Step 9: Add the Wow Factor

Write Draft 3: Content + Structure + Polish

You are finally ready to polish your essay. Content and structure were most important in steps 5 and 7; now you need to pay just as much attention to spelling, grammar and style. When you finish this step, your coach will carefully proofread your essay. If you are working with a Wow coach, your coach is your reader. If you are working with a counselor or consultant, they are your reader. Don’t find someone else to review your essay!

To begin Step 9, watch the Video Intro, then continue reading to learn more about this step.  Select Try It Now for a guide to writing your next draft.

Note: the video tells you to “Click Read It.” There is no click! Just read the page.

Play Video

What is the Wow Factor?

This is not the time to make big changes. To add the Wow factor, you need to revise once more, this time with an eye toward clarity and style. This revision is all about final edits and proofreading. You have chosen an effective topic, your theme is clear, and readers are sure to learn something meaningful about you from reading your essay. Now polish your prose just a tiny bit. At the same time, don’t let anyone else choose your words. As always, make sure you are telling your story in your own voice and in your own words. Admissions officers want to hear your voice – not the adult voice of your well-meaning parent, coach or tutor.

Reflect on Your Coach’s Feedback

Before you revise your essay again, consider the feedback you have received so far.

How will you use it? Don’t make changes just because your coach suggested them, and don’t disregard suggestions because they sound challenging.

Read your essay again. Before you write your next draft, make some notes about what you want to work on to improve your essay. Pay particular attention to content, structure AND polish. Don’t rely on someone else (or spell check) to correct your misspellings or grammar errors. This is your work, and it should reflect your best abilities as a writer.

Make every word count. Read for clarity and focus, and make small changes that can make a difference. Don’t overhaul the essay. You’ve done the hard work already.

Try Step 9: Add the Wow Factor

Estimated time to complete this writing task: 1 hour

Try It: Add the Wow Factor

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