Stephen Wilbers

Columnist | Effective Writing
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Stephen Wilbers teaches seminars in effective business writing. His column appears online every other Monday.

Recent content from Stephen Wilbers

A Strunk and White's principle is key both to a writer's style and to this puzzle

For this year's holiday puzzle, I'd like to take you back to Principle 17.

Updated: December 26, 2010, - 05:34 PM

Better writing takes time, not just quick fixes

I have a tough job. Imagine trying to help people improve their writing in a half-day seminar. How do you have an impact in so little time?

Updated: December 05, 2010, - 07:49 PM

Conflict resolution doesn't have to mean compromise

Many people agree that a functioning democracy depends on compromise, but their passionate commitment to their beliefs makes compromise difficult.How do we find common ground in such a win-lose environment?

Updated: November 29, 2010, - 10:07 AM

How Rogerian persuasion can turn losers into winners

Are you feeling oppositional these days? If so, you're not alone.

Updated: November 07, 2010, - 03:04 PM

Stop the error. Then break the bad habit.

Make an error once, and you can bet you'll make it again. Why? Habit and generalization.

Updated: October 17, 2010, - 03:24 PM

Stephen Wilbers: I'll get straight to the point after answering this new e-mail

I'll get straight to the point after answering this new e-mail

Updated: October 03, 2010, - 05:00 PM

Sometimes the idiomatic phrase just seems idiotic

In response to my using the expression "Better hit the road," one reader wrote: "I am puzzled. While we know what meaning is being conveyed, my former teacher would have scolded me for using the word hit. She would have asked, 'What did you hit the road with?'"

Updated: September 19, 2010, - 02:35 PM

So you think the comma is pretty minor?

Knowing when to use it around clauses can make your writing stronger, clearer.

Updated: September 05, 2010, - 03:28 PM

With time, compound words often become one

When Confederate soldiers erected a light fence just inside the stockade wall of the Andersonville prison where they were holding captured Union soldiers, they were participating in one of the most common and natural features of language. "Stay away from the wall. Step over the fence and you'll be shot," they told their prisoners.

Updated: August 29, 2010, - 06:43 PM

In a job search look outside, then inside

If you're lucky enough to have a job, you've probably written a self-evaluation for your annual job performance review. If you're unemployed or underemployed, you've no doubt written a letter of application -- or maybe dozens of them.

Updated: August 15, 2010, - 03:23 PM

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