Use good examples to bring your essays to life and engage the reader. "Lack of Substance” is the first post in our series, 5 Fatal Flaws to Avoid in Your Med School Essays. Writing about nothing tends to bore, like a trite sitcom or movie with no plot. They lack substance and so will your essay if it isn’t based on: Substantive self-reflection. Use of specifics, examples, and anecdotes. Willingness to reveal your thought processes and feelings. So start your writing process with self-knowledge. You don’t have to search the internet or a large library. Start with your experiences and your dreams. Search your head and your heart. That is where the substance of a good personal statement is stored. Then use anecdotes, specifics, and examples to reveal what’s in your heart and show that your dreams are grounded in experience. Good examples can bring your essays to life and engage the reader. At the same time, recognize that essays with only examples and anecdotes don’t reveal your thought processes and consequently are also superficial. Make sure you balance your stories with insight and analysis. Avoid Fatal Flaw #1: Bring your personal statements to life with self-reflection and astute use of examples balanced by analysis. Related Resources: • Navigating the Med School Maze • Successful Medical School Secondary Application Strategies • Nine Ways To Get Rejected From Medical School This article originally appeared on blog.accepted.com. Accepted.com's experienced admissions consultants can help you create the most impressive application possible with comprehensive packages,or provide targeted assistance from picking perfect programs to designing a dazzling resume, constructing engaging essays, or preparing for intense interviews…and more! Accepted.com has guided thousands of applicants to acceptances at top programs since 1994 – we know what works and what doesn't, so contact us to get started now!