Episode 83: The Moorpark Horror: Middle Grade Horror Critique

Episode Description

In this episode, Leslie and Clark critique the first chapter of The Moorpark Horror, a middle grade horror novel, by Russell Gibbs. They discuss proactive protagonists, making transitions clear, and conflict.


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Show Notes

The passive protagonist is one who either has no goal–or is making no effort to achieve his goal. If your character spends most of his time staring out the window or observing as other people do things, that’s a good sign he’s lapsed into passivity.
— K.M. Weiland


Editorial Mission—Active Protagonist

Read the first quarter of your book and ask yourself these questions for each scene: 

  • What does the protagonist want in this scene?
  • How does it relate to her big goal for the whole story?
  • What does she do to try to get what she wants?
  • What stands in her way?
  • What does she do to overcome the obstacles?

This will reveal whether she’s actively pursuing what she wants or waiting to see if it will come to her. 

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Inline Critique