Sunday, December 14, 2014

Christmas-time Middle Grade Books

I thought I would list a few middle grade holiday books, in case anyone would like to read them.

by Nancy Krulik
Scholastic Paperback October 2009

 How The Pops Stole Christmas (How I Survived Middle School Super Special Series)

Jenny can't wait for the holidays, but her good mood quickly evaporates when she picks Dana as her "Secret Snowflake" in English class and finds out that her friend Sam is heading home to England for the holidays.

by Tony Abbott
Scholastic Press 2005


Unlike the traditional Santa Claus myth, Kringle is a coming-of-age story about an orphan who becomes a force for good in a dark and violent time. It is a tale of fantasy, of goblins, elves, and flying reindeer — and of a boy from the humblest beginnings who fulfills his destiny.
Our tale begins in 500 A.D., when goblins kidnapped human children and set them to work in underground mines. Kringle is one such child.... until he discovers his mission — to free children from enslavement. His legend lives on today, as he travels the earth every Christmas Eve to quell the goblins once more.

by Kathryn Laski
Scholastic November 2001

Christmas after All: The Great Depression Diary of Minnie Swift, Indianapolis, IN, 1932 (Dear America Series) 

At the age of twelve, Minnie Swift is living through one of the toughest times in America's history, The Great Depression. She keeps a detailed diary over the span of one Christmas month. Reflecting the sadness but also the optimism that characterized the time, this is an intimate portrait of a mid-western family's days and nights, ups and downs, triumphs and losses. It is the story of one family's persevering spirit.

The only one I have read is the Christmas After All and I enjoyed it.

There are lots and lots of picture books with the Christmas theme, but I couldn't find that many MGs that dealt with Christmas - hmm, maybe I should write one.

 Do you have any good ones to add to my list?

By the way, I mentioned in my last blog post about our local library's annual writing contest. They announced the winners at a reception on Thursday.

I was surprised and happy to find out that I took 1st place in poetry and 1st place in memoirs!

Monday, December 8, 2014

A Writer's Rest and Relaxation

All year I have been writing and revising.

I am somewhat of a perfectionist and want everything just right or should I say,  just write.

I have been working and working on one of my middle grade manuscripts and finally decided to send it out again - with the many changes I made to it this year.
So, with fingers crossed, I took the plunge and sent it flying out into the world.

I also finished two new picture books, that I just love, and sent them flying out into the world.

Now - I wait.

Every now and then I suffer from writer burn out. That is what I am doing now. So, I have been taking a break and getting caught up on other things.

These burn outs usually do not last very long. I know by the first of the year, I will be at it again - working on my ideas and typing away at the computer.

Soon I will return with regular posting.

Our local library had their annual writing contest and Thursday there will be a reception to announce the winners and have them read their winning entry. I was notified that I placed, so I will be there. That may be just the nudge I need to start writing again. 

Do you ever get writer burn out?
Do you ever feel like you have to take a break - even if it is just a little one?
What gives you the nudge to start writing again?

I think my nudge is that I have to write and I am not happy until I put the words down on paper. As the main character of one of my middle grade manuscripts says, I get so full up, I think I am going to explode.