When developing your book, Ben's top tip is to think back to the books you yourself liked as a child: "What were the things that most appealed to you? If you have children in your life, think about what they like to read – what excites or scares them? Is what you're writing as exciting as that? Is it too scary or just scary enough?"
And there is one very important thing to remember – don’t think that writing a children’s book is easy. "There is no harsher critic than a kid", says Ben."If your book isn't interesting to them, they will not hesitate to drop it and go to find something else to do!"
If done well, middle grade books create the next generation of readers and foster a hopefully lifelong love of the written word. "It’s a responsibility, a privilege and enormous fun!"
Feeling ready to start writing your own middle grade book, or finesse work you've already started? Head over to WriteNow to submit your book before midnight on Sunday 11 July.