“The science behind the art of legal writing is a book that belongs to every collection of university law libraries and to the office of every professor of legal writing. In the introduction, the authors acknowledge the plethora of legal texts available to complement any legal writing program, but this is the first to explain the science behind the guidelines given by legal writing professors and legal writing manuals. It is a one-stop shop to learn and understand the science behind legal writing, where students can learn to make informed and logical decisions about how to structure their legal writing. – Whitney A. Curtis, Law Library Journal, Vol. 112:3 This text provides easy access to research in the form of socio-psychological experiences, statistical analyses, and surveys (some by others and others by authors). suggesting that much of the advice given to legal writing students is supported by sound science. As a complementary text for a first-year legal writing course, or as the main text for an advanced legal writing course, The Science Behind the Art of Legal Writing provides evidence, in addition to the statement “because I told you so,” that students must follow many common legal writing conventions. Legal writing is partly a skill course. Learning to cook and learning to write are two skills that need to be developed. And both can be learned. No one hatches out of the egg with writing skills.

Writing skills, similar to cutting an onion (Julia discovered), improve significantly when a person uses easy-to-use techniques. Mastering the art of legal “writing” also includes mastering the art of legal analysis and research, which is why our first-year course is called Legal Analysis, Writing and Research. To this, I would also add mastery of the art of legal reading, which requires careful reading and critical thinking. Watching the film reminded me of how students develop in their legal writing classes. Legal writing is a mirror held up to the author, who learns his own thoughts and ideas from there. In this way, improving legal writing skills helps the author identify the development of his thinking. Legal writing could eventually be done not for an audience, but for personal use. It is a measure of the author`s patience to express in writing with skill and precision. Legal writing could be a possible representation of the author`s philosophy and remains one of the most important skills within the legal profession today. Mark Twain was right when he said, “I apologize for such a long letter – I didn`t have time to write a short one.” Repetition must be avoided at all costs. Any word written in the article or opinion can only promote the motive of the jurist.

Legal writing must remain free from any blind adaptation of worn-out writing habits. These habits could use complex sentences, redundant vocabulary, and verbosity. Pompous language could prevent the reader from engaging in the writer`s future works on a bad day. Moreover, well-intentioned legal language[7] could leave the reader completely confused as to what the author is trying to convey. Write and develop bullet points, practice brevity[8] throughout the written piece, leave unnecessary words aside to keep the written article more effective. [8] Charrow, V., Erhardt, M.K. and Charrow, R. (2007). Clear and effective legal drafting.

Austin, Texas: Wolters Kluwer Law & Business, Aspen Publishers. What evidence is there to support the advice that legal writing professors offer their students? For example, do legal readers really prefer short sentences and active voice? Is it a description of the best way to start a memo or briefing? Can a particular font make a letter more compelling? Is deductive reasoning the most effective form of legal argumentation? Will a legal author view the use of the word “unambiguously” with skepticism? Are judges annoyed by minor grammatical errors or typos? These and many other questions are addressed in The Science Behind the Art of Legal Writing. This text provides an easy gateway to research in the form of socio-psychological experiments, statistical analyses, and surveys (some by others and others by authors) suggesting that much of the advice given to legal writing students is supported by sound science.

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