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Blog • Perfecting your Craft

Posted on Jun 30, 2023

How to Write a Biography: A 7-Step Guide [+Template]

From time to time, nonfiction authors become so captivated by a particular figure from either the present or the past, that they feel compelled to write an entire book about their life. Whether casting them as heroes or villains, there is an interesting quality in their humanity that compels these authors to revisit their life paths and write their story.

However, portraying someone’s life on paper in a comprehensive and engaging way requires solid preparation. If you’re looking to write a biography yourself, in this post we’ll share a step-by-step blueprint that you can follow. 

How to write a biography: 

1. Seek permission when possible 

2. research your subject thoroughly, 3. do interviews and visit locations, 4. organize your findings, 5. identify a central thesis, 6. write it using narrative elements, 7. get feedback and polish the text.

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Biography Outline Template

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While you technically don’t need permission to write about public figures (or deceased ones), that doesn't guarantee their legal team won't pursue legal action against you. Author Kitty Kelley was sued by Frank Sinatra before she even started to write His Way , a biography that paints Ol Blue Eyes in a controversial light. (Kelley ended up winning the lawsuit, however).  

how to make a biography of a person

Whenever feasible, advise the subject’s representatives of your intentions. If all goes according to plan, you’ll get a green light to proceed, or potentially an offer to collaborate. It's a matter of common sense; if someone were to write a book about you, you would likely want to know about it well prior to publication. So, make a sincere effort to reach out to their PR staff to negotiate an agreement or at least a mutual understanding of the scope of your project. 

At the same time, make sure that you still retain editorial control over the project, and not end up writing a puff piece that treats its protagonist like a saint or hero. No biography can ever be entirely objective, but you should always strive for a portrayal that closely aligns with facts and reality.

If you can’t get an answer from your subject, or you’re asked not to proceed forward, you can still accept the potential repercussions and write an unauthorized biography . The “rebellious act” of publishing without consent indeed makes for great marketing, though it’ll likely bring more headaches with it too. 

✋ Please note that, like other nonfiction books, if you intend to release your biography with a publishing house , you can put together a book proposal to send to them before you even write the book. If they like it enough, they might pay you an advance to write it.  

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Book Proposal Template

Craft a professional pitch for your nonfiction book with our handy template.

Once you’ve settled (or not) the permission part, it’s time to dive deep into your character’s story.  

Deep and thorough research skills are the cornerstone of every biographer worth their salt. To paint a vivid and accurate portrait of someone's life, you’ll have to gather qualitative information from a wide range of reliable sources. 

Start with the information already available, from books on your subject to archival documents, then collect new ones firsthand by interviewing people or traveling to locations. 

Browse the web and library archives

Illustration of a biographer going into research mode.

Put your researcher hat on and start consuming any piece on your subject you can find, from their Wikipedia page to news articles, interviews, TV and radio appearances, YouTube videos, podcasts, books, magazines, and any other media outlets they may have been featured in. 

Establish a system to orderly collect the information you find 一 even seemingly insignificant details can prove valuable during the writing process, so be sure to save them. 

Depending on their era, you may find most of the information readily available online, or you may need to search through university libraries for older references. 

Photo of Alexander Hamilton

For his landmark biography of Alexander Hamilton, Ron Chernow spent untold hours at Columbia University’s library , reading through the Hamilton family papers, visiting the New York Historical Society, as well as interviewing the archivist of the New York Stock Exchange, and so on. The research process took years, but it certainly paid off. Chernow discovered that Hamilton created the first five securities originally traded on Wall Street. This finding, among others, revealed his significant contributions to shaping the current American financial and political systems, a legacy previously often overshadowed by other founding fathers. Today Alexander Hamilton is one of the best-selling biographies of all time, and it has become a cultural phenomenon with its own dedicated musical. 

Besides reading documents about your subject, research can help you understand the world that your subject lived in. 

Try to understand their time and social environment

Many biographies show how their protagonists have had a profound impact on society through their philosophical, artistic, or scientific contributions. But at the same time, it’s worth it as a biographer to make an effort to understand how their societal and historical context influenced their life’s path and work.

An interesting example is Stephen Greenblatt’s Will in the World . Finding himself limited by a lack of verified detail surrounding William Shakespeare's personal life, Greenblatt, instead, employs literary interpretation and imaginative reenactments to transport readers back to the Elizabethan era. The result is a vivid (though speculative) depiction of the playwright's life, enriching our understanding of his world.

Painting of William Shakespeare in colors

Many readers enjoy biographies that transport them to a time and place, so exploring a historical period through the lens of a character can be entertaining in its own right. The Diary of Samuel Pepys became a classic not because people were enthralled by his life as an administrator, but rather from his meticulous and vivid documentation of everyday existence during the Restoration period.

Once you’ve gotten your hands on as many secondary sources as you can find, you’ll want to go hunting for stories first-hand from people who are (or were) close to your subject.

With all the material you’ve been through, by now you should already have a pretty good picture of your protagonist. But you’ll surely have some curiosities and missing dots in their character arc to figure out, which you can only get by interviewing primary sources.

Interview friends and associates

This part is more relevant if your subject is contemporary, and you can actually meet up or call with relatives, friends, colleagues, business partners, neighbors, or any other person related to them. 

In writing the popular biography of Steve Jobs, Walter Isaacson interviewed more than one hundred people, including Jobs’s family, colleagues, former college mates, business rivals, and the man himself.

🔍 Read other biographies to get a sense of what makes a great one. Check out our list of the 30 best biographies of all time , or take our 30-second quiz below for tips on which one you should read next. 

Which biography should you read next?

Discover the perfect biography for you. Takes 30 seconds!

When you conduct your interviews, make sure to record them with high quality audio you can revisit later. Then use tools like Otter.ai or Descript to transcribe them 一 it’ll save you countless hours. 

You can approach the interview with a specific set of questions, or follow your curiosity blindly, trying to uncover revealing stories and anecdotes about your subject. Whatever your method, author and biography editor Tom Bromley suggests that every interviewer arrives prepared, "Show that you’ve done your work. This will help to put the interviewee at ease, and get their best answers.” 

Bromley also places emphasis on the order in which you conduct interviews. “You may want to interview different members of the family or friends first, to get their perspective on something, and then go directly to the main interviewee. You'll be able to use that knowledge to ask sharper, more specific questions.” 

Finally, consider how much time you have with each interviewee. If you only have a 30-minute phone call with an important person, make it count by asking directly the most pressing questions you have. And, if you find a reliable source who is also particularly willing to help, conduct several interviews and ask them, if appropriate, to write a foreword as part of the book’s front matter .

Sometimes an important part of the process is packing your bags, getting on a plane, and personally visiting significant places in your character’s journey.

Visit significant places in their life

A place, whether that’s a city, a rural house, or a bodhi tree, can carry a particular energy that you can only truly experience by being there. In putting the pieces together about someone’s life, it may be useful to go visit where they grew up, or where other significant events of their lives happened. It will be easier to imagine what they experienced, and better tell their story. 

In researching The Lost City of Z , author David Grann embarked on a trek through the Amazon, retracing the steps of British explorer Percy Fawcett. This led Grann to develop new theories about the circumstances surrounding the explorer's disappearance.

Still from the movie The Lost City of Z in which the explorer is surrounded by an Amazon native tribe

Hopefully, you won’t have to deal with jaguars and anacondas to better understand your subject’s environment, but try to walk into their shoes as much as possible. 

Once you’ve researched your character enough, it’s time to put together all the puzzle pieces you collected so far. 

Take the bulk of notes, media, and other documents you’ve collected, and start to give them some order and structure. A simple way to do this is by creating a timeline. 

Create a chronological timeline

It helps to organize your notes chronologically 一 from childhood to the senior years, line up the most significant events of your subject’s life, including dates, places, names and other relevant bits. 

Timeline of Steve Jobs' career

You should be able to divide their life into distinct periods, each with their unique events and significance. Based on that, you can start drafting an outline of the narrative you want to create.  

Draft a story outline 

Since a biography entails writing about a person’s entire life, it will have a beginning, a middle, and an end. You can pick where you want to end the story, depending on how consequential the last years of your subject were. But the nature of the work will give you a starting character arc to work with. 

To outline the story then, you could turn to the popular Three-Act Structure , which divides the narrative in three main parts. In a nutshell, you’ll want to make sure to have the following:

  • Act 1. Setup : Introduce the protagonist's background and the turning points that set them on a path to achieve a goal. 
  • Act 2. Confrontation : Describe the challenges they encounter, both internal and external, and how they rise to them. Then..
  • Act 3. Resolution : Reach a climactic point in their story in which they succeed (or fail), showing how they (and the world around them) have changed as a result. 

Only one question remains before you begin writing: what will be the main focus of your biography?

Think about why you’re so drawn to your subject to dedicate years of your life to recounting their own. What aspect of their life do you want to highlight? Is it their evil nature, artistic genius, or visionary mindset? And what evidence have you got to back that up? Find a central thesis or focus to weave as the main thread throughout your narrative. 

Cover of Hitler and Stalin by Alan Bullock

Or find a unique angle

If you don’t have a particular theme to explore, finding a distinct angle on your subject’s story can also help you distinguish your work from other biographies or existing works on the same subject.

Plenty of biographies have been published about The Beatles 一 many of which have different focuses and approaches: 

  • Philip Norman's Shout is sometimes regarded as leaning more towards a pro-Lennon and anti-McCartney stance, offering insights into the band's inner dynamics. 
  • Ian McDonald's Revolution in the Head closely examines their music track by track, shifting the focus back to McCartney as a primary creative force. 
  • Craig Brown's One Two Three Four aims to capture their story through anecdotes, fan letters, diary entries, and interviews. 
  • Mark Lewisohn's monumental three-volume biography, Tune In , stands as a testament to over a decade of meticulous research, chronicling every intricate detail of the Beatles' journey.

Group picture of The Beatles

Finally, consider that biographies are often more than recounting the life of a person. Similar to how Dickens’ Great Expectations is not solely about a boy named Pip (but an examination and critique of Britain’s fickle, unforgiving class system), a biography should strive to illuminate a broader truth — be it social, political, or human — beyond the immediate subject of the book. 

Once you’ve identified your main focus or angle, it’s time to write a great story. 

Illustration of a writer mixing storytelling ingredients

While biographies are often highly informative, they do not have to be dry and purely expository in nature . You can play with storytelling elements to make it an engaging read. 

You could do that by thoroughly detailing the setting of the story , depicting the people involved in the story as fully-fledged characters , or using rising action and building to a climax when describing a particularly significant milestone of the subject’s life. 

One common way to make a biography interesting to read is starting on a strong foot…

Hook the reader from the start

Just because you're honoring your character's whole life doesn't mean you have to begin when they said their first word. Starting from the middle or end of their life can be more captivating as it introduces conflicts and stakes that shaped their journey.

When he wrote about Christopher McCandless in Into the Wild , author Jon Krakauer didn’t open his subject’s childhood and abusive family environment. Instead, the book begins with McCandless hitchhiking his way into the wilderness, and subsequently being discovered dead in an abandoned bus. By starting in medias res , Krakauer hooks the reader’s interest, before tracing back the causes and motivations that led McCandless to die alone in that bus in the first place.

Chris McCandless self-portrait in front of the now iconic bus

You can bend the timeline to improve the reader’s reading experience throughout the rest of the story too…

Play with flashback 

While biographies tend to follow a chronological narrative, you can use flashbacks to tell brief stories or anecdotes when appropriate. For example, if you were telling the story of footballer Lionel Messi, before the climax of winning the World Cup with Argentina, you could recall when he was just 13 years old, giving an interview to a local newspaper, expressing his lifelong dream of playing for the national team. 

Used sparsely and intentionally, flashbacks can add more context to the story and keep the narrative interesting. Just like including dialogue does…

Reimagine conversations

Recreating conversations that your subject had with people around them is another effective way to color the story. Dialogue helps the reader imagine the story like a movie, providing a deeper sensory experience. 

how to make a biography of a person

One thing is trying to articulate the root of Steve Jobs’ obsession with product design, another would be to quote his father , teaching him how to build a fence when he was young: “You've got to make the back of the fence just as good looking as the front of the fence. Even though nobody will see it, you will know. And that will show that you're dedicated to making something perfect.”

Unlike memoirs and autobiographies, in which the author tells the story from their personal viewpoint and enjoys greater freedom to recall conversations, biographies require a commitment to facts. So, when recreating dialogue, try to quote directly from reliable sources like personal diaries, emails, and text messages. You could also use your interview scripts as an alternative to dialogue. As Tom Bromley suggests, “If you talk with a good amount of people, you can try to tell the story from their perspective, interweaving different segments and quoting the interviewees directly.”

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These are just some of the story elements you can use to make your biography more compelling. Once you’ve finished your manuscript, it’s a good idea to ask for feedback. 

If you’re going to self-publish your biography, you’ll have to polish it to professional standards. After leaving your work to rest for a while, look at it with fresh eyes and self-edit your manuscript eliminating passive voice, filler words, and redundant adverbs. 

