Saturday, August 28, 2010

7 Questions For: Literary Agent Dr. Uwe Stender

Dr. Uwe Stender represents me, the Middle Grade Ninja, among others:) Here's a guest post he wrote for this very blog.

Here's a two-part post I wrote about my experiences being represented by Dr. Stender.

TriadaUS Literary Agency founder, Dr. Uwe Stender, is a Full Member of the AAR (Association of Authors' Representatives).

Our best known clients are actress Melody Thomas Scott, CNN HLN and TruTV's In Session News Anchor Christi Paul, Eric Deggans, former CNN anchor Daryn Kagan, 4 time Grammy Award winning composer Lalo Schifrin ("Mission Impossible"),  Elizabeth LaBan, Stacy Tornio, Dale McGowan, actress Dana Davis, and legendary NBA referee Bob Delaney.

In 2013, Uwe will attend (and speak at) several major conferences including DFW Writers Con (@DFWCON) in Dallas, Pennwriters (@Pennwriters) in Pittsburgh, and Thrillerfest in New York City.    

TriadaUS Literary Agency is always open to any strong fiction (our current focus in fiction is YA, middle grade, Women's Fiction, Literary Fiction and Mysteries) and all non-fiction projects.

You can follow Uwe on twitter @UweStender

If you get a chance to meet Dr. Stender, jump on it. I had the good fortune to bump into Dr. Stender at the Midwest Writer's Workshop. He’s very funny and I learned more about the world of literary agents in a couple hours talk with him than reading a hundred books on the subject. He described the queries he gets and his process for sorting them in as frank a manner as I’ve ever heard. He even showed me the portable device on which he reads them and examples of queries that would or would not interest him. He was real and genuine and if you want to know what happens with your query after you send it, he’s the guy to ask. 

And now Dr. Uwe Stender faces the 7 Questions:

Question Seven: What are your top three favorite books?

I assume you mean of all time and any and all books included...hmmm, I guess in some ways that changes often...right this minute, off the cuff, I'd say...The Little Prince, The Big Sleep, Thirteen Reasons Why

Question Six: What are your top three favorite movies and television shows?

LOL....well, that probably also changes all the time...okay, won't think...just write what comes to mind right now:

Movies: Cinema Paradiso, Pulp Fiction, Goodbye Lenin

TV shows: Seinfeld, The Sopranos, The Big Bang Theory

Question Five: What are the qualities of your ideal client?

Creative, smart and low maintenance

Question Four: What sort of project(s) would you most like to receive a query for?

Projects with great hooks and super strong writing in both fiction (especially in YA, middle grade, Women's Fiction, Literary Fiction and Mystery) and nonfiction.

Question Three: What is your favorite thing about being an agent? What is your least favorite thing?

I love discovering a great new project. Least favorite: Rejections, getting them and giving them.

Question Two: What one bit of wisdom would you impart to an aspiring writer? (feel free to include as many other bits of wisdom as you like)

Don't quit. Don't give up, don't ever give up. Work at your craft and don't take rejections personally.

Question One: If you could have lunch with any writer, living or dead, who would it be? Why?

Raymond Chandler so he can explain the plot of The Big Sleep to me.


  1. Good advice!

    On a side note, Dr. Stender has excellent taste in movies. Also, much love for The Sopranos!

  2. Hmm, I've got to catch up on your agents series. This is a great resource! Haven't head of Dr Stender yet.

  3. This was great! Thanks for the interview! <3

  4. All of this information is over 3 years old. My experience is recent--March, 2014-May, 2014. My first email query was sent in March, 2014. I received an immediate "Auto Response" from, presumably, Dr. Stender, stating he was away, but would respond by 3/17/14. I was impressed and encouraged. No response. I sent another email query in April. Again, "Auto Response, stating he was away, but would respond by 4/24/14. I was losing faith, but tried to remain hopeful. No response. My final email was this afternoon, 5/16/14, in which I said, "It's a Yes or No question. May I please send you a synopsis and the first three chapters of my book?" I received an immediate response that simply said, "No." The Triadaus website would lead you to believe they welcome new material, and they will respond. They do not respond, in accordance with the information on the website. So not worth the effort. Dr. Stender, Uwe are rude and a phony.

    1. Hi Sally,

      Thanks for sharing your experience and thanks for finding your way to this blog. As it happens, I'm still in regular correspondence with Dr. Stender, who I still consider my agent even though I don't have much for him to do just now. He's the one agent on this blog I 100% endorse because of the wonderful job he's done both for me and a good friend I refereed to him. He speaks plainly and bluntly, it's true, but that's one of the things I like most about him. I prefer it when people speak straight, which isn't for everyone, but it does save time.

      Without spilling his personal business online, I know that during the dates you're referring to Dr. Stender was dealing with the death of an immediate family member and it's probable his inbox wasn't a top priority just then. All of his responses to me have been prompt, but under the circumstances, I think we can cut him a little slack. It's important to remember agents are people too and they have lives that get complicated and busy outside of their duties of responding to queries.

      Frankly, if you sent me an email like the one you describe, I wouldn't have bothered responding. Nothing personal. You could've sent me the world's best proposal, but querying an agent is an intention to begin a business relationship. If such a relationship were begun with an ultimatum, it doesn't bode well for what might come later during events of greater consequence. An agent's first priority should be their existing clients, which you'll appreciate when an agent signs you, and sometimes that means new business has to be delayed.

      I'd be careful posting to blogs like this one using your name. The publishing world is a small place, after all, and you don't want to give the impression of being difficult to work with. That said, Dr. Stender probably isn't the right fit for you. The good news is there are plenty of other agents to explore as well as the world of indie publishing, which I love. It's a great time to be a writer as there are more opportunities than ever before. Hang in there until you find yours:)


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