I’ve gotten to the point in my journey towards publication where I need to start working on my proposal. My proposal will go along with my finished manuscript when I mail it off into the world, and will give editors an idea of what my story is about. You know when a book catches your eye so you pick it up to read the back cover? Well that’s what I have to come up with – a back-cover synopsis. I think the most challenging part of this for me will be making sure the synopsis is exciting and doesn’t get overly detailed. But rest assured, once I do write it up I will be posting it to this blog and I will need your feedback on it, so don’t be shy.
The part that’s going to be the most difficult for me is the bio. I have to write a short bio about myself convincing the publishers that they should take a chance on me. According to The Guide, I have to demonstrate why I and I alone am the perfect author for my book. This is where I would tell them if I’ve been published before, if I’ve won any awards, if I’m an expert, if I have an incredible life story…basically it’s time to toot my own horn. In the third person.
I think it would be difficult for anybody to step outside themselves and write up a page about how awesome they are.
I could pay a professional bio-writer to do this for me, but I don’t have that kinda cash to burn.
So what do we have to work with?
I haven’t been published before – with the exception of my two blogs, which I guess I could include.
I don’t think anyone is the expert on fiction. And I’m certainly not the expert on vampires and werewolves. Consequently, if I ever start calling myself that please take me out back and slap me around for a while.
Awards…the last award I won was second place at the Underwater Pumpkin Carving Contest in Louisiana. I’ll probably include that in my bio, just because I’m pretty dadgum proud of that. Other than that though…I mean, I was on the Dean’s List a few times in college. And I was Lion’s Club Student of the Week in high school. I’m not sure that’s what they’re looking for though. Perhaps I should enter in to a bunch of contests right now just so I can have something to include here. I’ll consider that.
I don’t have a compelling life story. I was never homeless. I haven’t had to overcome an addiction or racism or any sort of injustice. I’ve never saved anyones life. I haven’t had to cut off my own arm in order to survive. I’ve never made an emergency airplane landing on a lake. I think the most exciting thing I’ve done in my life thus far is study abroad.
I’d love to use as a template my favorite author’s-bio I have ever read on the back of a book. It’s for Pride and Prejudice and Zombies by Seth Grahame-Smith, and it goes like this:
“Jane Austen is the author of Sense and Sensibility, Persuasion, Mansfield Park and other masterpieces of English literature. Seth Grahame-Smith once took a class in English literature. He lives in Los Angeles.”
Maybe mine could go:
“Jenni won second place at the Underwater Pumpkin Carving Contest in 2010. She studied psychology at King’s College, London. She is stuck in North Texas.”
Then again, maybe not.