What made John Steinbeck famous as an author? It was his vivid descriptive style!
The key, and most missing element, to having a great application essay is to write in a vivid descriptive style.
Writing with vivid language is a way to describe an action or a scene, allowing the reader to envision what you are talking about, painting a clearer picture for the reader to enjoy. Vivid description is writing which makes you feel as if you are standing there, right there where the author has just described something. Vivid description appeals to the senses- eyes, nose, ears, skin, and makes you feel a part of the scene.
John Steinbeck, a great American author from the middle 1900's, beginning in the 1930's with books still read in schools today- "Of Mice and Men" and "The Grapes of Wrath", was an expert user of vivid language. All you have to do is read the first couple pages in Of Mice and Men to see for yourself, and you will instantly become a better writer for it.
When it comes to college essays, you can count on this- good writing follows a flow; good writing is focused and written for a purpose; good writing is grammatically correct and easily readable; and good writing uses vivid description making it more enjoyable.
You create your own advantage by having an essay that is interesting to read, making it more likely to get read by the college counselor.
In writing a quality essay, here are a few important tips to consider.
1) Have a creative title; the key is to draw immediate interest
2) Do not stray or deviate from the topic; the key is to stay on point
3) Steer clear of confusing terms and unnecessary words; the key is to be vivid and precise
4) Begin with a dynamic first sentence; the key is to get the reader's immediate interest
5) Create a flow from start to finish; the key is to move towards the conclusion
6) Admission counselors much prefer shorter over longer; the key is to keep their interest
Here is an awesome essay of a Syracuse student.
The River of Divide- The Mississippi River begins its course in northern Minnesota and wanders southward for 2,320 miles down the heart of America through the Mississippi Delta and into the Gulf of Mexico. To me, this has always distinguished how our nation is divided between the east and the west. The Mississippi River has always been considered the great divide of this country. However, we now have a new divide and this divide seems nearly as wide as the Atlantic Ocean, for which I call the racial-divide. It feels to me that the racial-divide in this country is expanding in width largely due to a combination of economic issues and discrimination practices. And with it comes a distrust amongst people which will only serve to widen the gap and further damage relationships.
I am a firm believer in the term that two-heads-are-better-than-one provided that both heads are working together to achieve common goals. But, I also know that when two heads are working against one another, the cause will be compromised and is often doomed. It seems as though our government's partisan way operates this way. And it feels like America is turning this way with racial strife that is ever present in society today. There are too many people in complete opposition with one another, causing distrust and turning to violence.
I will not stand for this anymore. My mission in life is to ensure that there is no division in my relationships with people no matter what their race, gender, ethnicity, or any other differentiating factor of the individual may be. While I realize that I can't resolve the country's divide, I assuredly can say that I will play no factor in contributing to it. It truly seems as if the media and politicians are flooding this river of divide as opposed to draining it.
Though I live in Fairfield, Connecticut with a minority population under 7%, I live just five miles away from the city of Bridgeport which has a minority population approximating 80%. I've grown up knowing that differences exist in our communities, but I don't see any differences while I am out everyday living my life. I interact on sports fields and in classrooms with everyone equally without regard to someone's heritage or income level.
I am forever determined to follow my sense that two heads are better than one. Future partners and relationships of mine depend on this mindset. Once someone's race or ethnic background takes precedence over talent, intelligence, and character, then the opportunity is compromised. However, if we can forge new relationships without bias and prejudice, then our potential is unlimited. In this regard, I see opportunity as being the size of a vast ocean and not limited to that of a narrow river.
When I look ahead to college, I will be better prepared to go to school and live amongst a student population coming from a variety of racial backgrounds and ethnic cultures. To many fellow students, I will be the one coming from a different background offering a different perspective. And that's ok! I will be rooming, studying, eating, and socializing with fellow students of various nationalities and unique personal characteristics. I will become aware of my triumph when I learn from other people's perspectives, and they learn from mine. I will openly engage in the social and academic opportunities in college in order to broaden my perspectives on life itself. Accordingly, I will never widen the River of Divide , rather I will always work to narrow it.
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