Over at a post on the Nerdy Book Club, I recently posted the following comment regarding the “Middle Grade” book label:
I’m not sure if I like the official “Middle Grade” categorization for books appropriate for this age range. Nothing wrong with recommending books for a certain group of readers, but that “Middle Grade” label places too much of a limitation on potential readers — and authors.
As an author, I do not want to write into the box of the “Middle Grade” label. What I write may indeed be appropriate for and enjoyed by middle grade readers, but a good book should offer an organically constructed story, not one tailored to fit into a convenient, easily marketable package.
My 6th graders are loving my first novel, and it’s certainly an appropriate read for them, but when I wrote it, I had none of the characteristics of 6th grade readers shaping my writing process.