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"A Role Model in Fiction" (Common App essay) the influence of a fiction char.


cmvitolo 1 / 4  
Aug 31, 2009   #1
Describe a character in fiction, a historical figure, or a creative work (as in art, music, science, etc.) that has had an influence on you, and explain that influence.

As a child, I watched a variety of humorous and educational cartoons. Each and every show gave me new ideas to think about, and they paved the way to my imagination. Throughout my childhood, I have always been intrigued by fantasy and mysteries. Then, one morning when I got up earlier than usual and flipped the switch to turn on the television, I was introduced to a fictional show that I have never seemed to have forgotten. It was because of one character that I just could not divert my eyes.

He was a role model of a father, a great guy, strong and above all, caring. This one character, named Goku, demonstrated this beautiful personality, and his positive attitude and pure heart affected me. Suddenly, I wanted to be the same way. I yearned to look at life the same way he did. No matter what situation befell me, I wanted to smile and never look back at the negatives.

As a follower Christ, I was further influenced by Goku's ability to do exactly what Christ had suggested we do: "Love your enemy."

In the midst of all his success in martial arts and his strength, he never fought to kill, and he never held any hate in his heart. He always fought with his enemies but not before asking them to change. He showed kindness to the very people who were trying to kill him! At first it seemed too unrealistic, but Goku's actions reminded me of Christ, who forgave those opposed him, beat him, and crucified him.

In my early teen years, I had faced a great deal of changes as well as adversity. I was growing up, and my peers were unpleasant and vulgar people to be around. I did not make many friends because I was intimidated by the selfish and crude conversations. Then, I found myself thinking about how Goku's childish but loving attitude seemed to draw others to the same attitude, and instead of avoiding people, it seemed better to sit right in the midst of everyone, especially during lunch, and be myself. It was better that people knew who I was, and the choice was up to them to accept or not accept me.

In the show, it was Goku's love and desire to protect that allowed him to become the world's greatest martial artist. He was determined and never gave up. Even when times became more complicated, I would remember to never give up and never back down because I was inspired when Goku took every challenge ever presented to him and never stopped until he surpassed each one.

In high school, I raised my goals even higher, and I would never stop until my goals were met or surpassed them with flying colors. Goku's love, to his son and his friends, as well as his diligence continued to impact my thinking and my actions. More than ever, I wanted to be as friendly as possible to everyone around me. I always wanted to laugh things off and surpass my own expectations in school.

Ever since I first watched Goku on T.V., my own personality has changed in a beneficial way. I may have been pessimistic as a child, but now, I see the world in a new light. By Goku's way of life, I further realize just how satisfying a positive and loving outlook can be. There were many moral lessons I learned and many truths that I came to realize. One quote that I will always remember is, "What I represent can never be destroyed!"

EF_Simone 2 / 1,986  
Aug 31, 2009   #2
Are you replying to a religious institution?
OP cmvitolo 1 / 4  
Aug 31, 2009   #3
No, does that mean I should take that part out?
EF_Sean 6 / 3,491  
Sep 1, 2009   #4
The standard answer: No, of course not. You should be true to yourself, and Christ clearly plays an important role in your life. In fact, it makes one wonder why you didn't write about Christ instead of Goku. You should probably revise your essay to focus entirely on Christ.

The truth: Yes. Most secular universities contain a high proportion of what might be termed radical atheists. Your religious dedication is therefore likely to be viewed as a negative by your audience. If you want to maximize your chances of admission, avoid religious references in your writing.
EF_Simone 2 / 1,986  
Sep 1, 2009   #5
I'm going to come down in the middle here. These days, colleges and universities bend over backwards to accommodate what are increasingly called "people of faith." However, the heavy religious focus of this essay made me assume you were applying to Bob Jones or some other overtly religious institution. If I were reading this essay at a secular university, I would worry: Is this somebody who won't be able to participate in secular class discussions with people of other faiths because s/he can't quit referring to Christ in every other sentence?
OP cmvitolo 1 / 4  
Sep 1, 2009   #6
I would've wrote about Christ, but he's not fictional. If I want a chance at admission, I should edit out that part then. I can understand the worry that the university would hold, and I guess there is no way for them to know how well I can converse with people of other faiths or lack thereof. Even though it is the truth, should I omit it?
EF_Simone 2 / 1,986  
Sep 1, 2009   #7
Would it be possible to tone it down? To make one reference to the similarity you see between the character and Jesus Christ but then focus on the character without continually referring back to Christ?
OP cmvitolo 1 / 4  
Sep 1, 2009   #8
Yeah, I think I could do that. I wanted my essay to show who I was, so if I tone it down, then I am still showing that side of me.
EF_Sean 6 / 3,491  
Sep 1, 2009   #9
I would've wrote about Christ, but he's not fictional.

