Writers/Dyslexic Tricks

Dyslexic Tips On Writing A Letter Of Intent

It’s been a while. Let’s do some catching up.

I didn’t really get to have a rest after my crazy week at GDC last March. I jumped straight back into work at Microsoft, fixing broken Xbox accounts and tracking down packages that Full Sail had shipped me. I got my brand new Apple Mac Book Pro that I have happily name Mr. Apple Delight and my first course books. The following week it was right into classes where I learned about flash fiction and basic film script structure.

While I was struggling through the massive amount of reading and writing, my email box started reminding me that I still had a blog and people we’re leaving comments. I kept saying, I’ll write a post after I’m done with this chapter / writing this page. Of course, I never did until a friend of mine today reminded me that he had a blog and was catching up on his posting.

I then remembered that I promised to post once a week on either the blog or my author page, which then led me to remember I promised to post my Letter of Intent I sent to Full Sail. Well, I can at least keep one of my promises and will have to work on the other.

As promised here is the Letter of Intent I sent to Full Sail:

——————————————————————————————————————–

To whom this may concern,

            The lovely admission staff of Full Sail University told me I would need to write a letter of intent to be considered for the Creative Writing MFA at your university. In doing research on what a letter of intent is, how best to approach writing the letter, and what will really make it stand out, I realized I am incredibly unqualified for any Master Degree program, be it Creative Writing or not.

For your convenience, I have written out a list of my shortcomings:

  • Do not have a strong background in writing.
  • Knowledge of script writing for films is minimal, but script writing for comic books is passing.
  • A rudimentary understanding of character and plot development.
  • Weak sentence structure.
  • Spelling is horrid
  • Grammar is worst.
  • I have Dyslexia.

            It would not have taken you long to realize any of these shortcomings. In fact reading only the first few pages of the novella I recently published, would have made it glaringly obvious. In addition, I have been struggling with Dyslexia since I was first diagnosed with the learning disability in elementary. Perhaps that is why when looking at this list I have outlined, I laugh. If you had asked me seven years ago if I would be pursuing a Master Degree in Creative Writing, I would have pointed to that list and said absolutely not. A few weeks ago, I even contemplated giving writing up. I thought about taking down the novella that had taken two years and several edits to write, plus other writings I have posted around the internet. Then I thought back to when I first started Mydeslexicworld.com, a blog I regularly keep and has gained a small following.

            Mydeslexicworld.com was created to accomplish three goals: introducing myself as a writer, sharing the struggles of Dyslexia, as well as sharpening and polishing my written style. Had it not been for the blog and the followers reminding me how much I truly do enjoy the art of storytelling, I might have given up writing entirely. In a recent post, I stated to my readers that I felt I was lacking the tools and knowledge to master my chosen craft and how to resolve this issue. In fact, had it not been for their support I would not have had the courage to write this letter to you.

            I can assure you, I am not applying to your university on a whim. I recently spoke with a graduate of your University, to make sure I understood the fast pace breakneck speed at which your university teaches. Thankfully, DeVry University has a similar teaching style of pelting students with information and further reflects the fast changing technologically driven world we live in. The decision to apply at Full Sail University was further sealed by a member of your Advisory Board, whom I have had the pleasure of meeting and speaking with for the last few Game Developer Conferences I have attended.

            I cannot honestly say to you that I am the perfect fit for Full Sail University, or your Creative Writing MFA. I can tell you I am willing to give everything I have to acquire the knowledge of what it takes to be in the fast evolving world of written entertainment. I want to be able to easily craft more engaging characters and worlds, and share fantastical adventures across media. In short:

            I refuse to be limited by my shortcomings,

            Or tiny letters on a page.

            I will transcend past the boundaries,

            And reach beyond the lines of my dreams.

Thank you for allowing me this opportunity to apply for the Creative Writing Master’s Degree and I look most forward to your reply.

Sincerely,

Rebeca A. Easton

———————————————————————————————————————

As my L.O.T. stated, I did research on writing a letter to a university and I even asked a few people how best to approach this message.

These websites gives a good break down on how to write an L.O.T.

http://education.seattlepi.com/tips-writing-graduate-school-letter-intent-1903.html

http://www.howtodothings.com/hobbies/a4531-how-to-write-a-letter-of-intent.html

http://www.uni.edu/~gotera/gradapp/stmtpurpose.htm

This one gives you an example:

http://www.wikihow.com/Sample/Letter-of-Intent-for-Graduate-Program

If you’ve checked out those links you’ll notice they all kind of say the same thing.

  1. Address the person you’re sending your L.O.T. to.
    • This might be the professor you want to study under or the head of the program you want to enter.
  2. Introduce yourself. (Don’t get to sappy)
    • This can be something along the lines of; I have always loved games and the beautiful visuals that draws a person in.
  3. Give credentials. (You’re bragging rights)
    • I have a bachelor degree in game design with a minor in creative writing. I was awarded the plaque of AWESOMENESSS and a noble prize in badassittued.
  4. Tell them why you picked their school. (They know their awesome, tell them why.)
    • You’re school has turned out some of the top designers and I aim to be among those greats.
  5. Always end with Sincerely.

Now, my L.O.T. breaks several of these very simple rules. A quick call and email to Full Sail University did NOT yield me a name to address my letter to. I was instructed by both the admission staff and my friend on the Advisory Board to put “TO WHOM IT MAY CONCERN.”

At that point all the rules flew out the window for me and I decided to get a little sappy and tell the truth. Laid it all bare and said, “This is me take it or leave it!” The hard part was finding the balance between the formal L.O.T. and my version of it.

My approach does not work for everyone, I’m surprised it worked for me. What I can tell you is this. Every University has a different structure for their L.O.T. submission. If you’re going to apply, make sure you put your heart into it. Don’t just throw words onto a page and say “They’ll take me cause all colleges want money, and I gots money.” While this might be true for some schools, I truly believe that your L.O.T. signifies your passion and that being lazy about your L.O.T. might just make you lazy in your studies too. Start off on a strong note that’ll carry through the rest of your Master Degree journey.

Until next time my lovelies!

A penny for your thoughts?

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