During our first week of work, the summer associates participated in a firm wide writing workshop with the Director of the University Writing Programs at the University of Chicago. It was a great experience to actively learn and participate with the summer associates in all of the Quarles offices around the nation. I took away practical editing techniques that I had never been exposed to in any of my other education, and I have already used these techniques to improve my summer work product.
Professor Larry McEnerney's Writing Workshop was informative and captivating. His reader-focused approach provided a great introduction to practical legal writing, i.e. how to convey value to the client. This was one of my favorite summer associate training programs at Quarles & Brady.
The Writing Workshop was extremely beneficial. The professor provided information that debunked several myths I had about legal writing. In addition, he showed how simple tweaks in wording can vastly improve the experience for those reading your work. The tips he provided have helped both my legal writing and my writing in routine interactions such as email. I will use the tips and exercises presented throughout the summer and my legal career.
The Writing Workshop Quarles offers is excellent. Professor McEnerney not only explained how to do things but why they were more persuasive. His understanding of language and why readers read things the way they do is something that all lawyers would find extremely helpful. I'm very glad Quarles offers such a great workshop to their summer associates.
Professor McEnerney's Workshop provided specific tips to produce clear, valuable writing. Those tips have been helpful in approaching summer assignments, and I'm so glad Quarles & Brady offered this opportunity early in the summer.
Professor Larry McEnerney is a force of nature. We all learned so much from his workshop in just a few short hours and now think about writing in an entirely different way. Professor McEnerney focused on the reader's experience, showing us that how we process our own writing isn't necessarily how it comes out on the page for the person reading it. This realization has changed how we approach writing—I have already used many of his tips and diagnostic tools in my memoranda and other projects, and I find myself a better writer for it.
The Writing Workshop was a unique perspective and learning experience on how to write better. It seemed like a waste of time at the beginning, since each of us thought we all knew how to write. But the workshop leader deconstructed our writing process and showed us how to turn complex writing into clear, reader-friendly writing. It was a great exercise.
The Writing Workshop was a fantastic crash-course that helped serve as a refresher on the many topics covered in a typical legal writing course. In particular, the workshop helped me improve my proofreading abilities, as well as understand why my proofreading in the past had been ineffective. Overall, Professor McEnerney's focus on "writing for a reader" is a mantra that has been especially helpful with the assignments I've completed following the workshop.
The Writing Workshop was just as helpful this summer as it was the last. It was useful to be reminded of writing tips that would make us all better writers if we just remembered to put them to use.
The Writing Workshop has helped me focus more on writing for the people reading my work. Professor McEnerney emphasized that writing and reading are two different processes. Good writers know how to communicate their messages in ways their readers will understand. This is especially critical in the legal field. I came away from the Writing Workshop with a few tips on how to make small changes in my writing that will have big impacts on the messages I am communicating.
After completing four semesters of law school writing classes, I was initially skeptical that Professor Larry McEnerney possessed information on legal writing that I had not already heard. I could not have been more wrong. The Writing Workshop Quarles sponsored and Professor McEnerney led could not have been more interesting or useful. He was able to show the Summers some "next level" writing techniques, and helped me shift my focus away from what I was writing, and to think more about the person reading my work. Professor McEnerney also led us deep into the specific ways our writing can be difficult to read, and taught us how to make sentences more appealing to readers through the use of subject/verb agreement, turning nouns into verbs, and even how to properly use passive voice. I have made a conscious effort to use these techniques in my assignments this summer, and I think it has led to genuine improvement in my writing. Thanks Professor!