Hemingway is telling me that Tamaishi is written at about a 3rd or 4th grade reading level. I’ve started to realize how much of an art to write for younger audiences without becoming mundane.
At the book fair someone suggested that I might write Zōsan “lite”, or a simplified version — something I hadn’t really considered.
For Tamaishi, however, I think 3rd or 4th grade reading is appropriate. The chapters are 5-10 minutes long, a few hundred words, and I’ve been working on how to break up the text with marginal illustrations.
Still chipping away at words. It’s still amazing to me how a sentence can look so different few days or even hours later, and how much better each paragraph can become with a little finesse.
One thing I noticed about these kinds of editors — Hemingway, Grammarly and the like — is that they have a tendency to make me question my style too much. There are some sentences that skyrocket to 7th or 8th grade, but every time I read them they flow like a storyteller might riff things off the top of their head and that feels right to me. The apps are helping me reel in my verbosity but I have to be careful not to let them shape me too much.