Writing: New MG Project

NaNoWriMo took me a whole different direction than I planned. I had slightly mapped out a sci-fi/fantasy before Nov 1st, but eventually I ran out of story. Because I needed a better outline and bunches of brainstorming to make that sucker work, I abandoned my water world and interstellar characters.

Something had to change to get the words down.

My imagination amazes me some days and as I let it roam, I thought of how I raised my son as a single mom. In his twenties now, he is strong, intelligent, and kind. I’m very proud of him.

These thoughts brought up other thoughts and before I realized it, I was thinking of another boyβ€”not my son but an imaginary middle-grade boyβ€”and put him on his bike facing the longest, and the steepest hill in the world on his worst day of his life.

Kid suicide is a serious thing, and this kid faced it every day on his way home from school when he stopped at the top of the longest, and the steepest hill. Every day he wanted to let go, race to the bottom and end it all.

poppy-1778345_1280I started writing about this boy and how just before the bike loses control he gives himself one more day. But his life is without hope until he sees a poster advertising a magic club meeting at the local library.

This story is about how he earns his place, finds the pieces of his wand and with the help of some friends eventually assembles it. As long as he succeeds he’s fine, but if he fails, there may be no saving him.

Let’s hope I do it justice. Any advice or reading you’d suggest. I’ve written middle grade before but my hero was much older than this little guy.

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32 responses to “Writing: New MG Project

  1. Sounds like you came up with a really great story idea. More Nanowrimo magic. I wish I had some reading suggestions, but can’t think of any at the moment.

  2. I don’t read a lot of middle grade…but this sounds very interesting. Especially with the magical element. Good luck!
    sherry @ fundinmental

  3. My heart breaks for this boy, but I like that magic club at his local library helps him. Good luck writing it! It sounds like a great story.

  4. Love the idea of this story! I’m not an MG writer, but I think the every day struggle of real life for the boy and a bit of magic added in sounds like a winning combination.

  5. What a great idea for a story. Just think like a child!

  6. Sounds like a great idea for a story.

  7. Wow, that sounds like something I’ll really enjoy reading. Like the premise. Best of luck.
    Juneta @ Writer’s Gambit

  8. I feel for your character all ready! Good luck it sounds like you have found your story or maybe he found you.

  9. There’s magic behind this idea, Anna, and it sounds like it has the potential to be powerful. Go for it!

    I don’t read a lot of MG, but two books I read in recent years have stayed with me, and might help you in terms of atmosphere, emotion, etc. (They might not, but they’re great reads regardless! :))

    The Thing about Jellyfish by Ali Benjamin
    Orbiting Jupiter by Gary D Schmidt.

  10. You know, I don’t do the heart-rending stuff usually, because it makes me want to bawl, and that’s not why I read or write. But, I think it sounds like a great concept.

  11. It’s kind of cool when the must takes you in an entirely different direction to the one planned, don’t you think, Anna? It must be because one is led by the mind and the other by something deeper, therefore we naturally expect it to be even more interesting and to have more staying power. Good luck with the new story! πŸ™‚

  12. Wow this sounds like such a powerful story. And it’s amazing how it came to you. Good luck with it!

  13. I didn’t realize suicide in MG kids age group is so rampant. That makes me very sad. Your book topic is timely and could even save some kid’s life. Very important. You can do this with your wonderfully imaginative writing. I like the children’s books by Beverly Stowe McClure.

  14. I love it when I start out on one path and end up on a different one. It was meant to be, I guess. Congrats on following what seemed the right way to go.

  15. Sounds like an interesting story,

  16. Oh, I love this idea! It sounds like a great book. And congrats on winning NaNo–I was cheering you on!

    I assume you’ve read the first few Harry Potter books? They might help. Or Chronicles of Narnia. Or Bedknobs and Broomsticks.

If you're new to writing, ask me anything and if you're experienced, feel free to share what you know. Learning something new in the craft is always welcome.

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