I recently read an interesting article from a successful appellate lawyer in Alabama, Mike Skotnicki. The article is on his blog. Mike discussed storytelling in appellate briefs. When attorneys think of appellate arguments they often picture a panel of scholarly judges discussing the finer of points of legal issues.
Mike presented an interesting study concerning the impact of storytelling in appellate briefs. In the cited study, a panel of appellate judges was provided two briefs. One brief presented solely logical arguments. The other incorporated a strong storytelling element. Most of the readers found the brief incorporating storytelling to be much more persuasive. I started my career writing appellate briefs. I can say that I probably spent 90% of my brief writing time telling the compelling story presented by the facts and only about 10% of my time making the legal arguments. Real cases involve real people and real problems. Their stories are personal and compelling.
The study cited by Mike considered the impact of storytelling just on appellate judges. However, all of us are hard-wired to be moved by compelling stories.