usage

Spell-Checkers Won’t Catch These Usage Bungles

Does your spell- and grammar-checker proof your writing and make your usage decisions? Some common usage errors should make you think twice.

Fear Not Beginning Sentences with And or But

Old superstitions die hard. Yes, you can begin sentences with And and But

Use 5-Cent Words for 10-Dollar Ideas

To convey big ideas in your legal writing, use short, familiar Anglo–Saxon words.

Effective Writing is Efficient Writing

To write efficiently, uncover buried verbs and cut useless prepositions. Clients appreciate efficiency and the courtesy that comes with it.

Is it Time for Contractions in Legal Writing?

Contractions don't deserve the label of uneducated vulgarisms. So why do judges and lawyers avoid them in their legal writing?

The Pitfalls of Sentence Adverbs in Legal Writing

Good legal writers avoid the myriad problems caused by using sentence adverbs in legal writing. Here's how you can too.

Legal-Writing Resolutions for 2013 (Part Two)

Assuming the world doesn't end on December 21, here are some New Year's resolutions that can improve your legal writing in 2013 (Part 2 of 2)

Legal-Writing Resolutions for 2013 (Part One)

Assuming the world doesn't end on December 21, here are some New Year's resolutions that can improve your legal writing in 2013 (Part 1 of 2).

Persnickety Lawyers Hyphenate Phrasal Adjectives

Persnickety lawyers hyphenate phrasal adjectives. Novices don't. So stop perpetuating this usage mistake by learning some basic rules.

Simple Legal Writing a Newfangled Idea? Hardly.

A simple, direct style of legal writing isn't a newfangled idea. In fact, this style has deep roots in Western literature and law. So let's defend it.