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The MG Club!

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Jaina

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Who wants to come clean--half-finished MG, anyone?  More than half-finished?  Putting off all that work that needs to be done?

I've been really lazy about working on my MG, lately, but it's time to buckle down.  I need to get a completed first draft in decent condition by Chautauqua in July.

I've been revising as I go along because reading as-good-as-I-can-get-it chapter drafts always gets me in the mood to work on the next bit.   I also started this book by working out of order, writing any part that caught my fancy at the moment (I had a detailed chapter outline).  As a result, I have some chapters with nothing written, when the next chapter may have been written and worked over several times.  Not good!

I also experienced a temporary freeze due to a conference critique which suggested I add a new chapter at the beginning, causing some  ??? and some  :'( and some  :-\ .  I think I've finally gotten over that and am back to my usual :P .

My goal for today:  Type the changes I had made on my printed-out draft into the computer file for the first three chapters.  Anything else I do on it is extra, a bonus, and I deserve a cookie.

Anyone else?
#1 - March 16, 2004, 01:18 PM

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I'll join you Jaina. I have a bunch of ideas that I have been pushing aroud for a mg. I've even made a few fits and starts, but nothing major (could be because I'm trying to finish up a few pbs and an ez reader).

I really want to go to Chautauqua, but I'm a little :cuccoan: because I don't have the mg even started yet. (I have to decide before the early deadline is done, or it won't fit in my budget.)

What I've been doing:
Reading a ton of mg books

Signing up for a new writing class (starts tonight) because I want some help in how to get going on my mg
#2 - March 16, 2004, 01:40 PM
Site - http://sruble.com
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picture book: EWE AND AYE (Disney-Hyperion)

Quzi

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Sigh-probably not going to Chatacqua this year-or however you spell that thing. Too many wrinkles to iron out for it to be a reality. But, I'm currently writing 2 mgs-both fantasy/sf. I've written five previously and one of those is sitting on a Editorial Director's desk, burning a hole into the formica-hissing and snarling while the editor makes up their mind. So...in between waiting and whining, I'm trying to behave and write.
#3 - March 16, 2004, 03:19 PM
« Last Edit: March 16, 2004, 03:20 PM by Quzi »

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Jaina,

I have one I have to get working on too. Ijust finished the rewrite but now I have revisions - and unless my editor gives me a whole lot of revisions on my YA I have time.


Alma
#4 - March 16, 2004, 06:47 PM
GG Finalist, Golden Oak award, CLA BofY Honor Book, Ruth and Sylvia Schwartz award, TD09 Finalist, Yalsa Quickpick, Stellar shortlist, MYRCA shortlist

Cana

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Well, since I don't even know where Chautauqua is, I guess I won't be going. I wanted to go to the Fla. SCBWI conference in Orlando in June, but don't think I can swing it financially. Instead I have penciled in January in Miami where our own Verla Kay will be featured along with Kate DiCamillo. Haven't seen $ figures on that yet. But I'm hopin'.

Have one MG early chapter book subbed. Another is finished and starting the crit group rounds for revisions. The 3rd is in planning stages. Got characters sketched out, but having a problem deciding on exact setting and conflict resolution. (As in, I don't know what their problem will be yet...so can't resolve it! LOL. That one is still tumbling around in my brain.)
#5 - March 16, 2004, 06:48 PM

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Can I be in your club?  Pleeease?

I have a mg that is on its third draft and one that is a fifth of the way through the first draft.

Then from years ago, I have two others outlined with first chapters.  I just didn't know where to go next back then.

I want to finish the one that is in the third draft to get it ready to sub, and I'd like to get the second in shape before Chautauqua because that's the one I'd like help with.  But I don't know if that's possible.  There's not much time.  Of course, if I could just stop playing Snood, Jaina and Verla, thank you very much. . .

Anne Marie
#6 - March 17, 2004, 03:57 AM
BUSY-EYED DAY (Beach Lane Books, 2018)
GROUNDHUG DAY (Disney-Hyperion, 2017)
VAMPIRINA AT THE BEACH (Disney-Hyperion, 2017)
among others

bballmom

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can i be in the club, too?

