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Stratemeyer Syndicate

Entry updated 14 January 2020. Tagged: Community.

Story factory or fiction packager operated by Edward Stratemeyer (whom see) and subsequently (after his death in 1930) by his daughters Harriet Stratemeyer Adams and Edna Stratemeyer Squier. From 1906, beginning with the Boys of Business sequence as by Allen Chapmen and the Boy Hunters tales as by Stratemeyer himself writing as by Captain Ralph Bonehill, the Syndicate generated hundreds of boys' and girls' books in such popular series as The Bobbsey Twins, mostly by Lilian Garis (1873-1954) as by Laura Lee Hope, The Hardy Boys as by Franklin W Dixon, Nancy Drew as by Carolyn Keene, and many others. The most famous series of sf relevance was Tom Swift, mostly by Howard R Garis writing as by Victor Appleton, though the Great Marvel Series, mostly by Garis as by Roy Rockwood, was far more impressive. Beyond the prolific Garis, who also wrote several of the Motor Boys series as by Clarence Young, authors with entries in this encyclopedia include Jack Binns, Weldon Cobb and John William Duffield.

The syndicate's business model was straightforward, if ruthless. Stratemeyer himself normally created plot summaries, which were farmed out to a stable of freelance writers who worked for hire; the edited manuscript would be typeset by the syndicate, and plates sold on to various publishers, usually Cupples and Leon, Grosset and Dunlap, or Lee and Shepard. By the time of Stratemeyer's death, the Syndicate was (or had been) responsible for issuing fifty-six separate series in this manner. [DRL/EFB/JC]

see also: John Button; Radio Boys.


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