Lawyers in a well-oiled department write competently. Because of that somewhat tenuous link to law department management and more because I try to write well, I began a series of posts on writing tips. I produced 21 of them and drew a scattering of comments. Nevertheless, it has been months since I last posted on writing, so when I read the following on Hannah Hasl-Kelchner’s Legal Literacy blog on Nov. 17, 2007 I thought it appropriate to explain why I have stopped.
“Ray Ward discusses the value of short sentences and cites Joanne Young’s 10 Commandments for Writing. And for lawyers trying to battle legalese, some plain language guidance is offered by The Party of the First Part and Wayne Schiess’s Legal Writing Blog with a special tip of the hat going to Sun Microsystems for putting plain language into action with its newly revised contributor agreement.”
Along with the five blogs on legal writing linked to above, there are consultants aplenty who can help in-house counsel write better (See my post of May 13, 2007 for names of some.) and there are courses. In the face of this much expertise, I decided to end my own, self-taught posts on prose style and effectiveness. Advice on how to write well should come from those who can.