Posted by: nancyisanders | August 31, 2011

Middle Grade Novel: Brainstorming

Brainstorming is a vital part of writing.

Without it, we get writer’s block, weak plot, uninteresting characters, and boring manuscripts.

When we brainstorm, we are armed with tools to sail forth and write successful stories that sell.

Kids learn how to brainstorm in early elementary school so they can earn good grades in school. Every writer will benefit from brainstorming sessions as well.

So when I started brainstorming for my middle grade novel, I grabbed an empty spiral notebook and started jotting down ideas as fast as they could come. I carried this notebook around for several days and I was amazed at the ideas that poured out onto paper. Many of them disjointed, a lot of them probably won’t get used, but I wrote down ALL of them and will pick and choose later.

To brainstorm for your middle grade novel, first brainstorm which genre you want this to be. Here are some to consider:

Realistic Fiction
Humorous Fiction
Historic Fiction
Science Fiction

Save Your Time Track: For writers with limited time
Pick a genre you’re familiar with and start writing your middle grade novel.

Take Your Time Track: For writers who have the time to maximize the journey
Pick a genre even if it’s new territory for you, study the rules, and follow them as you write your middle grade novel.


  1. I jot down ideas in my phone because I don’t like to carry anything more than my small purse when I go out.
    I’m getting lots of broad ideas that, I’m afraid, would make the novel run longer than 50,000 words. So when I’m ready to sit down to plot, I need to pick the best ideas before I start my research. I hope this is a good plan.

    • This is a great idea, Anne! When brainstorming, I like to jot down EVERYTHING. Then it’s just a matter of picking and choosing when I actually sit down to plot.

  2. I am finaly home! I will strat to read the three books I bought… now I must read them, the brain storm will start later!

  3. I found an interesting link about the Whipping Boy,

  4. 11 characters!!!!!!!!!!! gloups I am scared now!

  5. Hey, Nicole! Hang in there! I’ll be talking about characters soon…just use 1 main character and 1 supporting character for now (think Jemmy and Prince Brat). It’s not that hard…actually!

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