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Common App. Essay Public Speaking


Rowa 5 / 15  
Dec 10, 2009   #1
My essay is about 800 words, so I need help deleting some things.
Any comments or improvements would be appreciated!

The Wooden Stage of a Speaker



I made my first step through the creaking doors of the auditorium. I took a few more steps and I heard the door slam behind me. Instantaneously, five hundred eyes turned to spot the source of the sound. At that moment my heart started to pound one hundred times a minute. "Stay calm", I said to myself. But my heart beating right through my body disagreed. I could hear whispers; "Who is that"? "I have never heard her talk before"! I pretended not to hear the comments, looked away, and started to walk towards the stage. I could see the eyes following my every footstep. I walked up the stairs and on to the wooden stage. It seemed like a century; walking towards the podium. "This was it" I said. All my hard work writing this speech was going to finally reveal. I took a deep breath and stared to recite my speech. I paused to look at the audience. I saw their illegible faces. This is what I feared the most; not being able to distinguish if the receiver was pleased to listen or bored to death. I ended my speech with a pause; which seemed to last for hours. But then, out of the blue, applause erupted. My fear suddenly turned into excitement, when I could finally know that the audience was not bored to death, but they were more than pleased to hear what I was saying. From that moment on, I decided to devote my life to public speaking, because I didn't want the emotion I felt when I was on the stage to vanish.

It all started a few years ago at school when I was required to speak in public unprepared. I got the common symptoms of sweaty palms, trembling voice, and wobbly legs. I faced this situation more than once, until I finally decided to change. I didn't want to stay quiet just because I couldn't talk in public. I knew that I had a lot to say, and I wanted people to hear it. And there it was, the opportunity of a life time. I knew that my willingness to change allowed me to see the opportunities I was blind to see earlier. I eventually joined the Toastmasters public speaking club. I joined with an urge to change and I left as a new person. At the club, I was required to speak various times. And every time I felt that feeling, that everything was under my control, that I could do anything. This made me more certain of my decision to continue to speak in public. What made me more confident was how unique this is. Hundreds of people fear to speak in public, yet I enjoy it and consider it as a hobby. Most of the students at my school hate it when the teacher asks us to talk about something, yet I feel the excitement rush through my body, knowing that this is another opportunity for me to let people see the real person I am. I always strive to be different. To stand out from the crowd and all this made me feel different. I knew that by speaking in pubic and influencing others through my speeches, I have achieved my goal.

Although most of the students that joined the club didn't think or seem to have learned anything form the club, I was determined to make use of that experience. I grasped every opportunity I could to speak in front of a crowd. People were shocked of what I could do, due to my quiet personality. They were also surprised of the fact that I was more comfortable in front of a large crowd rather than a group of five people. And then it was time to really show off my skills, at my school's annual speech contest. I failed to participate the previous year. But the next year, I was a new person after the Toastmasters, and I succeeded. I won something that I would never have imagined a few years back. I received an award and even more for just speaking in public.

I gained respect for my ability to speak in public. People started to know who I really was, because they were influenced by my speeches. And I would never forget the day when a girl came up to me and said: "I can't wait to hear your speech, every time you go up on the stage I know that you will give a great speech." This gave me more than just confidence, it gave me motivation. She said this right before I gave an important speech. When I recited that speech, I felt an emotion even stronger and better than my other speeches. I promised myself to continue public speaking for the rest of my life and I owe it all to Toastmasters and myself.

jjeff 4 / 9  
Dec 10, 2009   #2
I think the essay is good. Though the first paragraph is way too complete. It's as if it could stand on its own as a short response.

Perhaps you can change this part:
"I ended my speech with a pause; which seemed to last for hours. But then, out of the blue, applause erupted. My fear suddenly turned into excitement, when I could finally know that the audience was not bored to death, but they were more than pleased to hear what I was saying. From that moment on, I decided to devote my life to public speaking, because I didn't want the emotion I felt when I was on the stage to vanish."

...into a thesis, or transition sentence, since this sentence in the 1st paragraph: "I decided to devote my life to public speaking, because I didn't want the emotion I felt when I was on the stage to vanish" is too similar to your concluding sentence "I promised myself to continue public speaking for the rest of my life and I owe it all to Toastmasters and myself".
surabhicool - / 1  
Dec 11, 2009   #3
not five hundred eyes make it five hundred pairs of eyes...i am not good at grammar so cant help much in that. i like your essay but praise yourself a little less. sentences like -Although most of the students that joined the club didn't think or seem to have learned anything form the club, I was determined to make use of that experience.... then it was time to really show off my skills, at my school's annual speech contest. rest i think is good. best of luck


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