I finished the first draft of my very first mg novel a few weeks ago.  I too want to have at least one revision done before Chautauqua (I love typing that word- we have a Chautauqua park in our town, I love saying it too, Chautauqua).  

Must start revisions today. . . :pig  I just wanted to use the pig, I've never used the pig in a post, lol, get it pig in a post.  I crack me up. Probably no one else is cracking up but I am. . . oh :o it's going to be a long day!

Barb
#7 - March 17, 2004, 06:36 AM

Jaina

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Anyone can be in the club who wants to be in the club.

Here are the rules of MG Club.
Rule #1--Don't talk about MG Club.
Rule #2--Don't TALK about MG Club.
Rule #3 . . .

Oh, okay.  Yuk, yuk.  I went for the obvious joke.   :P

The only rules of MG club are the kind your make for yourself.  Mine will be something like:
--I will work on my MG!
--I will have fun while doing it!
--I will respect the project! (Mine's a bit on the silly side content-wise)
--I will reward myself when done--Finished chapters get cookies!  Finished draft gets Rocky Road ice cream!

Tough Talk for Lazy Self:
Good ideas in your head are as good as good ideas in the garbage.  What if you get smacked upside the head by a soccer ball at the park or a huge dictionary lands on you next time you go to the library?  Suddenly, you can't remember your name, let alone all those good ideas . . . not much good, are they?  Get them on paper!  Break it down to bite-size chunks.  It's NOT that hard!




#8 - March 17, 2004, 09:10 AM

Chris Mandelski

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I'll be in it too -- I am 2 and 3/4 chapters into mine -- they are pretty long chapters -- there are ony going to be 9 or so (according to my outline anyway) so I feel like I'm doing pretty well.  

It feels good to have what I consider to be two decent chapters under my belt -- just gotta keep chipping away!

Best to all,
Chris ;D
#9 - March 17, 2004, 12:21 PM

ToniBME

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I am IN.  I LOVE LOVE LOVE MGs.  I have had a block in mine and a great friend pointed out how I could help it.  

I felt I needed to write in chapter order and that isn't needed here for my main project.

I need MG interaction.  PB ideas keep popping in and I need to feed the MG.  

I really enjoy getting into the complexity of the characters.  

Okay, wonderful bonding group, I am setting a goal.  

What will it be.  You all will have to kick my $%^&*( if I don't do it.  

DOUGLAS,  we need a bum kicking smilie.

I will complete at least three rough draft chapters by the end of this month.

Okay, I typed it.   I will report in at the end of the month.  MGs rock.

Mine is a rather humorous tragic story.  Boy as main character.  What about you guys?

 :writing3: :writing3: :writing3: :writing3: :writing3: :writing3:


Toni
#10 - March 17, 2004, 12:50 PM

Quzi

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hmmm-the one currently being considered is sf about a girl whose parents are famous archeologists who vanish from a dig site on the planet Lindos. The Mc, determined to solve their disappearance, is plunged into a morass of intrigue-an ancient mystery about a vanished city, a plantery struggle for dominance, and a tangle of interstellar spying.
whew, recover yet? next one is a sequel-what hapens after her parents are found and the whole cast is thrust into another interstellar adventure-complete with archeology and spying. Then I'm working on a sf/fantasy tale (something very different, an idea I haven't heard mentioned anywhere, so for now, I'll keep this one to myself)
And my other wip is ya fantasy.
#11 - March 17, 2004, 01:00 PM

lurban

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Consider me an MG club pledge.
I'm only 2 1/2 chapters into mine, but I'm determined to finish -- even if this turns out to be only a "practice book" (thanks for the technical term, Deetie!).

My big goal: an ugly first draft by the end of July.  That means two more chapters -- however homely -- by the end of April.  
There.  
It's public.

Now I have to do it.

