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Life science inspiration from books

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I'm applying to PhD programs in microbiology / immunology / pathology - being in the sciences seems to have automatically made my writing relatively dry and to the point, although I have been an avid prose writer in my free time. Regarding my inspiration, my true initial interest in these fields came from reading books like The Andromeda Strain (fiction) and The Demon in the Freezer (non-fiction) when I was in high school, in addition to my science classes at the time, of course. Should I include information like this?

It has potential to seem juvenile and irrelevant if I don't do it right, so I have refrained from putting anything like it in my SOP template so far. If I do include it, how should I best tie it in to the rest of my educational / research experience?



Thanks in advance

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I think that if they truly influenced you, you could talk about reading science fiction and non-fiction as a teen and how it inspired you. I wouldn't mention a Michael Crichton book specifically, though. The committee will mostly care about your ability to be a successful graduate student and not your flowery prose (I think). Have there been any recent papers that have influenced your graduate school decisions?

I have also noticed that my ability to write has pretty much dried up into technical styles only. It's hard for me to enjoy any other kind of writing now--and I was originally a poetry major. It's rather unfortunate. In magazines, I now skip over fiction and go straight to profiles or journalistic writing.

Edited by habanero
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I used a similar type of opening - I think it can work, as long as it's very short (1-2 sentences max) and it's clear you have matured past the "OMG the scientists in Jurassic Park had the coolest job ever" phase.

E.g.: "As a high school student, thrilled by the scientific derring-do in novels such as The Andromeda Strain and The Demon in the Freezer, I decided to study biology. Many years later, I am still awed by the power of biology, but I have come to appreciate the craftsmanship and hard work that has gone into building our knowledge. As a graduate student, I hope to become part of this tradition. My research interests are..."

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