Publications

2015 Lincoln Award Legal Writing Contest

A Young Abraham LincolnDear YLD Member:

You're out in the trenches....you know the hot topics in your field – the new statutes, the important new cases, the legal developments that you and your colleagues grapple with in the real world of lawyering.

We invite you to share your hard-won knowledge, and maybe win $2,000 in prize money by entering the Annual Lincoln Award Legal Writing Contest.

We're looking for useful, practical articles on topics important to practicing lawyers. The highest scores will go to manuscripts that Illinois lawyers can use in their practices, written in a no-nonsense, plain-English style.

If you're an ISBA lawyer member under age 36 as of July 1, 2014 or admitted to the bar fewer than five years as of that date, you're eligible to compete for a share of the $3,500 in Lincoln Award prize money and a handsome plaque for your office. And even if you don't win, yours may be among the many Lincoln Award entries to appear in the Illinois Bar Journal.

The deadline for filing a notice to enter the contest is July 15, 2014; use our online form. A brief outline of the article must be submitted on or before August 15, 2014; email the outline to Jean Fenski at jfenski@isba.org. The final deadline for manuscripts is noon Wednesday, October 1, 2014; manuscripts should be emailed by noon to Jean Fenski at jfenski@isba.org.

The contest is sponsored by and for members of the Young Lawyers Division. A distinguished panel of judges will evaluate the entries. Please read the contest rules below, and if you have questions, contact Jean Fenski at jfenski@isba.org or (217) 525-1760 or 800-252-8908. Good luck!

Sincerely,

Mark Mathewson signature

Mark S. Mathewson
Director of Publications


Annual Lincoln Award Writing Contest Rules

Important Contest Dates to Remember

  • July 15, 2014 – Notice of intent to enter the competition shall be filed with the Illinois State Bar Association. Please use our online form.
  • August 15, 2014 – A brief outline of the article is due. Email the outline as a Word attachment to Jean Fenski at jfenski@isba.org.
  • October 1, 2014 – The manuscript (including the document of certification) must be sent via email by noon. Email the manuscript as a Word attachment to Jean Fenski at jfenski@isba.org. Manuscripts sent later than noon October 1, 2014, will not be considered. Facsimile or postal delivery not allowed.

1. This competition is open to all lawyer members of the Illinois State Bar Association under the age of 36 years on July 1, 2014, or admitted to the bar fewer than five years as of that date. ISBA Law Student Members who will be admitted to the bar on or before December 31, 2014, also are eligible.

2. Subject to the requirements of Rule 1, co-authorship of a manuscript is permitted in the contest; all participants in the drafting of the manuscript must be designated as co-authors. Authors may participate in the writing of only one entry per contest. Authors may also use research assistants (law students, law clerks, etc.) and shall acknowledge in an appropriate footnote the name(s) of such assistant(s).

3. Notice of intent to enter the competition shall be filed with the Illinois State Bar Association no later than July 15, 2014. Please use our online form. The names of entrants will be held in confidence until judging of articles has been completed.

4. Authors are allowed to write on legal topics of their choosing. Manuscripts will be judged on (1) significance of subject, practicality and timeliness, (2) quality of research and legal analysis, and (3) clarity and style.

5. A brief outline of the article must be submitted on or before August 15, 2014. Email the outline as a Word attachment to Jean Fenski at jfenski@isba.org. Please include your complete contact information.

6. Manuscripts, including footnotes, shall be no longer than 3,000 words. Feel free to include tables, charts, graphs or other figures. Any citations should be in endnote form, not in the body of the manuscript. Avoid lengthy footnotes, using them for citations only except in rare cases (no string cites, please). Citations should be consistent with the Style Manual for the Supreme and Appellate Courts of Illinois, http://www.state.il.us/court/StyleManual/SupCrt_StyleManual.pdf, which largely adheres to A Uniform System of Citation (the Bluebook).

Entrants' names shall appear only on a separate title page, which will be removed when a number is assigned the entry. The title page should also contain a one- or two-sentence resume or story line of the article and a one sentence biography for each author, including your email address unless you don't want it published.

In addition to the title page, each manuscript shall include a separate page from the author (or authors) in which he or she certifies (or they certify) that the article submitted has not had prior publication in any form, that it will not be submitted for publication elsewhere, and that the author transfers ownership to the Illinois State Bar Association.

7. The manuscript must be sent via email as a Word attachment to the Illinois State Bar Association no later than noon Wednesday, October 1, 2014. Manuscripts sent later than noon October 1 will not be eligible for the contest. Email your manuscript to Jean Fenski at jfenski@isba.org (facsimile or postal delivery not allowed).

8. Winners will be announced by February 2015. At least one of the winning articles will be considered for publication in the February 2015 issue of the Illinois Bar Journal. Other papers, whether winning or not, will be considered for publication in subsequent issues.

9. The $3,500 in prize money will be allocated as follows: $2,000 for first, $1,000 for second, and $500 for third place. Lincoln Award plaques also will be given to all winners.

10. Lincoln Award winners shall be eligible to enter succeeding competitions.