#12 - March 20, 2004, 08:44 PM

kimmar

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Oooh! It is SUCH a big step for me to post in this section! I'm venturing out from the pb world and trying to see if a novel is at all within the realm of possibilities for me. Strange thing is, I am so brand new here, that I have no idea what I'm doing. I've decided to spend a few weeks just throwing my mc into scenes that I THINK will be related to whatever story he's trying to tell, and then see where that leads in an effort to really understand who this kid is. I don't know where he wants to take me at this point. I'm trying to let go of my perfectionist nature and allow myself the time to just let the thoughts flow. The hardest thing is convincing myself that this won't be wasted time (I know it won't, but still it's hard to convince myself :) ). Are 2200 words of jibberish enough to gain admission into this club?
Kim
#13 - March 21, 2004, 07:42 AM
« Last Edit: March 21, 2004, 07:57 AM by kimmar »

Jaina

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No time is wasted if you learn something, Kimmar!

Okay, I don't necessarily believe that.  Like if you're watching a terrible disgusting movie and you're "learning" how much you hate it and how many brain cells you can kill in one sitting, then . . .  yes, that's wasted time.   ;)

And need you ask?  ANY amount of gibberish will gain you admittance to this club.

If you need to bounce your ideas off someone or get one person's opinion, feel free to send a message my way!  I don't usually like to do that in the idea stage, cause I feel like it might take away some sort of secret mystical writing power and suck the life out of my project and the energy out of me.  But, hey--if you don't have that hang-up, I'd be happy to give you my thoughts!
#14 - March 21, 2004, 09:27 AM

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lurban, I think I might be writing a practice mg...it's a really weird thing I have started to create, and I don't know if anyone would publish it, but it's a learning experience for sure!!

kimmar, I'm doing a bit of writing scenes that I think might fit too. I'm guessing it will help in the long run to define the character and story for me.

I'm writing a book with a tornado as a character...no, it's not a re-telling of the Wizard of Oz, or a sequel to the movie Twister! hahahaha sorry, sometimes I crack myself up, even if nobody else thinks it's funny. I guess that's why I don't do comedy anymore.  ::)
#15 - March 21, 2004, 10:01 AM
Site - http://sruble.com
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picture book: EWE AND AYE (Disney-Hyperion)

shelly

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And need you ask?  ANY amount of gibberish will gain you admittance to this club.


Really? Then I guess I qualify too.

Kim, Linda, and Stephanie--Yep, what you guys said...I am soooo in the same boat. Love the term "practice book", it is so liberating! Woo-hoo!

I've been debating whether to jump into this "club" since the day Jaina started it, but: okay, I'm in.
#16 - March 21, 2004, 10:45 AM

Aud

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Where Kim goes, I go, whenever possible. I'm scared--I'm frightened!!!--but I'm in.
#17 - March 21, 2004, 11:57 AM

bballmom

Guest
Gosh, I think of all my books as practice books!  If I took myself too seriously I don't think I'd be able to write a word!  If doctors practice medicine why can't writers practice writing?  Did i read that somewhere, or did I make it up? :study

My mg is going to sound like it has a worn plot but is about a boy's struggle with a long-term substitute teacher.  It is filled with humor, but has a serious thread about an awol Dad.

Hey, YAY for me.  THis is my 200th post

Barb
#18 - March 22, 2004, 07:59 AM

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Gosh, I think of all my books as practice books!  If I took myself too seriously I don't think I'd be able to write a word!  If doctors practice medicine why can't writers practice writing?  Did i read that somewhere, or did I make it up? :study
Barb

I probably have millions of words of practice writing in my files. This includes three midgrades written a long time ago which I have put to rest.

I am still practicing. It's fun.
#19 - March 22, 2004, 08:08 AM
PAINLESS (Albert Whitman 2015)
BLOOD BROTHERS (Delacorte 2007)

I'm in.  I have started a mg, but I don't know if I'm using anything I've written. One of my problems is that I keep working on pbs.  So, I'm finishing up 2 pbs that are mostly "there" and then I'm going to write till I drop on the mg. 

