Brainstorm: 5 Contradictions

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Humans are complex, contradictory, creatures. 

Contradictions can add texture and complexity to your essay.

Here are five contradictory things about me:

  1. I love beating my younger brother in chess, but afterwards I always feel guilty.

  2. In college I had no problem giving my girlfriend a kiss but would never drink from the same straw.

  3. I have thousands of used books lining the walls of my home but have read fewer than 25% of them cover-to-cover.

  4. I love BBQ sauce but can’t stand vinegar. (BBQ sauce is vinegar-based, btw.)

  5. I will turn off the faucet while brushing my teeth to save water but sometimes leave the shower running for minutes in order to heat up the water, wasting a whole lot more.

What does each detail reveal about me? You decide. The point is this: contradictions are fascinating because they represent a mystery, a puzzle. They’re what make a character in a story complex. Opposites make us want to know more. And your contradictory details will make your reader want to know more.

What's a contradiction or quirk you have? Comment below.


Another great read: The Great College Essay Test


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