I currently find myself in a conundrum. My verbal and analytic writing GRE scores were excellent, but my quantitative scores were low. I’m fairly sure that, if I took it again, I could raise my quantitative score by 2-3 points (which would move me from around the 48th Percentile to around the 60th Percentile), but this isn’t guaranteed. I could do worse than I did the first time, which wouldn’t hurt my scores any (I can choose which scores universities see), but the test costs $200 each time I take it. Add to this the fact that I’m exhausted, everything that Alayna is going through with the pregnancy, and just life during the holidays in general and it makes retaking the GRE very stressful for both myself and for Alayna. Further, the Quantitative section of the GRE isn’t essential to my applications. I’m applying for non-analytic philosophy programs, but that doesn’t mean that it won’t count. Admissions committees often get many more applications than they have positions, and so even relatively unimportant factors (such as a quantitative GRE score) are often used to differentiate otherwise equivalent candidates. However, my overall GPA is also low (because I was a lazy bum in undergrad and my first masters program), so if I’m being differentiated from other candidates there is already plenty of reason to do so. So, I’m trying to figure out whether its worth the $200 and extra stress to retake the GRE in order to boost my score a little bit in order to strengthen the one part of my application that I am actually in control of. I’ve been praying about this decision for much of the afternoon, but I’m still not sure what to do. So, I have a writing exercise for you today, but if anyone wants to chime in with ideas, please do. For today’s exercise I’m going to give you a picture and I want you to use it as inspiration to design one part of the world you’ve started. This could be fleshing out one of the nations that you’ve already come up with or it could be creating an all new nation or continent for your world:


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