I have a confession to make: I hate updating my About page.
Shocking, but true. I don’t have a problem composing them for other people, but somehow when it comes time to work on my own, my internal editor insists that everything I generate is, well, let’s just say
crappy less than stellar.
Be that as it may, I’m in the midst of changing things around here to give you a better experience when you visit, and that means I’ll be overhauling my About page. Again.
It may be painful, but I will do it because I know that one little page is important. Maybe it’s not stop-a-meteor-from-colliding-with-the-Earth important, but it is a critical part of a writer’s toolkit. It is often the first (and only) place your readers go to learn about you.
There are tons of posts out there with advice on how to build a better About page. In fact, you’ll find a few links to some that I have found helpful at the end of this post. But, keep in mind that not every About page works for every writer. It’s one part personal preference and one part image projection. Having said all that, I’m going to toss out a few tidbits that may help you to navigate creating the Who’s Who of You.
1. Think visible.
Readers may like to play hide and seek, but not when it comes to finding out about you. Make your About page easy to find and simple to read.
2. Think business.
In our online world, your About page is the equivalent of your business card. Everything you would put on a business card should be included on your About page. Who are you? What do you do? Where can I reach you? It may be cute to say: “Jane Doe is addicted to Scrabble and has a bad haircut.”, but if cute is all you’ve got, clients won’t be able to contact you to offer you a gig.
3. Find what appeals to you.
Look at other About pages for inspiration. When I find a particularly attractive About page, I bookmark it for reference. I mix and match ideas from the ones I find most appealing. This type of one-sided brainstorming is useful if you’ve never written an About page and are overwhelmed, or if your internal editor has convinced you to have a terminal case of writer’s block.
Need more information on crafting your About page? Here are those links I promised:
Are You Making These 7 Mistakes with Your About Page? (Copyblogger)
Add an About Page to Your Blog (ProBlogger)
How to Write an Effective Freelancer About Page (FreelanceSwitch)