episode four we’re gonna talk today about your story [Music] you [Music] it’s a place for winners everybody thinks that their English is the major component in their essay is it good enough what really matters is how you write your approach to writing when did you understand what Tolstoy was about you didn’t coal story is not about any particular thing it’s about a conversation that you’re having for the rest of your life very big idea Russians are very comfortable with big ideas guess what the essay is not a big idea it’s not a big philosophical thing it’s very short it’s very to the point take Stephen King what the movie version of your life looks like and the movie version of your life is quite different how do we get moving there’s a simple technique called thesis and approach to writing in which you put your main idea right up front thesis is a simple formula that contains three points 1 2 3 so they give you a question oh what’s your favorite food what is your goal my goal my goal is to become my goal and you’re thinking oh don’t I have to save that for the end if you do you lose because no one’s gonna want to read your introductory essay until the end they’re gonna they’re gonna quit and you ESPE about your profile what are the key elements you’re trying to deliver in your profile your skills something that happened to you that changed you your values your opinions great academic achievement a funny story does what your school is looking for they’re looking for these valuable elements hmm USP he’s got a huge score on the GMAT USP oh he’s a great consultant he’s sold millions of dollars worth of stuff oh he’s an incredible mathematician and he teaches at the greatest school he lives in the country and he has the first organic farm in the region whatever it could be anything it could be wider a wider range of subject than you think it can be an amazing fact when I was 10 years old I stole my grandfather’s car and I drove to the Ukraine an image a swimmer who was winning the race or a narrative how their father quit smoking when he was a child he watched his father quit smoking and it made a huge impression on him and you would say well this story is not about me it’s about my father who’s quitting smoking but exactly about you because you observed it it made an impression on you and it will make an impression on us why because we can see your dad we can see the picture of your dad and we can see him throwing the cigarettes down this is a kind of thing a cinematic thing that brings a reader into an essay so you only got 500 words or less and you got to deliver an amazing story and you can’t do it in 500 pages so you can’t afford an introduction so start with the real important thing what is the most important thing start with it it doesn’t matter as long as it brings us into your life where we can see you we can understand about you from this amazing fact image or narrative we’re using something called a modular approach what is the difference between chronological and modular chronological demands sequence first second third that’s all right in the bad but it meant I was young I got a little bit older got a little bit older got a little bit older it’s all biographic soup going down the sewer just way too much information the modular approach allows you to talk about a particular subject your dog and your relationship to the dog and how this was important the first time you were in an airplane the time you led the team on a project all by yourself and you were blinded by the Sun and you had to do it by sense of feel yeah and you’re saying it didn’t happen to me that I can’t use that story it didn’t happen to be terrible into your life and there is something amazing because everybody has an amazing story you know it if you don’t have an amazing story you haven’t looked far enough the problem is looking for it it’s difficult to look for it because it’s never been something that you’ve needed to show somebody to get something that you want so now to do it some interesting examples about story so I’ve been working with writers Russian writers for 15 years and let me tell you it’s amazing you guys are just amazing I’ve heard some of the greatest stories and I want to tell you some of these tours so you can get an idea of what works there’s the guy who wrote about his failure as a mountain climber and you’re gonna say why did he write about his failure as a mountain climber you would think he’d write about a success know he learned everything he need to know by failing he was climbing the mountain and he was hiding the fact that he was sick because he wanted to reach the peak he wanted to get there and then he became sick and he became a burden to his friend and it was dangerous and he realized o-m-g I’m doing the wrong thing and this was his aha moment and he’s on top of the mountain and there’s snow everywhere and I’ve gotta carry him down in a gurney and it’s his big it’s his big deal and it was his aha moment his moment of total embarrassment which turned out to be a turning point in his leadership great story another guy he wrote about building a dacha with his father his father was a construction guy and he was a consultant and so the construction guy and the consultant get together and they’re gonna build that a doctor together and they’re father and son and you can imagine chaos ensues they can’t agree on the nails they can’t agree on the hammer the father thinks he’s smarter than the son the son thinks he’s smarter than the father and they’re trying they’re trying to work this out and it’s actually a complete analogy of the relationship and how they’re going to get along they’re trying to build something both sides realized that the other one is pretty smart that they’re related to each other and that is the source of their genius and they finish the doctor and the guy goes to school another story I really love about the girl who put on a fire with a $700 coat a lady coming home from work she’s in the village and there’s a fire and she’s all alone and she’s on the road and she doesn’t know what to do the fire is going towards the village he’s all by herself she’s in the village so there’s no cell coverage or cell phone doesn’t work what to do no water no phone what to do she’s got a coat so she gets out there in her heels and he’s putting out the fire with a 700 code sacrifice it was something important to her but the fire was going to the village that’s more important that shows priorities what she sees as important that you say oh it’s just a coat yeah but it’s a $700 coat and you’re gonna think about it boys right and you don’t have much time so at the tense situation like in the movies did you want to have a great introduction skip the introduction and go straight to the point give us thesis that’s what we want once you build your thesis and you engage your reader and you show them some of the highlights of your profile with USP then you can go on in your essay and explain what that means you can deliver more value as you go down and finish your essay come back soon to the War Room and we’re going to talk about trajectory take one