Admissions essays: watermelon vs. seed stories
An elementary school teacher taught me that “watermelon stories” are those about a huge topic, while “seed stories” focus on specific experiences. Many students have trouble starting their college admissions essays because they try to write about a huge topic -- their entire life and identity. Essays that try to distill an entire life story into five paragraphs are often generic and boring, because the outlines of most of our lives are not that interesting. Rather than recount a list of life events, college essays should focus on “seed stories” -- specific experiences that allow the writer to dig into the sensory and emotional details that bring a narrative to life.