The brainstorming session

Four Westford Academy juniors attended my March 23 workshop on “Brainstorming your college application essay.” I was surprised by how intriguing their lives are and how effectively their experiences translate into interesting story topics.

One student has built three robotic arms and and is thinking about writing about the progression of building each arm. Another discussed his memories of living on the island of Kwajalein Atoll, part of the Marshall Islands, from around age 9 to 12. There were no cars on the island, he said. Instead inhabitants rode bicycles everywhere. A third student plays sports with passion but is plagued by a physical illness that once rendered him immobile for three days.

These life experiences are the stuff of great essays. I’ve asked the students to write their first drafts by April 15 and to aim for having a completed essay that is ready for submission by Sept. 15.

How about you? Do you need help brainstorming your college essay topic? I’m here to help. Coming up with a topic may seem like a murky exercise but within an hour or two, we can harness a clearcut story line that will help you to begin writing.

The next workshop takes place onsold-out-graphic April 6.

Groups of four to six can be put together for a two-hour brainstorming workshop at a cost of $150 per person. Sessions can be conducted in person or remotely using Skype.

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