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Please, please stop beginning your application essays with the word "as." Please! You're going to exhaust our nation's supply of ases (though unfortunately not asses) and where will we be then, Skippy? Huh?!

Also, stop trying to blow my mind with the magnificence of your prose! If I have to read one more essay that begins "The little boy skittered excitedly across the dingy gymnasium floor, his eyes gleaming with the anticipation of Christmas joys yet to be received" or "Retching, I turned away from the fetid stench wafting from the gray old man's gangrenous foot into my cringing nostrils" or "My heart racing, I looked anxiously into the eyes of my parole officer, white orbs with blue irises as deep as the ocean," I'm seriously going to kill someone. I know you think that kind of writing will get this response...
...but what it really gets is more along the lines of...
496.jpg
So put the thesaurus away and just keep it simple. Please!
 
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Goro

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Hey colleague, you forgot "they brought the [elderly man in pain/terrified little boy] in at midnight and no one could [figure out what was wrong/understand what language they spoke]. While I could could [not do a thing and felt helpless/could only offer a kind smile]...I gradually saw [a smile/the tears stop]...

Yup, some of you write like you have a book of Mad Libs in front of you.
 

premedalt

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Please, please stop beginning your application essays with the word "as." Please! You're going to exhaust our nation's supply of ases (though unfortunately not asses) and where will be then, Skippy? Huh?!

Also, stop trying to blow my mind with the magnificence of your prose! If I have to read one more essay that begins "The little boy skittered excitedly across the dingy gymnasium floor, his eyes gleaming with the anticipation of Christmas joys yet to be received" or "Retching, I turned away from the fetid stench wafting from the gray old man's gangrenous foot into my cringing nostrils" or "My heart racing, I looked anxiously into the eyes of my parole officer, white orbs with blue irises as deep as the ocean," I'm seriously going to kill someone. I know you think that kind of writing will get this response...
...but what it really gets is more along the lines of...
View attachment 240874
So put the thesaurus away and just keep it simple. Please!
Hey colleague, you forgot "they brought the [elderly man in pain/terrified little boy] in at midnight and no one could [figure out what was wrong/understand what language they spoke]. While I could could [not do a thing and felt helpless/could only offer a kind smile]...I gradually saw [a smile/the tears stop]...

Yup, some of you write like you have a book of Mad Libs in front of you.
. well-****.jpeg
 
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PeleHonuaMea

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:laugh::laugh: ... and I'm sitting here trying to figure out how the heck am I supposed to write like some of these guys :eyebrow::help:
I guess I've been in the hospital too long... we chart in half sentences and unapproved acronyms :whistle:
 
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Oct 3, 2018
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Please, please stop beginning your application essays with the word "as." Please! You're going to exhaust our nation's supply of ases (though unfortunately not asses) and where will be then, Skippy? Huh?!

Also, stop trying to blow my mind with the magnificence of your prose! If I have to read one more essay that begins "The little boy skittered excitedly across the dingy gymnasium floor, his eyes gleaming with the anticipation of Christmas joys yet to be received" or "Retching, I turned away from the fetid stench wafting from the gray old man's gangrenous foot into my cringing nostrils" or "My heart racing, I looked anxiously into the eyes of my parole officer, white orbs with blue irises as deep as the ocean," I'm seriously going to kill someone. I know you think that kind of writing will get this response...
...but what it really gets is more along the lines of...
View attachment 240874
So put the thesaurus away and just keep it simple. Please!
Question: is straightforward, to the point no BS writing with no flourishments desired? I get the impression that the personal statement is not about prose that stands out, but rather using the personal statement to point out and accentuate parts of your app.

Sent from my Moto E (4) using SDN mobile
 
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LizzyM

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Question: is straightforward, to the point no BS writing with no flourishments desired? I get the impression that the personal statement is not about prose that stands out, but rather using the personal statement to point out and accentuate parts of your app.

Sent from my Moto E (4) using SDN mobile
Don't write a screenplay. /thread
 
Oct 13, 2008
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Please, please stop beginning your application essays with the word "as." Please! You're going to exhaust our nation's supply of ases (though unfortunately not asses) and where will be then, Skippy? Huh?!

