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Presented By: University of Michigan Helen Zell Writers' Program

Presentation and Q&A: When Your Book Goes on Submission

Agent Stephanie Delman, Trellis Literary

Stephanie Delman Stephanie Delman
Stephanie Delman
This event is virtual-only (via Zoom) and is open to Helen Zell Writers' Program MFA students, Zell Fellows, and alumni, as well as U-M graduate and undergraduate students. It is not open to the general public. Please email Ashley Bates ( for login instructions.

Stephanie Delman's presentation will explore the many ways a debut novel, memoir, or story collection can sell to a traditional publishing house—from auctions to pre-empts to the deals that take a year to close, and what each writer can expect from the process.

Stephanie Delman spent 10 years building her list at Sanford J. Greenburger Associates before co-founding Trellis Literary Management with in the fall of 2021. Stephanie is focused on adult fiction: literary/upmarket, maximalist storytelling, untold or underrepresented historical fiction, high-concept plots, highbrow/lowbrow mashups, psychologically propulsive suspense, and novels that play with genre and dip a toe into surrealism, the fantastical, and/or horror. Stephanie also represents a limited selection of braided memoir/narrative nonfiction projects by authors with established platforms and diverse perspectives.

Stephanie is interested in the concept of hauntology—the ways in which we are physically, intergenerationally, and psychologically haunted. Many of the books she represents are a testament to that: The Upstairs House and What Should Be Wild by Julia Fine; Four Treasures of the Sky by Jenny Tinghui Zhang; forthcoming debuts by Jami Nakamura Lin, Kelsey Norris, Gina María Balibrera, and more. Stephanie is also seeking projects that use elements of horror to illuminate contemporary fears and societal injustice, like her client Zakiya Dalila Harris’s New York Times bestselling debut The Other Black Girl and her client Ayesha Manazir Siddiqi’s forthcoming novel The Centre. She would love to find more writers with literary dexterity, authors who can write across genres, like (non-client) favorites Alexander Chee and Carmen Maria Machado.

Stephanie studied Writing Seminars at Johns Hopkins University and considers herself a “hands-on” agent, both editorially and as an advocate. She was raised in Northern California and has lived in Brooklyn, NY for the past ten years.

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