio checks the box on nearly all of our recommendations for a great bio. She begins with her full name, her location, and what she does best. From there, she gets creative by appropriately mentioning the brands she’s worked with and highlighting some of her favorite projects. With a third-person approach to the writing, this bio invites the reader behind a metaphorical door to meet Lisa as a professional, traveler, learner, wife, and mother.
11. Nancy Twine : Hair Care Founder
Bio platform: company website.
As Founder and CEO of Briogeo — a popular natural hair care line that's received rave reviews in publications such as Allure and InStyle — there are undoubtedly plenty of accolades Twine could boast about.
But she chooses to start her bio from a humbler place, stating: "Nancy Twine is no newcomer to the beauty-sphere — in fact, she made her first foray into the world of natural product formulation at the ripe age of five."
The rest of her bio similarly focuses on Twine's strengths as someone who's able to take hair care "back to basics". The bio focuses on why Twine made the decision she did to start her company, and what ultimately drives her.
Similarly, you might consider using your personal bio as an opportunity to highlight your bigger purpose or vision. As Twine demonstrates, sometimes it's best to keep it simple and let your message resonate with the right audience.
12. Trinity Mouzon : Wellness Brand Founder
I gravitated towards Mouzon's bio from the first sentence: "I'm obsessed with leveling the playing field." Mouzon effectively grips the reader's attention with this introduction and then dives into some of her impressive accomplishments — including a brand that's now sold at Urban Outfitters and Target.
The language used throughout Mouzon's bio is authentic, real, and honest. Consider, for instance, the beginning of the second paragraph, where she admits, "While building a brand may have looked effortless from the outside, starting a business at age 23 with no resources or funding quickly forced me to realize that early-stage entrepreneurship was anything but transparent."
Ultimately, this bio doesn't just focus on Mouzon's (impressive) background — it also highlights how she can help her readers start and scale their businesses.
By focusing on the reader, Mouzon effectively demonstrates the real power of a good bio: the power to convert newcomers into leads and customers.
13. Alberto "Beto" Perez : Co-Founder of Zumba Fitness
As an avid Zumba fan, I was excited to include this one in the list. Perez styles his LinkedIn bio as a short story, starting with his background as a hard-working teen who held three jobs by age 14.
His bio tells the fun and fascinating origin story of Zumba, in which Perez, an aerobics teacher in Florida at the time, forgot his music for class and used a Latin music cassette tape instead ... "And it was an instant hit!"
His bio continues, "Shortly after he was connected to Alberto Periman and Alberto Aghion and Zumba was officially created ... what started as a dream now has 15 million people in more than 200,000 locations in 186 countries who take Zumba classes every week."
What I like best about this bio is Perez's decision to use the space to tell the story of his business, rather than list out his accomplishments. It provides a more real and colorful introduction to Perez and immediately makes him feel both relatable and inspirational.
Learn how to write your professional bio with more free tips, templates, and inspiring examples.
Let's dive into a few examples of short professional bios next.
14. Ann Handley : Writer and Marketer
If you're a marketer, you've likely heard of Ann Handley. Her list of credentials is lengthy, and if she wanted to, she could go on and on and on about her accomplishments.
But when people list out all their accomplishments in their bios, they risk sounding a little egotistical. Sure, you might impress a handful of people with all those laurels, but many people who read your bio will end up feeling either intimidated or annoyed. Think about it: Is that how you want the majority of your readers to feel when they read your bio?
To minimize the egoism that comes with talking about yourself, think about how you can list out your accomplishments without sounding like you're bragging. Ann does this really well, choosing a tone in her bio that's more approachable.
Best of all, Ann chooses to focus on her readers' challenges and motivations, rather than her own. For instance, she writes, "Ann Handley writes and speaks about how businesses can escape marketing mediocrity to achieve tangible results. >And she will inspire you to do work you're proud of. "
Follow the link and you'll be led to a page dedicated to a fuller bio, which she's divided into two parts: a "short version" (literally a bulleted list of key facts) and a "long version," which includes traditional paragraphs. There's something in there for everyone.
15. Rebecca Bollwitt : Writer
Bio platform: instagram.
Instagram is a notoriously difficult platform on which to write a good bio. Similar to Twitter, you simply don't have room for a professional bio that includes everything about you. And because Instagram is primarily a mobile app, many viewers are reading about you passively on their mobile devices.
Instagram's limited bio space requires you to highlight just your most important qualities, and blogging icon Rebecca Bollwitt does so in her own Instagram bio in an excellent way.
Rebecca's brand name is Miss604 and cleverly uses emojis in her Instagram bio to tell visitors exactly what makes her a valuable content creator. Take a look at the screenshot below:
Starting with a trophy emoji, Miss604 says she's an award-winning blogger. I haven't even looked at her pictures yet and the introduction of her bio has already sucked me in.
The rest of her bio follows suit, breaking up the text with an appropriate emoji and a perfect collection of nouns to tell me who she is as a person. She even links out to her husband's Instagram account after the heart emoji (an adorable addition) and assures her followers that all of her pictures are authentically hers.
Take a lesson from Miss604, and show your personal side. Just because you're branding yourself as a professional doesn't mean you have to take your human being hat off. Often your most personal attributes make for the best professional bio content.
16. Corey Wainwright : Principal Marketing Manager
Bio platform: blog byline.
Corey Wainwright is a Principal Marketing Manager here at HubSpot. She's written content for HubSpot's Marketing Blog for years, and her blog author bio has caught my eye since before I ever started working for HubSpot. (Back then, it started with, "Corey just took a cool vacation.")
What I love most about Corey's bio is that it's a great example of how to deliver information about yourself without taking things too seriously. And in this context, that's totally appropriate.
Despite having several impressive accomplishments under her belt, she simply doesn't like displaying them publicly. So, she prefers making her author bio a little more "light."
Her bio (pictured below) reads, "Corey is a Bruce Springsteen fan who does content marketing, in that order."
It helps that authors' social media accounts are located right below our names and above our pictures. For folks who really do want a list of Corey's credentials, they can click the LinkedIn button to go to her LinkedIn page. (You can read this blog post to learn how to create social media buttons and add them to your website.)
17. Megan Gilmore : Cookbook Author
Bio platform: instagram.
Megan Gilmore is a best-selling cookbook author, and she often posts healthy recipes on her Instagram page to inspire followers' to realize that you don't have to sacrifice taste for the sake of health.
Plus, Gilmore includes a CTA link within her Instagram bio that leads followers to free, ready-to-use recipes. You might be thinking — Why would she do that, since it discourages people from buying her book? But that couldn't be further from the truth.
