January 20, 2015

Author Bios - Yay or Nay?

Okay, guys. Get ready. Some dirty secrets are about to be aired. Just don't hate me afterwards, okay?

There's a subject that's been on my mind for a while now - author bios. 

I admit, it never accord to me to put the author's bio on my review post of their book. I see it often enough on other blogs, and I do it in tour related posts, but never because I thought to put it there. Lately, I've been wondering about that - like, why don't I do that?

I reached two conclusions on that:

1) I just don't care who the author is - I care for the book. A good book is a good book no matter who wrote it, and same for a bad book. When I read, I never once stop to think of the author. Before I became a book blogger, I often forgot author names. I could always recall a book based on it's plot, but aside for special few (like the Queen herself, J.K Rowling), I wouldn't know a book based on it's author.
Okay, maybe this is a little dramatic, but...
Now, things are a little different. Often enough I'll come to search an author out because I know I love their writing. And, rarely, I'll put a warning to a name because I heard some form of scandal related to them that made me want not to support them. Or, occasionally, I'll have to try and put aside my feelings on one of their books to try the others. But really, they're the farthest thing from my mind when I read. I only do all that because being a book blogger kind of forces you to notice authors (and that's not a bad thing at all, guys. I'm not complaining. If anything, I'm thankful).

It's like, the author is an Entity to me. They're something quite outside the realm of reality. That's why I also have trouble realizing that one day, my favorite authors will be dead. Some of them already are. It's inconceivable!
I'd really rather stay in my cushioned fantasy world where Authors are immortal and will forever bestow upon us the gift of their stories. I'm delusional, so what?

2) I don't really "believe" in bios, so to speak. A bio doesn't tell me much about the author, to be honest. It's dry facts. And in today's world, where I can actually contact authors on social media and learn to know them for real, those bios seem so... meaningless to me. I don't read them when I see them on fellow blogger's reviews.

For example, a bio will not tell you how an author prosecuted a reviewer for not liking his/her book in the court of the net, which 2014 did not lack in. Nor will the bio tell you how an author reached out to a reviewer who disliked their book to tell them they appreciated the feedback and even agree with them (as happened to me at the end of 2014), or how they sent free copies to their book to a fan when they couldn't get the book themselves. It won't tell you how they interact with their readers, or don't.

So, because of all this, I never put up their bios. I link to places you can find their bios, if you so please (like GR), but I don't make it part of the post.

But I see plenty who do. Do you read those bios? Are they important to you? Do you think it's necessary for them to be in the post? Do you agree with me/disagree with me? tell me all about it!
Nitzan

11 comments:

  1. I don't read bio's, I don't find them important either.. It sounds terrible doesn't it, that the author isn't the important part, but I'm reviewing the book, their work, their art. You wouldn't see a photo of a film directer underneath a film review, it doesn't happen. You wouldn't find a photo of the game producers underneath that review either, you review the book and that's it. I'll include if I've been asked to include them on tours and such, but if I'm not asked, I won't, I dislike it. Good post hun! :)

    ReplyDelete
  2. I totally agree! It's like, I'm reviewing the book, not the author. It's not important to me to read their bio - I never do...
    Good point about movie and game reviews!
    Thanks ;)

    ReplyDelete
  3. I think the author's behavior does have impact in cases such as Authors Behaving Badly. I'm sorry, but when I hear an author stalked a reviewer who expressed negative emotions toward their books, I do NOT want to read their books. It won'y affect my ratings for books of theirs I already read, but I won't read more books by them, you know?...

    ReplyDelete
  4. I started to put bios on my reviews a while ago mainly because the girl who designed my blog did a lovely tag for "ABOUT THE AUTHOR" so I wanted to use it. I don't write long bios though, I put them with the links to social medias because I love interacting with them.
    Just so you know, I totally understand your point. I was the same before blogging I couldn't remember many names.
    Great topic!
    Ruty @Reading...Dreaming

    ReplyDelete
  5. Haha, couldn't resist the prettiness, eh?
    You write the bios yourself? Don't you just copy them from somewhere?
    Thanks for commenting!

    ReplyDelete
  6. I put bios because the post looks a little naked without it. I don't expect people to click on them, but it feels more complete with them, in my opinion

    ReplyDelete
  7. Ha, I never thought of it like that :)
    There is nothing wrong with putting bios on reviews, I swear I didn't mean that!

    ReplyDelete
  8. Oh, no! If I was implying that I was upset, i must've written something wrong because that is NOT what I meant at all either!

    ReplyDelete
  9. I agree - you can learn so much more about an author from their social media presence than from their bio. I like posts that focus on the book more than the author :)

    ReplyDelete