There, I've said it too.
#20 - March 22, 2004, 11:17 AM
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AMAZING KITCHEN CHEMISTRY (Nomad 2008)
EXPLORE ROCKS AND MINERALS (Nomad 2009)
MAPPING AND NAVIGATION (Nomad 2013)

kimmar

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Do I get kicked out of the club if I haven't written more than a few sentences in a few days? Sure, I've done lots of THINKING, but I need Jaina to threaten me with group eviction in order to get me to DO MY WORK!
Kim
#21 - March 24, 2004, 06:38 AM

shelly

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No, Kim. No.

Otherwise, I'd have been kicked out before I even joined. I've been on a writing break for almost two months, but have set myself a goal to begin writing regularly again before the end of April. So please don't evict me...pretty please.

However, if the end of April comes and I'm still not back into my writing, let the threats begin.
#22 - March 24, 2004, 07:37 AM

kimmar

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Hi Shelly,
I don't want to be evicted either, but I need the THREAT of eviction in order to get productive, LOL.
Kim
#23 - March 24, 2004, 07:44 AM

Jaina

Guest
Kim, the answer is yes.  I've been meaning to talk to you about something.  (<--doesn't that phrase just make you wanna cry?)

If you don't write something on your MG by this Saturday at 12 noon, a group of goons personally selected by yours truly will arrive at your house and you don't want to know what they'll do.  Believe me.  :death:

So get  :writing3: my friend.

Shelly, you're okay.  The "rules" of MG Club vary for each member.  But at the end of April, watch out!   :devil:

My personal rules say I must complete a draft of one of these blank chapters of mine before Sunday night (the 28th).
#24 - March 24, 2004, 08:22 AM

shelly

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And if not, Jaina? You gonna send goons to your own door, or would you like me to help you out?
#25 - March 24, 2004, 08:45 AM

HB

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Jaina, do you think it was the writer goons at your door a couple of nights ago?  :eek5:

I think the MG club goons are going to have to come to my place soon. I've been applying for other writing assignments, working on short stuff, and non-fiction. The problem is, I have deadlines for the other things, so I work to deadline. The MG gets left behind. :-[

Although I've been editing this week, I still haven't finished the elusive last chapter. *sigh*

#26 - March 24, 2004, 09:44 AM

Jaina

Guest
MG CLUB--Roll call!

Don't make me send the goons.  Have you done any work since we started this thread?  Do you want to be a  :typing: or a   :cuccoan: ?  Do you want to write a middle grade novel, or do you just wish you already had written it? 

Wishing wasn't doing much for me.  I know lots of us are busy during this time of year with Spring Break vacations or visits to family, etc.  Maybe the kids are home from school and you feel like you can't get anything done--there's always something, isn't there?  But how about writing 200 words a day?  How about doing that for 5 days each week?  You'd have 1,000 words a week!  If you can do more, even better!  Come on, MG gang! :jump

My goal for today is 1,000 new words.  I've done about 700.  No, they're not great words so far--but they're words.  I'll go back and fix it later.  Don't  :feelbad: yourself, but I need some company!  Who's with me?  By the end of April, I'm going to have a completed first draft.  If I don't have a complete first draft of this novel by May 1st, I will post a picture of me in a BATHING SUIT on this thread--a recent one.   :eek5:  Now THAT's motivation.  Motivation for you guys to support me, too--you don't want to see a picture like that, believe me!   :tongue:
#27 - April 10, 2004, 02:26 PM

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I'm trying to get my mg ready for the Ursula Nordstrom contest.  Postmark deadline is Thursday.  After lots of agony, it's getting there.

AM
#28 - April 10, 2004, 02:43 PM
BUSY-EYED DAY (Beach Lane Books, 2018)
GROUNDHUG DAY (Disney-Hyperion, 2017)
VAMPIRINA AT THE BEACH (Disney-Hyperion, 2017)
among others

Cindy

Guest
I'll join you, Jaina. 

I'll finish my current draft by May 1st. 

There, now that I've said it in front of all these witnesses, I'll feel guilty if I have to admit I didn't do it.   :yup
#29 - April 10, 2004, 03:47 PM

tom

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I don't know, I'd kind of like to see the swim suit pic.  ;D 
#30 - April 10, 2004, 03:52 PM

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