Welcome to our channel surf, where we highlight our favorite writing, publishing, and/or book-related posts of the week by middle grade authors! Hit the pause button for a sec and check this out…

Channel SurfRiff Writing

by Paul Greci, YA and MG author

Riffs – improvisation. This is something I’m quite familiar with as a musician. And I honestly can’t believe it never occurred to me to apply the concept to writing. Paul post describes a quick exercise that could yield some freaking awesome results in your story.

Hanging Cliffhanger Endings With Multiple POVs

by Janice Hardy, author of The Healing Wars Trilogy

I can’t possibly sum up this post more succinctly than its title. Janice breaks down what happens when good cliffhangers go wrong (wisely using Revenge of the Sith as an example), then offers tips on making sure you outshine Lucas on the ending front. Also, post your own cliffhanger ending in the comments of her blog by Monday, and you could win a 1,000 word critique!

Finding Calmness in an Age of Distraction

by Nathan Bransford, author of Jacob Wonderbar and the Interstellar Time Warp

“We used to wait.” Like Nathan, I can remember the days of not knowing about Everything As It Happened. It seems like so long ago. And while I appreciate what the Internet has done for communication, I really do pine for the days when unplugged was our default setting. What do you do to find calmness in our social media Twitter Facebook texting crazy world?

Regarding the Tribe

by Mike Jung, author of Geeks, Girls, and Secret Identities

Specifically, the KidLit Tribe – “a commitment to promoting the general welfare,” as Mike so wonderfully puts it. His post is a fantastic tribute, not to mention inspiring. Because regardless of what stage of publishing you’re in, you no doubt know that this industry can be, to put it not so delicately, a beeyotch. The more we support one another, pick each other up, and cheer each other on, the better. In the end, it’s not about numbers and sales and all that for authors – that’s for others to worry about. We’re about telling great stories, and one of the most important things we can do is encourage and nurture other storytellers.

Literature Circles: Savoring Books in a Community of Readers

by Katherine Schlick Noe, author of Something to Hold

If you’re a middle school teacher or librarian who runs, or is interested in running, any sort of book discussion club, Katherine’s series on From the Mixed-Up Files is fantastic. In this extensive post, she covers everything from choosing the right books to writing exercises and extending the response.

What’d I miss? Let me know if you caught any great middle grade posts this week!