how to publish

(On Campus Interviews, Summer Associate positions, Firm Reviews, Tips, ...)
Forum rules
Anonymous Posting

Anonymous posting is only appropriate when you are revealing sensitive employment related information about a firm, job, etc. You may anonymously respond on topic to these threads. Unacceptable uses include: harassing another user, joking around, testing the feature, or other things that are more appropriate in the lounge.

Failure to follow these rules will get you outed, warned, or banned.
Anonymous User
Posts: 326533
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

how to publish

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Aug 24, 2018 6:26 pm

I've recently graduated law school, currently on the job hunt.

My biggest goal is to publish something academic (in a journal, book, etc). It's a matter of personal fulfillment for me. I wouldn't be happy working litigation my whole life and letting all my creative/theoretical ideas slip through, I need to work on, and develop them. But I don't know the steps toward doing this, as I have never done it before. For those who have published something, do you have any advice on how to reach that goal?

How does it even work for people who have graduated? Do I have to only apply to academic jobs? Or would it also be possible to do a normal litigation job, and work on the paper during my spare time? Does anyone ever do the latter route? What kinds of jobs should I apply to?

And in terms of the paper itself, is there a process to go about it? Can I just start writing or do I have to do field research to see if anyone has touched on it before? Wouldn't that take forever? I really don't know where to go from here, but I want to at least try to make it happen, so please ELI5!

nixy

Bronze
Posts: 473
Joined: Fri Feb 16, 2018 8:58 am

Re: how to publish

Postby nixy » Fri Aug 24, 2018 8:44 pm

Were you on a journal in law school? Respectfully, it sounds like you don't know very much about the publishing process.

Yes, you do need to do research to find out if other people have written about a topic and/or what they've said - you don't just produce ideas in a vacuum. You need to think of what you write as contributing to a conversation about the topic. That conversation might be "Hey, here's this thing no one has thought about before," or it might be, "Hey, here's this thing people who've thought about this have missed/got wrong," or it might be, "Here are these two things that people have thought about before but haven't put together." Or whatever - along those lines.

You can write whenever/however works for you. You don't have to apply to academic jobs. (They're also super hard to get.) You write the article, you submit it to law reviews, they read it, lots will reject it, some may accept it.

Eugene Volokh has a book called Legal Academic Writing which goes through a lot of this in very helpful detail.

User avatar
Vursz

Bronze
Posts: 106
Joined: Mon Jun 10, 2013 7:31 pm

Re: how to publish

Postby Vursz » Fri Aug 24, 2018 9:12 pm

I’ve done this multiple times. It’s literally just a matter of putting together a CV and sending that (and the paper) to law reviews via ExpressO or Scholastica.

If you’re out of law school you’ll have to pay a fee to use the services (Scholastica, in particular, isn’t cheap), but that’s how most journals accept pieces.

Anonymous User
Posts: 326533
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: how to publish

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Aug 24, 2018 9:15 pm

Vursz wrote:I’ve done this multiple times. It’s literally just a matter of putting together a CV and sending that (and the paper) to law reviews via ExpressO or Scholastica.

If you’re out of law school you’ll have to pay a fee to use the services (Scholastica, in particular, isn’t cheap), but that’s how most journals accept pieces.


This. It's the easiest thing in the world because legal journals are not serious or peer reviewed like scientific journals. Pick any topic, come up with a thesis, stuff your paper with 120 footnotes and you're guaranteed to get published.

Anonymous User
Posts: 326533
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: how to publish

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Aug 24, 2018 10:16 pm

Vursz wrote:I’ve done this multiple times. It’s literally just a matter of putting together a CV and sending that (and the paper) to law reviews via ExpressO or Scholastica.

If you’re out of law school you’ll have to pay a fee to use the services (Scholastica, in particular, isn’t cheap), but that’s how most journals accept pieces.


Hi! Did you do this as part of a job or school? Or did you have another job, and did this during your personal time??

