Professor Emerita of Law, Nancy Lawler Dickhute, will be the next speaker at the LA Beachwriter’s meeting on Monday, April 16 at 5:30 p.m. at the Thomas B. Norton Public Library in Gulf Shores.
An organizational meeting will follow the presentation. The public is welcome. Members of LA Beachwriters and those interested in becoming members are welcome to stay for the meeting after the presentation. If you plan on attending, please send a short email to Nancy Lawler Dickhute at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Dickhute (pictured) will discuss the critiquing process and how to give and receive feedback during the writing process. Dickhute spent 27 years teaching at Creighton University School of Law in Omaha, Nebraska, where she served as Director of Legal Writing and Associate Dean for Professional Development.
As Director of Legal Writing, Professor Dickhute taught classes that focused on analytical writing, contract drafting, persuasive techniques and effective oral argument. She is a big believer that all writing is persuasive in some fashion. Writers need to grab their readers’ attention from the first sentence.
“Most writers get one chance to make an effective first impression Therefore knowing your audience’s needs and your purpose is paramount to keeping the reader’s attention. Providing concrete feedback allows a writer to assess the effectiveness of his or her message as seen through the eyes of the reader.” Dickhute’s presentation will provide writers of all genres with some tried and true techniques for giving another writer meaningful feedback.
Professor Dickhute graduated from Creighton University School of Law and then served as a law clerk to the Honorable Leslie Boslaugh and Chief Justice William Hastings of the Nebraska Supreme Court. She was then associated with the Omaha law firms of Kutak Rock and Campbell and Steier, Rogers and Pistillo. Before her years at Creighton, Professor Dickhute taught in the Legal Assistants Program at Metropolitan Community College in Omaha, where she was awarded the Outstanding Teacher Award by Phi Theta Kappa. She was a member of the board of directors for the Association of Legal Writing Directors and a member of the Legal Writing Institute. She was a frequent presenter on a wide range of writing topics at the biannual meetings of both organizations.
Dickhute retired in 2016 at which time she was promoted to Professor Emerita of Law. Her publications include a law review article, “Jury Duty for the Blind in the Time of Reasonable Accommodations: The ADA’s Interface with a Litigant’s Right to a Fair Trial” 32 Creighton L. Rev. 849 (1999) and a reoccurring column in The Nebraska Lawyer, “The Writer’s Block.”
Her articles focused on effective communications between lawyers and their clients and included discussions of learning to condense (“Less Is More”, Jan. 2001, at 20); streamlining sentences (“Writing Better Sentences”, Apr. 2001, at 22); the power of choosing the right verb (“The Verb’s the Word” July 2001, at 24.); using pronouns to guide one’s reader (“Purging Our Prose of Pronoun Problems” Oct. 2001, at 31); handy tips to benefit all legal writing (“A Baker’s Dozen and then Some: Tips for Successful Legal Writing” Jan. 2002, at 29); and abandoning the random use of commas (“From Love Letters to Contracts, Punctuation Matters” June 2002, at 32).