Review and critique please

(Personal Statement Examples, Advice, Critique, . . . )

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Joined: Fri Aug 31, 2012 9:53 am

Review and critique please

Postby brittanynicole_4 » Fri Aug 31, 2012 10:33 am

Please review my draft for my personal statement. Do you think the topic is too personal or inappropriate? I wasn't sure I even wanted to write about this, but it is what interested me in law. Do I need to focus more on how the event impacted me/made me want to focus on law or is that apparent from the nature of the event? Please give me detailed comments, I want to make it perfect! Also, please let me know if you spot any grammatical errors. Thanks.
Grappling and contemplating my verdict still wavers on which story to impart, an abbreviated, generic tale of a girl filled with ambition and passion for law since she was a child, or the detailed account of what ignited this passion. An ignition accelerated by disgust, shame, embarrassment, and guilt. Many were scathed, burned, and broken, scars that never healed, wounds so deep that rising from the engulfing flames seemed impossible. Compliantly allowing the noxious, black cloud to wrap its deadly hands around their throats, suffocating and smothering they gave up. Soot covered, I emerge fueled and impassioned. Thus my tale will begin. Head first, I will dive. I will dive deep, deep into the murky abyss that hides the many secrets of my life. Hoping to keep my head above the torrent waves, will I sink or swim?

Twelve years ago, I sat in a baby blue skirt with top that matched, accented by navy flowers, a favorite outfit my uncle had bought me. I sat in an oversized chair behind a podium and microphone, they call this the witness’ box. I was to testify. I was to tell my story to the judge and jury. I was told I did not have to, it was my choice, but I wanted to. I wanted desperately to punish the man who violated me. At the age of ten, I learned what vengeance felt like. I wanted so badly for him to suffer, to feel the pain I felt, to feel disgusting, shameful, embarrassed, and guilty. Foremost, I did not want anyone else to be harmed by this monster as I had.

I stared at him as he sat across from me. A cloak of invincibility appeared to shroud him, as his watchful lawyer protected him. The prosecutor began to question me. I nervously sat up straight, and talked into the microphone. My recollection of the questioning is a bit nebulous. I have tried to forget specifics of this event, but to no avail they continue to haunt me. Recalling my account, I looked at the jury speckled with men and women, both black and white, many were saddened. A weeping willow drenched by a nights rain, as eyes of distraught and concern stared back at me. Then, turning again to look at him, a cold, inimical gaze stared upon me. No remorse, no willow weeping. I told my tale, minute by minute, every detail that transpired that life changing night. A nightmare it was, as the defense told the jury. Reality it was not they proclaimed. Yes, I agree it was exactly that, a nightmare. A nightmare made true by a monster. Again, I sat, a ghost not seen nor heard, as the jury found him not guilty. I sat paralyzed, not moving, not feeling, numb. Jurors walked away crying, sobbing uncontrollably. I was confused, I didn’t understand. Why cry, if they thought it only to be a nightmare?

Today, as the confusion wanes, a foundation is formed for many decisions to come. Fighting those torrent waves, I have tried so desperately to keep my head above the water. The vengeance I once sought after began to fuel a passion inside of me. Determined, motivated, and driven I became. I realized what it is I am meant to do. Focused on my future, trying to forget the past, I look upon the horizon paddling. My swim commencing, it is close, just in sight, I kick harder, but I can not quite reach it. I wait as the torrent waves beat against my tired body; I have done all I can do. Unwavering will and passion have not failed me. They have simply taken me as far as they can. Now I wait for an answer. The torrent waves dissolve, my goal an arms reach away, I wait.

Waiting to be told I have what it takes; to be told I no longer need to kick and paddle, or fight this endless battle, because I have reached my destination. My goal has been achieved. A purpose I have finally received: extending closure to others, a prospect never forgotten. Yet in limbo I still float, not knowing if my courage was enough. Not knowing if these words on this page portray me, but my mind is set, I know what I want, and I will fight. Just as I have fought for all that I have attained, this will be no different. My determination will not waver. With knowledge as my resource and passion as my motivation, I will not sink. I will swim.


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Re: Review and critique please

Postby bmore » Fri Aug 31, 2012 10:41 am

NO! NO! NO! The topic is not too personal. The way you handled it is all wrong. Are you writing a "pulp" novel?


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Re: Review and critique please

Postby Techsan23 » Fri Aug 31, 2012 1:21 pm

I agree with the poster above. I don't think the topic is too personal. I think it could be better if you focused less on the incident and more about how it transformed you as a person. I think including the incident itself is fine but don't make that the main focus of the statement. Thank you for your comments on mine btw!

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Re: Review and critique please

Postby RSterling » Fri Aug 31, 2012 1:42 pm

I'll also echo what's above. This is way too personal. Also, you need to tone down your writing a little bit.

" A weeping willow drenched by a nights rain, as eyes of distraught and concern stared back at me. "

Phrases like this make me cringe, and your adcomms will likely feel the same. I know this likely comes off as dickish, but I'm just trying to be as brutally honest as possible. I know it sucks, but you really have to start from square one. Pick a different topic and one where the reader could at least infer why it is you're applying to law school and where your interests lie. It doesn't have to be explicit (I want to go to LS because..).

But really I can't stress enough that you need to tone down the writing. As the previous poster said, you're not writing a pulp novel.

edited for grammar

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