Let’s Talk About Middle-Grade Novels! A Quick and Dirty Guide

November 3, 2017- There seems to be a lot of confusion around three little words…Middle-Grade Novel. Let’s dive into the basics and explore what elements make up a middle-grade novel.

  • Middle-grade books are for kids in grades 4, 5, and 6-ages 9,10, 11.
  • This is a diverse group of readers, and the middle-grade word counts are as follows: books for younger kids are 20,000-25,000 words and the books for the older kids usually contain 35,000-40,000 words.
  • These books are usually large print, fast reads. A great example of a younger middle-grade novel is Diary of a Wimpy Kid, and a great example of an older middle-grade book is our very own Unfrogged by Tamara Botting.

Middle grade interests include the following things:

  • PEERS– I capitalized this word because it’s the single most crucial thing to middle -graders and it’s important to know that kids care what their friends think above anything else at this age!
  • Family-The child is the main character, the child is in the middle, and everything revolves around him or her. For example, parents are getting divorced what does that mean to the child?
  • Self Concept– How do I belong? Who am I? Kids at this age are just starting to figure this out and ask the questions that will eventually shape them into adults.
  • Puberty-Looks, development, gender, opposite sex and relationships.
  • Future-Upon who does the future depend?…It depends on the main character of course!

So if you’re planning on writing for middle-graders, keep the above things in mind!

LB

Unfrogged-FRONTresized

 

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