How to write a successful biography?
1. Forms of biography
The classic Autobiography
This form tells about life in chronological form. It begins with the birth and includes the entire life path until the time when the biography is written. The focus is on one’s own ego and its development over time. However, since the development of a person is always influenced by the external circumstances, the particular events and the events of the day, the classic autobiography always includes the external context and the background.
These are memories. Memoirs are also written in chronological order, and they tell the course of life on an ongoing basis. In contrast to classical autobiography, however, memoirs focus on the external events, contexts, and backgrounds that characterize the person, rather than on the person and his/her development itself. Memoirs mostly tell of events that interest a broad public and characterize stylistically memoirs through a casual, chattering narrative style, sometimes with anecdotes.
The life recollection
It focuses on the self and development of the personality. In contrast to classical autobiography, however, life recollection does not tell the entire life cycle in chronological form but focuses on individual events or certain life segments.
The autobiographical novel
It blends, unlike the three other forms of biography, facts and fictions. The reader does not know which parts are true and which parts the author invented. In this respect, an autobiographical novel is written just like any other novel.
Learn the examples
Before you start to write biography essay, you have to study the information to learn about them. On the Internet, for example, various short biographies can be found, which should be looked at once. The biographies on Wikipedia should not be an example. For a Wikipedia text are always several authors responsible, which has a negative influence on the quality. There is no clear narrative structure. It is more a collection of facts. Good biographies look different in any case.
Determine the correct length
Before you discuss the content of the biography, you should be aware of how long the biography will be. In a short biography, for example, it would be impossible to focus on childhood. A more detailed life story, on the other hand, requires a detailed explanation. If it is a short biography, with a maximum of 1000 words, you can concentrate on the professional career. If you write a longer text, you can also explain the private background.
The work on a biography starts with the acquisition of information. You try to get everything in your hands, which somehow is related to the personality in question. All texts from the Internet are printed, books are borrowed from the library and subject-relevant television broadcasts are recorded. The better you get to know the personality, the better the biography will ultimately be.
Find a good start
The beginning of a biography determines whether the reader reads the text further or does not. For this reason, the beginning of the text is of great importance. Inexperienced authors often make the mistake when they start writing the biography chronologically. The beginning is, for example, “The person XY was born on 3 January 1983”. The peculiarity of this person was certainly not his birth, but what he had created in life. First of all, it is written about what makes this person and what successes he has achieved. Only after that, you can start chronological biography. Such a narrative structure can also be found in the well-known book biographies.
After the text is finished, you should leave it for a few days and not look at it again. With a little distance, you will rather be able to see to what extent the biography is optimized. After the revision has taken place, you can again take a small break and after a few days to see whether the text now meets the own requirements.
A good biography is characterized by the fact that it actually tells a life and is just as lively as life itself. This means that a biography is not only about enumerating sober specific experiences or reflecting certain events. Don’t be afraid of it, it’s much easier than writing a dissertation. Just make the text emotionally rich!