Illustration of an editor reviewing a manuscript

Then, have a professional editor give you a general assessment. They’ll look at the structure and shape of your manuscript and tell you which parts need to be expanded on or cut. As someone who edited and commissioned several biographies, Tom Bromley points out that a professional “will look at the sources used and assess whether they back up the points made, or if more are needed. They would also look for context, and whether or not more background information is needed for the reader to understand the story fully. And they might check your facts, too.”  

In addition to structural editing, you may want to have someone copy-edit and proofread your work.

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Importantly, make sure to include a bibliography with a list of all the interviews, documents, and sources used in the writing process. You’ll have to compile it according to a manual of style, but you can easily create one by using tools like EasyBib . Once the text is nicely polished and typeset in your writing software , you can prepare for the publication process.  

In conclusion, by mixing storytelling elements with diligent research, you’ll be able to breathe life into a powerful biography that immerses readers in another individual’s life experience. Whether that’ll spark inspiration or controversy, remember you could have an important role in shaping their legacy 一 and that’s something not to take lightly. 

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Literacy Ideas

How to Write a Biography

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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 a biography, it’s worth taking a little time before they put pen to paper to tease out a crystal clear definition of a biography.

Visual Writing Prompts

What Is a Biography?

how to write a biography | how to start an autobiography | How to Write a Biography | literacyideas.com

Simply put, a biography is an account of someone’s life written by someone else . While there is a genre known as a 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 BIOGRAPHIES

how to write a biography | biography and autobiography writing unit 1 | How to Write a Biography | literacyideas.com

Teach your students to write AMAZING BIOGRAPHIES & AUTOBIOGRAPHIES using proven RESEARCH SKILLS and WRITING STRATEGIES .

  • Understand the purpose of both forms of biography.
  • Explore 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.

Biography structure.

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.

BIOGRAPHY FEATURES

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)

THE PROCESS OF WRITING A BIOGRAPHY

Like any form of writing, you will find it simple if you have a plan and follow it through. These steps will ensure you cover the essential bases of writing a biography essay.

Firstly, select a subject that inspires you. Someone whose life story resonates with you and whose contribution to society intrigues you. The next step is to conduct thorough research. Engage in extensive reading, explore various sources, watch documentaries, and glean all available information to provide a comprehensive account of the person’s life.

Creating an outline is essential to organize your thoughts and information. The outline should include the person’s early life, education, career, achievements, and any other significant events or contributions. It serves as a map for the writing process, ensuring that all vital information is included.

Your biography should have an engaging introduction that captivates the reader’s attention and provides background information on the person you’re writing about. It should include a thesis statement that summarizes the main points of the biography.

Writing a biography in chronological order is crucial . You should begin with the person’s early life and move through their career and achievements. This approach provides clarity on how the person’s life unfolded and how they accomplished their goals.

A biography should be written in a narrative style , capturing the essence of the person’s life through vivid descriptions, anecdotes, and quotes. Avoid dry, factual writing and focus on creating a compelling narrative that engages the reader.

Adding personal insights and opinions can enhance the biography’s overall impact, providing a unique perspective on the person’s achievements, legacy, and impact on society.

Editing and proofreading are vital elements of the writing process. Thoroughly reviewing your biography ensures that the writing is clear, concise, and error-free. You can even request feedback from someone else to ensure that it is engaging and well-written.

Finally, including a bibliography at the end of your biography is essential. It gives credit to the sources that were used during research, such as books, articles, interviews, and websites.

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.

Research Skills:

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

how to write a biography | research skills 1 | How to Write a Biography | literacyideas.com

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.

Student Examples of Biography Writing

  • Year 5 Example
  • Year 7 Example
  • Year 9 Example

“The Rock ‘n’ Roll King: Elvis Presley”

Elvis Aaron Presley, born on January 8, 1935, was an amazing singer and actor known as the “King of Rock ‘n’ Roll.” Even though he’s been dead for nearly 50 years, I can’t help but be fascinated by his incredible life!

Elvis grew up in Tupelo, Mississippi, in a tiny house with his parents and twin brother. His family didn’t have much money, but they shared a love for music. Little did they know Elvis would become a music legend!

When he was only 11 years old, Elvis got his first guitar. He taught himself to play and loved singing gospel songs. As he got older, he started combining different music styles like country, blues, and gospel to create a whole new sound – that’s Rock ‘n’ Roll!

In 1954, at the age of 19, Elvis recorded his first song, “That’s All Right.” People couldn’t believe how unique and exciting his music was. His famous hip-swinging dance moves also made him a sensation!

Elvis didn’t just rock the music scene; he also starred in movies like “Love Me Tender” and “Jailhouse Rock.” But fame came with challenges. Despite facing ups and downs, Elvis kept spreading happiness through his music.

how to write a biography | A4H32CWFYQ72GPUNCIRTS5Y7P4 | How to Write a Biography | literacyideas.com

Tragically, Elvis passed away in 1977, but his music and charisma live on. Even today, people worldwide still enjoy his songs like “Hound Dog” and “Can’t Help Falling in Love.” Elvis Presley’s legacy as the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll will live forever.

Long Live the King: I wish I’d seen him.

Elvis Presley, the Rock ‘n’ Roll legend born on January 8, 1935, is a captivating figure that even a modern-day teen like me can’t help but admire. As I delve into his life, I wish I could have experienced the magic of his live performances.

Growing up in Tupelo, Mississippi, Elvis faced challenges but found solace in music. At 11, he got his first guitar, a symbol of his journey into the world of sound. His fusion of gospel, country, and blues into Rock ‘n’ Roll became a cultural phenomenon.

The thought of being in the audience during his early performances, especially when he recorded “That’s All Right” at 19, sends shivers down my spine. Imagining the crowd’s uproar and feeling the revolutionary energy of that moment is a dream I wish I could have lived.

Elvis wasn’t just a musical prodigy; he was a dynamic performer. His dance moves, the embodiment of rebellion, and his roles in films like “Love Me Tender” and “Jailhouse Rock” made him a true icon.

After watching him on YouTube, I can’t help but feel a little sad that I’ll never witness the King’s live performances. The idea of swaying to “Hound Dog” or being enchanted by “Can’t Help Falling in Love” in person is a missed opportunity. Elvis may have left us in 1977, but he was the king of rock n’ roll. Long live the King!

Elvis Presley: A Teen’s Take on the Rock ‘n’ Roll Icon”

Elvis Presley, born January 8, 1935, was a revolutionary force in the music world, earning his title as the “King of Rock ‘n’ Roll.” Exploring his life, even as a 16-year-old today, I’m captivated by the impact he made.

Hailing from Tupelo, Mississippi, Elvis grew up in humble beginnings, surrounded by the love of his parents and twin brother. It’s inspiring to think that, despite financial challenges, this young man would redefine the music scene.

At 11, Elvis got his first guitar, sparking a self-taught journey into music. His early gospel influences evolved into a unique fusion of country, blues, and gospel, creating the electrifying genre of Rock ‘n’ Roll. In 1954, at only 19, he recorded “That’s All Right,” marking the birth of a musical legend.

Elvis wasn’t just a musical innovator; he was a cultural phenomenon. His rebellious dance moves and magnetic stage presence challenged the norms. He transitioned seamlessly into acting, starring in iconic films like “Love Me Tender” and “Jailhouse Rock.”

how to write a biography | Elvis Presley promoting Jailhouse Rock | How to Write a Biography | literacyideas.com

However, fame came at a cost, and Elvis faced personal struggles. Despite the challenges, his music continued to resonate. Even now, classics like “Hound Dog” and “Can’t Help Falling in Love” transcend generations.

Elvis Presley’s impact on music and culture is undeniable. He was known for his unique voice, charismatic persona, and electrifying performances. He sold over one billion records worldwide, making him one of the best-selling solo artists in history. He received numerous awards throughout his career, including three Grammy Awards and the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award.

Elvis’s influence can still be seen in today’s music. Many contemporary artists, such as Bruno Mars, Lady Gaga, and Justin Timberlake, have cited Elvis as an inspiration. His music continues to be featured in movies, TV shows, and commercials.

Elvis left us in 1977, but his legacy lives on. I appreciate his breaking barriers and fearlessly embracing his artistic vision. Elvis Presley’s impact on music and culture is timeless, a testament to the enduring power of his artistry. His music has inspired generations and will continue to do so for many years to come.

how to write a biography | LITERACY IDEAS FRONT PAGE 1 | How to Write a Biography | literacyideas.com

Teaching Resources

Use our resources and tools to improve your student’s writing skills through proven teaching strategies.

BIOGRAPHY WRITING TEACHING IDEAS AND LESSONS

We have compiled 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.

Biography Graphic Organizer

Get our FREE Biography Writing Graphic Organizer

Use this valuable tool in the research and writing phases to keep your students on track and engaged.

WRITING CHECKLIST & RUBRIC BUNDLE

writing checklists

To Conclude

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

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Personal Narrative Writing Guide

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  • Learn How to Write a Biography: A Step-by-Step Guide.
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Learn How to Write a Biography: A Step-by-Step Guide.

Human lives are intricate tapestries woven with experiences, emotions, challenges, and triumphs. Biographies and autobiographies serve as windows into these remarkable stories, offering insight into the lives of individuals who have left their mark on history or those who wish to chronicle their own journeys. 

I n this guide, we will explore the art of writing biographies and autobiographies, delving into the nuances of both genres and providing valuable tips on how to craft compelling narratives.

Understanding Biography and Autobiography

  • Biography: Exploring Lives Beyond the Surface A biography is a literary exploration that unveils the intricate layers of a person’s existence, transcending the mere listing of events. It provides a comprehensive account of an individual’s life, offering insights into their achievements, struggles, societal impact, and distinct qualities that define them. These narratives serve as windows into history, allowing readers to traverse time and understand the legacy left by remarkable individuals. Biographies are usually crafted by biographers, individuals skilled in research and storytelling. They undertake a meticulous journey of gathering information from diverse sources, such as historical records, interviews, letters, and secondary literature. The biographer’s role is to curate these fragments of information into a coherent narrative, painting a vivid portrait of the subject. This comprehensive approach lends credibility and depth to the portrayal, enriching the reader’s understanding of the subject’s contributions and character. Example:  Consider the biography of Mahatma Gandhi. A biographer compiling his life story would explore not only his role in India’s fight for independence but also his principles of nonviolence, his experiments with truth, and his impact on the world’s political landscape. By presenting a holistic view of Gandhi’s life, the biography reveals the nuances of his personality, beliefs, and the larger context in which he operated.
  • Autobiography: The Intimate Dialogue of Self-Discovery An autobiography is a narrative journey undertaken by the subject themselves—a profound sharing of one’s life experiences, emotions, and reflections. This genre provides readers with an intimate insight into the subject’s psyche, allowing them to witness their life’s trajectory through personal recollections. Autobiographies carry a unique authenticity, as they are composed from the vantage point of the person who lived those moments, providing a firsthand account of their journey. Autobiographies draw from the subject’s reservoir of memories, emotions, and introspections. This self-exploration leads to a narrative that is often more than a linear chronicle; it becomes a tapestry woven with the threads of emotions, thoughts, and personal revelations. By directly communicating with the reader, the autobiographer creates a powerful connection, allowing readers to step into their shoes and experience their story from within. Example:  A notable example of an autobiography is “The Diary of a Young Girl” by Anne Frank. Written during her time in hiding during World War II, the book offers a candid portrayal of Anne’s life, fears, hopes, and dreams. Through her own words, readers gain a deep understanding of the challenges faced by Jews during the Holocaust, as well as the resilience and humanity that Anne exudes even in the face of adversity.

Writing a Biography:

Research: The Foundation of a Compelling Biography Thorough research is the cornerstone of a captivating biography. Delve into reputable sources like books, articles, interviews, and archives to gather a comprehensive view of your subject’s life. By immersing yourself in these materials, you gain insights into their experiences, motivations, and contributions. Scrutinise the historical context to understand the era’s impact on their journey. Successful research forms the bedrock of your biography, enabling you to present an accurate and nuanced portrayal that resonates with readers. It’s through meticulous research that you uncover the hidden stories and connect the dots, allowing the subject’s essence to shine through the pages.

Selecting a Focus: Defining the Narrative Scope Choosing a focal point is essential for a well-structured biography. Decide whether to cover the subject’s entire life or concentrate on specific periods or achievements. This decision shapes the narrative’s trajectory, preventing it from becoming overwhelming or disjointed. A focused approach allows you to delve deeply into pivotal moments, providing a more profound understanding of the subject’s journey. By clarifying the scope, you enable readers to follow a coherent storyline, making it easier for them to engage with the subject’s life in a meaningful way.

Structuring the Biography: Chronology and Themes The organisation of your biography greatly impacts its readability. Structure your work into logical sections or chapters, employing either a chronological or thematic arrangement. Begin with an engaging introduction that captures readers’ attention and provides essential context. A chronological structure follows the subject’s life in sequential order, offering a clear timeline of events. Alternatively, a thematic structure groups events by themes, allowing you to explore different facets of the subject’s life. A well-structured biography guides readers smoothly through the subject’s experiences, fostering a deeper connection and understanding.

