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VP
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Joined: 22 Oct 2006
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Schools: Chicago Booth '11
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Editing [#permalink] New post 28 Jul 2008, 05:30
So did a few first drafts of some essays, and got my first feedback from a friend. I guess my essays were not as great as I thought:) Wordy and too conversational were major issues. I know that conversational is good to a point but I guess I overdid it. Well need to start some major editing.
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Re: Editing [#permalink] New post 28 Jul 2008, 05:42
terp26 wrote:
So did a few first drafts of some essays, and got my first feedback from a friend. I guess my essays were not as great as I thought:) Wordy and too conversational were major issues. I know that conversational is good to a point but I guess I overdid it. Well need to start some major editing.


that's interesting terp - I got the opposite feedback on one of my essays. Apparently I was too formal, used 'thus' too many times and was not conversational enough :)
ah well - I gues that's why they call them drafts!
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Re: Editing [#permalink] New post 28 Jul 2008, 06:18
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Forcefeed from last year (who got into HBS and Chicago), recommended this service: http://www.editavenue.com. I plan to use it once my essays are near completion.
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Re: Editing [#permalink] New post 28 Jul 2008, 06:37
that service looks really helpful thanks
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Re: Editing [#permalink] New post 28 Jul 2008, 07:20
Good price! Thanks.
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Re: Editing [#permalink] New post 28 Jul 2008, 14:05
The Economist Style Guide is one of my favorite sources too. There's a page specifically about Unnecessary Words and Do's and Don'ts. Granted, this is meant for The Economist writers, but if it's good enough for a well-reputed business magazine, it should be good enough for application essays, wouldn't you say?

Unnecessary Words: http://www.economist.com/research/style ... N=49923452
Do's and Don'ts: http://www.economist.com/research/style ... N=49923452

Example:

Case: “There is perhaps no single word so freely resorted to as a trouble-saver,” says Gowers, “and consequently responsible for so much flabby writing.” Often you can do without it. There are many cases of it being unnecessary is better as It is often unnecessary. If it is the case that simply means If. It is not the case means It is not so.

Locate, in all its forms, can usually be replaced by something less ugly. The missing scientist was located means he was found. The diplomats will meet at a secret location means either that they will meet in a secret place or that they will meet secretly. A company located in Texas is simply a company in Texas.
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Re: Editing [#permalink] New post 28 Jul 2008, 19:30
I know in discussions with some other people last fall many of us fell into the trap of writing far too much during first drafts. I think I came up with a pretty good way of dealing with this. I wrote my essays without worrying about length...literally some were more than double the allowed length. Then I cut out any stories or material that didnt add anything additional to my application. Having three stories that show the same strengths is useless in one essay. Then hack out overly descriptive things and useless transitions. Usually by the 3rd or 4th time going through I was down to the right length or so and had the materials I felt were the best...after that it was all down to polishing it as much as possible.

An important thing to remember...While essays aren't formal, they also should be somewhat professional. You arent writing something to your best friend but you dont want to seem cold, dry, and basically boring. You want to be interesting and engaging. Also remember a story you think is funny or interesting might not be at all appropriate for a b-school application essay.
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Kellogg Class of 2010...still active and willing to help. However, I do not do profile reviews, don't offer predictions on chances and am far to busy to review essays, so save the energy of writing me a PM seeking help for these. If I don't respond to a PM that is not one of the previously mentioned trash can destined messages, please don't take it personally I get so many messages I have a hard to responding to most. The more interesting, compelling, or humorous you message the more likely I am to respond.
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Re: Editing [#permalink] New post 29 Jul 2008, 12:52
I second river's method. That's pretty much what I did too. Though the 'cutting' part was painful... :shock:
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Re: Editing   [#permalink] 29 Jul 2008, 12:52
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