I recently rewrote the bio and artist statement for a friend’s website. She had all of the info there, but she knew that the delivery could be better. That’s when I entered the picture. I rearranged, simplified and solidified her statement and message. I had fun with it and she LOVED the final product. This was easy for me. It was easy and it was fun. So why can’t I do the same for my own bio?
I’ve been meaning to rewrite my bio for, oh, four months now. Pretty much ever since my website went live. I wrote something quick, dirty and to the point fully intending to re-do it ASAP. That definitely hasn’t happened. Since then I have written thousands of words, yet I can’t quite bring myself to re-do my bio. In fact, I am choosing to write a blog post about rewriting my bio right now, instead of just rewriting the damn thing. If that isn’t some stellar procrastination in action, I don’t know what is!
Truth be told, I would rather write anything else. I would choose to rewrite the menu of a dollar-a-scoop Chinese restaurant over rewriting my bio. I hate writing about myself – I don’t mean about my thoughts or feelings. I think you have all figured out that I have no issues with that whatsoever! What I hate is summing up who I am in a couple of paragraphs and, in some regards, selling myself to the reader.
What do I include, what do I leave out? Do I make it fun and witty, or “Just the facts ma’am?” Since I’m a writer, there’s that added pressure that it has to be really good, to drive home the fact that I’m a writer. Now mind you, I can look at someone else and tell you what is relevant and apropos for the given situation. I have a monthly article where I do just that, and I love that project. But I can’t do it for myself, and I don’t think I’m alone in this. I feel that as a culture we don’t like talking about ourselves. If you tout all of your skills and strengths, you’re a braggart. If you downplay those things, you’re self-effacing. In reality, you might be a totally kick-ass person, but it’s awkward to say that about yourself.
This is why I think that all bios should be written by someone else. After all, they are called bios, not autobios. In all seriousness though, I don’t think you should write your own bio. You’re too close to the matter at hand to be objective. You will get a much truer representation, if the description is coming from someone else. Or this whole random blog post has been a stream-of-consciousness bit of sophistry so that I can justify not rewriting my bio for another couple of months . . .