Smorgasbord Public Relations for Authors – Part Two – Author Biographies -Tips and Translations by Sally Cronin

A quick hello as I surface from chaos and grieving status quo. I’m in the midst of packing, donating, and trying to sell stuff online that requires frequent attention – just what I don’t feel like doing. I’m moving in two weeks and trying to figure out the puzzle, deciding how to keep as much as will fit in the smaller unit, which isn’t really small, but compared to now, well, let’s just say it’s A LOT of stuff. I probably won’t have a Sunday review ready this week, but I’ll have a new edition of Writer’s Tips next week. In the meantime, I’m sharing Sally Cronin’s recent article in her new fabulous, Author Series, where she offers valuable PR tips on how to best present ourselves, from bios to pictures.


Smorgasbord Public Relations for Authors – Part Two – Author Biographies -Tips and Translations by Sally Cronin



The definition of Public Relations in business is “Public relations is a strategic communication process that builds mutually beneficial relationships between businesses and the public”

In the past my focus has been on book marketing, which did include how to reach potential readers with blogs, social media and as part of the writing community. Whilst this series will revisit those platforms along the way it is an opportunity to focus on some key areas of our public profiles that might influence the public to buy our books.

The focus this time is on you.. the author.

Last week I looked at the impact our Profile Photo – First contact with reader might have on potential readers.

This week it is the turn of the biography that we put on selling sites such as Amazon, Bookbub and Goodreads.


Author Biography – Tips and Translations

With approximately 150 authors across the Cafe and Bookstore and the Children’s Reading Room, I am in Amazon and Goodreads daily checking for new releases and reviews to share in the updates. In the current series of Meet the Authors I am also updating biographies to include and I am afraid that I have had to update quite a few myself with new books, or the numbers of books that have been written.

My suggestions today are not carved in stone, and how you write your biography is entirely your decision. The one area that is key and seems to be echoed around the writing sites is the fact that a biography that is overlong will be overlooked.

The biography is your advertisement that combined with your photograph is going to grab the attention of the potential reader who has landed on your author page.

Last week I shared the fact that there are 20,000 new ebooks uploaded each week on Amazon that are in direct competition with your books. Provided you have listed your books with the genre or sub-genre, when searching for books a reader will be offered a selection to choose from. Hopefully that will land them on your book page or your Amazon Author Page.

Having got them there.. and smiled at them from your author photograph they will look at the first line of your biography and with any luck will decide to read the rest.

However, they are not going to stay their long! Which is why the recommended length of an author biography is under 1000 characters (Amazon recommendation) or 300 words.

  • The primary aim of your biography is to establish your credentials as a writer and to give a quick resume of your work with a dash of personality that makes them think they might enjoy your books.
  • It is recommended to write the biography in the third person. I have played around with both first and third person and I have just revamped mine with the latter. (I am still playing around with it)
  • Not all of us have degrees in literature or are award winning or USA Today Bestselling authors. However, those that do should lead with that.
  • Failing academic credentials, then get creative on how to hook a reader into trusting you know what you are doing. One of the ways to do that is use third party endorsement by using snippets from your reviews.

For example you could select one of your top reviews for a book and start your biography.

James Smith is a writer whose readers consider ‘is a master storyteller who brings characters alive’

Samantha Johnson’s first novel Desperate Authors received five star reviews ‘Johnson’s creative world building left me breathless’

  • If you have awards for other books mention you have several including two or three stand out commendations.
  • Following this, and if you have more than one book, it it a good idea mention your most current book with a brief synopsis.
  • It is not necessary to list the titles of all the books you have written within the biography as the covers are featured on the page. However, after the main biography you can add further information on series of books for example, so that the reader has a better idea of which book to begin with.
  • Many of the sample biographies of best-selling authors that I have read over the last couple of weeks have been written with a certain amount of humour which made them stand out.
  • It is a good idea to put the link to your website with a note – For more information about the author and their work etc.

Amazon new look Author Central


Amazon have made it easier for you to share your biography, not only on other sites but in other languages.

Potential readership around the world.

