Trimming down PS?

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

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Trimming down PS?

Postby theycallmefoes » Fri Jan 17, 2014 12:31 am

Some of the schools to which I'm applying allow for 3-page personal statements, and a few others do not specify a page limit. However, there are also some that explicitly limit you to 2 pages. Right now, I have a 3-page PS - any advice as to how to trim it down? I feel like cutting an entire page would pretty much just gut the paper. Or should I start over and write a new 2-page version?

Also, how much room is there for adjusting the formatting? For example, if the school doesn't specify, using 1.5 line spacing instead of 2.

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Re: Trimming down PS?

Postby papercut » Sat Jan 18, 2014 6:35 am

I think this is the sort of thing that's hard to give advice on without seeing your writing.

Read it out loud a few a times and cut out everything that's redundant.

Can you do without that adjective?

Does the verb make the adjective unnecessary?

Are you using "in order to" instead of "to?"

Are you taking too long to get into the meat of your story?

Are you spending too many words on a minor point?

Are you using big words where smaller words would do?

And so on...

I think it's definitely harder to cutdown versus expanding.

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