Biography Essay Format must be followed in order to deliver the perfect essay. As Biography writing discusses someone’s life events and accomplishments, it is often considered a formatless or easy type of essay. That’s totally false because your essay needs to have a scholarly tone and proper formatting to achieve perfection.
Biographical Essay formatting varies for commercial and non-commercial use. They are usually written to reveal important facts about a popular figure’s life. Before we dig into it, you need to know that a biography essay might be telling a story of someone, but it should be professional and formal. This blog is the ultimate guide to biography essay and how to make your essay appealing to the readers.
So much can happen in one’s life, and there is no possible way to compile everything in one essay. That’s why you need a format that follows only the notable and important incidents of your subject’s life. Despite a biography essay being a life story, you need to follow a proper format so as not to make it look like just a pile of unprocessed data. Following is the standard biography essay format:
When we meet someone new, what’s the first thing we notice? Obviously, the face and appearance. An introduction is the face of your essay and the starting point. It’s the crucial part of an essay that helps in hooking the readers at the start. It’s the first part of your essay that interacts with the reader, and it should be compelling enough to grab the audience’s attention and intrigue them enough to read the rest of the essay.
Add a quote: Add an interesting quote about your subject to let the audience know more about the personality and thoughts of the subject. You can also add some remarks and quotes from other writers who have written pieces regarding the same subject.
For example: “Education is the most powerful weapon you can use to change the world.” by Nelson Mandela. This quote expresses the dedication of Mandela with the importance of education.
Add headlines or news: Start your essay with some interesting headline about the subject that helps introduce the particular subject to the audience. Adding headlines and important news helps highlight the huge impact of the subject on society.
For example: “ Popular sitcom ‘Friends’ leading actor ‘Methew Perry’ died at the age of 54 on 28 october 2023.” The news anchor’s voice was sending waves of shocks to my body.
Start with the title: If your selected subject has a title or nickname they are known for, you can also mention it at the start of your essay. It enables the readers to recognize the subject and have a sense of familiarity.
For example: “Maidan Queen” is a popular title of Queen Elizabeth I and vastly used in biographical essays.
Add a compelling story: You can start your essay by writing a short story or a childhood event from the subject’s life that delivers a powerful message. That short story could be a turning point or a point where the subject recognizes their true passion.
For example: J.K Rowling writing her first story in primary school.
Add your introduction paragraph: Including your introduction paragraph as the writer will be a great chance to interact and engage the reader. A strong introduction will help in establishing your credibility as a writer. You can add your academic background, area of expertise, and, most importantly, the reason for choosing that particular subject for your essay.
For example: I as a student of biological studies have a close academic association with DNA Structure that was first discovered by Rosalind Franklin.
Make an Outline: You are required to outline your essay to keep it organized and accurately detailed. You can’t add everything in an essay or emit particular things. That’s why you have to outline what notable events and points of life you are going to use in your essay to show their effect on the subject.
For example: Introducing charlie chaplin, detailing his early life, the turning point of his life when he started performing as ‘The Tramp‘’, and death by stroke.
Background information: After the first quote, you have to provide all the basic background information about the subject’s life. Background information includes birth date, birthplace, parents and their occupations, area of expertise, and some notable accomplishments.
For Example: Michael Jackson, an African American from Gary, Indiana, first debuted in 1964. He was from a poor family, his parents belonged to the working class and had several little jobs to support the family.
Thesis statement: At the end of the introduction, you can now mention the main thesis statement of your essay. That statement could be a new addition or observation to the subject’s life, a flaw in their work, or an incident that shaped the subject’s life. A thesis statement is the template of your essay, and the rest of your essay revolves around justifying it.
For Example: ‘Contributions of Nikola Tesla that he was never credited for.’
Body paragraphs hold the information you obtained from research. In this section, you are required to add all the supporting information on the subject that can justify your thesis statement. To ensure the accuracy of the information, make sure to collect your data from authentic and trusted sources. Interviews, TV shows, documentaries, published books, and articles would be a great source to observe the subject from close. There are mainly three to five paragraphs in a biography essay. Here is what to add in the body paragraph:
Chronologically added information: Start with giving information about the subject’s childhood, parents, friends, significant other, and acquaintances. You can also mention their views, remarks, or experiences with the subject. This information helps in understanding the subject’s true nature and behavior. All the life events you are going to add to your essay should be in a proper order.
Development of their personality: Try highlighting important events from the subject’s life that shaped their human nature, temperament, and personality. You can also mention how some incidents impacted the subject’s mindset and led them to make certain big decisions in future.
Refrain from adding irrelevant details: The subject of your essay must have an area of expertise, some popular accomplishments, and a timeline of their life that defines them. You need to focus on that part of their life where they did what they are known for. Emit extra information such as where the subject attended school, what part-time jobs they did, or how many years they were in a relationship. Only add information that has impacted their personality and achievements.
Accomplishments should be timelined: The major accomplishments by the subject and what impact they first created, presently have, and will have in future should be included in a proper timeline. One achievement of the subject should connect with the other. To avoid any ambiguity, try to list down all the achievements in chronological order and then link them with what motivated the subject to make it.
Keep the events connected: Include the flashback of the earlier incidents of the subject’s life and connect them with their behavior and actions later. Relate the subject’s decision and pattern of behavior with what they faced in their childhood. Refrain from adding something that hasn’t had proper background information because that might lead to confusion on the reader’s end.
Mention the biggest challenges: Proceed to add some of the most challenging situations the subject faced throughout their lives. Record their process of analyzing and responding to the challenges and what motivates them to keep moving and accomplishing their goals.
Should have a turning point: The most important part of the essay is that great incident that served as the turning point for the subject and led them to make achievements they are known for. For example, Michael Jackson’s biographical essay will focus on the turning point of his life when he left the Jackson 5 band and went solo in his career.
The conclusion should describe all the main events of the subject’s life and what they are known for. You can also mention quotes and remarks from other published works about the subject to support your thesis statement. You can also mention how your research has rejected many misinterpreted and misunderstood claims about the subject. Summarize how your research has proven your thesis statement.
In case of an infamous subject, list down their bad deeds that will always have an impact on the society. Give a proper closure to your subject and reveal the massive influence and legacy the subject left on society. In the end, mention how the accomplishments of the subject are still relevant today and what are the possibilities of research on it in future. Refrain from rewriting your thesis statement in the conclusion, but add some unknown and interesting facts about the subject.
Now that you’ve made it to the end of this blog, you are equipped with all you need to know about biography essay format. Your essay must have an introduction, body paragraphs, and a conclusion. You must reveal the influence that subject has on the society as a whole and what their accomplishments contributed to their area of study.
Choose a famous subject to get authentic and published information regarding the person of interest. A Perfect biographical essay has a compelling start, detailed and researched body paragraphs, and a strong conclusion.
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