2019 • $30.00 • 296 pp • paper
Beyond One L: Stories About Finding Meaning and Making a Difference in Law is inspired by Scott Turow’s One L, the classic account of a first year law student’s experience at Harvard Law School. With an introduction by Turow, Beyond One L explores first, second, and third year experiences in the decades since One L was published. It then moves beyond law school to tell the stories of taking the bar, searching for judicial clerkships, practicing law, and leaving law practice to become a teacher or judge. Story authors include lawyer Gerry Spence; Above the Law editor David Lat; professors Ian Ayres, Stephen Carter, Deborah Waire Post, and Adrienne Wing; and judges Marilyn Skoglund, Donn Kessler, and Michael Zimmerman. The stories are about the moments in life that were game-changers—ones that changed the course of the authors’ careers or brought them extraordinary meaning.
"I have always been a believer in the power of narrative and Beyond One L did not disappoint! I had a hard time putting this book down. I loved the way the authors framed their stories to illustrate how the first year of law school was instrumental in forming their personal or professional identities. I laughed at some of the stories, and cried at others. I was inspired by the "kaleidoscope of experiences" that were shared. I would highly recommend this book, particularly if you have gone to law school, are planning to go to law school, or just want to read a meaningful book." — Christine Coughlin, Professor of Legal Analysis, Writing, and Research, Wake Forest University School of Law
"Law students and lawyers all too quickly forget why they went to law school. Inside each attorney is some passion that does not involve billing hours. Beyond One L is a reminder to find that passion. From stories of questioning the Torah, to a federal judge’s journey through racial segregation, to a professor’s admission during his 1L year at HLS that “I’m not sure exactly where I’m lost...but I am”, I was reminded of the real world of law. Law school can be funny, affirming and sometimes even enjoyable. The profession is a challenge, but clients are inspiring, the justice system valuable and law school provides lifelong advice like “never turn down free food,” “do not sleep with that person.” Regardless of where you are on your legal path- just considering law school or Buddhist monk-this collection of stories will bring a smile to your face and may just
rekindle that passion."— Judge Stephen Bough
"What a wonderful way to gain perspective on law students, law school, and law practice! The stories in Beyond One L give great insight into the process of becoming a lawyer, starting even before the decision to apply to law school and continuing long beyond law school. Some authors give guidance: David Lat, the founding editor of Above the Law, offers three recommendations on what he would do differently as a law student, including “calm down” (easier to give than follow, he concedes), while Wanda Temm, author of Clearing the Last Hurdle, a best-selling bar prep book, provides practical advice on bar exam prep. Others explore how law school changed them, empowering them to speak and advocate. And others discuss how they have made their lives in the law. Reading each story reminds me of why I became a lawyer!"— Naomi Cahn, Professor of Law, George Washington University
"Beyond One L reads like a novel. Whether you are thinking of going to law school or reliving decades-old experiences, the stories will captivate you. They capture the hopes, stresses, challenges and adjustments that indelibly mark those who make it through law school, and they do so with humor and insight. The volume salts the personal stories with useful tips on not just surviving the first year, but applying for clerkships, passing the bar, starting your own practice, entering the academy and following your dreams as a lawyer wherever they take you."— June Carbone, Professor of Law, University of Minnesota