Do Middle Graders Like Corny Metaphors?


Dear Young at Heart…

Indeed, humorous MG fiction can feature intentionally corny metaphors; readers that age do still chuckle over such silliness. That’s not your cup o’ tea, though, and that’s okay. We all have different sensibilities when it comes to humor, even ten-year-old boys. (I have three of those creatures, so I know firsthand.) Hammy metaphor is just one device for building an MG narrative voice with sniffs of humor. If you can craft a youthful voice using other devices—and there are many—all the better. Knowing your competition means not just knowing what’s selling but also knowing how your book stands out from the others. You’ll use that info for positioning purposes when it’s time to submit or publish. For now, work on honing a narrative voice that sounds youthful because it reflects the perspective and concerns of that age group. Leave the ham and corn to those who like that fare.

Happy writing!
The Editor


  1. Can you tell why the editor wanted you to read this book? Similar plot or similar audience? I’d focus on what the editor wanted to get across, not on the corny humor.

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