39 ABA Journal Storytelling articles.
When my first novel hit bookstores, there was one question my lawyer friends couldn’t help but ask: “Are you going to keep practicing law?” I told them I loved being a lawyer and saw no reason to quit, to which the typical response was something along the lines of “Gee, I’m really sorry, I hope your next book does better.”
Feb 1, 2023 2:10 AM CST
My decision to teach law more than 40 years ago has had the single biggest impact on my professional development. I made the move after working as a public defender in Seattle and as an assistant attorney general. I wanted to deepen my trial skills and thought teaching could help me.
Nov 30, 2022 9:50 AM CST
Lawyers all over the world struggle with storytelling. To become better storytellers, lawyers need to leave the insulated world of legal practitioners and study what makes other professional storytellers—like novelists, journalists, advertisers and filmmakers—effective.
Aug 1, 2022 2:00 AM CDT
By diminishing law students’ belief in the power of storytelling, we rob them of the creativity and legal imagination crucial for effective lawyering, writes Philip N. Meyer, a professor at Vermont Law School and the author of Storytelling for Lawyers.
Oct 1, 2021 2:00 AM CDT
Jul 19, 2021 11:31 AM CDT
All lawyers are storytellers. And Supreme Court justices are not exceptions. Outcomes in constitutional law are typically predicated upon the stories the justices tell—interpretations of foundational “origin stories”—that shape understandings of the law and who we are as a people, writes Philip N. Meyer.
Feb 1, 2021 1:00 AM CST
Steve Jobs understood the power of great storytelling. And lawyers’ cases, like Jobs’ beloved products, are the embodiments of stories we tell others and ourselves as well. How can we tell those stories better?
Oct 1, 2020 1:20 AM CDT
Litigation unfolds upon a stage in the theater of the courtroom. And while combative, compulsive and closed litigation stories are constrained and shaped by evidentiary and legal rules and the meticulous presentation of factual evidence, lawyers are nevertheless the producers, directors and set designers of their own theatrical courtroom dramas.
Jun 1, 2020 12:50 AM CDT
Being a good judge can be lonely and emotionally excruciating. In the remarkable book Tough Cases, 13 trial judges candidly recount their most difficult cases.
Jun 1, 2019 1:20 AM CDT
For me, the most important law songs, the ones that are closest to my heart, are often not about lawyers at all but instead about themes of justice and injustice. The most remarkable of these songs are by our two greatest folk poets: Bruce Springsteen and Bob Dylan.
Apr 1, 2019 1:30 AM CDT
With winter’s chill now in full force, I recall sitting in a beach chair in late August on a spit of sand on the rocky Maine coast reading Walter Isaacson’s…
Jan 1, 2019 2:20 AM CST
Jerome Bruner, who died in 2016 at the age of 100, was one of most influential psychologists and interdisciplinary thinkers of the 20th century. Late in his career, Bruner became fascinated with the law. Trial lawyers employ the power of storytelling to, in Bruner’s words, go beyond the information given.
Nov 1, 2018 1:35 AM CDT
Bruce Springsteen pares his 500-page autobiography and more than 50 years of songs into three acts with a clear narrative arc.
Sep 1, 2018 2:10 AM CDT
An appellate prosecutor and a president show how precise timing and use of prolonged silences can enhance presentations and give arguments greater impact.
Jul 1, 2018 1:25 AM CDT
Civil rights attorney, writer and law professor Bryan Stevenson, author of the best-selling Just Mercy, employs well-told stories to reveal the plight of people trapped in the criminal justice system.
May 1, 2018 1:30 AM CDT