Stephen Wilbers

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

Recent content from Stephen Wilbers

Use antimetabole and chiasmus to make your sentences memorable

Let’s talk about schemes. Not schemes of the nefarious sort, but schemes of word order.There are various types, including schemes...

Updated: March 09, 2014, - 02:00 PM

Wilbers: Use strong action verbs to drive home your point

The verb is the engine that drives the sentence.In “The tracks made a line in the snow,” the engine lacks...

Updated: February 23, 2014, - 02:00 PM

Use two natural stress points in your sentences for emphasis

Beginnings and endings count more than middles.Consider this sentence: “I have never felt more frustrated.” The intensity of that statement...

Updated: February 09, 2014, - 02:00 PM

Wilbers: Maintain parallel structure for consistency, clarity and emphasis

Normally I don’t leave snowy Minnesota in the heart of Nordic ski racing season, but this year I made an...

Updated: January 26, 2014, - 02:00 PM

Wilbers: A good manager is someone who cares and communicates

What is your definition of a good manager?When I ask participants in my writing seminars that question, I often hear...

Updated: January 12, 2014, - 02:00 PM

Wilbers: Send a goodwill message to make someone happy this year

There’s a lot of stress going around these days. Plenty to be unhappy about.Just take a look at your inbox,...

Updated: December 29, 2013, - 02:00 PM

Wilbers: You can't use the active voice until you get to the transitive

The last time I gave a presentation, we had so much fun discussing the active voice that no one wanted...

Updated: December 15, 2013, - 02:00 PM

Wilbers: Follow eight rules for numbers for consistency and precision

“There are three rules for writing a novel,” W. Somerset Maugham once wrote. “Unfortunately, nobody knows what they are.”If I...

Updated: December 01, 2013, - 02:00 PM

The active voice is usually, but not always, the better choice

Which is better: the active voice or the passive voice?Compare “I let go of the Cessna’s strut and prayed my...

Updated: November 17, 2013, - 02:00 PM

Wilbers: Lessons learned from writing 900 columns on effective writing

With this, my 900th column, I can’t help asking myself why I’ve stayed with it this long. If you’ve been...

Updated: November 03, 2013, - 02:00 PM

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