Indie Life – Self publishing middle grade.

Welcome to Indie Life, sponsored by the Indelibles. This is a monthly blog hop where participants focus on anything and everything to do with self publishing.

Join in the fun!


Have you wondered about self-publishing middle grade?

I have. A lot.

My first love is a great story – for any age.

But I love reading and writing middle grade. I’ll be honest. I’ve been a little hesitant about self publishing middle grade. It does seem to be tougher…but not impossible. And let’s face it. Any kind of publishing is hard work.

There are many middle grade writers though who have self published their middle grade works. Some have found great success. Melanie Marks and The Slumber Party Wars. Sybil Nelson and Priscilla the Great. Marcus Emerson and Diary of a Sixth Grade Ninja. Just to name a few.

My friend and critique partner, Ansha Kotyk self published her middle grade novel, Gangsterland about a boy falling into a comic book set in the 1920s. Pretty cool stuff.

Recently, a group of self-published upper middle grade or tween authors formed a group similar to the Indelibles. They call their blog Emblazon. Their blog launches today and I believe they’re running a huge giveaway. You might want to check them out.

As for me and middle grade? I’m still debating. Maybe someday.

So what say you about self-publishing middle grade? Have any good book recommendations?

Head back to the Indelibles to find the links to all the posts!

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20 Responses to Indie Life – Self publishing middle grade.

  1. Anna Staniszewski July 10, 2013 at 10:38 am #

    Self-pubbed MG does seem to be a smaller market right now, but I suspect that will change.

    • Laura July 10, 2013 at 4:43 pm #

      I hope so! 🙂

  2. Ansha Kotyk July 10, 2013 at 12:19 pm #

    Thanks for the shout out today Laura! 🙂 I think, like Anna mentioned, that we are all hoping to see an increase in the online middle grade market. For self-pubbers it’s challenging to find our audience online right now. We’re hoping Emblazon can help match upper middle grade readers with some great authors. And >YES< we are giving away a $100 Amazon gift card to bloggers like yourself who blog about the debut today, but we're also giving away a slew of paperbacks and ebooks through our rafflecopter contest. So check out the new website:
    Thanks Laura, for posting today!!

  3. Alan Tucker July 10, 2013 at 3:52 pm #

    Thanks so much for helping us spread the word today. It seems so hard to bridge the gap between chapter books with lots of pictures to young adult, we wanted to spotlight some of the better (we feel) options out there. Thank you again and be sure to enter in the big book giveaway!

  4. Laurel Garver July 10, 2013 at 4:33 pm #

    Some of my writing group friends were wondering the same thing, and I didn’t have any advice for them. While my novel is YA, it’s actually doing best with adults who like literary fiction. Go figure.

    Thanks SO MUCH for the link. Now I have a resource for my critter pals!

    • Laura July 10, 2013 at 4:44 pm #

      Well, they say that 55% of YA readers are adults and I suspect with literary YA it’s even higher!

  5. KimberlyAfe July 10, 2013 at 4:36 pm #

    I have thought about it myself since I have a few MG manuscripts that I love too. 🙂 With all the ways to read with a mobile device, maybe that day is soon approaching.

  6. Laura July 10, 2013 at 4:45 pm #

    I’ve bought self published MG for my kids and considering how fast they read the books at the library, I’d def. buy if it would interest him.

  7. Janeal Falor July 10, 2013 at 6:11 pm #

    MG isn’t really my thing so it’s highly unlikely that it’s something I’ll ever have to consider. It does seem like something that would come with it’s own challenges but I think the bigger self-publishing is getting the easier it will get. It’s such a great time in publishing to be a part of.

  8. Alex J. Cavanaugh July 10, 2013 at 7:33 pm #

    Now you know where to go for support! You should pursue those books.

  9. J.L. Campbell July 10, 2013 at 8:43 pm #

    Hi, Laura,

    It took me a while to get around to publishing my middle-grade novel. I went ahead with it because I believe in the story and wanted to share it. The toughest part has been the promo aspect, but like I said I believe in it, so that helps me to continue to push.

  10. Natalie Aguirre July 11, 2013 at 12:51 am #

    I agree it’s probably harder to self-publish middle grade. At least right now. I just heard about this new website. It sounds awesome.

  11. Stina Lindenblatt July 11, 2013 at 3:09 am #

    I’ve tried to get my kids to read ebooks and they all refused. They only want to read real books. I decided not to go into that argument.

  12. Cherie Reich July 12, 2013 at 7:42 pm #

    It’s great about Emblazon! I definitely think it would be a struggle to find the MG audience with a self-published MG book. That’s one reason I’ve been holding off on writing a MG book I have in mind, but there may come a day to take the plunge. 🙂

  13. Rachel Morgan July 13, 2013 at 6:29 am #

    I’ve always thought that self-publishing for a younger audience, like MG or picture books, would make it more difficult to reach your target audience than self-publishing for an older audience. Do kids search for books online? Do they have ereaders? I imagine those would be some of the challenges… But it’s clearly not impossible, and some people are doing well at it! And something like the group Emblazon will help more people self-pub for middle grade readers, so that’s great!

  14. Margo Berendsen July 16, 2013 at 8:38 pm #

    I love that idea of a falling into the world of a 1920’s comic book. I think self pubbing for MG is still a good shot because you can reach the parents and librarians, if not the kids directly. I’m always trying to push books on my kids 🙂

    One of your books made my top ten list today!

  15. Angela Ackerman July 22, 2013 at 3:00 am #

    I highly suspect I’ll go this route down the road, so I’ll keep an eye on their blog–thanks!

  16. Melanie August 16, 2013 at 9:02 pm #

    Thank you sooooo much. I’m a MG writer. I’ve been looking to self publish and have been surrounded by the world of traditionals. I can’t tell you how excited I am to have found you!!!!!

  17. Sam May 13, 2015 at 2:58 am #

    I’m a little late coming to this conversation but was looking for info on self-publishing middle grade and was excited to see a website focusing on this genre. However, it looks like Emblazon never made it, as the WordPress site is discontinued. Do you know what happened or have any recommendations for other websites to do with middle grade self-publishing?

    • Laura May 19, 2015 at 10:20 am #

      Hi Sam, Here’s the link to the Emblazon website Not sure why the link isn’t working! Best of luck!

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