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The Litigation Consulting Report

20 Great Courtroom Storytelling Articles from Trial Experts

Posted by Ken Lopez on Thu, Mar 7, 2013 @ 07:14 AM

storytelling for lawyers courtroom litigators trial consultantsby Ken Lopez
Founder & CEO
A2L Consulting

The power of storytelling has been recognized for millennia. From Aesop to Hans Christian Andersen to Steven Spielberg, great storytellers are celebrated by our society, almost as much as the people that they glorify in their tales. We tell our kids stories, businesses are encouraged to share stories to build culture, and we all admire that person who can captivate a group of friends with a fascinating tale, true or invented.

The reason we appreciate these great storytellers is hard-wired in the human brain. Storytelling predates written language, of course. It is how our ancient ancestors communicated what to fear, what to value and whom to love. Studies reveal that whether we are told a story or not, our brains will naturally try to build a story around a set of facts. In other words, if a trial lawyer fails to build a story, judges and jurors will build one anyway. It's how we make sense of a set of complicated facts. It’s how we impose order upon chaos. It’s how we resolve tension and conflict.

As more and more experts study what works best in the courtroom, the value of storytelling is being increasingly recognized.  We have written frequently about the subject and plan to release an e-book on the topic next week. Other top trial consultants write about storytelling too, and I would like to highlight some of the best articles that I have found on the topic.

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Here are 20 articles from trial consultants and lawyers around the industry that discuss the power of storytelling in the courtroom. Watch for a new complimentary e-book next week that we are publishing on storytelling for lawyers. If you'd like to be notified of its publication, be sure to claim your free subscription to The Litigation Consulting Report here.

  1. Storytelling for Lawyers

  2. Litigation: The Art of Storytelling

  3. Storytelling for Oppositionists and Others: A Plea for Narrative

  4. The Power of Storytelling in Your Legal Practice
  5. Trial Lawyers as Storytellers, The Narratives Versus The Numbers

  6. Why Trial Lawyers Say it Better
  7. Psychodrama and the Training of Trial Lawyers: Finding the Story
  8. Tips for Lawyers on Persuading Through Storytelling
  9. The Power of the Story in the Courtroom

  10. Final Argument: Storytelling
  11. The Storytelling Lawyer
  12. The Importance of Storytelling at All Stages of a Capital Case

  13. Yarn Spinners: Storytellers' no-tech craft proves refreshing, educational
  14. The Stories We Lawyers Tell
  15. iPad and Storytelling for Lawyers
  16. What Trial Lawyers Can Learn from a Songwriter to Strengthen Their Case
  17. Fiction 101: A Primer for Lawyers on How to Use Fiction Writing
  18. When You Think "Story" Think "Structure"
  19. A Trial Presented as Story
  20. Twelve Heroes, One Voice reviewed in the Advocate magazine

There are many great articles out there on this topic, and unfortunately many are hidden behind a paywall or require a subscription. I've endeavored to list only those that you can readily access.


Click here to Download a Free Litigation E-Book

Tags: Trial Consultants, Litigation Graphics, Jury Consulting, Litigation Consulting, Trial Consulting, Juries, Jury Consultants, Psychology, Storytelling, Judges

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Ken Lopez founded A2L Consulting in 1995. The firm has since worked with litigators from all major law firms on more than 10,000 cases with over $2 trillion cumulatively at stake.  The A2L team is comprised of psychologists, jury consultants, trial consultants, litigation consultants, attorneys and information designers who provide jury consulting, litigation graphics and trial technology.  Ken Lopez can be reached at lopez@A2LC.com.


Tony Klapper joined A2L Consulting after accumulating 20 years of litigation experience while a partner at both Reed Smith and Kirkland & Ellis. Today, he is the Managing Director of Litigation Consulting and General Counsel for A2L Consulting. Tony has significant litigation experience in products liability, toxic tort, employment, financial services, government contract, insurance, and other commercial disputes.  In those matters, he has almost always been the point person for demonstrative evidence and narrative development on his trial teams. Tony can be reached at klapper@a2lc.com.

dr laurie kuslansky jury consultant a2l consulting

Laurie R. Kuslansky, Ph.D., Managing Director, Trial & Jury Consulting, has conducted over 400 mock trials in more than 1,000 litigation engagements over the past 20 years. Dr. Kuslansky's goal is to provide the highest level of personalized client service possible whether one's need involves a mock trial, witness preparation, jury selection or a mock exercise not involving a jury. Dr. Kuslansky can be reached at kuslansky@A2LC.com.

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