Sunday, May 01, 2011

A bit of a ramble...

Yesterday I started off my day by browsing Twitter and clicking on links and then some more, and then some more. I tell you this because yesterday there was no decorating or DIY. Nope, we have hung up our rollers and as one of my bosses used to say: "thrown some money at the problem." A nice little man is going to go and paint our walls on Monday. This is not to say that I've hung up my rollers for good. There will still be the hallway and entrée to do in the summer, but it's the size of a postage stamp (well 2 postage stamps). So, let me ramble on some more about what I've been reading.

Firstly, I spotted this very helpful article by Chuck Sambuchino. It's a link to five different articles about what makes something a Children's Book (Middle Grade in these articles) or YA. I was particularly drawn to this as when I first started my WIP I insisted on calling it 'tween! Just go and see what Kidlit has to say about that. Each article has a slightly different viewpoint and I found that I could pick a teensy weensy little fault in each person's reasoning, but on the whole each article furthered my understanding. I'm not going to summarise the articles, because I really want you to go and read them. They're good, go on.

See, they were good weren't they. So I spent the afternoon trying to write a synopsis of a page and failing, but safe in the knowledge that my WIP was a Children's book and my future WIP is YA. After having a last crack at the synopsis just before bedtime and shaving off a whole three lines, I had a last look at some links and came across this article by Katie Dale about happy endings. If you read through the comments everybody has a different opinion about whether teen fiction should have a happy ending and that was when I had my 'Aha!' moment. The whole way through my current WIP I've been a little uncomfortable about the happy ending. OK, it's not completely happy, there's death and separation, but on the whole, in my head, it's a happy ending. And for me that's what makes it a Children's book. Now in the YA to be written thing, I keep thinking, blooming hell that's a bit dark and while I suppose everything works out in the end, it certainly doesn't for the MC. The first time I wrote it I remember thinking that perhaps the ending was a little too dark. So, I've thrown in this little ray of hope, but it ain't for the MC. So, maybe as well as all the other factors that make a book Children's or YA, it's whether the ending is happy or not.

So with that, I shall leave you to go and do some more shaving and scraping to my synopsis. Oh and that's a picture of some chocolate cupcakes I made this morning with the bubba. She took one bite and decided she didn't like them! It's a good job I only had one egg and had to halve the recipe.

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