The other key element to think about is your visibility on an international platform such as Amazon which sells our books on 17 sites (maybe more as growing fast) with a reach of approximately 58 countries. This means that you need to make sure your biography is on as many sites as possible. . . Please continue reading at Sally’s blog.


Have a look at the first part in this informative series by Sally – People Buy People First, Profile Photo

Sally Cronin Author

About Sally Cronin

I have been a storyteller most of my life (my mother called them fibs!). Poetry, song lyrics and short stories were left behind when work and life intruded, but that all changed in 1996.

My first book Size Matters was a health and weight loss book based on my own experiences of losing 70kilo. I have written another thirteen books since then on health and also fiction including three collections of short stories. My latest collection is Life is Like A Bowl of Cherries: Sometimes Bitter, Sometimes Sweet.

I am an Indie author and proud to be one. My greatest pleasure comes from those readers who enjoy my take on health, characters and twisted endings… and of course come back for more.

As a writer I know how important it is to have help in marketing books.. as important as my own promotion is, I believe it is important to support others. I offer a number of FREE promotional opportunities on my blog and linked to my social media. If you are an author who would like to be promoted to a new audience of dedicated readers, please contact me via my blog. All it will cost you is a few minutes of your time. Look forward to hearing from you.


Sally Cronin's Books


Original Source: Smorgasbord Public Relations for Authors – Part Two – Author Biographies -Tips and Translations by Sally Cronin | Smorgasbord Blog Magazine




49 thoughts on “Smorgasbord Public Relations for Authors – Part Two – Author Biographies -Tips and Translations by Sally Cronin

  1. Good luck with downsizing, never easy but always feels good after as you feel lighter. Will you be staying in the same complex? Thanks for sharing this post from Sally. It is so useful. Sending hugs your way.


  2. This was a good one to share, Debby. I have some work to do in this regard, definitely! Sally has a wealth of information and experience to share! Have a peaceful weekend, my friend. Hugs.


    1. Thanks Diana. I’m sure many of us have a lot of work to do. But there are only so many hours in a day. We’ll get there eventually ❤ Happy weekend to you too! xx


  3. Hi Debs Thanks for interesting content. Tip re ‘Prunning’ household objects. Ask yourself do you need THREE of everything (except books), which we did when we relocatd to Spain…We’ve since moved into a smaller apartment and tried…to prune again! So difficult…Good luck! Must work on a more concise and amusing? Bio… Thanks to Sally! Hugs to you both- Take care. xx


    1. HI Joy. Yes, pruning is essential. And don’t think I haven’t asked that question of the gazillion things I’ve thrown out or donated. Oye! Brutal! ❤ xx


  4. Thank you so much for taking the time to share this Debby I really appreciate it.. Hope the selling goes well for you and really looking forward to a guided tour of your new home when you are settled..hugs ♥♥


  5. Hi Debby – your life is really busy at the moment – I admire you for concluding the move – and hope that goes through peacefully – then there’ll be time to adjust more easily to the new life without your hubby – it must be so challenging – stay safe and take care and all the best in the coming fortnight … with thoughts and hugs – Hilary


    1. Thank you Jacqui. And let me say, that makes two of us. I don’t know how I’m getting all this done, honestly, it’s like the universe keeps dragging me along. 🙂


  6. Just wanted to say a quick hello, Debby! I’m sorry you are going through all of this, but downsizing is a great idea and I read a comment that you are staying in the same complex, thank goodness. My cousin just lost her 58-year-old husband of 31 years unexpectedly of cardiac arrest. She came home to find him on the floor inside their doorway. Now that we are all vaccinated, my whole family and I were able to travel to Portland, Oregon, for the services last week and keep her close as she and her mid-twenties children struggle on without him. He had a heart condition and had everything well in hand in the event of his death but we all just grieved along with her. It’s never easy, my friend, and I hope you are getting better each day a little less sad and embracing the future. And God is carrying you through, whatever you choose to believe.