Show, Don’t Tell: Evocative Storytelling Vivid descriptions, anecdotes, and quotes breathe life into your biography. Rather than merely listing facts, employ descriptive language to recreate scenes and emotions, allowing readers to immerse themselves in the subject’s world. Use anecdotes to illustrate key moments, capturing the essence of the subject’s character and the impact of events on their journey. Integrating quotes from the subject, contemporaries, or relevant sources adds authenticity and depth. Through this technique, you transport readers into the subject’s experiences, enabling them to witness the moments that shaped their lives.

Balanced Perspective: Portraying Strengths and Flaws A balanced portrayal adds credibility and depth to your biography. While it’s tempting to focus solely on accomplishments, a well-rounded view includes the subject’s strengths and flaws. This authenticity humanises the subject, making it relatable and multidimensional. By acknowledging both successes and challenges, readers gain a more honest understanding of their journey. Balancing positives and negatives helps readers empathise with the subject, connecting them on a deeper level and offering a more genuine insight into their lives.

Engaging Emotions: Creating Emotional Resonance Emotions are a potent tool in biography writing. Delve into the subject’s feelings, struggles, and aspirations to create an emotional connection with readers. By tapping into their emotional experiences, you make the narrative relatable and engaging. Sharing personal challenges and triumphs allows readers to empathise and reflect on their own lives. This emotional resonance elevates the biography from a mere factual account to a compelling and moving story that lingers in readers’ minds, leaving a lasting impact.

Citing Sources: Ensuring Accuracy and Credibility Accurate information is vital in biography writing. Properly cite your sources to maintain credibility and integrity. Clear citations not only lend authority to your work but also provide readers with the opportunity to explore further if they desire. Accurate referencing safeguards against misinformation and ensures that your portrayal is based on reliable evidence. In addition to enhancing your credibility, thorough citations demonstrate your commitment to thorough research and ethical writing practises, contributing to the overall trustworthiness of your biography.

complete guide to write a biography. start writing your biography now

Complete Guide to Write a Biography. Start Writing Your Biography Now

Writing an Autobiography:

Reflecting on Significant Moments and Experiences Initiating an autobiography involves introspection into your life’s pivotal moments. Delve into memories that have influenced your journey, such as turning points, challenges, relationships, and achievements. Reflect on these experiences, dissecting their impact on your personal growth and development. By contemplating these key events, you gain insight into the narrative threads that weave your life story together. This reflective process sets the foundation for an authentic autobiography that resonates with readers on a profound level.

Developing Your Unique Voice and Tone Crafting an autobiography demands a consistent voice and tone that reflect your personality. Write in a way that feels true to you, capturing your unique perspective and emotions. Authenticity is key, as it allows readers to connect with your narrative on a personal level. Whether your tone is introspective, humorous, or contemplative, ensure it aligns with the essence of your experiences. By embracing your genuine voice, you create an autobiography that not only tells your story but also conveys the essence of who you are.

Structured Storytelling for Engagement While autobiographies can be more flexible in structure compared to biographies, organising your narrative into coherent sections or themes enhances its readability. By grouping related experiences together, you provide readers with a clearer understanding of the themes that have shaped your life. This structure helps maintain their engagement by guiding them through your journey in a logical and compelling manner. While allowing for creativity, a structured approach ensures that your autobiography remains focused and accessible.

Embracing honesty and authenticity Honesty is the bedrock of an impactful autobiography. Share not only your triumphs but also your mistakes and failures. Authenticity creates relatability, allowing readers to connect with your humanity and vulnerabilities. Your journey’s challenges and setbacks are just as integral to your story as your successes. By being candid about your experiences, you demonstrate resilience and growth, inspiring readers to reflect on their own paths. This level of authenticity fosters a deeper connection, making your autobiography a source of empathy and encouragement.

Adding Depth Through Reflection Incorporate reflection to imbue your autobiography with depth and meaning. Explore the lessons you’ve learned from your experiences and the transformations they’ve prompted. Delve into how these moments shaped your beliefs, values, and perspective on life. By offering insights gained from introspection, you provide readers with wisdom and a broader understanding of your journey. Reflection transforms your autobiography from a chronicle of events into a thoughtful exploration of personal growth and the profound impact of life’s moments.

Creating vivid details for immersion Immerse readers in your world by employing sensory details and vivid descriptions. Paint a picture with words, allowing readers to visualise the scenes and emotions you’re describing. By incorporating sensory elements like sights, sounds, smells, and feelings, you transport readers into the moments you’re recounting. This immersive experience draws them closer to your story, fostering a stronger connection. Vivid details not only make your autobiography more engaging but also enable readers to forge a deeper connection with your experiences and emotions.

In the realm of literature, biographies and autobiographies stand as powerful testaments to the diversity and richness of human existence. Whether you’re capturing the life of a historical figure or penning your own life story, the art of writing these genres involves meticulous research, introspection, and a keen understanding of human emotions. 

Through carefully chosen words and evocative storytelling, biographers and autobiographers alike can craft narratives that resonate with readers and offer a deeper understanding of the human experience. So, whether you’re writing about the extraordinary or the everyday, embrace the challenge and privilege of narrating lives through the written word.

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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 Write Engaging Personal & Professional Bios (with Examples)

Last Updated: August 24, 2023 Fact Checked

Writing Personal and Professional Bios

Writing student bios, making your bio stand out, sample bios.

This article was co-authored by Melody Godfred, JD and by wikiHow staff writer, Glenn Carreau . Melody Godfred is a Career Coach, Entrepreneur, and Founder of Write In Color, a full-service resume and career development company that specializes in developing compelling personal narratives and brands. With over ten years of experience, Melody has worked with clients at entertainment and media companies including Apple, Disney, Fox, Netflix, Riot Games, Viacom, and Warner Bros, among others. The Muse invited Melody and Write In Color to serve as one of its 30 trusted career counselors (out of 3,000) to provide one-on-one coaching and resume services to the platform's more than four million active users. Melody earned a JD from Loyola Marymount University and BS from the University of Southern California. There are 7 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page. This article has been fact-checked, ensuring the accuracy of any cited facts and confirming the authority of its sources. This article has been viewed 5,722,671 times.

Personal bios are a great way to show people who you are and what you do. Whether writing a bio about yourself for a personal or professional website, a college application, or a social media account, bios are an important part of connecting with your audience or customer base. It’s important to take your time and be thoughtful as you write to ensure you get the right message across! Read on for a complete guide to writing a personal (or professional) bio about yourself, along with writing tips to make it as engaging as possible.

Things You Should Know

  • Start with your first and last name in a quick introductory sentence. Then, explain your job, greatest achievements, and professional mission statement.
  • Expand on personal details, including where you’re from, your educational background, and a quick summary of passions that aren’t related to your job.
  • Mention any projects you’re working on and end the bio with your contact information. Write in the third-person perspective unless it’s for social media.

Step 1 Identify your purpose for writing the bio and your potential audience.

  • The difference between personal and professional bios is all in the tone you use. Both cover your job and skills, but the bio you write for a personal website might sound less formal than the one you write for a job application.
  • As you write your bio, adjust your tone to make your bio appropriately formal, funny, professional, or personal.
  • If you can’t figure out what to write, check out bios from other people in your field and get a sense of their writing strategy. You can use their bios as models and write yours based on their overall structure.

Step 2 Write in the third person unless you’re writing for social media.

  • For example, begin a third-person bio with a sentence like, "Joann Smith is a graphic designer in Boston," and a first-person bio with "I am a graphic designer in Boston."

Step 3 Begin with a brief introduction citing your name and claim to fame.

  • For example, a simple yet solid introduction sentence could be, “Dan Keller is a columnist for the Boulder Times.”
  • Avoid writing a nickname in your bio. Even if your bio isn’t strictly for professional use, it’s best to treat it like a formal introduction to other people.
  • Be sure to mention your company or brand within your introduction. You might work for a company or own your own business with a personal brand.

Step 4 Explain your professional role, skills, and attributes in more detail.

  • For example, “Dan Keller is a columnist for the Boulder Times. He specializes in writing public interest stories on the latest technology.
  • Both personal and professional bios typically include job information; personal bios simply present that information a little more informally.
  • If you’re writing about your job informally, you might write something like, “Joann Smith is a passionate knitter who also happens to own and run her paper supply company.”

Step 5 Write about your greatest professional achievements to date.

  • “Dan Keller is a columnist for the Boulder Times. His 2011 series "All that and More" earned him Boulder’s prestigious “Up-and-Comer” award for innovation.”
  • Don’t make up accomplishments if you don’t have anything notable to add and only include achievements that relate to the career information or skills discussed in the bio.
  • Avoid buzzwords like "innovative," "experienced," "creative," and so on, which are often so overused that they don’t mean anything to people. Show readers what you can do through specific details, not catchy phrases.

Step 6 Come up with a mission statement that sums up your personal values.

  • For example, “Dan is committed to helping people understand and embrace the true power of technology.”

Step 7 Include personal details, interests, and passions to intrigue readers.

  • For example: “When he isn’t glued to a computer screen, Dan spends time working in the garden, learning French, and trying very hard not to be the worst pool player in the Rockies.”
  • The details you share can vary by bio. For a strictly personal bio, include details like hobbies, personal beliefs, and mottos.
  • For a bio that falls between "professional" and "personal," try sharing details that give a sense of who you are but won’t alienate others.
  • Avoid self-deprecating comments and details that are too intimate or potentially embarrassing for you or your audience.

Step 8 Summarize any projects you’re currently working on, if applicable.

  • For example: “Dan is currently working on a memoir.”
  • Keep this part of your bio short and sweet! A sentence is two is all you need.

Step 9 Leave your contact information at the end of your bio.

  • If you publish this bio online, format your email address carefully to avoid spam. Many people write email addresses online like: “Greg (at) fizzlemail (dot) com.”
  • This clearly tells readers how to spell out your email without making it easy for spammers and bots to copy and use your information.

Step 10 Edit, revise, and get feedback on your bio before publishing it.

  • Ask your friends and family (especially anyone who is a strong writer) to proofread your bio and give you feedback. A fresh pair of eyes can catch mistakes that you may miss!
  • Online editing software like Grammarly can grade your piece in terms of readability and suggest minor improvements.
  • Every once in a while, go back and update your bio. By putting in a little work frequently to keep it up to date, you'll save yourself a lot of work when you need to use it again.

Step 1 Tell a story with your bio instead of listing facts about yourself.

  • Chronological. Start at the story's beginning and end at the end. It’s simple and works well if you’ve had an interesting life that has taken you from points A to B to C in unusual or impressive ways.
  • Circular. Start at an important moment (D), then backtrack to the beginning (A), and explain all the events leading up to that moment (B, C), eventually bringing the reader full circle. This is good for building suspense!
  • Zoomed In. Focus on one critical event (C) to symbolically tell a larger story. Use a few small surrounding details (A, B, D) to orient the reader, but give that one moment enough emphasis to stand on its own.

Step 2 Focus on yourself and explain why you’re a good fit for the college.

  • Avoid statements like, "UCSF has one of the top-ranked research-based med schools in the world, which would provide me with the foundation necessary to achieve my lifelong dream of becoming a doctor."
  • Instead, write something like, “Watching a trauma surgeon save my brother’s life is a moment I’ll never forget. Since then, I’ve known undoubtedly that I would dedicate my life to medicine. My brother was lucky that his surgeon studied at one of the best programs in the country. By doing the same, I hope to one day mean to another family what Dr. Heller does to mine."

Step 3 Write in your own voice without trying to squeeze in fancy words.

  • Avoid statements like, "Having had a rather minimalistic upbringing, I find that I continue to assiduously value hard work and frugality above all else."
  • Instead, try something like, "Growing up very poor taught me that hard work and thrift are sometimes the only things a person can afford."
  • Well-written ideas make you seem far more intelligent than big words do. Focus on expressing yourself clearly, and don’t worry about the syllable count!

Step 4 Include concrete details to help readers get a sense of your abilities.

  • Avoid statements like, "I learned a lot from my experience as a camp counselor."
  • Instead, try something like, "I came out of my time as a camp counselor with a better understanding of empathy than before. Now, when my younger sister acts up, I know how to help her without sounding bossy or controlling."

Step 1 Keep the bio concise and consider any word count restrictions.

  • Different types of bio have different word count expectations. For instance, the average brief personal bio is around 250 words. For a resume or job search, it’s okay to have a personal bio of around 300 to 500 words.
  • For longer personal bios (ones you might post on an “about me” page for a professional website, for example), aim for around 1,000 to 2,000 words. Include all the details you can, but keep them concise.
  • Some social media sites, such as Twitter, restrict your bio to a certain number of words or characters. Ensure that you make the most of that space.

Step 2 Use humor to give your writing a personal touch.

  • For example, Tom Hank’s personal bio on Twitter reads, “I'm that actor in some of the movies you liked and some you didn't. Sometimes I'm in pretty good shape, other times I'm not. Hey, you gotta live, you know?”

Step 3 Use active verbs, so your writing sounds more alive and interesting.

  • Passive: "The window was broken by the zombie."
  • Active: "The zombie broke the window."
  • The difference between these sentences is stark: in the first, you have no idea whether the window just happened to be broken. The second is obvious: the zombie broke the window, and you need to hit the road.

Step 4 Be authentic and let your content speak for itself.

