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Don’t Hate. Annotate.

  “When we mean to build, We first survey the plot, then draw the model.” William Shakespeare, Henry IV act 1, sc. 3             Once you have identified the pertinent facts, applicable law, and best legal issues, you are ready to develop an annotated outline of...

Research – Method Over Madness

“Though this be madness, yet there is method in’t.”                                  – Hamlet, Act II, Scene 2; Polonius in conversation with Hamlet, supposedly mad   This is my next installment on developing a system for writing appellate briefs that  (1)...

Reviewing the Record/Identifying the Issues

“Not everything that can be counted counts, and not everything that counts can be counted.” ~ William Bruce Cameron, Informal Sociology, 1963   Your brief must tell a compelling story, one that makes the appellate court want to rule in your favor...

Build Your House, Part 3 – Quality Assurance

“If you think good architecture is expensive, try bad architecture.” – Brian Foote, software architect   In response to last week’s Bard of the Bar post (Build Your House Part 2 – Blueprint), a colleague who receives this blog asked me to clarify what I...

Build Your House, Part 2 – Blueprint

”There’s nothing ill can dwell in such a temple. If the ill spirit have so fair a house, Good things will strive to dwell with’t.” – William Shakespeare, The Tempest, Act 1, Scene 2   “If you don’t know where you are going, you’ll end up...

Build Your House

  “There are two things wrong with legal writing. One is style.  The other is content.”  Judge Mark P. Painter, 31 APR Mont. Law (April 2006).               We lawyers are not known for being good writers.  Perhaps that is because writing is hard.  Someone...

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