Most writers are accustomed to writing short biographies for articles or query letters, but few possess a full-fledged resumé of their attributes and abilities. That’s because few editors or agents request such a thing. While you may never need to send a paper resumé, an online resumé can fill several needs with little effort and doesn’t have to be limited to one or two pages like its paper counterpart. Here are three reasons an online resumé is handy:
1. For your personal record. As you publish more, or as you accomplish more in your career, you need a place to record the facts. Flipping into your website, you can note the latest byline, possibly with a link to where it’s located on the Web. I’ve referred to my resumé often when creating or updating my short bio or promotional blurb.
2. For editors and agents. While they say they don’t want your life’s history, they may be intrigued by your previous job experience or that strange degree that has nothing to do with writing. They may check out your website before signing with you, just to have a peek at who you are. I once had an editor call me out of the blue to do a piece on agricultural careers for a teenage magazine. She found me from my resumé, which also confirmed my degree in agronomy and background with the U.S. Department of Agriculture. For this assignment, my online resumé earned me $750.
3. For your readership. When a reader discovers your work and likes your writing, he wants to know more about the author. Your resume feeds that hunger, keeping him interested in your writing career and your future releases.
The items in a resumé consist of identification, employment, published material,
education, awards and professional affiliations. Make the font bold and legible and the layout professionally simple. For an example of my online resumé. For a great lesson on how to prepare an online and an email resumé, see The Riley Guide. Some free examples and templates can be found at 1st Writers.
Emphasize the writing aspect of your life and abbreviate anything else. This resumé is for your writing career.
C. Hope Clark is founder and editor of FundsforWriters.com, annually recognized by Writer’s Digest in its poll of 101 Best Web Sites for Writers. She delivers four newsletters each week to thousands with her specialty being grants and income opportunities for writers of all sizes. She’s published over 200 articles on paper and online. Those reluctant to promote their writing cherish her trade paperback The Shy Writer: An Introvert’s Guide to Writing Success. Find more hope for your writing career at www.fundsforwriters.com & www.theshywriter.com.