Sunday, September 9, 2007

writing for bar journals

It feels good to write and publish articles that have a receptive audience. Witness the popularity of legal writing articles and columns in state bar journals and bar association newsletters. Several legal writing professors regularly write such pieces. As Suzanne Rowe remarks, "Articles on writing can be fun to write and busy lawyers appreciate the tips."

Here are links or other directions to seveal. Use the "comment" feature below to share news of or links to others.

  • Suzanne Rowe and colleagues at the U of Oregon write for The Oregon Bar Bulletin. Go to, click "Archives," and look for the monthly column "The Legal Writer."
  • Gail Stephenson of Southern University Law Center has written a column titled "Gail's Grammar" in the Baton Rouge Bar Association's magazine since 1995.  Go to and click  "View all" beside "Gail's Grammar" to access them all.
  • Joe Kimble of Cooley Law School has written the "Plain Language" column in the Michigan Bar Journal since 1984. Go to
  • Two legal writing profs from Suffolk University Law School, Julie Baker and Lisa Healy, write a monthly column, "Write On," in Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly newspaper. 
  • Kathleen Dillon Narko writes a column for the CBA Record, the magazine of the Chicago Bar Association. She recently published an article there as well, about the shortcomings of CALR, if used in the wrong way: There Is No "Easy" Button, 21 CBA Record 69 (June/July 2007) (available on Westlaw and Lexis).


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1. Gertrude Block, Language Tips (monthly), Illinois State Bar Association (archives back to 2000)
She runs a column in at least one other bar publication--New York State Bar Association, but it's restricted to members.
2. Judge Mark Painter(Ohio First District Court of Appeals), The Legal Writer (monthly), LawyersUSA (articles back to March 2002)
3. Robert C. Cumbow, 14 columns (two to four a year back to 2003) Washington State Bar News
4. K.K. Duvivier, The Scrivener: Modern Legal Writing, The Colorado Lawyer (six articles a year dating back to 1991)
5. Kenneth F. Oettle, Making Your Point, New Jersey Law Journal (twice-a-month column dating back to October 2002)
6. Rick Bales, Effective Legal Writing, Kentucky Bench & Bar (13 columns from Jan 2002 through July 2004); they're posted on ssrn.
7. Scott Moises, The Scrivener, South Carolina Lawyer (about six columns a year since Nov 2002); available only to subscribers, but here's a link to a list of articles (look under "Legal Writing"):
8. Thomas Haggard, The Scrivener, South Carolina Lawyer (about six columns a year from July 1994 through March 2001, though I think his column dates back before then); use the link in Item 7 to see a list of his articles.
9. Terri LeClercq, Texas Bar Journal, occasional articles from 1986 through 1993
10. Gerald Lebovits, The Legal Writer, New York State Bar Association; longstanding column, but it requires subscription/membership.

Posted by: SAM | Sep 10, 2007 3:55:39 AM

Thanks for adding to our list! This is additional evidence of the ways legal writing profs can be of help to the practicing bar.

Posted by: Coleen Barger | Sep 16, 2007 4:16:49 PM

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