1. Writing your essay doesn't have to be stressful. Every fall, thousands of aspiring students just like you spend hours staring into a computer screen, searching for a clever opening line or a life-changing experience. It doesn't have to be that hard!
2. Counselors want to learn about you-and that's all! A good essay does not need to be a literary masterpiece, or a ...
1. Writing your essay doesn't have to be stressful.
Every fall, thousands of aspiring students just like you spend hours staring into a computer screen, searching for a clever opening line or a life-changing experience. It doesn't have to be that hard!
2. Counselors want to learn about you-and that's all!
A good essay does not need to be a literary masterpiece, or a scholarly treatise worthy of Albert Einstein. The best essays come from high school students being themselves, with all the depth, wit, charm and quirkiness you bring to your daily life.
3. So let your best come through!
College-admission experts Edward B. Fiske and Bruce Hammond give you all the advice you need for an application essay that will open the door of the college of you choice. Fiske Real College Essays That Work includes samples from both great and not-so-great writers, and describes how to take your essay from initial draft to final submission.
Real essays on these topics and more:
o Race and cultural experiences
o Personal growth
Gr 11 Up-This collection of 109 essays begins with an introduction that is clear and to the point. A chapter with practical and humorous tips on writing a great essay follows. Particularly helpful are the references to specific selections that exemplify the trait under discussion. For instance, when offering tips on metaphor, the authors refer to "Essay 93," in which a student talks about the stages of his life in terms of Greek scholars, the Dark Ages, the Renaissance, and the Enlightenment. Divided up by common admissions subjects (a hobby, a significant experience, personal growth, etc.), the writing is good-after all, these compositions were accepted-but attainable by average students with average lives. Some teens have amazing or tragic experiences on which to draw when applying to college. However, most have never met the Dali Lama or lost a loved one. These essays are a great jumping-off point for these young people. An excellent purchase for libraries with any percentage of students continuing on to college.-Morgan Johnson-Doyle, Sierra High School, Colorado Springs, CO Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Edward B. Fiske served for 17 years as education editor of the New York Times, where he realized that college-bound students and their families needed better information on which to base their educational choices. He is also the author of the Fiske Guide to Getting into the Right College. He lives in Durham, North Carolina.
1. What Makes a Great Essay?
Mention that you're writing a college essay and you'll probably get an earful of advice:
• "Write about your trip to Mexico," offers your mom. "You can show that you've broadened your horizons."
• "Community service always looks good," says Dad. "Talk about your work with Habitat for Humanity."
• "Write something funny," advises your best friend. "They love essays that make them laugh."
• "Make yourself stand out," says your guidance counselor. "In a pile of one thousand essays, yours should be the one they remember."
If you're lucky, you won't hear all of the above-at least not all at once. But the odds are good that you'll get some of it, particularly the one about making yourself stand out. How, exactly, do you accomplish that one? Have you scaled Mount Everest? Overcome a terminal disease? Saved a toddler from a burning building?
Of course not. Neither have 99.9 percent of the rest of us. The best essays are seldom about a dramatic event or "significant experience" that changes the author's life. Real people don't get hit by lightning and suddenly realize that they should live their lives differently. Human development is a step-by-step, day-by-day process that happens almost imperceptibly.
Introduction: Why Couldn't I Just Write about
Things That Make Me Happy? -
Part I: Writing a Great Essay -
Chapter 1: What Makes a Great Essay? -
Chapter 2: Rescue from Writer's Block -
Chapter 3: Crafting a Narrative -
Part II: Real College Essays That Work -
Science and Science Fiction -
Hobby or Interest -
The Arts -
Camp Counseling and Community Service -
Racial or Cultural Differences -
Politics and Religion -
A Significant Experience -
Family and Relationships -
A Moral Dilemma -
Personal Growth -
Why I Love First Choice U. -
Appendix: The Search for an Opening Line -
About the Authors -