Does the use of simple words make you seem smarter? That's the topic of two recent blog posts from two different bloggers that I happened upon
serendipitously by accident. One of the posts deals with a particular judge, which is the reason for the title of this post--
- "Use plain English, appear smarter (and more persuasive)," by Raymond Ward at the (new) legal wrtier; and
- "Mr. Garner's Simple English v. Judge Selya's Ultracrepidarian Lexiphanicism," by Martin Magnusson at Fairyland Castle.
As for the particular judge, I have no opinion. However, if you choose to take the advice suggested by most writing experts -- shorter sentences, shorter words, simpler writing -- here are a few tools that you can use to assess your own writing style: