Again. Again. One more time. Multiple rounds of edits doesn’t mean an essay is bad- it’s a sure sign that the essay is reaching a state closer and closer to that of ‘perfection’. And what is ‘perfection’? The meaning depends on who you ask. In my eyes, a personal statement, or any piece of writing for that matter, approaches success when it reflects what the writer needs and wants to say in the most powerful manner, while staying true to the writer, or rather, to his voice. To his inner feelings and thoughts. To what he hopes to convey. Because, then, there are no regrets regardless of how the reader takes it, for when something is written in such an undaunted and meaningful way, then it will follow suit that it is worthy and memorable for a reader. Success for the writer and the reader are mutually inclusive. That’s how I see it.
I truly love helping students express themselves, to encourage in them the confidence that guides them to writing honest and impactful statements about their personal stories, whatever the goals may be. Too often we write what we think others want to hear, when what they want to hear is what you genuinely have to say.
It is a joy for me to work with students to help them develop and output their ideas onto paper. To delve into every sentence written and provide as much constructive criticism as I can, pointing out both the positive aspects as well as what needs improvement, in order to bring out the best of that writer. I make suggestions that not only address issues such as grammar and syntax, but also strive to give the writer food for thought so that future edits and changes speak to a deeper and more complete version of what the writer is trying to get across. That’s not to say it’s not important to consider how it comes off- that is certainly significant. But the focus is on the means of output, not the reception of it, because they are, after all, mutually inclusive. Furthermore, all this is done with a mind to how a piece could across to an admissions officer, for instance, and I incorporate advice that avoids making common mistakes or re-hashing cliché topics or phrases. And whether one has the flexibility of writing several drafts or the challenge of only having time for a couple of rewrites, every edit and every word counts towards making the picture being painted brighter, more detailed, and more memorable.