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Talking about your family’s adoption of a three-legged dog and how your pet’s perseverance and quirky attitude influenced the way you live your life, will make a better essay than a super general diatribe on why you like dogs, for example.If you find yourself getting lost while writing, ask: what am I trying to say about myself, and am I using a specific, compelling example to tell my story? Write first, edit later: When it comes to writing, we are almost always our own worst critics.There is a sense of time and place- we can see the setting, smell the herbs.
So many students want and expect themselves to produce pure, uninhibited brilliance the first time their fingers hit the keys, but that is almost never the way good essay writing works.
Writing a compelling essay is a process, and the best writing can often be plucked from our stream-of-consciousness efforts.
Don’t edit yourself before you allow your creativity to warm up and pour onto the page.
Never judge your writing until you have a few paragraphs written down first. We’re content and grammar snobs, so we find clichés to be extra unappealing, but we also have enough confidence in your creativity to know that you can do better. It’s all in the details: What is the difference between these two sentences? My favorite activities included fishing and cooking my daily catch. My friends and I woke up early every morning to catch bass on Lake Michigan, cooking our spoils with herbs picked from a local farm.
” It will be much harder to remember “the girl who practiced the trapeze, and was also good at riding bikes, and who got an A on every test and who generally worked very hard,” or “the girl who really loved her late grandfather and who feels like she embodies a lot of his core characteristics.” Focus your story.
When you finish writing your first draft, do a branding test- try to label yourself based on your essay and see what you come up with.
You can always cut what doesn’t work and it is much easier to work with an overabundance of words and ideas than nothing at all. Admissions essay readers know it too, and expect you to . In the first sentence, we understand that you enjoyed certain activities.
In the second, yes, we know you like fishing but we also understand your commitment to an activity you engaged in every day and recognize that your fishing trips are a social effort.
Parents and students often ask us for our most valuable Common Application essay tips, so our savvy team of advisors compiled a list of simple, effective tricks to use as guidelines while you navigate the tricky waters of college essay writing. Now ask yourself- are any of these stories representative of my larger, most valuable qualities?
Think small: When writing the Common Application essay, too many students feel compelled to try and squeeze their entire life story into 650 words. Have you read something recently that blew your mind?