Appropriate age for my animorphic novel?

by Charles
(Inyokern, California)

I wrote an animorphic tale set in the old west.

It is about 300 pages long. (I don't want to give away too much info.) It is an epic to say the least.

I targeted the middle grade market, but I'm not sure if it is too "big" of a story or not. It certainly is not longer than a Harry Potter book.

I need to narrow this down so I can target the right agent. YA? Middle Grade? Children's? I thought I would need to target an agent who specializes in middle grade, who is NOT afraid or sick of animorphic animal stories.

Any suggestions?

Thanks in advance,


Comments for Appropriate age for my animorphic novel?

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Animorphic definition
by: Steve B. (webmaster)

Charles, could you define "animorphic" for me? My dictionary isn't helping.

Talking Animals!
by: Lisa J. Michaels

Talking animal books (there you go, Steve) are usually for very young readers and limited to picture books, although there have been exceptions.

With the word count that you're suggesting, you might be able to sell it as a "chapter book," which are aimed at kids who are not yet quite ready for the full novel.

Mid-grade readers these days are a bit more sophisticated than they used to be, so I doubt if your manuscript would work for that age group.

Before you decide, take one of the most important steps. Make sure that your manuscript is as tight as it can possibly be. Eliminate any parts that do not add to the story or further it along.

Make sure you have an effective beginning that fleshes out your characters for the reader, a middle that moves the story towards its climax, and a satisfying, conclusive ending, where the main character solves his/her issues with little or no help from the supporting characters.

Once you have tightened your story, your word count should be lower. This will give you a much better idea of where you're at with regards to your market.

Also, don't rule out kids magazines, where many writers get their first publishing credits! After tightening your manuscript, you might discover that you have a short story that is perfect for a magazine submission.

Magazines usually ask for only "first rights," reverting all rights back to you after the story has run and it's time for a new issue to be released.

Some mags keep the rights for a year. Either way, you get your rights back eventually, and then you can make money on the manuscript again by selling it to other publications or submitting it in chapter book format to book publishers!

I sincerely hope that helps you in polishing your work and knowing which direction to take. Best of luck!

Sincerely, Lisa J. Michaels

Animorphic definition
by: Steve B. (webmaster)

Thank you, Lisa! (Check out Lisa's page on this site.)

Lisa hits a lot of stuff right on the nose, Charles. Check out our Author Services Dep't. if you'd like any help!

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