By giving her followers the chance to try out her recipes, she's slowly turning leads into customers. After I tried a few of her Instagram recipes and loved them, I decided to go ahead and buy her book, knowing I'd like more of what she had to offer.
18. Van Jones : Political Commentator, Author, and Lawyer
Bio platform: twitter.
Someone who’s known for a variety of talents and skills may find it difficult to capture who they are in a professional bio. When limited to just over 100 characters on Twitter, the feat is nearly impossible. But Van Jones effortlessly explains who he is and why it matters to everyone who visits his Twitter profile.
He starts his professional bio with a token of personalization and prioritization of his values. By mentioning that he is a dad first, we recognize what’s important to him in his long list of successes.
As we’ve seen in other bios, sharing who we are outside of work makes us more personable and should find its way into your bio, if possible. Van leaves plenty of room to share a variety of professional experiences in his bio including CEO of REFORM and his 2020 Emmy award.
What’s great about Van’s Twitter bio is his ability to link valuable offerings to his readers. He invites us to check out his latest book and has his website reformalliance.com linked at the top.
19. Sarah Haskins : Writer
When in doubt, a few words go a long way.
Consider, for instance, the funny and impactful bio of Sarah Haskins on her Twitter page, which reads: "writer. bad but enthusiastic dancer."
What more do you need to know?
She doesn't take her bio too seriously and uses the space to highlight one serious accomplishment/skill (writer) and one not-so-impressive skill (bad dancer), to demonstrate her sense of humor and realness.
Particularly for a social media account that already restricts word count, consider how you might showcase your uniqueness in just a few words.
20. Bea Dixon : Feminine Care Founder
Bea Dixon, Founder, and CEO of The Honey Pot Company, efficiently uses her space on her Instagram profile to highlight who she is as a well-rounded human — not just a businesswoman.
For instance, while she highlights her Girl boss attitude with a tiara emoji, she equally calls attention to her fashion interests (Free People), her pets Boss and Sadie, and her love for ramen noodles.
Consider how you might also highlight your interests, hobbies, or passions outside of the 9-to-5. If people are reading your bio, they're interested in getting to know the full you.
- Introduce yourself.
- State what you do.
- Add key skills or areas of expertise.
- Include a personal mission statement
- Celebrate your wins.
- Provide your contact information.
- Show them your personality.
If you're posting a bio on a social media account or sending a quick blurb to a client, you want to keep it short and sweet while showcasing your accomplishments.
To get you started, here are the best practices for writing your short professional bio:
Your introduction is your first impression, so always begin by telling people who you are. You may start with a greeting like, "Hello, my name is" or "Hi! Let me first introduce myself …" when sending your bio as a message.
If you’re writing a bio for an online platform, simply stating your name at the beginning works as well, like the way freelancing entrepreneur Alex Fasulo presents themselves in the first person on their website:
2. State what you do.
Give people an idea of what you do day-to-day, as well as where you work. Your job title is how the people put you into context and consider whether your profession relates to your audience’s industry. So detail the most relevant work you're involved in your short bio like CEO, professor, and author, Angela Duckworth , specifies on her LinkedIn:
Even if you are a freelancer with a broad focus, you can keep it general yet clearly specify the type of contract work you do. If your specialty is writing, your title could be "Freelance Writer," or if it's Help Desk or Information Technology you may state yourself as a "Freelance IT Specialist."
3. Add key skills or areas of expertise.
Especially, if you're sending a bio to a client or potential employer, make sure to highlight the skills that they will find valuable. For instance, if you’re expertise is in social media marketing and content creation like Ivanka Dekoning , make sure you list these skills concisely:
Here Dekoning showcases their experience so potential connections immediately see if they have what they're looking for— and you can show this too.
4. Include a personal mission statement .
What do you hope to achieve through your work? Why do you do what you do? Answering these questions can help give your bio’s mission statement some direction, similar to how Farmer Bea makes their goal to help bees clear to all of their Twitter connections:
5. Celebrate your wins.
Your short bio can be a proud showcase of your accomplishments, so add 1 to 2 personal successes you’ve achieved through your skills or mission. For instance, if you’ve received acclaim from industry leaders in your scope like Art Critic Jerry Saltz , your wins may list as something like:
6. Provide your contact information.
People who visit your profile or receive your message will already know your social media account. But to take business off the app, include your email address, website, or any other professional profiles you’d like them to know about. Political Commentator and Sports Correspondent, Angela Rye , shows a great example of this in her short professional bio on Instagram:
7. Show them your personality.
Don’t be afraid to add a little bit of personal charisma to your short professional bio — because professional doesn’t have to mean plain. Your personality may be best portrayed through:
A joke: "Some mistakes are too much fun to only make once. At least that’s what I learned when I created…"
A mention of a hobby: "I’ll be honest: for me, tennis is life— Go Nadal!"
A fun fact: "Every year I watch 100 new films! I’m a cinephile and love every movie genre."
A few emojis related to your interests: "🎶🤖🎾🎬🎭"
Whichever way you choose to get personal, give people a glimpse into who you are as an individual.
When writing a short bio it can be tempting to try and pack in as much relevant information about yourself as possible — but this isn’t the most effective approach. Instead, focus on including the details that you and your audience care about most and leave out the fluff.
Create Your Own Professional Bio
Prim and proper, relaxed, or studded with accomplishments, your bio is a reflection of your best professional self. Your professional bio will often precede your physical presence. Before people meet you for the first time, they’ll probably read your bio.
Whether you’re creating an about page for your website or social media profile, one thing’s for sure, you’ll want to put your best foot forward with a top-notch professional bio.
Editor's Note: This post was originally published in November 2019 and has been updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness.
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How to Write a Biography
Last Updated: December 4, 2022 Approved
This article was co-authored by Stephanie Wong Ken, MFA . Stephanie Wong Ken is a writer based in Canada. Stephanie's writing has appeared in Joyland, Catapult, Pithead Chapel, Cosmonaut's Avenue, and other publications. She holds an MFA in Fiction and Creative Writing from Portland State University. wikiHow marks an article as reader-approved once it receives enough positive feedback. This article has 12 testimonials from our readers, earning it our reader-approved status. This article has been viewed 1,780,783 times.
Writing a biography can be a fun challenge, where you are sharing the story of someone’s life with readers. You may need to write a biography for a class or decide to write one as a personal project. Once you have identified the subject of the biography, do your research so you know as much about them as possible. Then, dive into the writing of the biography and revising it until it is at its finest.
Researching Your Subject
- If the subject does not give you permission to write the biography, you may want to choose a different subject. If you decide to publish the biography without the subject’s permission, you may be susceptible to legal action by the subject.
- If the subject is no longer alive, you obviously do not need to ask permission to write about them.
