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About the Presenter

Contact Stephen Wilbers at

Clients     Résumé




monthly writing tips


Email courses

“Better Writing in Six Weeks”
“Better Style in 10 Weeks


Weekly columns
My column appears every other Monday in the business section of the Minneapolis Star Tribune. If you missed it on hard copy, you can read it here.

Writing tips & exericses
olumns, advice, and exercises on topics ranging from
annoying phrases to punctuation, salutations, wordiness, and writer’s block


English language skills
Take the grammar, proofreading, punctuation, and word choice challenges.

Plain English

Improve your vocabulary

Book recommendations


Books by Stephen Wilbers
















Stephen Wilbers is a writing consultant, columnist, award-winning author, Senior Fellow at the University of Minnesota, and Fulbright Fellow. He has offered training seminars in effective writing to more than 10,000 business, technical, legal, and academic writers and to a wide variety of clients, including Mayo Clinic, Medtronic, 3M, U.S. Bank, Xcel, the Metropolitan Airports Commission, AgCountry Farm Credit Services, Cargill, Ryan Companies, Thomson Reuters, the Metropolitan Council, the Wilder Foundation, Fredrikson & Byron, the Pennsylvania Bar Institute, and the Oregon State Bar Association.

As a Senior Fellow in the University of Minnesota's Technological Leadership Institute, he teaches both written and oral presentation skills. He has also taught in the Carlson School of Management’s M.B.A. Program, the Program in American Studies, and the Program in Creative and Professional Writing. In 1995 he won an Outstanding Faculty Award in Hamline University’s Graduate Public Administration Program.

He has written more than 950 columns on effective business writing. His column appears every other Monday in the business section of the Minneapolis Star Tribune.


His doctoral dissertation, a history of the renowned Iowa Writers' Workshop, was published by the University of Iowa Press. In addition, he has published two collections of his columns, Writing for Business (winner of a 1994 Minnesota Book Award) and Writing by Wilbers. His book on stylistic technique, Keys to Great Writing, has been described as "a writing class in a book" that "breaks down general advice on what to do into practical steps on how to do it." His most recent book, Mastering the Craft of Writing: How to Write with Clarity, Emphasis, and Style, is a compilation of his free monthly writing tips.

This Northern Nonsense: Ernest Oberholtzer and Mallard Island, his chapbook of poems about the legacy of the preservationist who helped save the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness from development, was published by Red Dragonfly Press. A Boundary Waters History: Canoeing Across Time depicts efforts to preserve a remarkable wilderness on Minnesota's northern border while telling the story of canoeing for nearly 30 years with his father. Canoeing the Boundary Waters Wilderness: A Sawbill Log continues the story of the challenges, dangers, and rewards of wilderness canoeing.

With Sawbill Canoe Outfitter Bill Hansen, he is currently writing a guidebook on how to enjoy wilderness canoeing, to be published by The History Press in the spring of 2016. In addition, he is working on A Grammatical Affair, a wildly romantic love story that offers writing instruction in the form of a novel.

Dr. Wilbers earned his B.A. at Vanderbilt University and his M.A. and Ph.D. at the University of Iowa. He was a Visiting Fulbright Fellow at the University of Essex in Colchester, England. Before starting his business as a writing consultant, he established the University of Iowa’s first campus-wide advising program. At the University of Minnesota he directed student academic support services in the College of Liberal Arts and later served as Associate Director and Acting Director of the Program in Creative and Professional writing, where he worked with the creative writing faculty to establish a multi-section “meet the authors” creative writing course that is still offered more than 20 years later.

A reader, canoeist, cyclist, Nordic ski racer, opera-lover, and two-time skydiver, he and his wife Debbie have two children and two grandchildren, and they live in Minneapolis, where he is a proud member of The Loft Literary Center, serving as a member of the Loft's board of directors from 2003 to 2009 and as board chair from 2007 to 2009.

For additional information, see his résumé.     Clients

Books by Stephen Wilbers

Contact Stephen Wilbers at wilbe004@umn.edu.


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