Anonymous User
Posts: 326533
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: how to publish

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Aug 25, 2018 3:51 pm

I'm an editor at my school's law review and we accept submissions via our website and genuinely consider all submissions. We generally look for things that are novel and relevant but can be written and appeal to a generalized audience. I've also worked as an RA for a researcher who focuses on contracts and it seems like her process is to submit to a variety of law journals because it seems like most law reviews follow the same format, and you shouldn't just submit to one journal and hope they'll put it through because a lot of journals have very intense filtering processes and each one could be looking for something slightly different. Also make sure to read thoroughly through each law review's guidelines. A lot of law reviews have guidelines on word limits and things like that and not following them can really hurt your chances of getting published through those journals. Hope that helps!

Anonymous User
Posts: 326533
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: how to publish

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Aug 26, 2018 6:18 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Vursz wrote:I’ve done this multiple times. It’s literally just a matter of putting together a CV and sending that (and the paper) to law reviews via ExpressO or Scholastica.

If you’re out of law school you’ll have to pay a fee to use the services (Scholastica, in particular, isn’t cheap), but that’s how most journals accept pieces.


Hi! Did you do this as part of a job or school? Or did you have another job, and did this during your personal time??

I'm a 2L on my school's law review, and when I was doing a callback for OCI, one of the mid-level/senior associates asked me about the submission process for my school's LR. This associate had just written an article and was looking to get it published. It seems like they did it on their free time, while I don't know first-hand, it does seem doable to write during your free time while working in biglaw. Publishing articles also look good for the firm, so I'd imagine firms would support you on this. I've also interviewed with other associates who worked on articles together and senior associates would mentor junior associates through the writing process.

Anonymous User
Posts: 326533
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: how to publish

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Aug 27, 2018 10:44 am

Anonymous User wrote:I'm an editor at my school's law review and we accept submissions via our website and genuinely consider all submissions. We generally look for things that are novel and relevant but can be written and appeal to a generalized audience. I've also worked as an RA for a researcher who focuses on contracts and it seems like her process is to submit to a variety of law journals because it seems like most law reviews follow the same format, and you shouldn't just submit to one journal and hope they'll put it through because a lot of journals have very intense filtering processes and each one could be looking for something slightly different. Also make sure to read thoroughly through each law review's guidelines. A lot of law reviews have guidelines on word limits and things like that and not following them can really hurt your chances of getting published through those journals. Hope that helps!


Thanks so much!

Anonymous User
Posts: 326533
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: how to publish

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Aug 27, 2018 10:45 am

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Vursz wrote:I’ve done this multiple times. It’s literally just a matter of putting together a CV and sending that (and the paper) to law reviews via ExpressO or Scholastica.

If you’re out of law school you’ll have to pay a fee to use the services (Scholastica, in particular, isn’t cheap), but that’s how most journals accept pieces.


Hi! Did you do this as part of a job or school? Or did you have another job, and did this during your personal time??

I'm a 2L on my school's law review, and when I was doing a callback for OCI, one of the mid-level/senior associates asked me about the submission process for my school's LR. This associate had just written an article and was looking to get it published. It seems like they did it on their free time, while I don't know first-hand, it does seem doable to write during your free time while working in biglaw. Publishing articles also look good for the firm, so I'd imagine firms would support you on this. I've also interviewed with other associates who worked on articles together and senior associates would mentor junior associates through the writing process.


Thanks it's really helpful to know that other people have done the free time route successfully !

Anonymous User
Posts: 326533
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: how to publish

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Aug 27, 2018 10:48 am

Want to highly recommend that for your first article you team up with a professor at your alma matter or local law school. Their name will go first on the paper, and you will do the brunt of the work, but they can show you the ropes and increase your chances of getting published. FWIW I did this in law school.

Anonymous User
Posts: 326533
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: how to publish

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Aug 27, 2018 4:19 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Want to highly recommend that for your first article you team up with a professor at your alma matter or local law school. Their name will go first on the paper, and you will do the brunt of the work, but they can show you the ropes and increase your chances of getting published. FWIW I did this in law school.


