In our most recent "how can we help you?" thread, a reader writes:
I recently graduated with a MA and applied to very few PhD programs during fall of 2017. I didn't get in any of them. I didn't expect to because I kind of had a feeling that my writing sample was weak. Very weak. However, I'm trying again this time around, but with a better sample (hopefully). So, i was wondering whether anybody on here knew of good resources for someone like me to get better at writing. Groups people who can help etc. Or, if there are workshops anywhere in the country that help with writing for PhD admission. Any resource, guide or advice will be very helpful. I'm more or less on my own since I'm no longer in school and my professors from my previous school have their hands full with their current students. So, anything will be helpful. Thanks.
I'm not personally aware of particular resources, but am curious whether readers do. The only real advice I have is to write, and write a lot--and to get feedback from anyone who's willing to take the time to read your stuff. Writing, like anything else, takes a ton of practice. I've rewritten particular papers from scratch upwards of a dozen times. I also draft up papers that I go on to do nothing with. To me, doing these things isn't a waste of time. It's practice! My experience, at any rate, is that the more one writes, the more one's writing skills are likely to improve.
Still, I know this doesn't really answer the reader's particular query. So, what do you all think? Do you know of any good resources for improving one's writing--particularly as it pertains to putting together a good writing sample for PhD programs?