Law School Discussion

Law Students => Current Law Students => Topic started by: ionisnotme on May 22, 2008, 01:25:50 PM

Title: Law Review Write-on how hard?
Post by: ionisnotme on May 22, 2008, 01:25:50 PM
Exams are over and everyone is burned out including myself. Any advice on how hard it is to write a 8-10 page paper in just a week. Generally hard?
Title: Re: Law Review Write-on how hard?
Post by: mutual_biscuit on May 22, 2008, 01:48:41 PM
Not so much hard as tedious. Certainly not fun.
Title: Re: Law Review Write-on how hard?
Post by: jacy85 on May 22, 2008, 02:03:46 PM
Law review write on, personally, was one of the most difficult time I'd had at that point in law school.  The motivation for me just wasn't there.  We had I think 10 days, and I dove right in.  Within a two days, I became overwhelmed, demoralized and the burnout from all 1L was nearly too much to bear.

But I got it done.  I took a day off, finished writing my note, and then took another day off.  I edited it in short spurts, and turned in something I actually felt pretty good about.

I can't say how successful my write on submission was, as I ended up grading on (something unexpected).  But I survived, and turned something in I wasn't completely dissatisfied with.  That's more than a good number of people who pick the write on packet up can say, as a good percentage never even finish.

So advice is just to plug away steadily.  Don't leave it till the last minute, but don't push yourself so you get completely sick of it.  Use time wisely, and don't deny yourself needed breaks.  If you don't hit every single minor point, that's ok.  It's most important to hit the major points of analysis, try to make sure you're paper makes sense, and, from someone who had to grade write-ons last summer, papers that are well written piss off graders LESS and may make them more generous.
Title: Re: Law Review Write-on how hard?
Post by: Dxion on May 22, 2008, 02:45:24 PM
Don't WASTE any time. Take breaks if you have to, but try to spend as much time on it as you can. Every minute you waste you will wish you had back as the deadline approaches. This is one of those times where you just have to grab your balls and go.
Title: Re: Law Review Write-on how hard?
Post by: Astro on May 22, 2008, 04:00:49 PM
You should also consider how necessary or desirable Law Review is for you.  It's a great resume booster, but it's not for everyone.  Don't do it just because everyone else is doing it.  Do it because you either want to or need to do it.
Title: Re: Law Review Write-on how hard?
Post by: plex on May 22, 2008, 04:05:16 PM
In what situations, short of already being in your dream firm, would law review not be worth the effort, at least for having the ability to state you were accepted to law review?

I really really need some motivation to get this thing done, when it essentially is going to take time away from making $35/hour for every hour I spend doing the write-on for it. There is also a chance I may stick with part-time school/part-time work, in which case, every hour I spend doing law review stuff will be keeping me from making $35/hour.
Title: Re: Law Review Write-on how hard?
Post by: Astro on May 22, 2008, 04:31:31 PM
In what situations, short of already being in your dream firm, would law review not be worth the effort, at least for having the ability to state you were accepted to law review?

I really really need some motivation to get this thing done, when it essentially is going to take time away from making $35/hour for every hour I spend doing the write-on for it. There is also a chance I may stick with part-time school/part-time work, in which case, every hour I spend doing law review stuff will be keeping me from making $35/hour.

Come on, don't be short-sighted.  I didn't mean Law Review isn't always an awesome line on your resume.  It certainly is. 

I meant that there is a lot of effort involved, beyond just the write-on.  Some legal fields look for very specific types of work/classes in law school, and there may be better options for spending your time than Law Review.  There may also be a similarly prestigious journal at your school which either requires less effort or is more geared towards your interests or both.  Or, through networking contacts or internships, you may have a novel track towards employment which doesn't necessitate Law Review and requires you dedicate your (severely limited) time to other causes.


I didn't mean to decry Law Review, if that was the perception.  I think, in the majority of cases, Law Review is well worth the effort.  But for some people, looking at the big picture, it may be more effort than it's worth.
Title: Re: Law Review Write-on how hard?
Post by: plex on May 22, 2008, 05:10:53 PM
Eh, I wasn't being sarcastic, I really do need some motivation to get this write-on done, I already have 12 hours of classes + 15 to 20 hours of homework and readings + 40 hours of working/commuting each week  :'(.
Title: Re: Law Review Write-on how hard?
Post by: Astro on May 22, 2008, 05:18:58 PM
Eh, I wasn't being sarcastic, I really do need some motivation to get this write-on done, I already have 12 hours of classes + 15 to 20 hours of homework and readings + 40 hours of working/commuting each week  :'(.

