We got this submitted to us for review the day after HBS released its new essay questions — OK not really, maybe it was the week after. Regardless, we were a little shocked that BSers were already writing essays. The Round 1 deadline isn’t till end of September — even sitting here now, that’s still almost two full months away! This essay came in even before we published our new HBS essay guide, and that came out super fast after those questions were released. The weird part was that this wasn’t the first HBS essay we saw. The reason we weren’t thrilled to be seeing these essays is that people saying they were “done” with an essay when the question had only been available for a week or 10 days basically means that the essay is likely to suck (sorry!).
Essay-writing is a creative process. Creative processes take time — and many revisions. Typically, you’d start out by jotting down your ideas. Maybe you’d create an outline. You’d think about what you wanted to say and possibly you’d write out a draft — and then you’d let it simmer and stew for awhile. You’d put it away and let it ferment. Composting, we call this. Then you’d pull it back out and you’d look at it. You’d examine the other ideas you had. You’d see how these work against the other essays the school is asking for. Sometimes, you’d even decide to scratch the first attempt and start again.
Basically, you’d think about it.
To have gotten a draft on Day One gives us a stomach ache.
Wow, we just ranted on long enough to fill a whole post, without even showing you this draft that’s been burning a hole in our inbox. Apparently you’ll have to come back tomorrow for that.
If you just can’t wait till tomorrow, cruise over to the EssaySnark Bookstore and grab yourself a copy of the updated and expanded SnarkStrategies Guide to the 2012-’13 Harvard essay questions. It’s about a third longer than last year’s guide, yet there’s only two essay questions this year – which shows you how much more we’re offering to help you out with your monumental task of HBS.