- You may create research questions to help focus your research of the subject, such as, What do I find interesting about the subject? Why is this subject important to readers? What can I say that is new about the subject? What would I like to learn more about?
- For in person interviews, record them with a tape recorder or a voice recorder on your computer or phone.
- You may need to interview the subject and others several times to get the material you need.
- You may also want to visit areas where the subject made a major decision or breakthrough in their life. Being physically in the area can give you a sense of how the subject might have felt and help you write their experiences more effectively.
- When researching the time period ask yourself: What were the social norms of that time? What was going on economically and politically? How did the social and political climate affect the subject?
- You may also include historical events or moments that affected the subject on the timeline. For example, maybe there was a conflict or civil war that happened during the person’s life that affected their life.
Writing the Biography
- You may end up focusing on particular areas of the person’s life. If you do this, work through a particular period in the person’s life chronologically.
- For example, you may have a thesis statement about focusing on how the person impacted the civil rights movement in America in the 1970s. You can then make sure all your content relates back to this thesis.
- Flashbacks should feel as detailed and real as present day scenes. Use your research notes and interviews with the subject to get a good sense of their past for the flashbacks.
- For example, you may jump from the person’s death in the present to a flashback to their favorite childhood memory.
- For example, you may focus on the person’s accomplishments in the civil rights movement. You may write a whole section about their contributions and participation in major civil rights marches in their hometown.
- For example, you may notice that the person’s life is patterned with moments of adversity, where the person worked hard and fought against larger forces. You can then use the theme of overcoming adversity in the biography.
- For example, you may note how you see parallels in the person’s life during the civil rights movement with your own interests in social justice. You may also commend the person for their hard work and positive impact on society.
Polishing the Biography
- Revise the biography based on feedback from others. Do not be afraid to cut or edit down the biography to suit the needs of your readers.
- Having a biography riddled with spelling, grammar, and punctuation errors can turn off your readers and result in a poor grade if you are handing in the text for a class.
- If the biography is for a class, use MLA, APA, or Chicago Style citations based on the preferences of your instructor.
Video . By using this service, some information may be shared with YouTube.
- Be careful when publishing private or embarrassing information, especially if the person is not a celebrity. You may violate their "Right of Privacy" or equivalent. ⧼thumbs_response⧽ Helpful 30 Not Helpful 5
- Have the sources to back up your statements about the subject's life. Untruthful written statements can lead to litigation. If it is your opinion, be clear that it is such and not fact (although you can support your opinion with facts). ⧼thumbs_response⧽ Helpful 15 Not Helpful 15
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- ↑ http://grammar.yourdictionary.com/writing/how-to-write-a-biography.html
- ↑ http://teacher.scholastic.com/scholasticnews/indepth/peopleinthenews/activities/index.asp?article=research
- ↑ https://www.writersdigest.com/writing-articles/3-tips-for-writing-successful-flashbacks
About This Article
Before you write a biography, gather as much information about the subject that you can from sources like newspaper articles, interviews, photos, existing biographies, and anything else you can find. Write the story of that person’s life, including as much supporting detail as you can, including information about the place and time where the person lived. Focus on major events and milestones in their life, including historical events, marriage, children, and events which would shape their path later in life. For tips from our reviewer on proofreading the biography and citing your sources, keep reading! Did this summary help you? Yes No
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How to write a biography
How to Write a Biography
Biographies are big business. Whether in book form or Hollywood biopics, the lives of the famous and sometimes not-so-famous fascinate us.
While it’s true that most biographies are about people who are in the public eye, sometimes the subject is less well-known. Mostly though, famous or not, the person who is written about has led a life that is in some way incredible.
While your students will most likely have a basic understanding of what a biography is, it’s worth taking a little time before they put pen to paper to tease out a crystal clear definition of exactly what a biography is.
What Is a Biography?
Simply put, a biography is an account of someone’s life written by someone else . While there is a genre known as fictional biography, for the most part, biographies are, by definition, nonfiction.
Generally speaking, biographies provide an account of the subject’s life from the earliest days of their childhood right up to the present day or their death if the subject is deceased.
The job of a biography is more than just to outline the bare facts of a person’s life.
Rather than just listing the basic details of their upbringing, hobbies, education, work, relationships, and death, a well-written biography should also paint a picture of the subject’s personality and as well as their experience of life.
A COMPLETE UNIT ON TEACHING BIOGRAPHY WRITING IN 2022
Teach your students to write AMAZING BIOGRAPHIES & AUTOBIOGRAPHIES using proven RESEARCH SKILLS and WRITING STRATEGIES covering.
- Understanding the purpose of both forms of biography.
- Exploring the language and perspective of both.
- Prompts and Challenges to engage students in writing a biography.
- Dedicated lessons for both forms of biography.
- Biographical Projects can expand students’ understanding of reading and writing a biography.
- A COMPLETE 82-PAGE UNIT – NO PREPARATION REQUIRED.
What Are the Main Features of a Biography?
Before students begin writing a biography, they’ll need to have a firm grasp of the main features of the genre. A good way to determine how well they understand these essential elements of the genre is by asking them to compile a checklist.
At a minimum, their checklists should contain the items below. Be sure to help them fill in any gaps before moving on to the writing process.
The purpose of a biography is to provide an account of someone’s life
ORIENTATION (BEGINNING) Open your biography with a strong hook to grab the reader’s attention
SEQUENCING: In most cases, biographies are written in chronological order unless you are a very competent writer consciously trying to break from this trend.
COVER: childhood, upbringing, education, influences, accomplishments, relationships, etc. – everything that helps the reader to understand the person.
CONCLUSION: Wrap your biography up with some details about what the subject is doing now if they are still alive. If they have passed away, make mention of what impact they have made and what their legacy is or will be.
LANGUAGE Use descriptive and figurative language that will paint images inside your audience’s minds as they read. Use time connectives to link events.
PERSPECTIVE Biographies are written from the third person’s perspective.
DETAILS: Give specific details about people, places, events, times, dates, etc. Reflect on how events shaped the subject. You might want to include some relevant photographs with captions. A timeline may also be of use depending upon your subject and what you are trying to convey to your audience.
TENSE Written in the past tense (though ending may shift to the present/future tense)
Tips for Writing a Brilliant Biography
Biography writing tip #1: choose your subject wisely.
There are several points for students to reflect on when deciding on a subject for their biography. Let’s take a look at the most essential points to consider when deciding on the subject for a biography:
Interest: To produce a biography will require sustained writing from the student. That’s why students must choose their subject well. After all, a biography is an account of someone’s entire life to date. Students must ensure they choose a subject that will sustain their interest throughout the research, writing, and editing processes.
