This week's Agent Spotlight features Rachel Stout of Dystel & Goderich Literary Management.
Status: Open to submissions.
About: “Rachel Stout joined Dystel and Goderich after graduating with a degree in English from Fordham University. Her interest in publishing began early in her college career as she sought to figure out where exactly she wanted her life to head, career-wise (and to ward off the all too common assumptions that just because she studied English, she inevitably wanted to become a teacher). An internship with LJK Literary Management solidified and strengthened her determination and introduced her to the agenting side of the publishing world. Rachel hopes that DGLM will further foster these inclinations and is looking forward to the time ahead. After growing up on the South Jersey shore, Rachel now lives in Brooklyn and is interested in literary fiction, narrative non-fiction, and believable and thought-provoking YA as well as magical realism.” (Link)
About the Agency:
“Dystel & Goderich Literary Management was founded in 1994 by Jane Dystel, who has been a respected figure in publishing for over 30 years — first as an editor, then as a publisher, and finally as a savvy and successful agent. The agency is the product of her innovative vision of author representation as a full-service enterprise.
“DGLM was launched with a quickly growing roster of Pulitzer Prize winning journalists, celebrated experts in fields as diverse as parenting, women’s health, and cooking, acclaimed literary and commercial fiction writers, and an eclectic and exciting list of titles. The primary goal of the agency was and is to offer not just financial and contractual advice to its clients, but also editorial guidance and support.
“Being involved in every stage of putting together a non-fiction book proposal, offering substantial editing on fiction manuscripts, and coming up with book ideas for authors looking for their next project is as much a part of our work as selling, negotiating contracts, and collecting monies for our clients. We follow a book from its inception through its sale to a publisher, its publication, and beyond. Our commitment to our writers does not, by any means, end when we have collected our commission. This is one of the many things that makes us unique in a very competitive business.” (Link)
What She's Looking For:
Genres / Specialties:
Literary fiction, narrative non-fiction, magical realism, and believable, thought-provoking young adult.
From a Blog Post (9/2011):
“I really, really would love to see a great historical fiction. YA, literary, commercial—I don’t really care as much about that as I do about the story itself. I’m not even going to limit it to particular eras (though you can always get me with a really good Edwardian or WWII story)…
“I’m also a sucker for a good eerie story—paranormal in a human way. Witches, ghosts, mind reading. In a similar vein, magical realism in a subtle way can be really beautiful—I’m thinking similar to Aimee Bender’s The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake or The Monsters of Templeton by Lauren Groff. Any writer who can insert the tiniest elements of the wondrous unreal into what is otherwise a very normal world and make it work is a writer whose books I want to read.” (Link)
What She Isn't Looking For:
“I’m not the girl you want if you have an amazing business book or a brilliantly crafted horror story or thriller…” (Link)
Plays, screenplays, poetry. (Link)
The agency is editorial as a whole and at least one client has mentioned doing revisions with Ms. Stout.
A list of Dystel & Goderich clients is available on the website.
E-mail: Yes (preferred).
Submission Guidelines (always verify):
“Enclose a cover letter, outline or brief synopsis of the work (with word count if possible), a sample chapter, and a stamped, self-addressed envelope for our response. Please type all of your correspondence and double space everything other than the cover letter. E-mail queries are fine, but keep them brief and make sure your cover letter is in the body of the e-mail. We won’t open attachments if they come with a blank e-mail. Please be sure to query only one agent at this agency. We will not review queries sent to more than one of us.”
See the DGLM website for complete, up-to-date submission guidelines.
The agency's stated response time for queries is 6-8 weeks and 8 weeks for requested material. If you do not hear back within the stated timeframe, feel free to resend. (Link) Stats available appear consistent with these numbers.
What's the Buzz?
Rachel Stout joined DGLM as an assistant in October of 2010. I’m not aware of any sales yet, but her list is small and developing.
Worth Your Time:
A Word With Literary Agent Rachel Stout at All the Write Stuff (01/2012).
Around the Web:
Dystel & Goderich Literary Management on P&E ($, Highly Recommended).
Dystel & Goderich Literary Management thread at AbsoluteWrite.
Ms. Stout’s personal essay on the DGLM website.
Ms. Stout’s posts on the DGLM blog, categorized here.
Current and past DGLM newsletters are available here.
Rachel Stout and DGLM in the 2014 Guide to Literary Agents via Google Books.
Rachel Stout and DGLM in the 2013 Guide to Literary Agents via Google Books.
Author Essay Feature: Tamara Linse - How I Got My Dream Agent at All ‘Lit’ Up (01/2012).
Please see the Dystel & Goderich Literary Management website for additional contact and query information.
Last Updated: 9/12/13.
Last Reviewed By Agent? 9/12/13.
Have any experience with this agent? See something that needs updating? Please leave a comment or e-mail me at agentspotlight(at)gmail(dot)com
Note: These agent profiles presently focus on agents who accept children's/teen fiction. They are not interviews. Please take the time to verify anything you might use here before querying an agent. The information found herein is subject to change.