How Lawyers Write

Legal writing is a required course for all 1st year law students. Yet for all the emphasis on tight, logical argumentation, pithy style with comprehensive analysis, and its application in most lawyer’s practice and judges’ work (often on a daily basis), lawyers are notoriously horrible writers. Lawyers invented legalese and are pilloried (rightly so) for using phrases like “such,” “said,” “hereintofore,” etc. No one (including lawyers) wants to read or interpret the small print or endless legalese warnings we’ve grown accustomed to seeing in daily life. Yet lawyers continue to use legalese like it’s going out of style.

Here’s Scott Turow, acclaimed novelist and attorney, on how he writes, courtesy of The Daily Beast. And here’s Louis Auchincloss, the late estate planning attorney and author of many novels about old money New York society, on his writing techniques. Enjoy.

If my law firm, Johnson Law KC LLC, can help you or your company with your IP needs – copyrights, trademarks, or related litigation, call (913-707-9220) or email me (steve@johnsonlawkc.com) for a convenient, free consultation. My firm is experienced at helping clients navigate the complex twists and turns of IP law, while adding value to clients’ creative arts and IP, and provides friendly, affordable counsel for your legal needs.

(c) 2013, Stephen M. Johnson, Esq.

How Judges Write

The Daily Beast has this interesting interview with Judge Richard A. Posner (7th Circuit, Chicago) about his writing habits. Lawyers and judges are familiar with Judge Posner’s legendarily prolific output (dozens of books and over 2,000 published opinions), covering many legal, economic, and political subjects. Posner is an intellectual polymath, a sort of Isaac Asimov meets lawyer with a day job on the federal court of appeals. He is the most cited legal scholar of the 20th century. He regularly blogs with Nobel Laureate Dr. Gary Becker (Chicago) on various topics. Whatever one thinks of his jurisprudential views and legal philosophy (pragmatic libertarian), Posner’s work has had a dramatic effect on the law, legal writing, and the rise of the “law and” movements (law and economics, law and literature, law and race, etc). Judge Posner co-founded the law and economics or cost-benefit analysis of law movement from the University of Chicago’s Law School, where he has been a faculty member (first a professor, now a senior lecturer) for decades. Posner fans and critics alike agree that when Posner retires from the bench, he will be remembered alongside Judges Learned Hand and Henry Friendly as one of the most brilliant, prolific, and influential judges of his time.

If you’re a writer, artist, inventor, or otherwise enjoy creative expression and the creative arts, you need to protect your intellectual property. If my law firm, Johnson Law KC LLC, can help you or your company with your IP needs – copyrights, trademarks, or related litigation, call (913-707-9220) or email me (steve@johnsonlawkc.com) for a convenient, free consultation. My firm is experienced at helping clients navigate the complex twists and turns of IP law, while adding value to clients’ creative arts and IP, and provides friendly, affordable counsel for your legal needs.

(c) 2013, Stephen M. Johnson, Esq.

Dickens’ London Lives

The Daily Mail brings this fascinating glimpse of a rare collection of Victorian-era photographs from 1877, taken near the dawn of photography, and affords us a vivid and intimate, if stark, look at the London of Charles Dickens, that great city that so many have grown to know and love through Dickens’ masterpieces and other literature. Photography was invented around the time of the American Civil War (1861-1865), and these early pictures give us a window into the gritty real life that Dickens observed strolling down the cobble stone streets around Britain’s capital and so memorably evoked in his classic novels.

If my law firm, Johnson Law KC LLC, can help you or your company protect your photography or other creative artistic expression – with copyrights, trademarks, or related litigation – call (913-707-9220) or email me (steve@johnsonlawkc.com) for a convenient, free consultation. My firm is experienced at helping clients navigate the complex twists and turns of IP law, while adding value to clients’ creative arts and IP, and provides friendly, affordable counsel for your legal needs.

(c) 2013, Stephen M. Johnson, Esq.

The Beauty of Books

Here’s a BBC article on some of the most stunning libraries around the world. Public libraries are great meeting places for people, ideas, and culture. Kansas Citians are blessed to have 2 excellent public libraries with multiple branch locations – the Johnson County and the Kansas City Public Libraries – along with other regional and academic libraries. Personal libraries often provide an insightful window into an individual’s mind, soul, aspirations, and intellectual life. Albert Einstein once said that he imagined heaven as a giant library – that certainly sounds good to many bibliophiles, including your author.

What’s your favorite library? Where is it? Do you get to visit often? What genres do you enjoy reading or keep in your personal library? What stories fill your mind as you travel through life’s journey and your daily life?

If my law firm, Johnson Law KC LLC, can help you or your company with your copyright or trademark needs, call (913-707-9220) or email me (steve@johnsonlawkc.com) for a convenient, free consultation. My firm is experienced at helping clients navigate the complex twists and turns of IP law, while adding value to clients’ creative arts and IP, and provides friendly, affordable counsel for your legal needs. We love ideas, books, and the creative arts as much as you do and know how to efficiently and economically protect your creative expression.

(c) 2013, Stephen M. Johnson, Esq.

Welcome to the KC Creative Arts blog

Welcome to the KC Creative Arts blog! This blog will examine IP issues (copyright, trademark, and IP litigation), digital estate planning (what happens to art when artists and creators die?), and selected arts, music, and writing. For more info, visit our Meet Us page. This blog will explore legal issues my law firm handles, but strives to offer good legal insights in a friendly, easy-going style. At my firm, we work one-on-one with each client and serve all our clients with the great legal work they deserve at an affordable price. We’re always happy to answer your questions, we explain legalese in plain English, we add value to your creative arts and IP, and we like to have fun too. Feel free to email me (steve@johnsonlawkc.com) or call me (913-707-9220) any time – I’d love to hear from you! Join our creative conversation – cheers! ~ Steve

(c) 2013, Stephen M. Johnson, Esq.