I’d Rather Remove my Fingernails than Write my Biography

The more I get involved in marketing, the more often I’m asked for my biography.  When I published the first book, I wrote one for amazon.  It was pretty terrible.

Also.. I NEED your comments on this one.  If you’re a skimmer, the bulk of the post is I am writing my Bio and want your input!  (Now you can skip to the bottom of the post.

Kirk Allmond is a regular guy who wrote a book.  He has a three year old son and is from Georgia.

Tells you everything you need to know about me.  It’s succinct.  It’s humble.  It talks about the most important things in my life.  It’s perfect.

It turns out, no.  So, a while ago, I re-wrote it.  Now my bio says:

Kirk Allmond’s first book, “What Zombies Fear: A Father’s Quest” won no awards, but his amazing readers think its pretty awesome and he’s very confident you will too.

The 6th and final book in the bestselling What Zombies Fear series “The Incarnation” will be published late summer 2013.
Books in the What Zombies Fear Series:
1. A Father’s Quest
2. The Maxists
3. The Gathering
4. Fracture
5. Declaration of War
6. The Incarnation

The Farmer’s Daughter is a short story set during the time period “skipped” over in book 5. These will eventually be an entire series of short stories called “Victor Tookes Adventures.”

In addition, Kirk Allmond and Laura Bretz also write a serial called Will of the Dead.

Kirk enjoys writing zombie novels and also administers a zombie preparedness website, http://www.zombiepreparedness.org. The sites goal is to teach any who’ll listen how to survive the inevitable zombie apocalypse. You can find him on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/whatzombiesfear.

Kirk has been featured on major market radio programs as an expert in zombie survival. He has spoken at numerous conventions and consulted on two zombie themed motion pictures.

The in Michigan born writer holds firmly to the southern roots of his family. He grew up in Chicago IL, and Roswell, GA. Kirk has an amazing little boy who was born in 2007.

In addition to being incorrect (The Incarnation is no longer the 6th book in the series, nor, as it turns out, will it be the final book.  Victor’s world is not done with me, it would seem.

That’s one reason for the re-write. The other is that an auther’s bio is a tool.  For selling books.  Does the above make you want to buy a book?  Does it make me sound different than anyone else? Probably not on both accounts.   So, in addition to today’s load of words on the various projects I’m working on (LEGION 1st, Then Will of the Dead vol 2, then Colcoa Tailings 3rd) I’ll also be re-writing my bio.

So, dear readers, that’s where you come in.  YES! I need you!  Some of you know me better than others.  What would you like to know about me? What do you know about me that is interesting?  What would you put in a biography if you were me?

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6 thoughts on “I’d Rather Remove my Fingernails than Write my Biography

  1. I’m going to go right out on a limb, and suggest you play to your strengths. Why make the biography the same as the usual ones? Why not set it up as a conversation between 2 characters holed up in a library/bookshop within your fiction.
    Really okay about with it and break the 4th wall. After all it’s not going to interfere with the cannon of the series. Plus it gives anyone reading the biography an insight into your own world.
    I imagine it would then turn a chore into something you really enjoy.
    Hehehe I know it’s a risky gambit, but. Thought it was worth mentioning 🙂

  2. Bios are tough. Here are my suggestions, take them or leave them. 🙂

    First off, I find that I actually need 3 bios: small, medium, and large. I use the full-featured one with all the details (e.g. where I’ve lived before) on the “About” section of my webpage. I use the the smallest one with just the minimum details at the bottom of guest blog posts, etc. Obviously once you get one you like, you want to reuse it as much as possible, so I guess my advice there is to keep in mind you might need ones of different lengths and try to write it in such a way that you can leave sections in our out as required.

    Second, since you now have a body of work, I wouldn’t list them all specifically. As you’ve noted, it goes out of date pretty quickly, and anyway I like to let people think I’ve written more than I actually have. 🙂 So I would just say something simple like “Author of the bestselling “What Zombies Fear” series…” and then point them to a bibliography page. That way you only have to update one location, and your bio never goes out of date. In this case you could point them to http://whatzombiesfear.com/, but I personally like to point them to my webpage so that, in the future if you have other projects, you can direct them to all of your projects. In other words, direct them to your website, and from there you have control of how you want to direct them.

    Finally, I would say don’t sell yourself short! This is your bio, this is supposed to be the thing that sells you the most. This is not a place to be humble. So I would cut anything like “it won no awards”. A lot of people find this uncomfortable, but that’s why we write it in 3rd person, so we brag all we want and then pretend like someone else wrote it. 🙂

    My usual pattern is, factual section about me, “funny or quirky” section (for me this is about about my hobbies, but a lot of people seem to talk about cats in here), and then where you can find me online. Bing, bang, boom.

    Incidentally, I think the best sentence you’ve got is this one; I wouldn’t change it:
    “Kirk has been featured on major market radio programs as an expert in zombie survival. He has spoken at numerous conventions and consulted on two zombie themed motion pictures.”

    • Thanks Shane! Feel free to write my bio for me 🙂 The line you like the most is the one I like the least!
      I have no idea why this is so difficult. I just really hate talking about myself. That’s why I also have put this off for so long.

      • The trick that works for me is to pretend like I’m writing a character who *happens* to be named Shane Halbach and *happens* to have similar life experiences. I know it’s dumb, but for some reason that puts in enough distance that I can manage it.

        Oh wait, also, I am a tremendous ego maniac, so that helps as well.

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