Monday, January 20, 2014

Middle Grade Crushes

Just as in real life, fictional characters are motivated by many outside obstacles or tension. The ex-boyfriend moving back to town, a sudden storm that knocks out power during the school play, or even friction between a parental figure and a teen. But there are also inner motivations like beliefs, morals, and preferences. 

And the greatest of these is Love. (1 Corinthians 13:13)
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Unicorn Bell, in honor of the fast approaching Valentine's Day, is asking for some love highlights, today. Be it ooey-gooey, romantic love or the mesmerizing affection a character has over a chocolate bar. 

I've chosen a few lines from my current middle grade manuscript to spotlight a different love motivator. 

Meet Ebony Jade Charmed - twelve year old cheese lover slash spirit-tracker and her encounter with that uncomfortable yet exciting first tug at her heart strings.

Ebony gathered her things and pivoted to step in the opposite direction, but slammed into something hard. Her satchel rammed up under her chin and tipped her head back. To her shock, she found herself staring into the face of a boy, who looked familiar but, at the same time didn't. 

“Uh …” The alphabet had never failed her before. “Oh gosh, I’m …” 

Tall, with wavy chestnut hair tapping his earlobes, mystery boy’s skin glowed tan as though kissed from sunlight. The back of his hair brushed his neck and curled up at the ends. His bangs hovered just above his eyes like some dream guy from an old beach movie she'd watched with her mother. It was his eyes of ice and fire that got to her. Oddly enough, they reminded her of a cool bowl of double chocolate ice cream and spicy buffalo chicken wings at the same time. He offered her satchel, and she accepted it.

Without another word, he dipped his chin in a simple nod and then sauntered toward the school. 

“Wait!” She mentally did a face plant on an invisible desk, wondering why she couldn't stop her mouth from blurting out. 
Do you remember that initial boy/girl who tugged at your heart and made you question yourself?
 photo Sheri2.png

27 comments:

  1. My celeb crushes were C. Thomas Howell and Duran Duran! :) But in junior high, it seemed like we had a crush on a different boy each month! Luckily I have my diary from then that details all the crazy crushes (there were a lot). My daughter is in 6th grade, and she has a crush on a 7th grader... It starts already!

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  2. The alphabet had never failed her before - LOL!! I know that feeling.

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  3. So cute! And I'm with L. Diane, my favorite line was the alphabet had never failed her before. Thanks so much for joining us for the blogfest!

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  4. Hahaha, what a great blogfest. (Love the Bible verse, pal.) I love what his eyes of ice and fire reminded her of. *snort* She must be a take on Crystal. (The cheese) *wink* Great job.

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  5. Replies
    1. Oh, good to know. Me, too!!!

      Thanks so much for dropping by.

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  6. Very cute, Sheri. I don't know what a spirit tracker is -- but it sounds very cool!! :)

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    1. Thanks. Ebony is not only a medium, but one who can 'track' a spirit in the afterlife. ;) Brings up a few complication. lol

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  7. I used to call moments like that total dork-outs. Yes, had many.

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    1. You're not the only one. I think a compilation of those young experiences would make for a funny book.

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  8. Ah, love is definitely in the air. Your boy-girl encounter has set the stage for February!

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  9. Tongue-tied! That a great excerpt, as it captured such an innocent (and agonizing) moment so well.

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    1. Aw ... Thanks so much for stopping by and for reading!

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  10. Oh yes. This brings back memories of the guy all us girls had a crush on. Thanks for sharing this little snippet.

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  11. Love the description of this cute "mystery" boy! Oh, to be twelve again... Thanks for sharing this with us!

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  12. Loved the line about the alphabet having never failed her before! I've certainly been there. Thanks for sharing these great lines!

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  13. Ice cream and buffalo wings at the same time - nice opposites.

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  14. Liked this, esp. the line about the alphabet as L.G. said! And I do recall a certain boy who lived up the street from me...

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  15. This is cute! I remember various of my childhood crushes. I was a bit boy crazy. Ha!

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    1. Haha! You were???? Sounds like there's a story there ....

      Thanks so much for stopping by!

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  16. OMGoodness this is cute, I love the part where "to her shock she's staring into the face of a boy." hee hee. so cute. :)

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  17. That's so cute. :) I love middle grade. :)

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  18. Ack! I was sure I commented yesterday. *shrugs* Maybe messing interdimensional time gates is starting to affect my head. ;)

    The alphabet failed her...! You have so much personality in this excerpt. LOVE IT. Your voice is so authentic and so fun!

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  19. Cute. Funny. And "eyes of chocolate ice cream and buffalo chicken wings" just knocked me out.

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  20. Oh, this is so cute! Love the chocolate ice cream bit. I totally remember the gooey love stuff when I first started dating my hubby. Oh, the butterflies!

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  21. Ha! I love awkward moments. This is great!

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  22. This is wonderful. Such a balance of sweet and dorky.

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