Merit: Closely related to the previous point, students must consider whether the subject merits the reader’s interest. Aside from pure labors of love, writing should be undertaken with the reader in mind. While producing a biography demands sustained writing from the author, it also demands sustained reading from the reader.
Therefore, students should ask themselves if their chosen subject has had a life worthy of the reader’s interest and the time they’d need to invest in reading their biography.
Information: Is there enough information available on the subject to fuel the writing of an entire biography? While it might be a tempting idea to write about a great-great-grandfather’s experience in the war. There would be enough interest there to sustain the author’s and the reader’s interest, but do you have enough access to information about their early childhood to do the subject justice in the form of a biography?
Biography Writing Tip #2: R esearch ! Research! Research!
While the chances are good that the student already knows quite a bit about the subject they’ve chosen. Chances are 100% that they’ll still need to undertake considerable research to write their biography.
As with many types of writing , research is an essential part of the planning process that shouldn’t be overlooked. If a student wishes to give as complete an account of their subject’s life as possible, they’ll need to put in the time at the research stage.
An effective way to approach the research process is to:
1. Compile a chronological timeline of the central facts, dates, and events of the subject’s life
2. Compile detailed descriptions of the following personal traits:
- Physical looks
- Character traits
- Values and beliefs
3. Compile some research questions based on different topics to provide a focus for the research:
- Childhood : Where and when were they born? Who were their parents? Who were the other family members? What education did they receive?
- Obstacles: What challenges did they have to overcome? How did these challenges shape them as individuals?
- Legacy: What impact did this person have on the world and/or the people around them?
- Dialogue & Quotes: Dialogue and quotations by and about the subject are a great way to bring color and life to a biography. Students should keep an eagle eye out for the gems that hide amid their sources.
As the student gets deeper into their research, new questions will arise that can further fuel the research process and help to shape the direction the biography will ultimately go in.
Likewise, during the research, themes will often begin to suggest themselves. Exploring these themes is essential to bring depth to biography, but we’ll discuss this later in this article.
Researching for biography writing is an excellent way for students to hone their research skills in general. Developing good research skills is essential for future academic success. Students will have opportunities to learn how to:
- Gather relevant information
- Evaluate different information sources
- Select suitable information
- Organize information into a text.
Students will have access to print and online information sources, and, in some cases, they may also have access to people who knew or know the subject (e.g. biography of a family member).
These days, much of the research will likely take place online. It’s crucial, therefore, to provide your students with guidance on how to use the internet safely and evaluate online sources for reliability. This is the era of ‘ fake news ’ and misinformation after all!
COMPLETE TEACHING UNIT ON INTERNET RESEARCH SKILLS USING GOOGLE SEARCH
Teach your students ESSENTIAL SKILLS OF THE INFORMATION ERA to become expert DIGITAL RESEARCHERS.
⭐How to correctly ask questions to search engines on all devices.
⭐ How to filter and refine your results to find exactly what you want every time.
⭐ Essential Research and critical thinking skills for students.
⭐ Plagiarism, Citing and acknowledging other people’s work.
⭐ How to query, synthesize and record your findings logically.
BIOGRAPHY WRITING Tip #3: Find Your Themes In Biography Writing
Though predominantly a nonfiction genre, the story still plays a significant role in good biography writing. The skills of characterization and plot structuring are transferable here. And, just like in fiction, exploring themes in a biographical work helps connect the personal to the universal. Of course, these shouldn’t be forced; this will make the work seem contrived, and the reader may lose faith in the truthfulness of the account. A biographer needs to gain and maintain the trust of the reader.
Fortunately, themes shouldn’t need to be forced. A life well-lived is full of meaning, and the themes the student writer is looking for will emerge effortlessly from the actions and events of the subject’s life. It’s just a case of learning how to spot them.
One way to identify the themes in a life is to look for recurring events or situations in a person’s life. These should be apparent from the research completed previously. The students should seek to identify these patterns that emerge in the subject’s life. For example, perhaps they’ve had to overcome various obstacles throughout different periods of their life. In that case, the theme of overcoming adversity is present and has been identified.
Usually, a biography has several themes running throughout, so be sure your students work to identify more than one theme in their subject’s life.
BIOGRAPHY WRITING Tip: #4 Put Something of Yourself into the Writing
While the defining feature of a biography is that it gives an account of a person’s life, students must understand that this is not all a biography does. Relating the facts and details of a subject’s life is not enough. The student biographer should not be afraid to share their thoughts and feelings with the reader throughout their account of their subject’s life.
The student can weave some of their personality into the fabric of the text by providing commentary and opinion as they relate the events of the person’s life and the wider social context at the time. Unlike the detached and objective approach we’d expect to find in a history textbook, in a biography, student-writers should communicate their enthusiasm for their subject in their writing.
This makes for a more intimate experience for the reader, as they get a sense of getting to know the author and the subject they are writing about.
Use our resources and tools to improve your student’s writing skills through proven teaching strategies.
BIOGRAPHY WRITING TEACHING IDEAS AND LESSONS
We have put together a sequence of biography-related lessons or teaching ideas that you can follow as you please. They are straightforward enough for most students to follow without further instruction.
BIOGRAPHY LESSON IDEA # 1:
This session aims to give students a broader understanding of what makes a good biography.
Once your students have compiled a comprehensive checklist of the main features of a biography, allow them to use it to assess some biographies from your school library or on the internet using the feature checklist.
When students have assessed a selection of biographies, take some time as a class to discuss them. You can base the discussion around the following prompts:
- Which biographies covered all the criteria from their checklist?
- Which biographies didn’t?
- Which biography was the most readable in terms of structure?
- Which biography do you think was the least well structured? How would you improve this?
Looking at how other writers have interpreted the form will help students internalize the necessary criteria before attempting to produce a biography. Once students have a clear understanding of the main features of the biography, they’re ready to begin work on writing a biography.
When the time does come to put pen to paper, be sure they’re armed with the following top tips to help ensure they’re as well prepared as possible.
BIOGRAPHY LESSON IDEA # 2:
This session aims to guide students through the process of selecting the perfect biography subject.
Instruct students to draw up a shortlist of three potential subjects for the biography they’ll write.
Using the three criteria mentioned in the writing guide (Interest, Merit, and Information), students award each potential subject a mark out of 5 for each of the criteria. In this manner, students can select the most suitable subject for their biography.
BIOGRAPHY LESSON IDEA # 3:
This session aims to get students into the researching phase and then prioritise events and organise them chronologically.
Students begin by making a timeline of their subject’s life, starting with their birth and ending with their death or the present day. If the student has yet to make a final decision on the subject of their biography, a family member will often serve well for this exercise as a practice exercise.
