This contributor post was written by Tiffany Moore.
Are you on of those people who has no problem writing about other people, about your inspirations, about what you love, but when it comes to writing a bio, an artist's statement or a marketing page, you freeze up?
The point of a good personal statement (see also: manifesto, artist statement, bio, about page) is to dazzle your audience senseless and leave them wanting more, so much more, in fact, that they can't help but check what you're selling, visit your shop, or hop on over to your blog or services page.
But I don't want it to be too personal...
Remember, your art is personal. It's a part of you, so that's a big piece of what you're selling: YOU.
You don't do this work because it's easy. You do it because you can't not do it, because something compels you, because creating makes you come alive. That's what people want to hear about, that's what gets them hooked.
What are the things that make you "weird" to other people? Those are the things that make you stand out. Me? I'm fascinated by giraffes, head over heels for a couple of bluegrass brothers from North Carolina and swoon over anything French. These things get me going! They make me tick...I'm definitely going to be sharing them on my bio.
A couple of things to keep in mind as you contemplate your start:
- What makes your heart sing? We don't need your life story, we need your magic. What do you get lost in? What brings tears to your eyes? Start here and you can't fail.
- What value do you give to the world? If you have trouble with this one, start with the people who love and care about the most. Ask them what they love about you. Send an email asking for three words that describe you. Reach out and let them do the work ~ what you hear will surprise you.
But I don't want to sound like I'm bragging...
You, you sweet, dear soul, are so gracious and thoughtful and lovely, that you are beyond bragging. There is a difference between being proud of something you've accomplished and bragging.
The world wants to be able to celebrate your successes, the people who care about you (they exist in tremendous numbers) want to know what you're up to. No one can support you unless you want them to and tell them how. It's a simple fact.
When you first start out with talking and writing about yourself, it's going to feel incredibly uncomfortable. It will feel braggy. You will feel like you're doing nothing but talking about yourself. It's okay. Take it slow and be gentle with yourself. You will find your voice: the first step is to start. Somewhere, anywhere. Just get started.
*image via WriteWithMoxie Red Paper Pencils