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Essay Dialogues #4: A High School Senior Meets With the School’s College Counselor

RANCE, a high school senior, meets with his school’s college counselor, MS. LEWIS. MS. LEWIS: Hi, Rance, how are you doing with your Common Application essay? RANCE: Solid. Making progress. MS. LEWIS: Can I read your first draft? RANCE: Sure, here you go. (Rance hands Ms. Lewis a sheet of paper.) MS. LEWIS: Uhm, this …

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Essay Dialogues (#2): Parents Talking About Their Child’s Application Essays

MARC, fit, nervously watches his wife, ALEXANDRA, as she reads a sheet of paper. MARC: What do you think? ALEXANDRA: (she finishes reading, lowers the paper) It’s amazing… MARC: All right! (He lifts his hand for a high five. Alexandra doesn’t reciprocate.) ALEXANDRA: … if Schuyler was forty six years old, VP of Marketing for …

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Essay Dialogues (#1): A Couple of Parents Talking about College Application Essays

Starting a new series of blogs today called “Essay Dialogues.” Simple concept, people – students, parents, teachers, whomever – talking about the college admissions essay.  Here’s the first. I hope you find it enjoyable, enlightening, even comforting. (Hannah, efficient, crisp, the kind of woman you’d trust to pack your parachute, enters her local coffee spot, …

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Essay Dialogues (#3): Two High School Seniors Talking About Their Admission Essays

Bart and Ian, 17 years old, stalwart young men, sit on a bench in the park. They are dressed in athletic gear. A basketball sits on the ground in front of the bench. Bart exhales. Ian looks up in to a tree. Bart’s right leg bounces up and down aggressively. Ian rises, stretches out his …

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HOW TO MAKE YOUR COLLEGE APPLICATION ESSAY THE BEST WRITING YOU’VE EVER DONE (#25 OF 25)

The final of my twenty five ways to make your college application essay the best writing you’ve ever done could just as well have been the first. That’s because it can not only improve the quality of your essay, it can elevate the experience of writing it. #25. Use the writing of your essays as …

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HOW TO MAKE YOUR COLLEGE APPLICATION ESSAY THE BEST WRITING YOU’VE EVER DONE (#24 OF 25)

In truth, there are probably a hundred ways to make your college application essay the best writing you’ve ever done. And perhaps next year I’ll add another seventy five. But for now, here’s the next to last one for 2015. #24. Avoid being too general, or too complicated. The too general essay speaks in broad …

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HOW TO MAKE YOUR COLLEGE APPLICATION ESSAY THE BEST WRITING YOU’VE EVER DONE (#23 OF 25)

An interesting fact about written material is that everyone has an opinion about it.  After all, most people have at some time in their lives written something – anything – which they feel qualifies them to be the last word in literary criticism. But that shall remain a gripe for another blog series. Today we …

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HOW TO MAKE YOUR COLLEGE APPLICATION ESSAY THE BEST WRITING YOU’VE EVER DONE (23 of 25)

Number Twenty Three of the twenty five ways to make your college application essay the best writing you’ve ever done might seem merely technical, but it can contribute mightily to your chances for acceptance. #23. Respect the word count. As it relates to the Common Application essay, this one is easy, as the application will …

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HOW TO MAKE YOUR COLLEGE APPLICATION ESSAY THE BEST WRITING YOU’VE EVER DONE (#22 of 25)

There is an old show business adage (attributed at times to both P.T. Barnum and Walt Disney), “Always leave them wanting more.” As it relates to your college application essay, however, I would suggest a slight adjustment: “Always leave them wanting you.” Easier said than done, of course (what isn’t?), but Step Twenty Two of …

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HOW TO MAKE YOUR COLLEGE APPLICATION ESSAY THE BEST WRITING YOU’VE EVER DONE (#21 OF 25)

As a tribute to that time in my career when I was writing television soap operas, my previous blog contained a cheesy cliffhanger, stating that I would next reveal another important key to having your application essay achieve its objectives. And yet, dated tactics aside, Step 21 of the twenty five ways to make your …

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