Students should research and gather the key events of the person’s life, covering each period of their life from when they were a baby, through childhood and adolescence, right up to adulthood and old age. They should then organize these onto a timeline. Students can include photographs with captions if they have them.
They can present these to the class when they have finished their timelines.
BIOGRAPHY LESSON IDEA # 4:
Instruct students to look over their timeline, notes, and other research. Challenge them to identify three patterns that repeat throughout the subject’s life and sort all the related events and incidents into specific categories.
Students should then label each category with a single word. This is the thematic concept or the broad general underlying idea. After that, students should write a sentence or two expressing what the subject’s life ‘says’ about that concept.
This is known as the thematic statement . With the thematic concepts and thematic statements identified, the student now has some substantial ideas to explore that will help bring more profound meaning and wider resonance to their biography.
BIOGRAPHY LESSON IDEA # 5:
Instruct students to write a short objective account of an event in their own life. They can write about anyone from their past. It needn’t be more than a couple of paragraphs, but the writing should be strictly factual, focusing only on the objective details of what happened.
Once they have completed this, it’s time to rewrite the paragraph, but they should include some opinion and personal commentary this time.
The student here aims to inject some color and personality into their writing, to transform a detached, factual account into a warm, engaging story.
WRITING CHECKLIST & RUBRIC BUNDLE
By this stage, your students should have an excellent technical overview of a biography’s essential elements.
They should be able to choose their subject in light of how interesting and worthy they are, as well as give consideration to the availability of information out there. They should be able to research effectively and identify emerging themes in their research notes. And finally, they should be able to bring some of their personality and uniqueness into their retelling of the life of another.
Remember that writing a biography is not only a great way to develop a student’s writing skills; it can be used in almost all curriculum areas. For example, to find out more about a historical figure in History, to investigate scientific contributions to Science, or to celebrate a hero from everyday life.
Biography is an excellent genre for students to develop their writing skills and to find inspiration in the lives of others in the world around them.
HOW TO WRITE A BIOGRAPHY TUTORIAL VIDEO
OTHER GREAT ARTICLES RELATED TO BIOGRAPHY WRITING
How to write an Autobiography
How to Write a Historical Recount Text
15 Awesome Recount & Personal Narrative Topics
Personal Narrative Writing Guide
The content for this page has been written by Shane Mac Donnchaidh. A former principal of an international school and English university lecturer with 15 years of teaching and administration experience. Shane’s latest Book, The Complete Guide to Nonfiction Writing , can be found here. Editing and support for this article have been provided by the literacyideas team.
NO PREP REQUIRED A ready-made unit on Biographies awaits you.
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How to use ChatGPT to help you write
ChatGPT's advanced capabilities have created a huge demand , with the 'app' accumulating over 100 million users within two months of launching. One of the biggest standout features has been its ability to compose all sorts of text within seconds, including songs, poems, bedtime stories, and essays.
Also: What is ChatGPT and why does it matter? Here's everything you need to know
Contrary to popular opinion, ChatGPT can do a lot more than just write an essay for you (which could be called plagiarism). What is more useful is how it can help guide your writing process. If you are a looking for ways to use ChatGPT to support your writing, here are five different ways to explore.
How to improve your writing process with ChatGPT
1. use chatgpt to generate essay ideas.
Before you can even get started writing an essay, you need to flesh out the idea. When professors assign essays, they generally give students a prompt that gives them leeway for their own self-expression and analysis. As a result, students have the task of finding the angle to approach the essay on their own.
If you have written an essay recently, you know this step is often the trickiest part -- and this is where ChatGPT can help.
Also: I wish I had ChatGPT when I was in college. But not for the reason you might expect
All you need to do is input the assignment topic, include as much detail as you'd like -- such as what you're thinking about covering -- and let ChatGPT do the rest. For example, based on a paper prompt I had in college, I asked:
Can you help me come up with a topic idea for this assignment, "You will write a research paper or case study on a leadership topic of your choice." I would like it to include Blake and Mouton's Managerial Leadership Grid and possibly a historical figure.
Within seconds, the chatbot produced a response that provided me with the title of the essay, options of historical figures I could focus my article on, and insight on what information I could include in my paper, with specific examples of a case study I could use.
2. Use the chatbot to create an outline
Once you have a solid topic, it's time to start brainstorming what you actually want to include in the essay. To facilitate the writing process, I always create an outline, including all the different points I want to touch upon in my essay. However, the outline writing process is usually tedious.
With ChatGPT, all you have to do is ask it to write it for you.
Also : ChatGPT productivity hacks: Five ways to use chatbots to make your life easier
Using the topic that ChatGPT helped me generate in step one, I asked the chatbot to write me an outline by saying:
Can you create an outline for a paper, "Examining the Leadership Style of Winston Churchill through Blake and Mouton's Managerial Leadership Grid"
After a couple of seconds, the chatbot outputted a holistic outline divided into seven different sections, with three different points under each section.
This outline is thorough and can be condensed for a shorter essay, or elaborated on for a longer paper. If you don't like something or want to tweak it further, you can do so either manually or with more instructions to ChatGPT.
3. Use ChatGPT to find sources
Now that you know exactly what you want to write, it's time to find reputable sources to get your information from. If you don't know where to start, like with all of the previous steps, you can just ask ChatGPT.
All you need to do is ask it to find sources for your essay topic. For example, I asked it the following:
Can you help me find sources for a paper, "Examining the Leadership Style of Winston Churchill through Blake and Mouton's Managerial Leadership Grid."
Also : The best AI chatbots: ChatGPT and other interesting alternatives to try
The chatbot output seven sources, with a bullet point for each that explained what the source was and why it could be useful.
The one caveat you will want to be aware of when using ChatGPT for sources is that it does not have access to information before 2021, so it will not be able to suggest the freshest sources. However, it is a start.
4. Use ChatGPT to write a sample essay
It is worth noting that if you take the text directly from the chatbot and submit it, your work could be considered a form of plagiarism, since it is not your original work. As with any information taken from another source, text generated by any AI should be clearly identified and credited in your work.
In most educational institutions, the penalties for plagiarism are severe, ranging from a failing grade to expulsion from the school.
Also : ChatGPT is changing everything. But it still has its limits
If you want ChatGPT generate a sample piece of text, put in the topic, the desired length, and watch for what it generates. For example, I input the following text:
Can you write a five-paragraph essay on the topic, "Examining the Leadership Style of Winston Churchill through Blake and Mouton's Managerial Leadership Grid."
Within seconds, the chatbot output exactly what I asked for: A coherent, five-paragraph essay on the topic which can help you to guide you in your own writing.
