Middle Grade Magic

The deepest secret in our heart of hearts is that we are writing because we love the world. Natalie Goldberg

Enrolments for this course are now closed.

(correct as at August 2022)

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Here at girl and duck we’re writing a story together, you and I.

It’s a compelling story.

A heroic story.

A story full of tests, ordeals, rewards and… secret elixirs.

Together we’re facing tricksters, shapeshifters, gatekeepers and our own murky shadows.

This is the story of your creative writing journey and Middle Grade Magic is your next exciting adventure!


If you’ve completed my Junior Fiction course, or my Picture Book course, or even if you’re just floating about on the Duck Pond, you know me well by now.

I’m your mentor.

Your Yoda.


Scratch that.

I’m your Gandalf.

The Call to Adventure

I’m not going to write a long sales page telling you how I understand your pain points. Of course I know your pain points. I’m a writer, too!

Frustration, self-doubt, confusion, despair. Fun times!

I’m not going to tell you that I have all the answers, either. Or show you all my medals so you know  I’m qualified to teach you.

The thing is,  you probably already ‘know, like and trust me’ because we’ve been working together for ages!

Either that or a trusted friend sent you here.

Or maybe you just stumbled out of your ‘ordinary world’ into this world, my world, and  are now the LUCKIEST middle grade author in the universe. #micdrop

But seriously.

I LOVE middle grade fiction.

I love reading it but more than that.

I love WRITING it. Why?

Because this is where you can really let your imagination soar and, at the same time, push some literary boundaries (yours and the reader’s).

In middle grade fiction, you can really get down and WRITE some deep, sophisticated shizzle.

Or some highly commercial, hot-buttered popcorn if that’s your calling. Yum!

Either way, middle grade fiction is Writing with a capital W.

Enrolments for this course are now closed.

(as at August 2022)

Want to hear about this and other courses?
Join my mailing list. CLICK HERE!

In this 4-week, tightly focused e-course, I’m going to help you lift your MG game!

I’m not going to teach you how write a book. That would be ridiculous. Who could teach that in four weeks? No seriously. How?

What I am going to do is help you create a cracking opening sequence.

Some experimental chapters that will take you out of your comfort zone and get you writing with vigour and enthusiasm. Chapters that will have you thinking about creative writing and storytelling with renewed insight and clarity.

I’ll explain the significance of these opening chapters, too — I didn’t structure this course randomly, you know. It’s about creating story foundations that are firm, quirky and trustworthy.


You’re going to have to do some work. Not too much. But you will be required to, erm, write.

I want you to have something tangible at the end of this course. Something substantial to hold up to the light and consider.

Something to feel proud of.

Together we’ll explore perspective.

And point of view.



Nerd alert! Using an extract from one of my own middle grade novels, I’ve also created a unique exercise in textual analysis. This exercise will help you grasp, once and for all, the old adage, ‘show don’t tell’. You’ve gotta nail this if you’re writing a novel. And this exercise is almost guaranteed to give you a massive ah-ha moment!

You’ll probably write and thank me later.

Maybe send me flowers…


Join me for this course and together we’ll meet some quirky new characters, toss some magical literary sparkles in the air and write some truly enchanting words.

Course includes:

• In-depth video tutorials, delivered via email every Monday morning for four weeks

• A selection of downloadable PDFs to add to your reference material

• Unique exercises to expand your knowledge and your imagination

• Pop-up Middle Grade Magic Facebook group

•One live coaching call at the beginning of Week Four. This is a Facebook live Q and A where I invite you to grill me! Throw all your middle grade woes and wobbles straight at me and I’ll help you work through them. (These live coaching calls are always fantastic fun!)

Weekly Lessons: Topics Covered

Week One:

Defining Middle Grade Fiction
Rules of Middle Grade Fiction
One Cool Question to Guide You
The Importance of Chapter One
Understanding Narrative Arcs
Your Goal for this Course

Week Two:

Words and numbers: Your goal for this course (expanded)
Understanding Perspective
The Role of Perspective in Middle Grade Fiction

Week Three:

The Five Uses of Dialogue
Examples of Dialogue at Work
Understanding Beats

Week Four:

Rewriting Chapter One
Five Deadly Mistakes made by Middle Grade Authors (and how to fix them)
Tightening Chapter One

Course Dates

Week 1: Monday August 22, 2022.

Week 2: Monday August 29, 2022.

Week 3: Monday September 5, 2022.

Week 4: Monday September 12, 2022.

Live Coaching Call with Jen, Monday September 12, 7:00 pm AEST

Enrolments for this course are now closed.

(as at August 2022)

Want to hear about this and other courses?
Join my mailing list. CLICK HERE!

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