  • Avoid statements like, "Reading The Great Gatsby was a pivotal moment in my life that made me totally rethink my preconceptions about what it means to live in modern America. Thanks to that assignment, I want to pursue American Studies."
  • Instead, try something like, "My family’s ties to this country aren’t glamorous. We didn’t arrive on the Mayflower or have our surname butchered at Ellis Island. We settled in four states across the Midwest, where we’ve lived happily for over 100 years. The magic of that simple act isn’t lost on me, which is why I’ve chosen to major in American Studies."

Step 5 Link to your social media profiles or professional website in the bio.

  • For example, if you’re writing an Instagram bio, include a link to your personal website too—especially if there’s a longer and more detailed bio for readers to check out there.
  • Include a brief call-to-action, too! For example, if you have contact info, you might write “Contact me using the following” before you add the links.

Step 6 Use best SEO practices for your bio and optimize your online visibility.

  • On your website, longer bios (between 1,500 and 2,000 words) will have the best online optimization. If your bio needs to be shorter, be sure to at least use third-person POV, since your name is another keyword.
  • For example, your website’s “About” page could easily support a 1,500+ word bio. However, from there, you’d need to edit that bio down to a few sentences (a short paragraph) for your LinkedIn profile.

how to make a biography of a person

Community Q&A

wikiHow Staff Editor

  • Throughout the process, think back to the purpose and audience you identified in Step 1. This will help guide your writing. Thanks Helpful 0 Not Helpful 0
  • If you're writing online, include hyperlinks to things you mention, such as projects you worked on or a personal blog you keep. Thanks Helpful 0 Not Helpful 0

how to make a biography of a person

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  • ↑ https://www.collegerecruiter.com/blog/2011/01/28/how-to-write-a-personal-bio
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  • ↑ https://weareindy.com/blog/freelance-bio-examples-how-to-write-an-eye-catching-bio
  • ↑ https://searchengineland.com/guide/what-is-seo

About This Article

Melody Godfred, JD

When you write a personal bio, write in the third person so it sounds more objective and professional. Start with a sentence that includes your name and what you do for a living. Then, mention your most important accomplishments that are relevant to your field of work. Briefly mention a couple of your hobbies or interests to make your bio more relatable. End with a sentence on any big projects you’re currently working on. Try to keep your bio around 250-500 words. For help writing a personal bio for college applications or social media, keep reading! Did this summary help you? Yes No

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how to make a biography of a person

How to Write a Personal Bio (+ 15 Personal Bio Examples)

Last Updated on August 14, 2023 by Alex Birkett

Your personal bio could be the deciding factor in whether someone hires you, follows you, or buys from you.

However, writing one isn’t the easiest task in the world. It’s especially true if you’re one of those people who gets stage fright just thinking about having to talk about yourself.

So, how do you muster the courage to write a personal bio that stands out from the crowd? How do you make it witty, engaging, and memorable?

In this article, I’ll share some tips for crafting a personal bio (with some personal bio examples) that capture the attention of even the most distracted reader.

Before we start, here’s a quick overview of key elements you should include in your personal bio:

Editor’s note: I’m going to use some affiliate links when possible to try to earn some revenue from my content. These don’t change the opinions espoused in the content nor the style in which they are written.

What to include in a personal bio?

Here are some key elements that you should consider including in your professional bio:

  • Brief background information: Start your bio by introducing yourself and your current job title. This helps to establish your professional credentials right away. For example: “Hi, I’m Jane, a freelance writer and editor with over ten years of experience in the industry.”
  • Career highlights and achievements: Highlight some of your most notable achievements and accomplishments. This can help to establish your expertise and credibility in your field. Example: “I’ve worked with various high-profile clients, including XYZ Corporation and ABC Publications.”
  • Your unique skills and qualities: What sets you apart from others in your industry? Mention those unique skills and qualities in your bio.
  • Personal interests and hobbies: A few details about your life can help humanize your bio and make you more relatable to readers. Example: “In my free time, I enjoy hiking and exploring new places with my dog, Max.”
  • A call-to-action or contact information: For example: “To see more of Jane’s work, visit her website at www.janesmithdesign.com or follow her on Instagram @janesmithdesign.”

Now that we’ve covered the key elements to include in a personal bio, let’s focus on some tips for crafting an effective and engaging bio.

Before that, it’s important to clear one pervasive doubt.

Should you write your personal bio in the first person or third person?

When a company first requested my personal bio, I remember scurrying here and there on the internet, frantically searching for examples of how other writers crafted their bios.

Was it customary to write in the first person or in the lofty, third-person perch of professional grandeur?

And I came to a conclusion.

Writing in the first person can be useful when writing a bio for a personal website or social media profile, or when trying to build a personal connection with the reader.

The tone is also often more personal and informal, as if you are speaking directly to the reader.

Hemingway’s autobiographical work , “A Moveable Feast,” is also written in the first person.

how to make a biography of a person

On writing in Paris…

This approach in his personal biography allowed Hemingway to share his personal experiences and insights into the literary world of Paris in the 1920s. The book is a classic of literary non-fiction.

On the other hand, writing in the third person is suitable when writing for a professional website , resume , or when trying to establish authority or expertise. The tone is more formal and objective, as if someone else is describing your accomplishments and background.

For instance, Albert Einstein’s professional bio on the official Nobel Prize website is entirely in the third person.

how to make a biography of a person

This approach emphasizes Einstein’s achievements and contributions to the field of physics while maintaining a sense of objectivity and professionalism.

So, it’s simple. For personal bios, it’s first person. And for professional bios, it’s the third person POV!

Tips for writing a compelling personal bio

To create a bio that leaves a lasting impression, think of it like a mini-story highlighting your achievements, quirks, and passions.

Here are some tips to help you get started:

1. Know your purpose

Before you start writing your bio, you need to know why you’re writing it and what tone you want to convey.

Are you trying to showcase your expertise? Introduce yourself to potential clients or customers? Connect with fellow professionals in your field?

Whatever your purpose, you need to tailor your bio accordingly. Duh!

It should also show you have the skills and experience to do the job well. This is especially true if you seek work in a particular field.

For example, if you want to work as an accountant, architect, or teacher, you need to show that you are qualified for this type of work.

2. Address your audience

The best personal bios are written with a specific audience in mind. If you don’t know who that audience is, how can you write for them?

That’s why before writing anything at all, ask yourself who will be reading it.

Who do you want to reach out to with this information?

Are they looking for someone like you?

What do they need from someone like you?

Once you have an answer or two (or three), start writing.

Let’s say you’re writing a bio for a professional website or portfolio that targets potential employers or clients in the creative industry.

In that case, you might want to include background information such as:

  • Your education and qualifications in a relevant field
  • Your work experience and current position in a creative role
  • Your professional goals and interests related to creativity
  • Your hobbies and passions that showcase your creativity
  • Your awards and recognition for your creative work

Allie Decker’s professional bio is a shining example of how to address your audience from the get-go.

By stating, “I love to write and help organizations produce content that builds and converts communities and drives revenue,” she immediately captures the attention of businesses needing content marketing expertise.

how to make a biography of a person

She’s also using specific language relevant to her audience – “builds and converts communities” and “drives revenue.” By using these terms, she’s showing that she understands her audience’s needs and priorities and can deliver results that matter to them.

What makes this short professional bio even better is how Allie strikes a balance between giving a glimpse into her professional and personal life.

Melinda Gates ‘ bio is another excellent example of how to tailor your personal bio for your target audience.

Her bio focuses on her work as a philanthropist and co-chair of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, highlighting her passion for improving global health and empowering women and girls.

how to make a biography of a person

By focusing on these topics, she appeals to a broad audience of people who share her values and interests.

3. Keep it concise and focused

When it comes to your bio, Alexandre Bocquet , Founder and CEO of Betterly , has some great advice:

“In today’s digital world, people tend to skim rather than read, so it’s crucial to keep your descriptions short and to the point. If your “Personal bio” page looks more like a book, it will deter people from reading it.”

Alexandre adds, “keep your word count to roughly a thousand words, bullet point key attributes and accomplishments, and keep paragraphs to four sentences or fewer.”

And there are studies to support this.

A study found that recruiters typically spend an average of 6 seconds on a profile before deciding whether to pursue a candidate further – highlighting the importance of making a strong first impression with a concise and impactful personal bio.

Writing a lengthy, meandering introduction has its appeal. But if you’re looking to catch the eye of a recruiter or potential clients, or even snag a coveted byline, a snappy and concise personal bio will be more suitable.

Alex Birkett’s personal bio is a prime example of how to make a reader care with only a few sentences.

He succinctly mentions his professional expertise and accomplishments as a product growth and experimentation expert and co-founder of a content marketing agency. Additionally, he shares his personal interests and hobbies, such as skiing, giving the reader a glimpse into his personality.

how to make a biography of a person

The mention of his dog Biscuit provides a human touch that can make the reader smile. Overall, his bio is concise, engaging, and balances professional and personal information.

4. Highlight your unique qualities and accomplishments

When you’re writing your personal bio, you want to make sure that you highlight your unique qualities and achievements.

Think about what you have achieved in your professional or personal life. These could include awards, recognitions, publications, promotions, or other significant milestones.

To highlight your unique qualities, think about what sets you apart. What are your strengths, skills, and experiences that make you unique? Is it your uncanny ability to solve complex problems or your talent for playing the ukulele?

It’s a shame I didn’t pay more attention to my Bharatnatyam (a classical Indian dance form) classes when I was younger.

But if you’ve got a unique accomplishment, own it!

5. Show your personality and character

When writing a personal bio, using the same template as everyone else is tempting. But that’s a mistake: Your brand is unique, so your bio should be too.

You have a few precious seconds to make a good impression. You have to be memorable and stand out from the crowd.

One way to do this is by injecting your personality into your personal bio.

Just take it from Natalia Brzezinska , Marketing and Outreach Manager at UK Passport Photo , who cites the bio of Polish journalist Maciej Okraszewski as the best-crafted she’s ever seen.

Okraszewski briefly highlighted his educational background and shared some of his best articles before ending with a hilarious quip about his love for Italian movies, old hip hop, and potatoes with kefir.

According to Brzezinska , “this bio demonstrated Okraszewski’s easygoing nature and sense of humor, proving that showcasing your human face can be more impactful than simply listing achievements.”

Tom Hanks’ Twitter bio is a great example of a personal bio that showcases personality and humor. It’s short, concise, and gives readers a glimpse into his life and personality.

how to make a biography of a person

Hanks’ bio gives readers a sense of who he is as a person while also making them laugh and feel more connected to him. Such personal bios are especially perfect for social profiles, where you want to connect with your audience.

Your turn now to infuse your personal bio with your unique personality and character. Here are a few tips for doing that:

  • Use action verbs: Instead of saying, “I am an entrepreneur,” say, “I build businesses from scratch.” Instead of saying, “I am a writer,” say, “I write stories that make people laugh, cry and think.”
  • Be specific about what you do – and why you do it: Say you’re a marketing director at an online retailer because you love helping consumers find products they love, not because it pays well or gives you flexibility in your schedule.
  • Inject humor: Humor is a great way to get people’s attention and make them like you more. You can do this by using jokes or puns in your bio or even being funny.
  • Be yourself: This one should go without saying, but if you’re too formal, then it’s going to sound fake. If you want people to see another side of you, be natural and casual about it. People will appreciate an honest approach more than anything else.

6. Use keywords and industry-specific language

If the aim is to attract more clients or connect with other people in your industry, don’t forget to include keywords and industry-specific language in your bio.

For example, if you’re a software developer, you might include keywords like “Java,” “Python,” or “web development” in your bio. If you’re a freelance writer, you might mention specific industries or topics you specialize in, such as “B2B SaaS writer,” “healthcare writing,” or “content marketing for small businesses.”

The more specific you can be with your keywords, the better your chance of being found by your intended audience.

However, add these terms organically – don’t just cram a bunch of buzzwords into your bio unless they actually reflect your skills or experience. Instead, think about the key skills or areas of expertise you want to highlight and find ways to incorporate those naturally.

For instance, if you look for keywords like “SaaS freelance writer” or “content strategist,” you’ll come across Marijana Kay’s personal bio .

how to make a biography of a person

By using terms like “SaaS,” “marketing,” and “content strategist,” she’s making it clear what industries she specializes in and what types of clients she works with.

At the same time, her bio is also personal and engaging. By sharing her background and how she became interested in marketing, she’s giving readers a glimpse into who she is as a person and what motivates her in her work.

Another great aspect of her bio is that it includes a call to action, encouraging readers to learn more about her and her work. This can be a great way to get potential clients to take the next step and contact you for more information or to start a conversation.

7. Keep it up-to-date

If you think you can stick with your old, dusty bio from half a decade ago and still manage to wow potential clients, think again.

Your target audience will probably think you peaked once and still piggybacking on that one accomplishment.

Instead, your bio should give a current picture of who you are and what you’ve been up to.

When should you change your bio? There are key moments in your life and career when it becomes imperative to refresh it.

Don’t forget to change your bio when you:

  • Change jobs or roles
  • Complete a new project or course
  • Receive an award or recognition
  • Learn a new skill or tool
  • Achieve a personal or professional goal

Make sure to double-check all the details in your bio, including your current job title, any recent projects or clients you’ve worked with, and any new skills or certifications.