    1. Thank you Terri for your heartfelt wishes. Certainly this losing a loved one business is the hardest thing any of us will endure. I’m so sorry about the loss of your cousin’s husband. How bloody tragic to find him like that. You see, there is no ‘better’. Either we watch someone die agonizingly before I eyes or in a flash a life is snatched, either way offers no solace. ❤


  7. I didn’t realise you were moving home so quickly, but I hope it all goes well, Debby. When we last moved home, I think I went offline for about a week after opening drawers and cupboards and finding Narnia in them. Where all that stuff came from remains a mystery. However, my eBay account was busy while my bank account bulged a little.
    I only wish I was there to help you move all those boxes.
    I’ve still to read Saly’s post, but I’ll get to it soon.
    Sending you lots of hugs.


    1. Thank you Hugh. The new place kind of fell into my lap (possibly from my husband). I had to get clearing, donating and selling fast as I pack. As you know putting together ads is time consuming, and so is babysitting them in the midst of madness. Once I move I expect a bigggggggggggg exhale. ❤ xxx


  8. Thanks D.G. AND Sally! Good luck on the downsizing. You don’t want know the details of our selling, giving away or dumping 30 years of stuff before we moved 10 years ago. We STILL had too much stuff we didn’t need. So don’t sweat putting some stuff in storage; you can always deal with it later [just don’t put it off forever :)]


  9. Thank you for sharing, Debby. Moving is NEVER fun and is definitely when we realize we have too much stuff. Good luck!


  10. Good luck, Debby. You have a lot of work on your hands, and I’m not at all surprised you have no time for reviews with everything going on. Take it easy and try not to worry too much. If you can manage to decide what you definitely need to take with you because you couldn’t do without it (the most personal things), all the rest normally doesn’t matter as much. I still keep wondering, three years later, about what I might have done with some stuff I was sure I had packed when I moved back to Spain, but I’ve survived without it, so… no harm done.
    I agree with your comments about Sally’s article. A treasure trove.


    1. Thanks so much Olga. Yes, Sally is a treasure trove of info, hence, I had to share this. And what you said about ‘stuff’, yes, I’m learning this with everything I throw away or donate, so much ‘stuff’, if I haven’t usedin years, I don’t need it. Hard when both my husband and I were such packrats. 🙂 ❤


  11. Sally is a smart cookie with tons of valuable tips and information. Thanks for sharing her latest article for authors here, Debby. I’ll be sure to continue reading on her site and check out the previous installment as well!


  12. First of all, Sally, thank you for sharing this!

    Second, but equally important, Debby! You have been through the greatest grief possible and now you are moving, two gigantic stressors. However, you have moral support nere and a friend to help you actually move.

    About the bio. I have submitted bios of several lengths. I began with 300-some words. Then a writers’ website asked me to pare it down to 90.

    Last week, the editor of an anthology, cut/paste the bio from my blog “About” page which is probably 600-800 words, his choice. I guess it all depends.

    Generally, though, I believe less is MORE! Hugs to both of you! ((( )))


    1. Thanks for your care and friendship Marian. I’m certainly running out of steam. I can’t wait to move and hide under the covers for a week or 10! 🙂 Yes, bios are different for different things, it’s good you have your variations as we all need them at different times – usually when we’re not prepared, lol. ❤


  13. Hi Deb and Sally, great tips here. Thanks as I’m always up for learning the latest thing to do on those large platforms. Good luck with your move, Debby. So much work. It sounds like you will have a cozy place once you’re settled in. You amaze me with how you’ve been keeping up here with your blog plus going through hell and back. Sending hugs as always.


    1. Thanks so much Lis. Truthfully, I amaze myself sometimes, lol. I feel like some force is just pushing me through with an invisible leash. Maybe it’s my husband? 🙂 ❤


  14. I’m thinking of you often, Debby. Hope the move goes well and you can feel settled in soon. From my heart to yours.


  15. Great share – I hadn’t thought of opening a bio with a review quote, what a good idea!
    I hope things are moving smoothly forward for you with the move, I know what it’s like to downsize quite dratically – never the easiest, and particularly at such a raw time. Take care of yourself, and remember to breathe!


  16. Hi Deb, thanks for sharing this useful and wonderful advice from Sally. I can already think of changes I need to make. 🙂 And I wish you a peaceful, smooth move into your new home. I know it can’t be easy. Hugs to you. xo


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