What's the hardest part about writing a college admissions essay?

<p>What do you struggle the most with as you're writing (or thinking about writing!) your college admissions essays?</p>

<p>I struggled most with voice and subject. I had to try out many different essays until I wrote something I liked. Voice is difficult because I'm not accustomed to writing about myself, so sometimes it took work not to sound pompous. I tried out many different topics for each essay before I got something I liked, that sounded like me. I wanted to do everything I could to put my best foot forward.</p>

<p>Hardest part was starting.</p>

<p>Finding a good topic and starting it. Then trying to keep the flow going through the piece. It's just stressful.</p>

<p>The hardest part of the college essay is coming up with a good idea. Unlike the majority of people, I only wrote one essay. That's right, only one essay! I never wrote an outline, and my rough draft hasn't even had multiple revisions; the only things I had to revise were a few grammatical errors (i.e., the occasional misplaced commas). All my teachers and my counselor complimented me profusely on my essay and told me that besides for a few minor grammatical errors, I shouldn't change a thing!</p>

<p>Why? Because for me, 3/4 of the writing process is coming up with a killer idea. I chose "Topic of your choice" and spent 2 months creating a workable prompt and contemplating ideas. I then sat down one night and wrote my entire essay in a couple of hours.</p>

<p>I've been writing for a hobby since grade school, so writing in general comes naturally to me. The only problem I had was coming up with an idea:
- That could positively portray me as a unique person in 500 words or less
- That I could focus completely on without digressing (it's hard to portray multiple aspects of yourself when you're focusing on only one main idea)
- That would be unique
- Without thinking, "Oh my God, my entire future depends on 500 words or less!" lol</p>

<p>Starting. Once I had a definite topic, everything just came to me.</p>

<p>The hardest part for me was undoubtedly the size limit. Like UFOninja, i basically wrote my essay in a couple hours. When i asked my AP lit teacher to check it she said it was amazing and didn't even change a word. Unfortunately, it was 747 words (and i had already left out a lot of things). It was painful cutting out more >.< But eventually i did. My essay is still 602 words... but it fits in one page...so...whatever.... -.-</p>

<p>I figured that i would risk it because if i cut out anymore, it just wouldn't sound like my natural writing. But now i am trying to write the extracurricular one, with 1000 words, and it is killing me! This is taking longer than my two 500-word essays. 500 words i can try to do. 1000 characters, i CANNOT!!!</p>

<p>So it sounds like for a lot of people the hardest part is starting the essay/coming up with a topic.</p>

<p>How do you go about that process? That is, what did you do to come up with a topic to write about and start writing?</p>

<p>I just played with ideas that I felt described me well and started writing the better ones. I tried journaling at one point. Eventually I took an idea I had started working on and used the intro and then went a different direction with it. It was the first one I really liked, so I ran with it.</p>