Essay Brain Frequently Asked Questions


Can a personal statement really make a difference in my application?

We know that the personal statement can be a crucial part of every application.  What difference can an application essay make? 

Consider this: for a few moments, an audience of highly educated deans and professors asks you to tell them about yourself, allows you ample time to prepare an answer, and then offers you their undivided attention as they read your personal statement.  

Also recognize that your application is one of hundreds or even thousands that the board must read. The other applicants are used to getting good grades, excellent test scores, and will boast solid letters of recommendation.  What chance then does your application essay have in setting yourself apart?

It can make all the difference.

How you respond to this opportunity to address this audience says much about your character.  Of course you can plop down and recite customary answers that are gauged to impress just as others do, and collapse far short of where you could have gone, and lose what the experience could have—and should have—been.  

How rare it is to have someone give a well thought out answer to those questions.  We’ve seen application essays turn the admissions board into advocates, stretching to recuit certain candidates because of the impact of their essay.  For some, it has made the difference in getting accepted. For others, it has been a key ingredient in recieving scholarships.

How long will writing my application essay take?

Since most people (including us)  hate “it depends” answers, we will first acknowledge that it depends, but provide more concrete answers as well.

Most applicants have not worked through a writing process like the Essay Brain methodology and therefore will have to adjust their writing habits. Most applicants typically do well enough to get good grades on papers, and think that a first draft = a B+ or A-. A second or third draft certainly merits and A to A+.

Not here. While counting drafts is natural what’s most important is the ability to get to a point in your writing that we detect your authentic personality and voice. Some applicants believe they are exceptional writers and micro-edit each draft so that it works against them. They expect that each draft will be their last.  Please – don’t do that to yourself.  Allow yourself the time to work through drafts until we find something that sets you apart.

The earlier you start, the better the opportunity to come up with something remarkable. There are harsh realities of deadlines and due dates that require that you submit your applicaiton by a specific date, but we recommend submitting your application early.

Will you write my essay?

Absolutely not.  Not only is it dishonest, but you are robbing yourself of the chance to learn from the experience. 

Which tutor will I work with?

Typically a member of our tutoring team will take the lead in communicating with you, but we are unique in that work as a team, rather than just assign you to an individual tutor. Our tutors come from a wide range of backgrounds, from law, business,  education, and others.  We want our clients to benefit from that broad range of experience. To that end, we approach tutoring with mutliple collaborators behind the scenes.


Tutoring/ Workshop Packages

What happens in a workshop?

Virtual workshops are a place where tutors and applicants meet in a virtual meeting room and work through an intensive instruction and drafting process.   Initially tutors present information and then make suggestions for writing tasks, and then regroup after several minutes to share what we’ve written and continue on with the next phase – repeating the opportunity to write multiple times throughout the workshop.  We also take time to work one-on-one (or mutiple tutors with one applicant) while the other participants are writing.

You can expect to have a great jumpstart on the writing process. The cost of the workshops can also be deducted from a full package tutoring service if you choose to purchase both.

Can you meet with me in person if I am local?

Probabably, but I wouldn’t make that a major factor in whether or not you work with us. We lead workshops in person and online, and most tutoring is done online. Applicants come from across the world. We have had clients from faraway places like India and Egypt, and from across the United States. Plan on sharing drafts online, with several phone conferences.

Can I have you review my draft to see if it's good?

Yes. You can sign up for a single draft review session. If you choose to work with us thereafter we will apply the full cost of the initial draft review to the package of your choice. 

What makes your service different or better than other tutoring services?

Rather than charge a per-draft fee, we prefer to take you through the natural writing process. People don’t just sit down and write a great essay on their first attempt. Applicants focused on paying per draft naturally try to finish the essay in as few drafts as possible. The pressure is on to get the essay finished right away, instead of having the freedom to work through ideas and drafts to find something deeper and more true to the way you think and who you are.  Our methods embrace that natural writing process. Sometimes you will write a few paragraphs and sometimes you might write more than a page – and with each draft we look for your authentic voice. Then, we hone in and focus in that direction as we draw closer to that final draft.  

Can you work with students living outside of the United States?

Yes, as long as you meet the following criteria:  1) you must be able to speak English, and 2) make payment in US dollars and you may need to adjust your schedule to fit our working hours (depending on your time zone).   

Drafting Process

How does the tutoring process work?

We schedule an initial startup call and get to know your goals and your schedule for applications. Then, we roll up our sleeves and get to work. This typically includes sharing a folder with the ability to both work together on drafts.   You are responsible for moving as quickly as you like. Expect to receive feedback and directions regarding what to do next within a day of each draft – and sometimes more often than that.  In the background, our tutoring team will be reviewing your drafts and collaborating to identify the best direction to take after each draft.

How quickly can I get my essay done?

Try to start early so that you have time to work through the writing process and get your essay done in time for early application deadlines.  If you are trying to make a deadline that is coming up soon, you can contact us and see if we can arrange to have an intensive writing schedule. This may include working through mutliple drafts a day and working to finish quickly. This is not ideal and we only accept these arrangements when we have the bandwidth to do so.


How much do I need to pay to get started?

You can enroll in the Essay Brain program that fits your needs. Payment is due at the commencement of the service.

Do you offer scholarships?

Yes. If you are interested in applying for an Essay Brain scholarship send an email to with “Scholarship Request” in the subject line and we will send you the scholarship application form.

How do I make a payment and get started?

You can enroll by selecting a package and paying through the online process. We will provide a receipt and you will receive contact information so that we can schedule our startup meeting.


Will your service make a difference in my application?

Naturally, there are no guarantees in the application process. Clients have often received personal notes and positive reviews and outcomes with essays that they have written through our guidance and tutoring. We have had clients who’ve been rejected by multiple schools in through the years and re-applied using an essay they wrote through our help, and they have been accepted to top 10 programs. We do not write application essays for our clients, but we do provide in-depth tutoring, feedback, guidance, and editing to lead you through the writing process and craft an essay that represents you at your best.

Still need help? Send us a note!

For any other questions, please Contact Us.