Thinking Like a Writer: A Lawyer's Guide to Effective Writing & Editing
If lawyers are to think and speak clearly about writing, the first step is the same as when they learn to think about an area of the law: understanding the fundamental principles that underlie all the more specific rules or advice. In writing, these principles arise from two disciplines: cognitive psychology and rhetoric (and, of course, from common sense). The first studies, among other things, how the mind absorbs and remembers complex information; the second helps us to understand how speakers and writers connect with and influence their audiences. This book will explain these principles, draw from them specific techniques for writing clearly and persuasively, and show how the principles enable you to make better use of everything you already know about writing. Most important, the book will help you to be a more effective and efficient editor, because it will show you how to spot a draft’s problems quickly, understand their causes, see the possible solutions, and choose the best one—all with the same acuity with which you spot and analyze legal issues.