Additionally, updating your bio can be a fun way to flex your creative muscles and inject a little personality into your online presence.

Finally, an up-to-date bio can make a big difference in how people perceive you and how likely they want to work with you.

Pro Tip: To keep your bio up-to-date, set a reminder for yourself to review it regularly. This might be once a month, once a quarter, or whenever you have a major change or accomplishment to add.

8. Name-drop previous clients or famous employers

A personal bio is a great place to name-drop previous clients or famous employers. The idea is to show you have experience working with other big names in your industry.

If you don’t have any big-name clients/employers, that’s OK! You can still use this technique to list small businesses and organizations relevant to your target market.

9. Include your personal story

Your bio is a great place to tell your story – especially if you’re writing for your personal website. It’s an opportunity to share your experiences and how you got where you are.

To get started, choose a central theme for your personal story that ties it all together. This could be a particular struggle you overcame, a key life lesson, or a defining experience that has shaped your worldview.

And while narrating your story, use vivid details and sensory language to bring it to life. This will help readers visualize the events and emotions you’re describing and make your story more engaging.

For example, instead of “I was nervous,” you could describe your sweaty palms and racing heartbeat.

That said, you don’t need to include every single detail of your life story. Focus only on the most impactful moments, and try to weave them together in a way that makes sense.

Marie Forleo , an author and entrepreneur, has nailed the art of spicing up her bio with her personal story.

how to make a biography of a person

Marie Forleo’s personal bio stands out from being just another generic bio as she takes a refreshingly honest approach by not only sharing her successes but also her struggles.

In her bio, she shares:

  • Her curiosity and passion for human potential and various fields of interest
  • Her journey from corporate jobs to odd jobs to building her own coaching business
  • How coined the term “Multipassionate Entrepreneur” to describe her unconventional approach
  • Her achievements and recognition as an author, speaker, TV host, and digital education company founder
  • Her philosophy and mission – to help people thrive in today’s world and change their lives

how to make a biography of a person

A bio like this is perfect for sharing your struggles with your audience and building a personal rapport with them.

That said, if you’re anything like me, you might be hesitant to share too much personal information in your bio.

But fear not, my fellow introverted friend, because I have a solution!

Check out this nifty template for a personal bio that cleverly weaves in your personal story:

For instance:

Lily Jones is a travel writer and blogger who loves exploring new places and cultures. She has visited over 50 countries and written for publications such as Lonely Planet, National Geographic, and Travel + Leisure. Lily’s passion for travel started when she was a teenager and went on a school trip to France.

She was amazed by the beauty and history of the country and decided to pursue a career in journalism that would allow her to see more of the world. Lily believes that travel is not only fun but also educational and transformative. She hopes to inspire others to follow their dreams and discover new horizons through her stories. When she’s not on the road, Lily enjoys reading, yoga, and cooking. You can follow her adventures on her blog: www.lilytravels.com

10. Use AI tools for assistance

Despite all these tips and tricks, writing a bio is not easy.

You may still need some help getting started.

And that’s where AI writing tools come into the picture.

And rather than taking the approach of “AI bad,” once you start thinking of these AI writing tools as your assistants, you’ll realize just how much they can help you achieve.

They especially come in handy when you’re facing writer’s block or having a hard time coming up with something creative to write. Something creative like writing a personal bio.

So, which AI writing tool should you use to pen your bio?

Should you use Jasper or ChatGPT ? Or Copy.ai ?

Since I am more familiar with Jasper.ai and often use it to get inspiration for my blog post intros, let’s see how it works for personal bios.

For the uninitiated, AI writing tools like Jasper use natural language processing (NLP) and machine learning algorithms to generate human-like text.

It’s going to be similar to creating your ” About page copy ” using Jasper (which we already discussed in the linked article).

Jasper has a pre-built “ Personal Bio ” tool that, in their own words, helps you “write a personal bio that captures attention.”

You just need to provide some basic information about yourself, such as your name, occupation, skills, achievements, and hobbies. Jasper will then generate a personal bio for you based on your input.

You can also pick your tone of voice, such as friendly, formal, professional, and the like.

Here’s how it works in action:

how to make a biography of a person

Once you hit the “Generate” button, you’ll get 4-5 personal bio results. The generated bios are all unique and customized to your input.

how to make a biography of a person

Now once you have the first draft, you can tweak it a bit to add more information or keywords. You might also change the wording of certain phrases or sentences if it appears too robotic – or even rewrite certain sections entirely to reflect your unique style and voice better.

You can also use the Personal Bio tool in tandem with other tools like sentence rewriter to improve the writing style. I talk about this in more detail here .

While these AI-generated bios are a great starting point, don’t forget to play around a bit and infuse your personality and voice into the final product.

Write a personal bio that makes you shine!

Crafting a personal bio that accurately reflects your unique personality and professional accomplishments can be challenging. That said, it’s also an essential part of building your personal brand and standing out from the competition.

By following the tips and taking inspiration from the professional bio examples in this article, you’ll be well on your way to writing your own professional bio that captures your audience’s attention.

Don’t forget to proofread and edit the bio, especially if you plan to use AI for better productivity . You can ask someone else to read it over for feedback or use an online tool like Grammarly.

BUSINESS STRATEGIES

How to write a professional bio (with examples and templates)

  • Rebecca Strehlow
  • 11 min read

How to write a bio

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, as part of making a website , 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.

What to include in a bio

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:

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. 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. Your bio is a huge part of your personal branding efforts, and should start with a strong intro to make a positive impact.

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. This can also be used, if needed for employment and recruitment opportunities. If you're a freelancer a strong bio can make all the difference in how successful sourcing work can be.

Green image with peach squares that say "be concise" plus lavender circles that say "Know your audience" and "Bio".

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. Don't be afraid to deploy storytelling in this part of creating your bio. Explore your narrative and then convey it.

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:

Your family

Your hometown

Your hobbies

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.

A professional bio template graphic that says [name] is a [job title] who [job description]. [Name] has [Academic Qualifications] from [University]...

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

Professional bio examples: 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. Alexandra Zsigmond

Professional bio examples: Alexandra Zsigmond

As someone who has served as art director for both The New York Times' opinion section and The New Yorker , it's no surprise that Alexandra Zsigmond's bio is thorough and detailed. Providing statistics or reflections on the things she achieved in her career is a clever way to demonstrate her value without saying so directly. As she explains:

"She has collaborated with a roster of over 1000 artists worldwide and art directed over 4000 editorial illustrations. She is known for greatly expanding the range of visual contributors to the Times, drawing equally from the worlds of contemporary illustration, fine art, animation, and comics."

03. Amanda Shields Interiors

Professional bio examples: 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.

Tips for writing a bio

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 fewer words to convey them.

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 - so be sure to consider it within your web design plans. 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.

Pro tip: You can add a bio to many different types of websites, so using templates can help you create yours faster. For example, if you're creating a portfolio website , explore portfolio website templates to help you get started.

Creating a bio for social media

Crafting a professional bio for social media is vital as it introduces you or your brand, and it builds credibility and trust. A well-written bio establishes your expertise, attracts the right audience, and fosters engagement. It helps maintain a consistent brand image, optimizes search and discovery, and opens doors to networking and career opportunities. A compelling bio delivers a concise, informative snapshot of who you are, what you do, and the value you bring, leaving a lasting impression on visitors and potential collaborators alike.

You may need to edit your bio depending on which social media platform you plan to use it on. Some of the most popular ones include Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and TikTok. Focus on getting your bio right on the platforms you plan to focus your personal or brand social media marketing efforts on.

Writing a bio with AI

If you're looking to write your bio fast while creating your website, consider using an AI text generator to build your draft. You'll still need to make sure it goes through. an intensive editing process, so that it really captures the essence of who you are and your professional skills. A bio is about much more than just basic information, so don't forget to include the storytelling too. Build a website with Wix and you can make use of the in-built AI text generator within its Editor .

Why good bios are important for a professional

In a world where first impressions matter, a well-crafted bio can make a significant impact in establishing trust and credibility with potential clients, employers or collaborators. It also offers insight into your personality and values, helping to forge authentic connections with your audience. It acts as a powerful tool for personal branding, allowing you to differentiate yourself in a competitive landscape and leave a memorable impression.

A strong bio also serves as a gateway to opportunities, whether it's securing new clients, landing job interviews or establishing partnerships. It acts as a professional introduction, allowing you to showcase your expertise. A polished and impactful bio is essential for you to effectively communicate your professional identity and stand out in your field.

Writing a bio without experience

Writing a bio when you don't yet have experience can be challenging, but it's an opportunity to showcase your potential and aspirations.

Begin by highlighting your educational background, skills and any relevant coursework or projects you've completed. Focus on your passions, interests and personal qualities that make you unique. Consider including volunteer work, internships or extracurricular activities that demonstrate your commitment and initiative. Emphasize your eagerness to learn and grow in your chosen field and express your future goals and aspirations. Don't be afraid to be honest about your current stage and your willingness to gain experience and develop professionally.

If you don't know what to write in your bio, start by brainstorming your key experiences, achievements, skills and personal attributes. Consider what sets you apart and what you want others to know about you. Look for inspiration from other bios or profiles in your field, and consider seeking feedback from friends, mentors or colleagues. Don't hesitate to highlight your passions, interests and goals, as well as any unique experiences or perspectives you bring to the table. Remember to keep it concise and engaging, and don't be afraid to revise and refine your bio until it accurately represents you.

How to write a bio FAQ

What is a short bio.

A short bio, short for biography, is a concise summary of a your life or professional background. It provides a brief overview of your key achievements, qualifications, experiences, and relevant details. Typically written in the third person, a short bio is often used in various contexts, such as professional profiles, social media accounts, introductions for speaking engagements, author descriptions, and other situations where a brief introduction is required. The length of a short bio can vary, but it's generally kept to a few sentences or a short paragraph to provide a snapshot of the person's background and expertise.

How do I write a bio about myself?

What should i include in a short bio, how do you write a fun bio for work, how do i make my bio stand out, related posts.

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Decision-Making

The benefits of a value-driven life, your values have implications for life choices, career decisions, and voting..

Updated March 30, 2024 | Reviewed by Devon Frye

  • Those who discern their values experience less stress and better health, decision-making and problem-solving.
  • Values typically stem from our family but evolve also with losses, tragedies, and lived experience.
  • Understanding another generation's values can go a long way to better relationships.
  • Most moments of contentment, success, and pride can be traced back to living one’s values.

“We all have core values whether we’re aware of them or not,” write Lisa Congdon and Andreea Niculescu in the booklet accompanying The Live Your Values Deck . “They’re the values that remain with us for most of our lives.”

Chronicle Books, used with permission

Research tells us that when we live a life guided by an awareness of what matters most to us, the authors note, we exhibit lower stress , better attention to our health, decision-making , problem solving as well as enhanced persistence. 1 In my book Overcoming Passive Aggression , about hidden anger , better health, and happiness , my co-author and I advise: “Operate within your values, recognizing that no one makes you do or say anything. Your behavior is your choice.” 2

We may not think of this topic often, yet when celebrities fall from grace, people stun us with their actions, as well as in a year we exercise our right to vote, values get called into play.

Why Values Matter

One of the reasons people seek individual therapy or pastoral counseling is to discern a direction, make a decision, or weigh the benefits or risks of certain choices. For couples, especially those who come from two different family value systems, it can be especially hard.

Values represent beliefs, ethics , priorities, and worldviews. Like feelings, they merely exist and ought not to be overanalyzed except to yield better understanding. To use a nautical metaphor, values are the beacons sent from a lighthouse that show us the way. Principles, a close cousin of values, describe rules, standards, and certain truths. Both principles and values direct us and guide our actions. 3

Our values usually stem from the roots our families of origin provided. Parents typically hope that some, perhaps not all, of what they taught children sticks with them as a foundation for life by the time they launch into adulthood.

As we age, thinking through and understanding what we value helps us to outline priorities, triage problems, and reconcile our desires against needs, especially as we discern choices. Either a choice remains congruent with our deeply held beliefs or it’s in conflict and opposed.

How Our Values Are Shaped By Our Culture

Those who don’t put much stock in values might say there’s a benefit to being free, flexible in how one lives. It’s indeed a viable perspective, yet one that could create more chaos and confusion in times when you need to be stable and resolute.

Tom Brokaw dubbed many of our parents or grandparents "The Greatest Generation," shaped by the Great Depression and World War II. I believe I can directly trace my frugality and thrift to how I was raised; the same goes for work ethic, moderation, resilience , and respect for democracy and our country.

With the 1970s as my formative backdrop, the values of equality (as in civil and women’s rights movements), non- conformity , independence, creativity , and education framed who I became. In my last year with Barbies, I imagined being a reporter amid televised Senate Watergate hearings. No doubt that curiosity, as a value, spawned an interest in current events, politics , and my writing.

Appreciating People for Their Values

Children, teenagers , and young adults may be the first to complain about what parents use as guideposts. Common family values include honesty (the truth matters), family time (remember your roots and those who raised you), perseverance (quitting is easy but strength comes from figuring it out), and respect for one’s elders (empathy for what they went through raising you).

