There is a famous quote from the poet Robert Burns, paraphrased thusly -- "The best laid plans of mice and men often go astray."  That's certainly how it works when it comes to your essays. You may think that you have an unstoppably brilliant idea, only to sit down and find that you can't actually write a word of it!  Or perhaps, you've got too many ideas (and you know it), but narrowing the field is proving nearly impossible. Or perhaps you're going through the umpteenth tweaking of your essay -- you've changed the "the" to "as", then back to "the" again, about fifteen times at this point. Only to finally, depressingly conclude that you just can't make this essay work. It just won't click.

You have three choices: one, you can forge ahead with an essay you know isn't your best. Obviously, we don't recommend that. Two, you can give up, curl up in a ball and cry. Satisfying, sure, but it doesn't get you any closer to your goal. Or three -- you can start your essay over from scratch.

Assuming you're on board and ready to start over again, here's the process you need to run through.

What was it that you fundamentally were not getting from the previous draft?  Was it a feeling, an idea, a sense of cohesion? What is the number one thing you need to focus on? Make sure it's only one -- the last thing you want is to try to fix everything, you'll end up right back where you started.

What is the simplest, best possible version of yourself that addresses this issue?  Say, for example, you're trying to make a school understand how sensitive and thoughtful you are. Maybe you want to write about the charity you created devoted to animal welfare, or the shelf full of paperback romance novels you've read over and over again. Well, maybe not that second one. :)

Forget about getting it right -- just write. When starting over, it's especially important not to get bogged down in first draft perfectionist syndrome. Instead, just tell the story to the best of your ability, set it aside for a couple of days, then return to it with fresh eyes.

So that's it!  3 simple steps and you'll be well on your way to (re)writing the essay of your dreams!  And if you have questions about how to proceed, give us a call.