At this point it's worth remembering how tools like ChatGPT work: They put words together in a form that they think is statistically valid but they don't know if what they are saying is true or accurate. That means you might find invented facts or details or other oddities. It won't be able to create original work because it is simply aggregating everything it has already absorbed. It might be a useful starting point for your own work, but don't expect it to be inspired or accurate.
5. Use ChatGPT to co-edit your essay
Once you've written your own essay, you can use ChatGPT's advanced writing capabilities to edit it for you.
You can simply tell the chatbot what you specifically want it to edit. For example, I asked it to edit for essay structure and grammar, but other options could have included flow, tone, and more.
Once you ask it to edit your essay, it will prompt you to paste your text into the chatbot. Once you do, it will output your essay with corrections made. This could be the most useful tool as it can edit your essay more thoroughly than a basic proofreading tool could, going beyond spelling.
You could also co-edit with the chatbot, asking it to take a look at a specific paragraph or sentence and asking it to rewrite or fix it for clarity.
How to use ChatGPT: Everything you need to know
For a better document collaboration experience, try these tips
The best AI chatbots: ChatGPT and other interesting alternatives to try
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How to Write a Biography
- DESCRIPTION how to write a biography
- SOURCE AZemdega / E+ / Getty
Whether you're hoping to become a published author, need to write a biography essay, or have a professional bio to complete, writing a biography requires care and tact. In a biography , you're telling the story of someone's most prized possession, their life. Follow a few simple steps and use tips for writing biographies to learn how to write a biography.
What Is a Biography?
Before you can write a biography, you have to understand exactly what a biography is. A biography is an “account of a person’s life written by another.” In the world of online bios, you could write your own biography.
Everything you write in a biography must be presented accurately while being interesting and engaging. What is it about your subject's life that will strike a chord or educate people?
Step 1: Choose a Subject
The first step in writing a biography is choosing your subject. Is that subject living or dead? For the most part, the process will be the same either way. You'll want to examine major life events, relationships, and the person’s influence on society.
When choosing a subject, there are several important questions to ask yourself.
- Is the person's life interesting enough to warrant a biography?
- Did they make an impact or meaningful decisions that will encourage others?
- Will their life connect with an audience?
- Is the subject already famous or a lesser-known person who should be brought to the forefront?
Writing About Celebrities
Celebrities and famous figures are universally viewed as interesting and will have a wider audience.If you choose to write about a famous person, make sure your biography stands out in some way from all the others.
Writing About an Unknown Person
If you know an ordinary person with an extraordinary story that could strike a chord with people, don't be afraid to write about it. Just be sure to narrowly focus the biography on those striking components that will connect with the readers. Someone unknown will be a tougher sell because you have to convince people to care about this unknown entity.
Writing About a Person Who Is Dead
When writing about someone who's already passed, you won't have access to their voice and will never know their feelings on your work. You can work with their family and former colleagues or use personal writings like journals to help you get an intimate view of your subject’s life.
Writing a Personal or Professional Bio
Unlike all other biographies, you are the author of your own personal or professional bio . In literary terms, this is considered an autobiography, but in the modern world the word “bio,” which is short for “biography,” is used. You can use the same steps for writing a biography to write an online bio.
Step 2: Gain Permission From the Subject
Once you've chosen your subject, you'll likely need their permission. If the person is deceased, you can ask their living family members for permission. This isn't always a prerequisite. Plenty of "unauthorized" biographies have been written about celebrities based on information available in the public domain . However, a biography is usually far more compelling if the subject is willing to talk to you.
If you don't get permission and you still wish to publish, you'll have to make sure you don't print anything untrue that could be viewed as slander or libel . If you hurt someone's reputation through your unauthorized biography, you could be setting yourself up for a lawsuit.
Step 3: Research the Life of Your Subject
As you conduct your research, the ultimate primary source is the subject. But, whether they're living or dead, that may not always be an option.
Using Primary Sources
Thankfully, there are other primary sources besides the subject of your biography. They include the subject's personal writings, those with firsthand information about the subject, original historical or legal documents, statistical records, and audio or video recordings. A piece of writing created during the time of an important event, such as a news article, may also be considered a primary source.
Using Secondary Sources
Secondary sources will be helpful to your research too, if you choose wisely. A secondary source is something created by someone who didn't know the subject directly or didn't witness an event with their own eyes.
A secondary source was created at a later time, based on primary or secondary sources, such as a review, analysis, or documentary. When using these sources, be sure to look into the writer's credibility to see whether they can be trusted.
Step 4: Choose a Biography Format
Since a biography is a non-fictional account of a person's life, starting at the beginning will probably set the rest of the story up nicely. That said, your audience may not want the details of your subject's happy-yet-uneventful childhood when a heroic or evil deed is on the horizon. So, the manner in which you organize your ideas should be determined before you really dig in.
The key to organizing a biography is to tell a story that always comes back to a theme. Is it about a person's resilience? Is it about their sense of adventure and exploration? Once you've decided that, the order in which you choose to lay out the details is entirely up to you. So, trust your instincts. Beyond that, keep to the narrative you'd like readers to pick up on.
Types of Biographies
You can find biographies written as children’s books, magazine stories, or novels. An abbreviated biography is called a biographical sketch .
Here are some ways to format your biography, aside from chronological order.
- By topic - Focus on the topics that affected the person's life. Detail each major event one by one.
- By theme - A thematic biography uses an overarching point of view or a characteristic of the subject to tie all life events back to a central theme.
- Through interviews - Talk to your subject, if you can. Ask people close to the subject what they thought of the subject, the people around the subject, and key events. Relay the story through these first-person accounts.
- In media res - In media res is a literary term meaning "in the middle of things". Stories written in media res do not lead up to the main event but begin in the middle of the tale and work backwards to hit on crucial elements, only to then resume a forward-moving account.
Step 5: Outline Their Story
Before you've gathered all your intel, you need to decide what you're going to do with it. Generally, it's best to start with an outline so you know what details are going to be included in the biography . Determine the main point, or thesis, then outline how each section or chapter tells a part of the story to support that thesis.
Do you want to cover a person's entire life, or focus on one significant aspect of their story? A timeline of their life will help you paint a picture and decide what to highlight. This will also help you decide if you want to present your biography in chronological order, by major life events, or in some other fashion.
Step 6: Write a First Draft
Now you know what information you need to fill in the details. Remember to present your subject accurately and tell a compelling story. Include relevant details, stick to that theme you're trying to convey, and draw your reader in with intrigue and motivating elements.
Have fun writing. If you're invested in the story you want to share through the chronology of someone else's life, that will translate well. Your readers will absorb your enthusiasm and give credence to your subject. You're about to take on a project that can shape the hearts and minds of others. So make sure you enjoy the ride.