If we hear the phrases, “Oh, Mom” or “Oh, Dad,” there’s a collective understanding among parents. We’ve all felt that pushback, the verbal and non-verbal reprimand about who we are and what we’re about. While this is more developmentally accurate the younger you are due to differentiating oneself, it’s also reasonable that adult children appreciate parents and grandparents, for doing so shows the values of openness , inclusiveness, and respect.

Fred Rogers Institute, used with permission.

During the pandemic, I adapted two of my own values card sorts for use with coaching and therapy. Clients used these to discern important values in their career , personal life, and relationships. Since cognitive-behavioral therapy often affords homework, a values sort helps those unsure of their next directions and decisions.

Choose a path and move foreward

Young people often have a vague idea of their values because it takes life experience, years lived, and a well-differentiated self. Some values change, especially when priorities shift. Think wake-up calls, come-to-Jesus moments, health scares, or brushes with death. Loss can set you back a few pegs.

We often find that those with openness also value inclusivity, honesty, assertiveness , and self-expression; they also tend to be self-aware with good self-respect and respect for others. Genuine people may have strong values for collaboration , generosity , empathy, forgiveness , and humility.

While industry, career success, risk-taking , or creating a legacy are all valid values, when they are overstated by those with less openness, empathy, and collaboration, we may see concern; e.g., the person who values themselves too highly, and whose value system inflicts harm, whether intended or unintentional. This might not be the person we hang out with, hire, or for whom we cast our votes.

If you’re in counseling and believe that a values card sort would be helpful, ask your therapist if they would be open to trying this approach. Books abound on the topic as well, including Our Endangered Values by former President Jimmy Carter. 3

People who sit on the fence often seem paralyzed as they’re called upon to make choices. And when tides change and breezes become storms, as they surely will, those who have discerned their values to live their lives accordingly, generally fare better.

In fact, identify times when you were happy, feeling content, successful, proud of your life and accomplishments, and stood up for or supported something of meaning. Very often you will find that core values got you to that place.

Copyright © 2024 by Loriann Oberlin, MS

1. Congdon, L. and Niculescu, A. The Live Your Values Deck (New York: Chronicle Books, 2021).

2. Murphy, T. and Oberlin, L.H. Overcoming Passive Aggression: How to Stop Hidden Anger from Spoiling Your Relationships, Career and Happiness (New York: Hachette/DaCapo Press, 2016).

3. Carter, J. Our Endangered Values: America’s Moral Crisis (New York: Simon & Schuster, 2005).

Loriann Oberlin MS, LCPC

Loriann Oberlin, MS, LCPC, is a clinical counselor and co-author of books including Overcoming Passive-Aggression.

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America has a 'trapped in place' economy

The economy is actually doing great — unless you want to make a change in your life.

how to make a biography of a person

If you like your situation right now — your job, your house, your car — you can keep it. If you aren't so satisfied, well, tough luck, because you might have to keep it anyway. Making a major life change, especially an upgrade, is going to come at a cost — one that many Americans would rather avoid, if they can manage it. Welcome to the "trapped in place" economy.

"If you are trying to move, buy a car, whatnot, then you have all these bad buying conditions on top of everyday high prices, so it's a double whammy," Joanne Hsu, the director of consumer surveys at the University of Michigan, told me.

The past four years have been filled with upheaval, though economic news has recently been on the upswing. Still, while there's been improvement on a macro level, on a micro, day-to-day level, there's a real sense of stasis. Inflation is falling, but prices are still much higher than they were before the pandemic. Interest rates are elevated. The labor market has cooled off somewhat, making it less advantageous to hunt for a new job. Everything seems stuck, and if you're looking to switch it up, it's going to cost you.

Take the housing market. Home sale prices have come off of their 2022 peak, but they're still 47% higher than they were in 2019, according to the S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller National Home Price Index. Even if you manage to find a deal, getting a loan is going to be costly. Thanks to the Federal Reserve's interest-rate hikes, mortgage rates are much higher than they were just a couple of years ago: somewhere around 7%, compared with just about 2.5% in 2021. Not only do these high rates weigh on prospective buyers, but anyone thinking of selling their home — hello, boomers — is likely to be turned off because their current mortgage rate is probably lower than a new one. With both buyers and sellers feeling the squeeze from higher mortgage rates, and with homebuilders unable to keep up, the inventory of available homes has collapsed . And as much as a lot of people would like to see a housing-market bubble burst, that's probably not in the cards .

The car market is in a similar situation. Vehicles are expensive. Loans are getting tougher to come by, and even if you manage to get credit, elevated interest rates are making financing costly. Car insurance is much more than it used to be, too. The Bureau of Labor Statistics' most recent consumer price index indicates the cost of car insurance is up by more than 20% over the past year.

Dana Peterson, the chief economist at the Conference Board, told me its consumer confidence survey suggests people have increasingly been scrapping plans to buy homes and cars. Given the economic challenges, that's not surprising. She added that consumers expect inflation and interest rates to come down, meaning that many may hold off on some big purchases until things improve.

"If you're a rational consumer, you'll say to yourself, 'Well, maybe I'll just wait,'" she said.

The issue is, of course, that not everyone is in a position to wait. It's one thing if you want to buy a new car because you're bored with the old one, but it's another thing if your car breaks down and you can't get to work. Regardless, waiting isn't particularly fun.

Employers are hiring as if there's a relatively weak labor market, not a strong one.

When it comes to work, the vibe is static, too. Yes, the labor market is strong, but it's not a great time to go looking for a new job . Companies aren't laying people off en masse, but they're also not bringing employees on board quickly. Hiring has slowed significantly from where it was in 2021 and 2022. And, it's much lower than one would expect with the current unemployment rate.

"Employers are hiring as if there's a relatively weak labor market, not a strong one," said Matt Darling, a senior employment-policy analyst at the Niskanen Center, a center-right think tank.

The downshift in hiring has also tipped the balance of power back toward employers. While wages are still on the upswing, switching jobs may not come with as much of a pay bump as it did during the Great Resignation of 2021 and 2022. That may be fine for those who are happy in their jobs, which many people are, but it's not so great for those who are feeling a little antsy or underappreciated. And for those Americans who find themselves out of work and looking for a new gig, it's going to take a minute. Darling told me that for the unemployed, it takes about twice as long to get a job as it did before 2008. A job search that used to take 10 weeks at a similar unemployment rate now takes 20.

"That's obviously a huge source of dissatisfaction, because 20 weeks is a long time," Darling said. "What's that, five months to be looking for a job?"

What this all translates to is a scenario where some Americans feel trapped. They can put food on the table and fill up their gas tanks, albeit at a price they'd rather not be paying. But it's hard and expensive to move up the ladder in many meaningful ways. In a consumerist society that encourages people to want more and a culture that prizes itself on economic mobility, this level of stillness is uncomfortable. While it's still possible to get a better job or a new house, those things feel like they're off in some nebulous future, out of your control.

Tamara Charm, a partner in consumer insights at McKinsey, told me that, if anything, a lot of people are shifting in the opposite direction and downgrading where they can; at the grocery store, some people are switching to private labels and generic brands to save money. She added that while people feel boxed out of big-ticket goods, they're still spending on treats — on vacations, on cosmetics.

"What we've seen is that consumers are both wanting to trade down, given all these economic concerns, but at the same time they want to splurge," Charm said.

If you can't buy a house, you may as well get that plane ticket.

Americans are much more bullish about the economy than they were six months ago, but they're not as satisfied as they were in, say, 2019, and it's not clear if they ever will be. It's impossible to predict what's ahead, and while the present is decent, the feeling of stuckness kind of sucks.

Emily Stewart is a senior correspondent at Business Insider, writing about business and the economy.

About Discourse Stories

Through our Discourse journalism, Business Insider seeks to explore and illuminate the day’s most fascinating issues and ideas. Our writers provide thought-provoking perspectives, informed by analysis, reporting, and expertise. Read more Discourse stories here .

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How People Are Really Using GenAI

  • Marc Zao-Sanders

how to make a biography of a person

The top 100 use cases as reported by users on Reddit, Quora, and other forums.

There are many use cases for generative AI, spanning a vast number of areas of domestic and work life. Looking through thousands of comments on sites such as Reddit and Quora, the author’s team found that the use of this technology is as wide-ranging as the problems we encounter in our lives. The 100 categories they identified can be divided into six top-level themes, which give an immediate sense of what generative AI is being used for: Technical Assistance & Troubleshooting (23%), Content Creation & Editing (22%), Personal & Professional Support (17%), Learning & Education (15%), Creativity & Recreation (13%), Research, Analysis & Decision Making (10%).

It’s been a little over a year since ChatGPT brought generative AI into the mainstream. In that time, we’ve ridden a wave of excitement about the current utility and future impact of large language models (LLMs). These tools already have hundreds of millions of weekly users, analysts are projecting a multi-trillion dollar contribution to the economy, and there’s now a growing array of credible competitors to OpenAI.

how to make a biography of a person

  • Marc Zao-Sanders is CEO and co-founder of filtered.com , which develops algorithmic technology to make sense of corporate skills and learning content. He’s the author of Timeboxing – The Power of Doing One Thing at a Time . Find Marc on LinkedIn or at www.marczaosanders.com .

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Easter Sunday

The irony of Steve Martin’s life isn’t lost on him

This image released by Apple TV+ shows Steve Martin in a scene from the documentary "Steve! (Martin) a Documentary in 2 Pieces." (Apple TV+ via AP)

This image released by Apple TV+ shows Steve Martin in a scene from the documentary “Steve! (Martin) a Documentary in 2 Pieces.” (Apple TV+ via AP)

FILE - Steve Martin poses for a portrait in New York to promote his new album “So Familiar,” with Edie Brickell on Sept. 2, 2015. Martin is the subject of a new documentary “Steve! (Martin) a Documentary in 2 Pieces.” (Photo by Victoria Will/Invision/AP, File)

FILE - Comedian Steve Martin holds the Grammy Award which he won for Best Comedy Recording for the album “A Wild And Crazy Guy,” in Los Angeles on Feb. 15, 1979. Martin is the subject of a new documentary “Steve! (Martin) a Documentary in 2 Pieces.” (AP Photo/Lennox McLendon, File)

FILE - Actor-comedian Steve Martin arrives at the premiere of his film, “Dead Men Don’t Wear Plaid” in Los Angeles on May 9, 1982. Martin is the subject of a new documentary “Steve! (Martin) a Documentary in 2 Pieces.” (AP Photo/Doug Pizac, File)

FILE - Comedian Steve Martin left, appears with host Johnny Carson during an appearance on “The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson” in Burbank Calif., July 19, 1980. Martin is the subject of a new documentary “Steve! (Martin) a Documentary in 2 Pieces.” (AP Photo/Lennox McLendon, File)

FILE - Steve Martin, from left, Chevy Chase, and Martin Short appear at the premiere of their film “Three Amigos!” in New York on Dec. 9, 1986. Martin is the subject of a new documentary “Steve! (Martin) a Documentary in 2 Pieces.” (AP Photo/Frankie Ziths, File)

FILE - Carmen Cusack, from left, Edie Brickell and Steve Martin appear at the curtain call for the Broadway opening of “Bright Star” in New York on March 24, 2016. Martin is the subject of a new documentary “Steve! (Martin) a Documentary in 2 Pieces.” (Photo by Charles Sykes/Invision/AP, File)

FILE - Steve Martin arrives at the 2015 Vanity Fair Oscar Party on Sunday, Feb. 22, 2015, in Beverly Hills, Calif. Martin is the subject of a new documentary “Steve! (Martin) a Documentary in 2 Pieces.” (Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision/AP, File)

FILE - Mel Brooks, left, presents Honoree Steve Martin with his award at the 43rd AFI Lifetime Achievement Award Tribute Gala at the Dolby Theatre on Thursday, June 4, 2015, in Los Angeles. Martin is the subject of a new documentary “Steve! (Martin) a Documentary in 2 Pieces.” (Photo by Paul A. Hebert/Invision/AP, File)

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how to make a biography of a person

NEW YORK (AP) — Steve Martin has long marveled at the many phases of his life. There’s his youth as a Disneyland performer, surrounded by vaudeville performers and magicians. A decade as a stand-up before the sudden onset of stadium-sized popularity. An abrupt shift to movies. Later, a new chapter as a banjo player, a father and, a comedy act, once again, with Martin Short .

It’s such a confounding string of chapters that Martin has typically only approached his life piecemeal or schizophrenically. He titled an audiobook “So Many Steves.” His memoir, “Born Standing Up,” covered only his stand-up years. In it, he wrote that it was really a biography “because I am writing about someone I used to know.”

“My life has many octopus arms,” Martin says, speaking from his New York apartment.

People participate in documentaries for all kinds of reasons. But Martin may be unique in making a film about his life with the instruction of: “See if you can make sense of all THAT.” Morgan Neville, the documentary filmmaker of the Fred Rogers film “Won’t You Be My Neighbor” and the posthumous Anthony Bourdain portrait “Roadrunner,” took up the challenge.

