MG Magical realism set on a farm
I’m Emma, a transplant from the UK to the USA and now living in my fifth state – Virginia. I write Middle Grade and it normally involves talking animals. I have two children who are middle grade readers, which is handy, and am married to a Marine – who is also handy. The ginger cat completes the set.
Hobbies include: playing the violin in a community orchestra, gardening, knitting, and I joined a women’s choir for the first time recently. I love to read middle grade, but also like to delve into other genres, especially historical and murder mysteries.
I started writing more consistently a few years ago, when the children finally started leaving the house for school, and have been a member of SCBWI for over three years.
I love great descriptions of characters and settings – especially when the writer can evoke a whole image in just a few, well chosen words. I like to hear a strong voice, preferably one with a sense of humour, and prefer fast paced plots to something which meanders.
I don’t do well with horror or graphic violence. I prefer polite murders.
The animals at The Flabbergast Farm prefer to keep it secret that they can all talk. Talk, sing, crack jokes.
But it will take all their talents to help Molly (aged 10) save the farm from nasty neighbours and the interfering Inspector who wants to close them down.
The half-crazed chicken zoomed between Molly’s legs, with a great cackling and squawking and flailing of wings. Molly looked up and watched her flapping, wobbling path between four horse hooves, over a back of a pig and across a puddle. Mud flew and feathers ruffled as the chicken flapped her way through the farmyard, straight up the rickety ladder into the chicken house.
“Bella,” called Molly, “Are you all right?”
Bella was clearly upset, but it was hard to tell why. From the state of the weather to the colour of her eggs, she was always worried about something, but she normally flapped her wings and pecked the ground. Perhaps this was more serious than usual.
“Can I help?” shouted Molly. With her hands resting on her hips, the girl stood firmly planted on the muddy path. She was small for her age, but strong and sturdy from all her work around the farm. “Bella! What’s wrong?”
Brown Leghorn chickens are bound to be more anxious and skittish than other chickens. Molly had read that in her chicken breed book when her grandmother had agreed to let Bella come and live at the Flabbergast Farm. Skittish. Molly had looked that one up in the giant dictionary she kept under her bed. It was too big to go on her crowded, sagging bookcase. Skittish meant jumpy, and that was spot on for Bella.
Anxious and skittish, but a good layer, producing about three hundred eggs a year. Grandma had been quite excited about that, and Molly couldn’t blame her. Of course, the animals weren’t at the Farm because of what they could produce. They were there because they all had something special in common.
I am currently in the middle of a first draft of another MG novel – The Music and Mouse.
I’m tinkering with a couple of spooky MG short stories too, so may bring those together eventually.
Also have an idea for a Western/ ghost story for Middle Graders.
I came up with a PB which is also listed – Bobo the Clown.
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