Parental Guidance

Discuss writing, including writing tips & tricks, writing philosophy, writer's block, etc. If you have grammar questions, marketing questions, or if you want feedback on a poem or short story you wrote, please use the corresponding forum below.
Featured Topic: How to Get Your Book Published
Forum rules
If you have spelling or grammar questions, please post them in the International Grammar section.

If you want feedback for poetry or short stories you have written, please post the poem or short story in either the Creative Original Works: Short Stories section or the Creative Original Works: Poetry section.

If you have a book that you want reviewed, click here to submit your book for review.
Post Reply
User avatar
Lincolnshirelass
Previous Member of the Month
Posts: 1507
Joined: 30 Oct 2017, 04:36
2017 Reading Goal: 0
Bookshelf Size: 0
Location: Eastern UK

Parental Guidance

Post by Lincolnshirelass » 09 Nov 2017, 04:50

This isn't about what you might think, but didn't know how else to title it. For the first time I'm doing a third person children's story - aimed at older children but not really young adults (I know these things are arbitary - let's say VERY roughly 10-13 year olds) and am having trouble with how to refer to my young protagonists' parents. To say 'Mummy' and 'Daddy' or even 'Mum' and 'Dad' comes over as a bit childish for this age group, but using first names doesn't quite work either (and is potentially confusing) and saying Mr or Mrs whatever seems stilted. Is this why so many children's books are about orphans :) Any advice or opinions much appreciated.
An Eye for an Eye only ends up making the whole world blind.

Mahatma Gandhi

User avatar
KS Crooks
Posts: 96
Joined: 11 Nov 2014, 12:33
Favorite Author: Matthew Reilly
Favorite Book: Voyage of the Dawntreader
Bookshelf Size: 0
fav_author_id: 7607
Location: Toronto, Canada

Post by KS Crooks » 11 Nov 2017, 19:49

What I find happens to kids when they reach that age, including myself once upon a time, is to use different words. When addressing parents in public or around friends, I would say "Mom", but when alone or around family I said "Mummy". Try giving your character a similar way of dealing with their mixed mindset.

User avatar
Lincolnshirelass
Previous Member of the Month
Posts: 1507
Joined: 30 Oct 2017, 04:36
2017 Reading Goal: 0
Bookshelf Size: 0
Location: Eastern UK

Post by Lincolnshirelass » 13 Nov 2017, 04:24

Thanks a lot for the advice, but I was thinking more of the third person, as in 'When Jane told her story she realised that Mum/Mrs Jones/Anne was finding it hard to believe.
An Eye for an Eye only ends up making the whole world blind.

Mahatma Gandhi

User avatar
johappy
Posts: 81
Joined: 14 Jun 2015, 18:34
Favorite Book: <a href="http://forums.onlinebookclub.org/shelve ... Matched</a>
Currently Reading: Into Thin Air
Bookshelf Size: 106
Reviewer Page: onlinebookclub.org/reviews/by-johappy.html
Latest Review: Solaris Seethes (Solaris Saga book 1) by Janet McNulty
Reading Device: B00HCNHDN0

Post by johappy » 14 Nov 2017, 22:06

It would seem most natural to say "her mum." I find that when I'm reading and the author has used another title, I forget that it's the parent. Make sense?

User avatar
CommMayo
Previous Member of the Month
Posts: 904
Joined: 22 Oct 2017, 14:19
2018 Reading Goal: 30
2017 Reading Goal: 6
2018 Reading Goal Completion: 83
2017 Reading Goal Completion: 183
Currently Reading:
Bookshelf Size: 40
Reviewer Page: onlinebookclub.org/reviews/by-commmayo.html
Latest Review: Upside Down by Denny Cope
Reading Device: B00G2Y4WNY
Location: Maryland

Post by CommMayo » 14 Nov 2017, 23:07

Are your audience and your characters British?

-- 14 Nov 2017, 23:07 --

Are your audience and your characters British?

User avatar
Lincolnshirelass
Previous Member of the Month
Posts: 1507
Joined: 30 Oct 2017, 04:36
2017 Reading Goal: 0
Bookshelf Size: 0
Location: Eastern UK

Post by Lincolnshirelass » 15 Nov 2017, 05:39

Mainly but not exclusively.
An Eye for an Eye only ends up making the whole world blind.

Mahatma Gandhi

vaz222
Posts: 126
Joined: 11 Jul 2017, 22:07
Bookshelf Size: 13
Reviewer Page: onlinebookclub.org/reviews/by-vaz222.html
Latest Review: "The 11.05 Murders" by Brian O'Hare

Post by vaz222 » 20 Nov 2017, 23:18

Could you say "her mother/her father" instead?

Whippet
Posts: 78
Joined: 29 Dec 2017, 21:01
Bookshelf Size: 6
Reviewer Page: onlinebookclub.org/reviews/by-whippet.html
Latest Review: "Bleeding Gull - look, feel, fly" by Raed Anis Aljishi

Post by Whippet » 16 Jan 2018, 13:15

Well, it seems childish, but that's because kids that age are just that - kids. Some people call their parents mummy and daddy forever, right? It just depends what you think the kids you're writing about feel. If you think they'd feel too old to call their parents a certain way, maybe you could work that into their character - a want to call their parents by first names and therein feel more mature :)

User avatar
Lincolnshirelass
Previous Member of the Month
Posts: 1507
Joined: 30 Oct 2017, 04:36
2017 Reading Goal: 0
Bookshelf Size: 0
Location: Eastern UK

Post by Lincolnshirelass » 17 Jan 2018, 03:52

@Whippet - why, thank you, perhaps I can feel a story coming on there! Actually, when I was around 8 or 9 I decided just to be 'rebellious' I would address my parents by their given names, and when they were perfectly okay about it and said, 'that's fine, if you want to,' it suddenly lost its appeal!
An Eye for an Eye only ends up making the whole world blind.

Mahatma Gandhi

Post Reply

Return to “Writing Discussion”