1. norafluff
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    norafluff New Member

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    Middle Grade fiction

    Discussion in 'By the Genre' started by norafluff, Nov 25, 2015.

    Are there age group guidelines for middle grade fiction? It seems to be ranged between 5th and 8th grades, but I've seen it as 4th-6th as well. Where are the lines between children's, middle grade, and young adult literature?

    Also, are severe depression, self harm, and suicide too mature for a middle grade fiction book?
     
  2. Tenderiser
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    Tenderiser Not a man Contest Administrator Contributor

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    Children: up to 7 years old
    Middle grade: 8-12 years old
    YA: 13-18 years old

    I think a MG book with suicide would be a very hard sell for publishers. Not so sure about depression and self harm... perhaps if it was dealt with very sensitively and non-graphically. I don't know too much about this market, hopefully another poster can advise.
     
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  3. norafluff
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    norafluff New Member

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    Well, I was already leaning towards young adult regardless of suggested age groups. This book idea probably should be 13+.

    I just had a new thought about it though. I have seen some book series (Life As We Knew It, for example) where one book takes the concept from a younger point of view and handles it, as you said, sensitively and non-graphically, and another book in the series either follows a new, older character or the same character but older. Then we see the more mature aspects.

    How unusual is it for a book series to jump up from MG to YA between one book and the next? I am now considering two books instead of one. Knowing my luck, I'd just keep going and make it three or four. Or I might not get farther than the third chapter, as has been my experience thus far.
     
  4. Tenderiser
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    Tenderiser Not a man Contest Administrator Contributor

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    I think a series with different audiences for different books would be an ever harder sell. Even if you self-published, it wouldn't work - YAs would be put off by the first book and MGs wouldn't be able to read the next one - remember parents/teachers often vet books before letting MG-aged children read them.

    What age is your protagonist? That determines the genre more than the content, although the content then has to fit the age of the protagonist. You can't sell a book as MG if the main character is over 12, as far as I know.
     
  5. uncephalized
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    uncephalized Active Member

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    Huh. I never thought about it but those categories actually make a lot of sense. Children's fiction for anyone under the age of reason (about 7-8), then middle grade for those not yet in puberty (around 12-13), then young adult and general fiction for those who are sexually aware (everyone else). Explains why so many older adults will read YA; because 15 year olds have adult concerns and problems that can be universally compelling. Neat.
     
  6. norafluff
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    norafluff New Member

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    I may stick to a single MG book then, handled sensitively and non-graphically. That was my original intention, no graphic depictions of self harm. The age I was thinking of was 11-12. Right before middle school.
     
  7. Tea@3
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    Tea@3 Contributing Member

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    Thanks, I was wondering this too.
     

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