Legendary Texas lexicographer Bryan A. Garner has posted an article on the ABA Journal’s website excerpting his long-form interview book Quack This Way: David Foster Wallace & Bryan A. Garner Talk Language and Writing. The excerpts in the article relate to portions of the book that Garner deems relevant to legal writing.
Wallace shares his insights on intelligence-based professions filled with good readers but poor writers, the origins of complicated writing filled with professional jargon, and on crafting solid argumentative prose. Conducted in 2006, the interview features two professionals clearly at the top of their fields in understanding words and how to use them. Yet we can also observe a conversation that goes deeper, seeking insight into the human element that drives usage and style in writing.