How long should writing a college essay take?

A week? 2 weeks? A month?

There is no answer for that.

@BrownParent Well I spent two whole days writing and I only have one page done. I want to know if I am wasting time or not.

This sort of essay writing isn’t something you are usually trained on in HS. Different people will approach writing in a different pay. So it isn’t like baking a cake where there are steps and a done time. However a parent here did make a nice post of guidelines. So are you saying you put 16 hours on it? I’m not sure what 2 whole days means. Ideas take time to germinate, but of course you have to start by writing something down. Writing a whole draft is the best step rather than consider a page ‘done’. Don’t try to put a finished paper on the page, make it a process. Write a draft to form the basic concept then rewrite it and work it over.

Here are some good tips

@BrownParent Thanks for the advice. I have followed the “conventional” steps of writing an essay, but when I I finish a page or two I realize that there’s nothing really interesting about the essay and start all over again.

OK, well switch prompts/topics to see if something else works better for you.

Here’s something I’ve suggested a few times here:

Today: print each prompt on the top of a different piece of paper. Find a quiet part of the house or the yard, and set a timer for 5 or 6 minutes. For those 5 or 6 minutes, brainstorm anything that could possible fit under the prompt. Anything that comes to mind is OK, no matter how ridiculous. After each set, stop, get a drink, check your texts, whatever, to reset your thinking.

OK, all done for today.

Tomorrow, I want you to take a look at what you’ve written. Eliminate the obviously unworkable, and spend a few minutes with each of the remaining ideas. Come up with a bullet list of what you would say for each one. Phrasing and grammar are absolutely unimportant at this stage, you’re just outlining your ideas.

All done for tomorrow.

Wednesday, I want you to start writing. Choose the most promising of your ideas. If you have no intro, fine, you can come back and insert an intro. Just get some sentences down.

Thursday, if necessary, do the same with another of your remaining topics. One day per idea, just and hour or so max per topic.

When you’ve gotten through each of your topics, walk away for a day or two.

Then come back, read what you’ve written, choose one and write your essay.