They wouldn't mind this? It's not like they're getting paid for it..and requires work and time from them ...

Anonymous User
Posts: 326533
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: how to publish

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Aug 27, 2018 4:53 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Want to highly recommend that for your first article you team up with a professor at your alma matter or local law school. Their name will go first on the paper, and you will do the brunt of the work, but they can show you the ropes and increase your chances of getting published. FWIW I did this in law school.


They wouldn't mind this? It's not like they're getting paid for it..and requires work and time from them ...


No not at all. Professors frequently publish, and you will frankly be doing a large portion of the work. They get another article out of it, while doing a lot less. And lots of them truly enjoy helping students/young attorneys. Not to say every single professor will say yes, but many will.

Anonymous User
Posts: 326533
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: how to publish

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Aug 27, 2018 6:44 pm

I published while in practice. It's difficult--few high-level legal jobs are going to give you much time or mental space to produce a ~15,000-20,000 word article on an original topic. But it's definitely possible. In my experience, most jobs won't care if you publish, which makes it an enormous expenditure of your time and energy for something with zero professional payoff.

If you do want to publish, be prepared to read a ton. I spent a LOT of time writing and revising my article. But I may have actually spent more time reading other articles to figure out (a) what I wanted to write; (b) how my argument fit into the broader intellectual space; and (c) how to refine and complicate my argument and proposal. If you're doing a good job, the time that you spend refining and complicating your idea (based largely on what others have written) should constitute an enormous part of your project.

If you are willing to be published anywhere, are a semi-competent writer and thinker, and are submitting as a practitioner rather than a student, there is probably a journal that will accept your piece. If you want your article to be read and cited by anyone else (and maybe this is not important to you!), you're going to have to aim a lot higher. So, to the extent you're not picky at all, "getting published" is pretty easy in legal academia. If you're looking to move the scholarly debate, even a little, it's not.

Finally, if you want to go into academia, there are additional things that you should be considering re publication (which I am happy to go into).

Anonymous User
Posts: 326533
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: how to publish

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Aug 28, 2018 1:13 pm

I published twice in law school, and I don't think it will ever mean much outside of some personal satisfaction that some people thought that my take on the law was worth putting out there. If you have the spare time in big law, I think it's a good idea to continue writing on subjects/case law that you find interesting, and as others have noted, putting those writings forward to various journals is a pretty easy process.

I wouldn't kill myself working over it though.

Anonymous User
Posts: 326533
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: how to publish

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Aug 31, 2018 8:34 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Finally, if you want to go into academia, there are additional things that you should be considering re publication (which I am happy to go into).


Please do.

Anonymous User
Posts: 326533
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: how to publish

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Nov 04, 2018 2:01 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Want to highly recommend that for your first article you team up with a professor at your alma matter or local law school. Their name will go first on the paper, and you will do the brunt of the work, but they can show you the ropes and increase your chances of getting published. FWIW I did this in law school.


They wouldn't mind this? It's not like they're getting paid for it..and requires work and time from them ...


No not at all. Professors frequently publish, and you will frankly be doing a large portion of the work. They get another article out of it, while doing a lot less. And lots of them truly enjoy helping students/young attorneys. Not to say every single professor will say yes, but many will.


Bumping this to find out more about the professor idea. For those that suggested teaming up with a professor:

- would you pick your own topic and then ask a professor to work with you? or do you approach a professor and ask to help out on whatever topic they are working on?
- I wrote a paper for a seminar while in law school. I worked closely with the professor on the paper (frequently went to office hours and stuff). I got an average grade in the class (my paper was meh, it wasn't written and organized as well as it could have been). At the end of the seminar, however, he commented that I should continue working on the paper if I want because no one has written on that topic before. Now, I have graduated, but have some time with which I could refine the paper. Is this a good scenario to ask a professor? If so, how would I phrase the question? (not really sure what I should be requesting him to do..)



Return to “Legal Employment?

Who is online

The online users are hidden on this forum.