Something near the entrance door attracts Nick's attention.
Subscribe to our FREE email newsletter and download free character development worksheets! Guest Column August 7, OK, class.
What sets a middle-grade novel apart from a young adult novel? If you said MG is for readers ages 8—12, and YA is for readers ages 13—18, then give yourself a check plus. Sadly, by not understanding what makes a book a true MG or a solid YA, these writers have hamstrung their chances for success, regardless of how well written their stories may be.
On the bright side, writers who study up on the many key differences between MG and YA will be able to craft the kind of well-targeted manuscript that will make both agents and editors take notice. Pay attention, because someday your manuscript will be tested.
This guest post is by Marie Lamba marielamba. Mg At A Glance Age of readers: Generally 30,—50, words although fantasy can run longer to allow for more complex world-building. No profanity, graphic violence or sexuality romance, if any, is limited to a crush or a first kiss.
Typically age 10 for a younger MG novel, and up to age 13 for older, more complex books. Profanity, graphic violence, romance and sexuality except for eroticism are all allowable though not required.
Ages 14—15 for a younger YA with cleaner content aimed at the middle-school crowd; for older and more edgy YA, characters can be up to 18 but not in college.
YA heroes discover how they fit in the world beyond their friends and family; they spend more time reflecting on what happens and analyzing the meaning of things. YA Readers Middle-grade is not synonymous with middle school.
Books for the middle-school audience tend to be divided between the MG and YA shelves. So which shelf do those readers go to? Writing a sweeter, more innocent YA? Instead, just stick to calling it either MG or YA when you submit, and let an interested agent draw conclusions about nuances from there.
Same goes for the way they speak and the way they view the world.
There are gatekeepers between your book and your targeted audience. To get a book, kids first go through a parent, a teacher or a librarian. While you might want to have that gritty character in your upper-MG novel drop a few four-letter words, doing so will hurt book sales, so choose your language wisely.
Also, think carefully about your content. MG is not the place for graphic or persistent violence, but can it be scary and dark?
Sure—look at Holes by Louis Sachar, where boys are threatened by a crazy warden and nearly killed by poisonous lizards.
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Note, however, that book does have a happy ending. And do remember that school and library support can really catapult a YA title to success. Exceptions to Every Rule Like any rebellious teen can tell you, rules are made to be broken. Word counts often vary from the suggested norms.
Hey, once you get as popular as Rowling, you can write doorstopper-sized tomes, too. Content can also stray from the stated guidelines, with good reason. You might, say, choose to have an MG with a swear word, or with a more edgy storyline.
Whether you aim to write a YA or an MG novel, there is one thing you absolutely must do: Tell a story that is meaningful to your intended reader.I have a confession to make.
When I was in school and a teacher would assign us to write an outline for a story, I’d finish the story first, then go back and write the outline so I’d have something to turn in. Even as a teenager I thought outlining was counterintuitive to the writing process.
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A plethora of resources both online and offline will teach you exactly how to write a screenplay but good luck trying to learn how to write a comic book script. A script and a screenplay are really the same thing, and the reason some people tend to think there's some sort of technical difference is because certain terms -- like "spec script" or "shooting script" -- use one term over another.
Voila! Finally, the Mirror Has Two Faces script is here for all you quotes spouting fans of the Barbra Streisand movie. This script is a transcript that was painstakingly transcribed using the screenplay and/or viewings of Mirror Has Two Faces.