Describe a . . . a historical figure,

I trust you will agree that Christ is a historical figure, something even heathens don't generally deny. But the point is moot, since you're trying to cut back on the religious references. Or maybe it's not. I still have my doubts about mentioning Christ at all, because, really, given what you like about Goku, and the obvious importance of religion in your life, it raises the question of why you didn't write about Christ to begin with, since the prompt does not in fact limit you to fictional characters. Writing about Christ directly would also allow you to emphasize that you are a non-judgmental, open-minded Christian more into the NT than the OT (most everything that is problematic about Christianity comes from the OT, I've noticed). Or, you could expurgate the religious references altogether and go with the essay you have now, which is fine otherwise. But mixing the two doesn't seem to be a great idea.
OP cmvitolo 1 / 4  
Sep 1, 2009   #10
I guess I must have overlooked the second half of the prompt...woops. Forgive my ignorance, but what does NT and OT stand for?
I don't know why I didn't see that in the prompt, but you are probably right about the two being mixed. I'll make a different essay and then decide which one I want to use.
DerekPadula - / 1  
Sep 10, 2009   #11
Hi Christina,

I think he meant Old Testament and New Testament.

By the way, you may want to check out the book The Dao of Dragon Ball. It discusses Goku and his relationship to historical figures such as Christ and Buddha Shakyamuni. I'm the author and I found this essay while doing further research for the book. I recommend it in your case because I've had a couple of people write in and say that they've been waiting for a Dragon Ball book like this for a long time as it reminds them of Goku's Christ-like actions. It's evident in your essay as well that you can see the similarities.

The book's site is at TheDaoOfDragonBall.

Free excerpts are available, such as A Super Man, which analyzes the relationships between Goku, Superman, Noah, and Jesus. You may find it a valuable (though now outdated) resource for writing your essay, and I'd be happy to discuss the subject with you further. I can be contacted through the site.

thedaoofdragonball.com/Excerpt/Excerpts.html

Wish you well.
openfly32196 - / 1  
Nov 28, 2012   #12
I like it. I think you may have a good chance at admision. You may want to think about changing the title though. Unfortuanatly, not everyone knows what a kamehameya is!!
jackiegirl33 2 / 7  
Nov 28, 2012   #13
I can't see the whole essay just that first intro paragraph but from that paragraph here's my feedback:
"As a child, I watched a variety of humorous and educational cartoons." Very boring first sentence, change it to something that will make the reader want to read it.

"Then, one morning when I got up earlier than usual and flipped the switch to turn on the television, I was introduced to a fictional show that I have never seemed to have forgotten." Try using more sophisticated vocabulary. Maybe 'One morning, rising out of bed earlier than accustomed to..."

Also "I have never seemed to have forgotten..." sounds awkward. Try rewording
flyinj2alridi - / 1  
Nov 28, 2012   #14
Thanks.

Um, i have it posted in the second box. D u see it?
jackiegirl33 2 / 7  
Nov 28, 2012   #15
"Suddenly I wanted to be the same way..." Awkward phrasing. Try saying he was your role model, or how much you looked up to him instead.

"Never let the negatives slow me down..." Maybe never let the adverse/detrimental slow me down. Try using more sophisticated vocabulary
"In my early teen years, I had faced a great..."
"my peers were unpleasant and vulgar people to be around. " Maybe try 'surrounding me were unpleasant, and vulgar peers" just an idea, you don't have to use it

" I did not make many friends because I was intimidated by the selfish and crude conversations" Maybe 'Intimidated by their selfish and crude conversations, I was unable to develop many friendships.'


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