There's monkey-in-the-middle, being sandwiched between other sweaty football players during a tackle, or standing dead center among other crazed fans at a rock concert. Can you see the red-headed step-child cringing?
We begin school at the elementary level, where everything is new and exciting. The end of our educational journey consists of high school and post-secondary colleges, at a time we're maturing, planning, and dreaming of what to do with our lives.
But what about the middle - MIDDLE GRADE?
What is it about being 12 to 14 that makes life so different? That is a question middle grade writers must ask themselves whenever beginning a story. So let's explore and give us something to chew on.
Middle grade is:
- where we have one foot in childhood and one the first step to adulthood.
- where we're beginning to discover who we are and who we'd like to be.
- where most begin to mature physically, causing awkwardness in body movements.
- where attitudes develop, wanting more independence yet still needing to be cared for.
- where we begin to see we have a place in the world and spend lots of time watching how others fit into their world.
- where peer pressure, popularity, and structured clicks usually begin.
- where realizing there's more in the world then just 'me' is just annoying.
- where the line between male and female becomes more pronounced.
- where the world begins to get bigger.
- where everything is a big deal.
- where drama begins.
Now, use these prompts to inspire ideas to add to your middle grade manuscript. Not a MG writer? Take a stab at it anyway.
How could you use these to develop your young adult or adult characters? Can you add to my list?