 :D :D :D

Sorry.  That really does suck.  Law Review write-on is a siege on the system. 

But you know it's really important to you, and it's only a week at most, so you'll kick its ass!


(As if that will help.)
Title: Re: Law Review Write-on how hard?
Post by: ionisnotme on May 22, 2008, 06:07:43 PM
Thanks for all the replies, but I mean in terms of how hard do they grade the paper. Anyone have to do bluebook critiques as well?

Anyone here who tried and failed?
Title: Re: Law Review Write-on how hard?
Post by: jacy85 on May 22, 2008, 06:41:08 PM
Thanks for all the replies, but I mean in terms of how hard do they grade the paper. Anyone have to do bluebook critiques as well?

Anyone here who tried and failed?

I was pretty harsh when I graded in terms of substance, and if something was poorly written or filled with typos, it pissed me off.  The more I had to work to read a paper the closer I looked at substance, and the fewer points I gave.  While reading papers, I would perhaps skim the footnotes.  If I noted blatantly wrong citations or a TON of errors, I made not of it and gave fewer of the "discretionary" points we were allowed.  That all being said, harsh graders tend to be harsh with everyone, and the managing boards should get a sense of who tends to give high and low scores, and everything tends to equal out.

I never graded any bluebook exercises; the managing editors of all 3 journals all split them up and did them (our write on is for all the journals, so all 3 managing boards are involved in creating the write on).
Title: Re: Law Review Write-on how hard?
Post by: HippieLawChick on May 23, 2008, 10:15:15 AM
Ours works a bit differently.  We give the top 10 people (not top 10%) a boost for their write on portion, whereby their packets only need to be in the top 2/3 of all of them, and they get on.  The Sr. Board said that outside of those 10 people and another 10 who wrote really good notes, the other 20 spots were decided by hundreths of a point. There were also about 50 people who took packets but didn't complete them. At my school, 180 turned in packets, and only 40 people got on. (out of a class of 280)

We don't allow just "grade on"
Title: Re: Law Review Write-on how hard?
Post by: Dwigt on May 23, 2008, 10:16:52 AM
Thanks for all the replies, but I mean in terms of how hard do they grade the paper. Anyone have to do bluebook critiques as well?

Anyone here who tried and failed?

I was pretty harsh when I graded in terms of substance, and if something was poorly written or filled with typos, it pissed me off.  The more I had to work to read a paper the closer I looked at substance, and the fewer points I gave.  While reading papers, I would perhaps skim the footnotes.  If I noted blatantly wrong citations or a TON of errors, I made not of it and gave fewer of the "discretionary" points we were allowed.  That all being said, harsh graders tend to be harsh with everyone, and the managing boards should get a sense of who tends to give high and low scores, and everything tends to equal out.

I never graded any bluebook exercises; the managing editors of all 3 journals all split them up and did them (our write on is for all the journals, so all 3 managing boards are involved in creating the write on).

Just as an aside for those who have reviewed submissions, how different is the grading standard for those looking to grade on vs write on?  My school has a "good faith effort/passing" requirement for people who meet the grade cutoff.  I guess I'm curious as to how often someone has the grades but doesn't put forth a good enough effort to get on.
Title: Re: Law Review Write-on how hard?
Post by: HippieLawChick on May 23, 2008, 10:35:27 AM
As far as I know, very few don't make the cut writing wise. 

Frankly, I am shocked I made ours, as I didn't spend nearly the time I should have, but I also did a perfect job on citation (we had to cite in our note, and in a separate citation exercise), which I am sure helped.
Title: Re: Law Review Write-on how hard?
Post by: ionisnotme on May 23, 2008, 12:28:28 PM
Good idea to try law review at current school if you have a decent chance at transferring?
Title: Re: Law Review Write-on how hard?
Post by: Gwar301 on June 03, 2008, 08:44:47 AM
I tried and failed to write on to law review.
However, my school does 50% grades and 50% write on, so i suspect it was the grades that kept me off.
Ended up doing a secondary journal and moot court and got a great summer associate job anyhow.
Law review is nice, but I believe it's not the be-all-end-all.