Shakira celebrates the official release of her new album, "Las Mujeres Ya No Lloran," early Friday, March 22, 2024, in Hollywood, Fla. (AP Photo/Michael Laughlin)

Yet Neville, too, was hesitant about any holistic view of Martin. The resulting film is really two. “STEVE! (martin) a documentary in 2 pieces,” premiering Friday on Apple TV+, splits Martin’s story in two halves. One depicts Martin’s stand-up as it unfolded, with copious contributions from journal entries and old photographs. The other captures Martin’s life as it is today — riding electric bikes with Short, practicing the banjo — with reflections on the career that followed.

It’s an attempt to synthesize all the Steve Martins, or at least line them up next to each other. The “King Tut” guy with the arrow through his head. The “wild and crazy guy.” The “Jerk.” The Grammy-winner. The novel writer. And the self-lacerating comic who says in the film: “I guarantee I had no talent. None.”

“I’m going to say something very immodest: I have a modesty about my career,” Martin says, chuckling. “Just because you do a lot of things doesn’t mean they’re good. I know that time evaluates things. So there’s nothing for me to stand on to evaluate my efforts. But an outsider can make sense of it.”

Neville, who joined the video call from his home in Pasadena, California, didn’t set out to make two films about Martin. But six months into the process, it crystalized for him as the right structure. Through lines emerged.

FILE - Steve Martin arrives at the 2015 Vanity Fair Oscar Party on Sunday, Feb. 22, 2015, in Beverly Hills, Calif. Martin is the subject of a new documentary "Steve! (Martin) a Documentary in 2 Pieces." (Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision/AP, File)

“When I look at the things Steve’s done in his life — playing banjo, magic, stand-up — these are things that take great effort to master,” Neville says. “But in a way, it’s the constant working at it. Even seeing Steve pick up a banjo, it’s never, ‘I nailed it.’ It’s always: ‘I could do that a little better.’”

Looking back hasn’t come naturally to Martin. He’s long resisted the kind of life-story treatment of a film like “STEVE!” But Martin, 78, grants he’s now at that time of life where you can’t help it. Even if reliving some things smarts.

“The first part, that’s what I really have a hard time watching,” Martin says. “When I’m on black-and-white homemade video being so not funny.”

Martin grew up in Orange County in awe of Jerry Lewis, Laurel and Hardy and Nichols and May. His first job, as an 11-year-old, was selling guide books at Disneyland. He drifted toward the Main Street Magic Shop. Stage performers like Wally Boag became his idols.

When Martin, after studying philosophy in college and writing for “The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour,” began stand-up, he drew copiously from Boag and others, filtering the showmanship of vaudeville into an avantgarde act, just with balloon animals and an arrow through his head. Donning the persona of, as he says in the film, “a comedian who thinks he’s funny but isn’t,” his routine moved away from punchlines and toward an absurd irony with “free-form laughter.”

Martin’s act was groundbreaking and, in the 1970s, when most comics were doing political material, it became wildly popular. “He’s up there with the most idolized comedians ever,” Jerry Seinfeld says in the film. Now, Martin doesn’t see much from those years that makes him laugh.

FILE - Comedian Steve Martin holds the Grammy Award which he won for Best Comedy Recording for the album "A Wild And Crazy Guy," in Los Angeles on Feb. 15, 1979. Martin is the subject of a new documentary "Steve! (Martin) a Documentary in 2 Pieces." (AP Photo/Lennox McLendon, File)

“Then there are these moments that I think of as performance glory, but they last a minute or two minutes. It was all so new. It was exciting because it was new to the audience and to me.”

Martin tends to be hard on himself. In one late scene in “STEVE!” he and Short are going over possible jokes, but most don’t make the cut for Martin.

It’s tempting to assign some of this nature to Martin’s famously critical father, Glenn, a real-estate salesman who had his own unrealized ambitions in show business. At dinner after the premiere of “The Jerk,” he pronounced his son “no Charlie Chaplin.” But Martin disagrees.

“I don’t think so,” says Martin. “It’s good to be hard on yourself. It’s just the way I do it. I just want to go over it and go over it. I realize it’s all in the details. It’s all in the timing.”

That makes Martin think of a joke that he and Short have considered for their act but thus far deemed too esoteric.

“I say, ‘You know, Marty, some comedians say funny things. And some comedians say things funny. And you just say … things,’” says Martin, laughing. “But there’s a truth in saying funny things and saying things funny. You walk the line. Our lives now are saying funny things and it used to be saying things funny.”

It’s a line, typically exact in its wording, that perfectly represents the irony of Martin’s own life. In 1981, Martin quit stand-up, he thought for good. The act had run its course and he was happy to transition to movies. It wasn’t until decades later, when Martin prepared to tour as a banjo player, that a friend convinced him audiences were going to want a little banter in between songs.

FILE - Actor-comedian Steve Martin arrives at the premiere of his film, "Dead Men Don't Wear Plaid" in Los Angeles on May 9, 1982. Martin is the subject of a new documentary "Steve! (Martin) a Documentary in 2 Pieces." (AP Photo/Doug Pizac, File)

“So I had this terror and I started working on material,” Martin says. “Eventually I became what I grew up with, which is a folk music act with a funny monologist, making funny intros to songs.”

That’s bled into Martin’s unexpected return to stand-up. Martin and Short, friends since the 1986 comedy “Three Amigos!” have become the premier double act of today, starring on the acclaimed Hulu series “Only Murders in the Building” and performing on the road. They cuttingly but affectionately volley quip after quip with the finesse of Grand Slam champions.

The irony isn’t lost on Martin. The no-punchline comedian has become a lover of punchlines.

“I’ve morphed into a person who really appreciates the joy of telling jokes,” shrugs Martin. “Marty and I in our show is joke after joke after joke.”

FILE - Comedian Steve Martin left, appears with host Johnny Carson during an appearance on "The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson" in Burbank Calif., July 19, 1980. Martin is the subject of a new documentary "Steve! (Martin) a Documentary in 2 Pieces." (AP Photo/Lennox McLendon, File)

It’s not the only reversal Martin never expected. After spending most of his life not wanting children, Martin and his wife of 17 years, Anne Stringfield, have an 11-year-old daughter. She’s seen only as a cartoon in “STEVE!” to protect her privacy.

Even more confounding for Martin: After a life riddled by anxiety he’s strangely content. Maybe even happy. “Yes, I hate to say it,” Martin says shaking his head.

Martin likes to say he has a “relaxed mind” now. He’s peeled away a lot — competitiveness, people or situations who brought him grief — and has narrowed his life down to things that matter most to him.

“I have this thing that I’ve noticed,” Martin says. “As we age, we either become our best selves or our worst selves. I’ve seen people become their worst selves and I’ve seen people who were tough, difficult people early on become better selves.”

In the film, Martin puts it: “I look back and go, ‘What an odd life.’ My whole life was backwards.”

Follow AP Film Writer Jake Coyle at: http://twitter.com/jakecoyleAP

JAKE COYLE

Baltimore bridge collapse: What happened and what is the death toll?

What is the death toll so far, when did the baltimore bridge collapse, why did the bridge collapse, who will pay for the damage and how much will the bridge cost.

NTSB investigators work on the cargo vessel Dali, which struck and collapsed the Francis Scott Key Bridge, in Baltimore

HOW LONG WILL IT TAKE TO REBUILD THE BRIDGE?

What ship hit the baltimore bridge, what do we know about the bridge that collapsed.

The 1.6-mile (2.57 km) long Francis Scott Key Bridge in Baltimore, Maryland collapsed into the water overnight after a cargo ship collided with it on March 26.

HOW WILL THE BRIDGE COLLAPSE IMPACT THE BALTIMORE PORT?

Reuters Graphics Reuters Graphics

Get weekly news and analysis on the U.S. elections and how it matters to the world with the newsletter On the Campaign Trail. Sign up here.

Writing by Lisa Shumaker; Editing by Daniel Wallis and Bill Berkrot

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles. , opens new tab

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Lisa's journalism career spans two decades, and she currently serves as the Americas Day Editor for the Global News Desk. She played a pivotal role in tracking the COVID pandemic and leading initiatives in speed, headline writing and multimedia. She has worked closely with the finance and company news teams on major stories, such as the departures of Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey and Amazon’s Jeff Bezos and significant developments at Apple, Alphabet, Facebook and Tesla. Her dedication and hard work have been recognized with the 2010 Desk Editor of the Year award and a Journalist of the Year nomination in 2020. Lisa is passionate about visual and long-form storytelling. She holds a degree in both psychology and journalism from Penn State University.

Francis Scott Key Bridge collapse in Baltimore

Erdogan's rival leads in Istanbul in high-stakes Turkey vote

Istanbul mayor led a challenger from President Tayyip Erdogan's AK Party in local elections in a potential boost for the Turkish opposition's effort to reassert itself. The nationwide local elections are seen as a gauge of Erdogan's support and the opposition's durability.

Ukraine's SBU security service dismissed as "pointless" a Russian demand on Sunday to hand over individuals it accused of links to terrorism and said Moscow had "forgotten" that Kremlin leader Vladimir Putin was the subject of an international arrest warrant.

Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan addresses his supporters during a rally ahead of the local elections in Istanbul

Perth councils deploying 'hostile architecture' to make life even tougher for homeless people

Can the humble park bench be considered hostile? Seems like a silly question.

But for some of the most vulnerable people, the design of public furniture can mean the difference between them feeling safe or not.

Experts say the shapes and designs of seating in the built environment are becoming increasingly hostile and homeless services say it's one way vulnerable people are being pushed out of cities.

It could be a curve in its design, sharpened edges, or arm rests placed in the middle of the seat.

Bright yellow public seating, including individual chairs and a long curved bench.

They are details that make it uncomfortable or impossible to sit for a long time or lie down.

It's commonly referred to as hostile architecture.

Len's struggle

For Len James, these design features made the daily battle of finding somewhere to sleep even harder.

He became homeless on the streets of Perth at 58, after a back injury put him out of work.

Older white male wearing black polo shirt, cream shorts and glasses sits on a public bench in Perth city.

"In a subtle way they let me know that they didn't want me there, so I had to look for somewhere else," Mr James said.

"That's what it's like when you're on the streets, you're forever looking for somewhere safe where you can sleep at night."

Mr James is now in social housing but he said feeling rejected by his city sits vividly in his memory.

"When your world becomes very small, things are exaggerated, so these things weigh heavily on you," he said.

Hostile architecture isn't limited to the design of benches.

A composite of two images, with one showing a round flat border around a tree and a man sitting on it, the other is sharp.

High-pitched ringing in a stairwell, music playing on loop or sprinklers coming on in parks are all ways people can be told to move along.

Creating barriers

Regional Urban Planning Lecturer at Curtin University, Shane Grieve, said these design features are intentional.

A middle-aged man with dark hair sits on a bench outside, wearing a suit jacket and jeans.

"[It's] all the little design elements that we put into what could be commonplace architecture that actually makes it difficult for people to be there for much longer than they should," he said.

"The 'should' is determined by somebody else."

Dr Greive said some local governments implement measures to prevent anti-social behaviour but, in doing so, it creates another barrier for people sleeping rough.

"We're trying to design out crime, and we're making places more defensible," he said.

"That works when you've got criminals or people with evil intent or bad intent.

"It's a different matter when you're using those design capacities or control features to really oppress people who are already very vulnerable and doing it tough."

Fighting for change

Shelter WA CEO Kath Snell said hostile architecture was a major issue for people sleeping rough, and was not a long-term solution to homelessness.

As an interim measure, the service works with some local governments to advocate for public spaces to be more accessible.

A homeless person sleeping on a park bench in a sleeping bag.

"What we're trying to do is really encourage people not to just move the problem, that's not solving anything," Ms Snell said.

"This is what your hostile architecture is doing.

"What we're saying to local governments is we've all got a part to play in this. Let's not make life even harder for people who are experiencing rough sleeping."

What's the solution?

Ms Snell said a move away from hostile architecture would involve benches designed to be slept on and not turning sprinklers on where councils know people are sleeping at night.

"Let's look at ways of improving that and changing it and seeing the differences that makes in your community as a whole," she said.

A woman wearing a pink dress and pink jacket sits on a park bench with green trees behind her.

Mr James said having access to welcoming infrastructure in his city would have made a "world of difference".

"It would be appreciated so much by people that are homeless that someone cares, that someone has put a bit of thought into it to try and make life a bit easier for them," he said.

"Ultimately homeless people need a roof over their heads.

"It's no good sort of giving people move on notices, and just pushing the problem from one place to another.

"It's a crisis and it needs to be addressed."

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Who are the people presumed dead in the Baltimore bridge collapse?

The victims are six construction workers who were on the key bridge when it collapsed; it’s unclear whether others were killed.

The six construction workers who were on the Key Bridge in Baltimore when it collapsed are presumed dead, authorities said Tuesday evening, ending a day-long rescue mission in cold and murky waters .

The six victims, all employees of Brawner Builders, a general contractor, were repairing masonry and potholes on the bridge when a 985-foot freighter lost power and crashed into the structure , which rose 185 feet above the Patapsco River at its peak height. Among those presumed deceased are Miguel Luna, who had worked for the construction company for about 15 years, and Maynor Suazo Sandoval, from Honduras, who was about to turn 39, their families said.

Alejandro Hernandez Fuentes, 35, from Mexico, and Dorlian Ronial Castillo Cabrera, 26, from Guatemala, also died in the collapse, authorities said. Divers on Wednesday found their bodies inside a red pickup truck under 25 feet of water.

