A Literary Analogy

Like many a teenager in olden times, I had my Beat Generation phase. As far as I can see, it had no demonstrable effect on my life. No Neal Cassady I!

But one fragment has somehow stuck in my mind. Here’s what William Burroughs says in the introduction to Naked Lunch:

The title means exactly what the words say: naked lunch, a frozen moment when everyone sees what is on the end of every fork.

I sporadically think of that in connection with what I do. I aim to strip away the clutter that interferes with simply saying in a contract whatever you need to say, with my own shortcomings being as much the target as anything else. Strip away the lame pseudo-scholarship. Strip away the know-nothing posturing. Strip away the expedient but unfounded conventional wisdom.

See what’s on the end of your fork.

About the author

Ken Adams is the leading authority on how to say clearly whatever you want to say in a contract. He’s author of A Manual of Style for Contract Drafting, and he offers online and in-person training around the world. He’s also chief content officer of LegalSifter, Inc., a company that combines artificial intelligence and expertise to assist with review of contracts.

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