Also, stop trying to blow my mind with the magnificence of your prose! If I have to read one more essay that begins "The little boy skittered excitedly across the dingy gymnasium floor, his eyes gleaming with the anticipation of Christmas joys yet to be received" or "Retching, I turned away from the fetid stench wafting from the gray old man's gangrenous foot into my cringing nostrils" or "My heart racing, I looked anxiously into the eyes of my parole officer, white orbs with blue irises as deep as the ocean," I'm seriously going to kill someone. I know you think that kind of writing will get this response...
...but what it really gets is more along the lines of...
So put the thesaurus away and just keep it simple. Please!
Unfortunately, a lot of the med school PS help books include essays with this sort of stuff as examples of an "ideal" PS. That's their recommended "hook" format.
 
Oct 3, 2018
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Unfortunately, a lot of the med school PS help books include essays with this sort of stuff as examples of an "ideal" PS. That's their recommended "hook" format.
Honestly, I feel like this style of essay with exaggerated theatricals comes off as unprofessional even. The personal statement is about why medicine. Show them how you know medicine is for you, and don't beat around the bush with fantastical prose.

Sent from my Moto E (4) using SDN mobile
 

Matthew9Thirtyfive

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Honestly, I feel like this style of essay with exaggerated theatricals comes off as unprofessional even. The personal statement is about why medicine. Show them how you know medicine is for you, and don't beat around the bush with fantastical prose.

Sent from my Moto E (4) using SDN mobile
The problem is not that those hooks are unprofessional. In creative nonfiction and in fiction, you want something to hook the reader. And when it’s written well, it really does pull you in (and it doesn’t have to be super dramatic—in fact, typically the reason those dramatic hooks don’t work is you don’t care about the characters at all so there is no real tension).

But this is a personal statement, not a creative nonfiction piece, and the majority of the people writing them are not good enough writers to pull that off.
 
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RangerBob

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A true hook would be talking about your experience in the peace corps, getting shot at while your rescued your buddy in the service, being a refugee, growing up in such poverty your parents search alleyways for used mattresses, etc.

I probably did the same thing when I was a pre-med-tried to make something simple sound more glamorous. But if you really want an adcom to think “this sounds like an interesting person!” then talk about something truly unique and defining about you. Like inventing the flux capacitor.
 
Oct 3, 2018
121
126
A true hook would be talking about your experience in the peace corps, getting shot at while your rescued your buddy in the service, being a refugee, growing up in such poverty your parents search alleyways for used mattresses, etc.

I probably did the same thing when I was a pre-med-tried to make something simple sound more glamorous. But if you really want an adcom to think “this sounds like an interesting person!” then talk about something truly unique and defining about you. Like inventing the flux capacitor.
What if you are normal? :(
 

Lucca

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What if you are normal? :(
write clearly, honestly, and well. Answer the question. Nothing all that complicated about the PS tbqh. My biggest piece of advice would be to write all of your app as if it were one contiguous thing. The PS and most meaningful activities should cohere and your app should tell something like a narrative.
 

RangerBob

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What if you are normal? :(
Unfortunately I was “normal” too. We can still make it into medical school even if our lives aren’t worthy of writing a biography that people would actually read.

As Luca said, be honest. Write clear. Tell the story of you-your PS is you. That is how you get to introduce yourself to the admins.
 

dr_kateb

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How long is the average PS? The length limit is like 3 double spaced pages but do people generally use all of it or no?
 

stayathomemom

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The substance of your personal statement should be what catches the reader's attention, not the "fancy" way in which it's written. You can't dress up a stupid story with flowery prose and pass it off as interesting, just as you can't put a dress on a dog and pass it off as your girlfriend.
 

HomeSkool

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Unfortunately, a lot of the med school PS help books include essays with this sort of stuff as examples of an "ideal" PS. That's their recommended "hook" format.
People write those books as their backup career plan when they don't get into medical school.
 

gyngyn

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Please, please stop beginning your application essays with the word "as." Please! You're going to exhaust our nation's supply of ases (though unfortunately not asses) and where will we be then, Skippy? Huh?!
How about beginning every essay with: So, ?
Drives me cucu.
 
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