Step 7: Edit Your Work
As you edit, make sure you've stuck to the outline you selected, whether that's chronological, event-based, or in media res. Tie every major element back to the theme and teach your readers something, whether that's the power of resilience, the impact of an adventurous heart, or the need for goodness in the world.
When you’re happy with the biography, get a second opinion from your subject or other primary sources you used. Be thoughtful about making any suggested changes.
Researching other biographies is an excellent way to draw inspiration for your own biography. YourDictionary features a Biographies channel where you can view a variety of biographies for famous figures from actor Bruce Willis to Filipino revolutionary Melchora Aquino .
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How to Write an Interesting Biography
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A biography is a written account of the series of events that make up a person's life. Some of those events are going to be pretty boring, so you'll need to try to make your account as interesting as possible!
Every student will write a biography at some point, but the level of detail and sophistication will differ. A fourth grade biography will be much different from a middle school-level biography or a high school or college-level biography.
However, each biography will include the basic details. The first information you should gather in your research will include biographical details and facts. You must use a trustworthy resource to ensure that your information is accurate.
Using research note cards , collect the following data, carefully recording the source for each piece of information:
Including Basic Details
- Date and place of birth and death
- Family information
- Lifetime accomplishments
- Major events of life
- Effects/impact on society, historical significance
While this information is necessary to your project, these dry facts, on their own, don't really make a very good biography. Once you've found these basics, you'll want to dig a little deeper.
You choose a certain person because you think he or she is interesting, so you certainly don't want to burden your paper with an inventory of boring facts. Your goal is to impress your reader!
Start off with great first sentence . It's a good idea to begin with a really interesting statement, a little-known fact, or really intriguing event.
You should avoid starting out with a standard but boring line like:
"Meriwether Lewis was born in Virginia in 1774."
Instead, try starting with something like this:
"Late one afternoon in October, 1809, Meriwether Lewis arrived at a small log cabin nestled deep in the Tennessee Mountains. By sunrise on the following day, he was dead, having suffered gunshot wounds to the head and chest.
You'll have to make sure your beginning is motivating, but it should also be relevant. The next sentence or two should lead into your thesis statement , or main message of your biography.
"It was a tragic end to a life that had so deeply affected the course of history in the United States. Meriwether Lewis, a driven and often tormented soul, led an expedition of discovery that expanded a young nation's economic potential, increased its scientific understanding, and enhanced its worldwide reputation."
Now that you've created an impressive beginning , you'll want to continue the flow. Find more intriguing details about the man and his work, and weave them into the composition.
Examples of Interesting Details:
- Some people believed that Lewis and Clark would encounter elephants in the western wilderness, having misunderstood the wooly mammoth bones discovered in the United States.
- The expedition resulted in the discovery and description of 122 new animal species and subspecies.
- Lewis was a hypochondriac.
- His death is still an unsolved mystery, although it was ruled a suicide.
You can find interesting facts by consulting diverse sources.
Fill the body of your biography with material that gives insight into your subject's personality. For instance, in a biography about Meriwether Lewis, you would ask what traits or events motivated him to embark on such a monumental exercise.
Questions to Consider in Your Biography:
- Was there something in your subject's childhood that shaped his/her personality?
- Was there a personality trait that drove him/her to succeed or impeded his progress?
- What adjectives would you use to describe him/her?
- What were some turning points in this life?
- What was his/her impact on history?
Be sure to use transitional phrases and words to link your paragraphs and make your composition paragraphs flow . It is normal for good writers to re-arrange their sentences to create a better paper.
The final paragraph will summarize your main points and re-assert your main claim about your subject. It should point out your main points, re-name the person you're writing about, but it should not repeat specific examples.
As always, proofread your paper and check for errors. Create a bibliography and title page according to your teacher's instructions. Consult a style guide for proper documentation.
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How to perfect your prompt writing for ChatGPT, Midjourney and other AI generators
Lecturer in Business Analytics, University of Sydney
Marcel Scharth does not work for, consult, own shares in or receive funding from any company or organization that would benefit from this article, and has disclosed no relevant affiliations beyond their academic appointment.
University of Sydney provides funding as a member of The Conversation AU.
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Generative AI is having a moment. ChatGPT and art generators such as DALL-E 2, Stable Diffusion and Midjourney have proven their potential, and now millions are wracking their brains over how to get their outputs to look something like the vision in their head.
This is the goal of prompt engineering: the skill of crafting an input to deliver a desired result from generative AI.
Despite being trained on more data and computational resources than ever before, generative AI models have limitations . For instance, they’re not trained to produce content aligned with goals such as truth, insight, reliability and originality.
They also lack common sense and a fundamental understanding of the world, which means they can generate flawed (and even nonsensical) content.
As such, prompt engineering is essential for unlocking generative AI’s capabilities. And luckily it isn’t a technical skill. It’s mostly about trial and error, and keeping a few things in mind.
Read more: AI art is everywhere right now. Even experts don't know what it will mean
First, let’s use ChatGPT to illustrate how prompt engineering can be used for text outputs. If it’s used effectively, ChatGPT can generate essays , computer code , business plans , cover letters , poetry , jokes , and more.
Since it’s a chatbot, you may be inclined to engage with it conversationally. But this isn’t the best approach if you want tailored results. Instead, adopt the mindset that you’re programming the machine to perform a writing task for you.
Create a content brief similar to what you might give a hired professional writer. The key is to provide as much context as possible and use specific and detailed language. You can include information about:
- your desired focus, format, style, intended audience and text length
- a list of points you want addressed
- what perspective you want the text written from, if applicable
- and specific requirements, such as no jargon .
If you want a longer piece, you can generate it in steps. Start with the first few paragraphs and ask ChatGPT to continue in the next prompt. If you’re unsatisfied with a specific portion, you can ask for it to be rewritten according to new instructions.
But remember: no matter how much you tinker with your prompts, ChatGPT is subject to inaccuracies and making things up . So don’t take anything at face value. In the example below, the output mentions a “report” that doesn’t exist. It probably included this because my prompt asked it to use only reliable sources .
Midjourney is one of the most popular tools for art generation, and one of the easiest for beginners . So let’s use it for our next example.
Unlike for text generation, elaborate prompts aren’t necessarily better for image generation. The following example shows how a basic prompt combined with a style keyword is enough to create a variety of interesting images. Your style keyword may refer to a genre, art movement, technique, artist or specific work.
The following images were based on the prompt leopard on tree followed by different style keywords. These were (from the top left clockwise) synthwave , hyperrealist , expressionist and in the style of Zena Holloway . Holloway is a British photographer known for capturing her subjects in ethereal and somewhat surreal scenes, most often underwater.
