I applied for English this year.
The best thing you can do is read as much as you can and read widely as well. This includes a variety of periods and a variety of forms.
The easiest way to think of a personal statement is like an essay; the only difference is the subject is you. You’ll want an intro and a conclusion and a few main paragraphs. I found the intro and conclusion hardest to write so I wrote them last.
For the main paragraphs, I linked a variety of texts (8-10 I think) by a central theme and then grouped each couple of texts into a paragraph (3 of them were by author and one was on American Literature).
The easiest way to start a personal statement is just to write a lot and accept your fast draft will be awful; mine certainly was. Then you can cut down and refine it. That’s where the bulk of “writing” your personal statement actually happens in the redrafting.
If you want any help with your personal statement specifically or applying for English feel free to PM me.