.comment-link {margin-left:.6em;}

the word whisperer

Monday, May 23, 2005

College Essay

This is the essay that I wrote for the college applications. Thought I'd share it with you...

It was in my early teens that I began to seriously consider writing as a possible career. By then I had become familiar with ancient classical stories, the Greek myths and historical legends. My childhood foundation for writing was based on readings of such authors as Robert Louis Stevenson, Alexander Pushkin, George MacDonald, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Lewis Carroll, and C.S. Lewis, as well as some of the contemporary writers.

Having been home schooled since second grade, I had only a few real friends, for I did not participate in many social activities. I grew up with imagination as my best companion and a loving family to support my development. Writing and literature had always been my favorite subjects, and I enjoyed composing short prose, mostly in the form of reflections. This is a major way for me to express my emotions and troubled feelings. In addition, I loved poetry and created simple rhymes as gifts. However, as I journeyed through the world of literature, discovering Dostoyevsky, Tolstoy, and other more philosophical writers, I yearned to find an author whose style would be the ultimate model for me to follow.

In 9th grade I had a wonderful literature course that consisted of a compilation of short stories from around the world, and there I encountered the work that introduced me into the world of Thomas Wolfe. It was called “ The Far and the Near.” Upon reading the story, my reaction was of complete shock: never before had I imagined that one could write with such piercing clarity and moving emotion, yet maintain complete control over language. The writing was lush and flowing, the words and meaning were a declaration of reality. Moreover, there was real, simple truth in every phrase.

I obtained nearly every book of his after reading that story, and my initial feelings were proved: Thomas Wolfe was a genius. Reading him is like listening to a beautiful piece of music and not wanting it to end. It is like taking in a painting and not being able to marvel at it enough. Likewise, when I read Wolfe, a “thirst” builds up within me that I cannot quench. I yearn for the writing to live in me, to pour out freely from inside like poetry in prose.

In addition to pursuing this desire in college, I plan to follow another important aspect of my cultural life. Like Wolfe in his semi-autobiographical novels, I, too, feel the power and importance of holding fast to my roots. Although I was born in the States, Russian was my first language and I continue to speak it fluently at home. My dream is to combine my love for writing, literature, and these two languages in order to dedicate myself in helping other young people to discover and develop their talents. By passing on to the next generation the inspiration that I received from Thomas Wolfe, and many other great authors, I hope to enrich my own knowledge, talents, and experiences in support of the belief that true art is indeed immortal.