You can also add keywords relating to:
- image qualities, such as “beautiful” or “high definition”
- objects you want pictured
- and lighting and colours.
With Midjourney, you can even use certain specific commands for different features, including ––ar or ––aspect to set the aspect ratio , ––no to omit certain objects, and ––c to produce more “unusual” results. This command accepts values between 0-100 after it, where the default is 0 and 100 leads to the most unusual result.
You can also use ––s or ––stylize to generate more artistic images (at the expense of following the prompt less closely).
The following example applies some of these ideas to create a fantasy image with a dreamlike and futuristic look. The prompt used here was dreamy futuristic cityscape, beautiful, clouds, interesting colors, cinematic lighting, 8k, 4k ––ar 7:4 ––c 25 ––no windows.
Midjourney accepts multiple prompts for one image if you use a double colon. This can lead to results such as the image below, where I provided separate prompts for the owl and plants. The full prompt was oil painting of an ethereal owl :: flowers, colors :: abstract :: wisdom ––ar 7:4 .
A more advanced type of prompting is to include an image as part of the prompt. Midjourney will then take the style of that image into account when generating a new one.
A good way to find inspiration and ideas is to explore the Midjourney gallery and style libraries .
A career of the future?
As generative AI models enter everyday life, prompting skills are likely to become more in-demand , especially from employers looking to get results using AI generators.
Some commentators are asking if becoming a “prompt engineer” may be a way for professionals such as designers, software engineers and content writers to save their jobs from automation, by integrating generative AI into their work. Others have suggested prompt engineering will itself be a career.
It’s hard to predict what role prompt engineering will play as AI models advance.
But it’s almost a given that more sophisticated generators will be able to handle more complex requests, inviting users to stretch their creativity. They will likely also have a better grasp of our preferences, reducing the need for tinkering.
Read more: No, the Lensa AI app technically isn’t stealing artists' work – but it will majorly shake up the art world
- Artificial intelligence (AI)
- Digital art
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Biographies are how we learn information about another human being's life. Whether you want to start writing a biography about a famous person, historical figure, or an influential family member, it's important to know all the elements that make a biography worth both writing and reading.
Here are some steps you can follow to help you write a successful short bio: 1. Choose a voice The first step in writing a short bio is deciding on a voice. For our purposes, choosing a voice involves deciding whether you are writing in the first or third person.
Listing your overall goal, values, or a statement that describes your ethos will help them get to know you, even in short bios. Your top three accomplishments: Especially in professional bios, you'll need a few accomplishments to show off what you've done in your career.
Your bio should be written in first or third person—whether you refer to yourself as "I" (first person) or by your name (third person). Professional and formal bios are often written in third person, while personal and informal bios are usually written in first person.
Picking a subject is the first step in writing a biography. You can pick an already famous person or a relatively unknown person with a great life story. If you already have a few in mind, you can start by asking yourself some questions such as; What has the subject accomplished that makes them a good subject? Have they had an impact on society?
Aim to describe yourself in a way that's professional…but also human. 3. Watch your word count. When you start writing a bio about yourself, determining the length may seem like an afterthought - something that just happens once you stop typing.
Here's how to write a short professional bio that suits your website or brand: Introduce yourself State your company or brand name Explain your professional role Include professional achievements Discuss your passions and values Mention your personal interests 01. Introduce yourself Begin your bio by stating your first and last name.
How to Write a Biography in English A biography is a detailed description or account of a person's life. It entails more than basic facts (education, work, relationship, and death). A biography also explains the subject's experience of these events. Like a profile or curriculum vitae (resume).
Writing Autobiography Definition, Examples, and Writing Guide Written by MasterClass Last updated: Aug 26, 2022 • 6 min read As a firsthand account of the author's own life, an autobiography offers readers an unmatched level of intimacy. Learn how to write your first autobiography with examples from MasterClass instructors.
Take note of the phrases or words you like, so you can use them later (with some editing) in your own bio. Step 2. Start with Your Name Write your name at the start or first sentence of your bio so people will immediately realize what they're reading. Advertisement Step 3. Explain Your Business or Occupation
How to Write a Professional Bio Create an 'About' page for your website or profile. Begin writing your bio with your first and last name. Mention any associated brand name you might use. State your current position and what you do. Include at least one professional accomplishment. Describe your values and how they inform your career.
If you are writing your bio for your professional website, it should be around 1,500 to 2,000 words. Keep details short and concise but include as many as possible. The main items your bio should include are: Purpose: Why are you writing your bio? To address clients and customers? Obtain a job?
Writing the Biography 1 Go for a chronological structure. Start chronologically from the subject's birth to their death or later life. Use the timeline of the person's life to structure the biography. Start with birth and childhood. Then, go into young adulthood and adulthood. If the person is still alive, include information on their later life.
Biography Writing Tip #1: Choose Your Subject Wisely There are several points for students to reflect on when deciding on a subject for their biography. Let's take a look at the most essential points to consider when deciding on the subject for a biography: Interest: To produce a biography will require sustained writing from the student.
1. Use ChatGPT to generate essay ideas. Before you can even get started writing an essay, you need to flesh out the idea. When professors assign essays, they generally give students a prompt that ...
Follow these steps to craft a great bio about yourself: 1. Give an introduction of yourself. The first thing to do in a bio is to introduce yourself. It's appropriate to mention your name and title if you work in a field where it is applicable. Next, describe what you do in an interesting way.
The first step in writing a biography is choosing your subject. Is that subject living or dead? For the most part, the process will be the same either way. You'll want to examine major life events, relationships, and the person's influence on society. When choosing a subject, there are several important questions to ask yourself.
When you write a biography, you're exploring the details of a person's life, including their thought processes and emotions. This means that you must be able to write with care and tact. You will also be analyzing the events in your subject's life and explaining why they do certain things to draw connections between those experiences.
To write a good biography, you'll need to take notes about the person you are writing about. That'll mean reading a few books about the person, or interviewing your subject if he or she is someone ...
It should point out your main points, re-name the person you're writing about, but it should not repeat specific examples. As always, proofread your paper and check for errors. Create a bibliography and title page according to your teacher's instructions. Consult a style guide for proper documentation. Cite this Article
Steps in writing a biography; Select the individual you want to write about Search for the basic facts that relate to a person's life. The encyclopedia or almanac could be handy at this. Think about the details to add in the biography which can bring out clearly about the person's life.
Image created using Midjourney. Prompt: oil painting of a child with their grandparent enjoying a moment together and looking at each other. The child's face is full of wonder and the ...