Saturday, April 28, 2012

April Showers: The Wonder of Middle Grade Fiction

Hey, thanks for dropping by. I have more good news this week. My YA novel PLUMB CRAZY, in the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Contest, has moved on to the semi-finals. My book is in the top 50 of 5000.Please consider following the link to the Amazon site and liking or reviewing the excerpt if you will. I also had a story released on the Farfaria app called "Waiting for Princess Tea".

I am a writer with varied talents. I write in multiple genres for children, and today I'm going talk about the wonder of middle grade. Middle grade is about impossibility - animals talk, fairies grant wishes and aren't pouting skanks and, my favorite, BFF, best friends are forever.

This is the place of a literal world. Black is black and white is white. Shades of gray aren't welcome in this magical land. It weird and wonderful because magic is welcome but ambiguity is not. That just makes me laugh. This is the way it works, "When you wish upon a star your dreams come true". I think the best middle grade authors get this and won't disappoint us by answering a wish with an unending nightmare. I mean if the wish is a curse our intrepid hero is going to figure that out and break that wish!

To me the best middle grade faces the big questions of injustice with shining clarity. Good triumphs over evil. Orphans find homes. Lonely kids find friends. Ordinary kids go on extraordinary adventures. This is no shrinking violet genre. Good people die and that experience builds a foundation in characters so they can take life on.

I love middle grade and I love to write it. I think it's because my inner twelve-year-old is alive and well inside me, and she has so many stories to share. Finally, if you are interested, here is a blog that does a great job exploring middle grade fiction -- From the Mixed Up Files. I hope you worked so hard this week I know you are doing amazing things. I hope I said something here that helps you define your journey.

This week's doodle in the cover of my story in the Fanfaria app, illustrated by the talented. Alexandra Artigas.

And finally a quote to keep with you this week.

It's no wonder that truth is stranger than fiction. Fiction has to make sense.  Mark Twain


Elissa Cruz said...

I love what you said about how magic is welcome but ambiguity is not. That, in itself, is a lovely thought to mull over in my head.

Oh, and thanks for the From the Mixed-Up Files shout out, too!

MollyMom103 said...

Hey, Elissa! Glad to get you mulling. :)

I like to shout out meaningful blogs. I'm just like that.

Vijaya said...

Molly, you're on fire!!! You are so talented with all the things you write and do! I love MG for all these things you mentioned. Oddly enough, even though I write short stories for the MG crowd, every time I've thought about a book length story, my MG morphs into YA.

MollyMom103 said...

I really do write picture books, middle grade and YA, and I think this is connected to my personas. That screaming twelve-year-old in me writes middle grade. I think you can't force yourself to write in a specific genre. If you do it will seem, well, forced. I struggle with short stories. I just have a hard time writing in a short form. I can do it if someone gives me assignment, but if I have to come up with the idea, ay yi yi.