As Hardwicke Building found out last week, lawyers who enjoy writing in their free time can sometimes cause problems. But, on balance, most barristers’ chambers and law firms look favourably on applicants with a few bylines to their name – and as the Barbara Hewson furore fades, that seems unlikely to change. Certainly, blogging helped Hardwicke’s most junior tenant, Leon Glenister, to get his foot in the door at the Bar…
As co-founder of the popular Law Think blog, Glenister found himself frequently asked questions about his writing during the pupillage interview process.
“They endlessly asked about Law Think,” he says, with questions including, “How do you check each other’s work and make sure you haven’t put something out that’s wrong.” Glenister adds that this sort of line of inquiry could “form the whole basis of an interview.”
Unlike many student legal bloggers, who stray into current affairs and careersy topics, Glenister stuck to writing about the law itself, with posts often inspired by essays and tutorial discussions. In doing so, he was guided by a belief that, despite their inexperience, law students “have some of the most interesting things to say” about legal developments.
“Students have an advantage in that they have time to think about a subject in more depth. Lawyers who are facing the hassles of practice often just aren’t able to do this,” he says.
Law Think‘s impressive Twitter following – which rose to almost 3,000 followers before Glenister and the blog’s other co-founders were forced to put their writing on hold due to the rigours of professional life – illustrates what a useful resource it became.
In the podcast below – also available on iTunes – listen to Glenister chat with me about legal writing in more detail. We’re joined by solicitor and Solicitors Journal columnist Kevin Poulter, and Legal Cheek‘s editorial assistant Tom Webb, who is currently finishing off an MA in journalism having graduated in law from UCL last year.