Gustavo Torres, the executive director of the Latino and immigrant organization Casa, said Luna was a father of three from El Salvador and “a longtime member of our Casa family, adding an even deeper layer of sorrow to this already grievous situation.” Suazo Sandoval was also a Casa member, Torres said. His family described him as a devoted husband and father to a 5-year-old daughter and a 17-year-old son.

Baltimore bridge collapse

how to make a biography of a person

The victims were from Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador, officials said. It remained unclear by Wednesday evening how many vehicles were submerged in the water and if other victims were killed or injured in the disaster. Emergency responders rescued two other workers from the water early Tuesday, one uninjured and the other who authorities said was hospitalized in “very serious condition” and later released. One was an employee with Brawner Builders.

Maryland Gov. Wes Moore (D) said he spoke to one of the victims and called his survival “pretty miraculous.”

Col. Roland L. Butler Jr., secretary of the Maryland State Police, said Tuesday evening that it was a “distinct possibility” that motorists were on the bridge at the time of the collapse, and that they would also be presumed dead.

The chief spokesman for the Baltimore Fire Department, Kevin Cartwright, called the water-rescue-and-recovery effort the city’s largest in a decade and warned earlier Tuesday that the number of victims could exceed six.

“This is herculean,” Cartwright said. “We are going to work and work and work until we bring this to a close and bring some peace to the families.”

The collision occurred about 1:28 a.m. Tuesday, minutes after the container ship Dali lost power. Crew members aboard the vessel issued a “mayday” warning , which allowed Maryland Transportation Authority police to begin to stop traffic before the crash. Recordings from the transportation authority police radio published by Broadcastify, an open-source audio-streaming service, indicate that officers discussed the workers on the bridge and planned to notify the foreman. But within about 20 seconds, before an officer could drive across the bridge and deliver the news, the structure plummeted into the water.

Jeffrey Pritzker, the executive vice president of Brawner Builders, said in a brief telephone interview that the bridge collapse was “a totally unforeseen event which no one could have predicted.”

“The company is upset, families are distressed, this is a terrible tragedy,” he said. “I don’t know what more I can say.”

He said company executives had spent “a great deal of time” Tuesday comforting the workers’ families. Pritzker declined to share any more information on their identities but said the men were “good family people.”

Marvin Luna, son of Miguel Luna, said he knew his father was on the Key Bridge overnight but did not know it had collapsed until friends called him and said, “The bridge is … gone.”

Marvin Luna then called his father, but no one answered the phone. On Tuesday evening, he was at home in Glen Burnie, Md., desperate for news about his dad.

“We’re okay right now because we don’t know yet, nothing about my dad,” Marvin Luna said. “But we still wait.”

Around him, relatives wailed.

As the hours passed Tuesday, with the ship still lodged between pieces of the disintegrated bridge, community members and officials alike grew increasingly anxious for news of victims or survivors. Guatemalan and Salvadoran consulates publicized emergency hotlines on Facebook. Politicians, including President Biden and Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg, pledged support for families still waiting on news.

One Baltimore City Council member, Phylicia Porter, further heightened anxiety by saying on CNN that a body had been recovered, only to later clarify that she was given wrong information and meant to refer to a bag of fertilizer.

Meanwhile, in a Royal Farms convenience store parking lot near Fort Armistead Park, Jesus Campos, an employee at Brawner Builders, paced, waiting for news about his colleagues.

Campos said in Spanish that working on the bridge is harrowing. Construction crews are continually worried about speeding motorists, and the bridge “moves a lot” because of its design and engineering. Last year, six road construction workers were killed when a motorist barreled into them along a busy highway in Baltimore County.

“This catastrophe has already disproportionately impacted our city’s immigrant community, one that often toils in demanding and dangerous jobs to the benefit of all who call Baltimore home,” Krish O’Mara Vignarajah, president and CEO of Global Refuge, a Baltimore-based immigrant services nonprofit, said in a statement.

Campos said his colleagues had been on a meal break, sitting in or near their vehicles, when the Dali slammed into the bridge.

Campos said he was not working Monday night but was roused from bed about 5 a.m. Tuesday by a colleague. The co-worker told him two people had been rescued from the water but that six others were missing.

“I’m very sad right now,” Campos said. “These are my co-workers and friends.”

As the sun set Tuesday, officials and residents gathered to pray inside a church in Turner Station, a neighborhood near the foot of where the Key Bridge once stood.

Throughout the hour-long service, clergy and elected officials tried to stay upbeat, discussing the power of community in times of tragedy. But with hope running dry that anyone else might be rescued from the waters, the Rev. Ako Walker of Sacred Heart of Jesus Church in Baltimore offered prayers in Spanish, honoring the missing workers.

“Te pedimos por las victimas de este tragedia. Te pedimos por sus familias.”

“We pray for the victims of this tragedy. We pray for their families.”

Scott Dance, Erin Cox, Maria Sacchetti, Peter Hermann and Kelsey Ables contributed to this report.

How it happened: Baltimore’s Francis Scott Key Bridge collapsed after being hit by a cargo ship . The container ship lost power shortly before hitting the bridge, Maryland Gov. Wes Moore (D) said. Video shows the bridge collapse in under 40 seconds.

Victims: Divers have recovered the bodies of two construction workers , officials said. They were fathers, husbands and hard workers . A mayday call from the ship prompted first responders to shut down traffic on the four-lane bridge, saving lives.

Economic impact: The collapse of the bridge severed ocean links to the Port of Baltimore, which provides about 20,000 jobs to the area . See how the collapse will disrupt the supply of cars, coal and other goods .

Rebuilding: The bridge, built in the 1970s , will probably take years and cost hundreds of millions of dollars to rebuild , experts said.

how to make a biography of a person

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  1. How to Research and Write a Biography (with 40+ Biography Examples)

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  3. 30 Professional Biography Examples (& Templates)

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  4. 30 Personal Biography Examples: How to Write (Free Template)

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  6. Biography Research Finished Example

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COMMENTS

  1. How to Write a Biography: 6 Tips for Writing Biographical Texts

    Using flashbacks allows the author to introduce relevant past information to the reader without bogging them down with paragraphs of background exposition. 6. Include your thoughts. A biography isn't just a transaction of facts. A biographer can share their own feelings and opinions on their subject's life.

  2. How to Write a Biography: 15 Steps (with Pictures)

    Make a timeline of the person's life. To help you organize your research, make a timeline of the person's entire life, starting from birth. Draw a long line on a piece of paper and fill in as much of the person's life as you can. Highlight key events or moments on the timeline. Include important dates, locations, and names.

  3. How to Write a Biography in 8 Steps (The Non-Boring Way!)

    Conduct relevant interviews. Whenever possible, seek firsthand accounts from those who knew or interacted with the subject. Conduct interviews with family members, friends, colleagues, or experts in the field. Their insights and anecdotes can provide a deeper understanding of the person's character and experiences.

  4. 11 Tips On How To Write A Personal Biography + Examples

    Learn how to create a winning bio for any profile with 11 tips and examples. Find out what to include, how to write in the third person, and how to optimize your bio for search engines.

  5. How to Write a Biography (Examples & Templates)

    Learn how to write a biography of a person by choosing a subject, doing research, picking a format, creating a timeline and adding your thoughts. Download free and customizable biography templates to get started.

  6. How to Write a Biography: A 7-Step Guide [+Template]

    Facebook. These are just some of the story elements you can use to make your biography more compelling. Once you've finished your manuscript, it's a good idea to ask for feedback. 7. Get feedback and polish the text. If you're going to self-publish your biography, you'll have to polish it to professional standards.

  7. How to Write a Biography: A Complete Guide with 12 Pro Tips

    6. Make a timeline of a person's life. To help you organize your research, create a timeline of a person's entire life, from birth. Draw a long line on a piece of paper and sketch out as many details about a person's life as possible. Highlight important events or moments on the timeline.

  8. How to Write a Biography: 8 Steps for a Captivating Story

    However, for most published works, biographies offer a deeper analysis, including many stories and examples that demonstrate the person's unique character. 1. Choose your subject. Ideally, your subject should be someone whose life deeply interests you. Note, however, that this doesn't mean you have to like the person.

  9. How to Write a Biography

    Simply put, a biography is an account of someone's life written by someone else.While there is a genre known as a 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.

  10. How to Write a Biography: Who Tells Your Story

    From here, you should have the information you need to settle on your structure. This will give you an idea of which outline best serves the facts. From that outline, you can begin organizing each of the sources and facts you've gathered until you've assembled a blueprint of how the final biography will look.

  11. How to Write a Biography

    Wondering how to write a biography? We've constructed a simple step-by-step process for writing biographies. Use our tips & tricks to help you get started!

  12. How to Write a Biography: Full Guide for Writing a Biography

    By acknowledging both successes and challenges, readers gain a more honest understanding of their journey. Balancing positives and negatives helps readers empathise with the subject, connecting them on a deeper level and offering a more genuine insight into their lives. Emotions are a potent tool in biography writing.

  13. How To Write a Biography (Format, Content and Tips)

    The process of writing a biography can be easier with a map to follow. You can follow these steps to write a biography: 1. Research your subject. The first step to writing a great biography is to spend time conducting extensive research on the person you're writing about, their career, their family and other information about them.

  14. How to Write an Interesting Biography

    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.

  15. How to Write a Personal Bio: Key Writing Tips & Examples

    Start with your first and last name in a quick introductory sentence. Then, explain your job, greatest achievements, and professional mission statement. Expand on personal details, including where you're from, your educational background, and a quick summary of passions that aren't related to your job. Mention any projects you're working ...

  16. How To Write a Personal Bio (Plus Tips and Examples)

    Related: 11 Tips To Improve Your Business Writing (With Examples) 3. Choose a point of view. In a personal bio, you can either write in a first-person or third-person point of view. First-person language uses words like "I," "we" and "me" to describe yourself.

  17. How to Write a Personal Bio (+ 15 Personal Bio Examples)

    The mention of his dog Biscuit provides a human touch that can make the reader smile. Overall, his bio is concise, engaging, and balances professional and personal information. 4. Highlight your unique qualities and accomplishments. When you're writing your personal bio, you want to make sure that you highlight your unique qualities and ...

  18. 30 Personal Biography Examples & Free Templates

    In today's competitive job market, understanding the skill and art of writing a personal biography that captures your target audience's attention is essential. A professionally written and optimized personal biography defines your brand and creates a great first impression anytime your potential employer, client, or someone at a networking event googles you online. However, writing a ...

  19. How To Write a Professional Bio in 6 Steps (With Examples)

    1. Choose the appropriate name and professional title. Writing a professional bio starts by choosing the right name and professional titles to use. Different names and titles can change depending on the purpose and audience of the bio. For example, some people choose to use a different first name in their bio instead of their given name.

  20. How To Write a Professional Short Bio (With Examples)

    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. Writing in the first person means using the words "I" and "me", and writing in the third person means using your name.

  21. How To Write a Professional Bio (With Examples and Templates)

    Here's how to write a short professional bio that suits your website or brand: 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.

  22. How to Write a Bio That Stands Out

    A short bio or a personal bio, is a brief summary of a person's professional background, skills, and achievements. Typically, a short bio is limited to just a few sentences or paragraphs and is designed to give the reader a very quick and concise overview of the person's experience and qualifications.

  23. The Benefits of a Value-Driven Life

    One of the reasons people seek individual therapy or pastoral counseling is to discern a direction, make a decision, or weigh the benefits or risks of certain choices. For couples, especially ...

  24. How To Make New Friends as an Adult: 102 Ways to Try

    Good friends are worth so much. Few things in life are more important than supportive, close friends.Eleanor Roosevelt even once said, "Many people will walk in and out of your life, but only ...

  25. The Trapped Economy: Americans Can't Buy a Home, Car, or Find a New Job

    The economy is actually doing great — unless you want to make a change in your life. If you like your situation right now — your job, your house, your car — you can keep it. If you aren't so ...

  26. How People Are Really Using GenAI

    Summary. There are many use cases for generative AI, spanning a vast number of areas of domestic and work life. Looking through thousands of comments on sites such as Reddit and Quora, the author ...

  27. The irony of Steve Martin's life isn't lost on him

    "I have this thing that I've noticed," Martin says. "As we age, we either become our best selves or our worst selves. I've seen people become their worst selves and I've seen people who were tough, difficult people early on become better selves." In the film, Martin puts it: "I look back and go, 'What an odd life.'

  28. Baltimore bridge collapse: What happened and what is the death toll

    Traffic was suspended at the port, the 17th largest in the country, opens new tab, and the jobs of 15,000 people are on hold. The flow of containers to Baltimore can likely be redistributed to ...

  29. Perth councils deploying 'hostile architecture' to make life even

    In short: Experts warn a rise in 'hostile architecture' is making life even harder for our most vulnerable citizens. When Len James found himself on the street, he said those design features made ...

  30. Who are the people presumed dead in the Baltimore bridge collapse

    Gustavo Torres, the executive director of the Latino and immigrant organization Casa, said Luna was a father of three from El Salvador and "a longtime member of our Casa family, adding an even ...