Game On: Looking for Volunteers to Review the Manuscript of the Fourth Edition of “A Manual of Style for Contract Drafting”

[Updated 9 March 2017: Thank you all, but I now have all the volunteers I can handle.]

OK, girls and boys, it’s time to start the process of publishing the fourth edition of A Manual of Style for Contract Drafting. The first part of that process is having some brave souls crawl over the manuscript looking for problems big and small. Anyone up for it? If so, email me. I’ll send the manuscript out over the weekend.

If we’ve corresponded before, expressing interest is all that’s required. If I don’t know you, please tell me a bit about yourself and why you’re interested. International volunteers welcome—the fourth edition will be a bit more international in scope.

All I can hope for is that some of you are deranged enough to find that sort of thing interesting. But as a modest extra inducement, I’ll have a limited number of free copies to give to those who contribute in a nontrivial way.

It amazes me what some publishers think justifies a new edition. The second edition of one book on contract drafting I have is a big two pages longer than the first edition. The second and third editions of MSCD were each a big step up, and that will be the case with the fourth edition, as it will be around 15% bigger than the third edition. It reflects four years of my plugging away.

One difference this time around is that what’s in the third edition needs little in the way of reworking. When I revisit some parts I wonder what kind of performance-enhancing drug I was on when I wrote them and where I can get more of the stuff.

The fourth edition might be 75 pages longer. That might affect the format.

To get a taste of the fourth edition, go to this post to check out the current version of the introduction.

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.

4 thoughts on “Game On: Looking for Volunteers to Review the Manuscript of the Fourth Edition of “A Manual of Style for Contract Drafting””

  1. Ken,

    I’m excited to see the 4th edition and will send you an email to sign up as a reviewer.

    FYI, I purchased the 2nd edition in hard copy format, and the 3rd in Kindle format. I find my Kindle great for reading, but researching a question in the 3rd edition on the Kindle last week, I concluded that would get the 4th in hard copy.

    Best regards,

    • Glad to have you on board, Tom.

      Of course, regarding versions of the book, the only sensible answer is … both! :-) Actually, I do consult my PDF version for some tasks and the hard copy for others.

  2. Ken,

    I’m responding here to allow others to comment on my suggestion for handling the book length constraint that you raise in your email. For those that haven’t seen the email, the current draft is around 545 pages, which is 35 pages more than the capacity of the wire-O binding, So unless you can remove 35 pages, you will have to shift to conventional paperback binding.

    You propose eliminating the chapter on drafting corporate resolutions (10 pages), as being a sideshow, which I support.

    I have the following suggestion for removing around 29 additional pages. Remove Appendix 1 (Before and After Contracts) from the hard copy (leaving it in the ebook versions) and publish it on your website. You could include a link to that material in the book for those that wish to view it and having it on your website could help drive additional book sales.

    I would be interested in other’s views on this suggestion.



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