I am a young author writing my first series. I’m not writing my books simply because I want to or that I am frustrated with other books, but those are some reasons.
The book I am writing is pure fantasy, with underlying genres of romance, tragedy, politics, and post-apocalyptic. But mainly fantasy.
I am targeting an audience of middle school and high school. When reading my favorite series targeted to the same audience, I became frustrated at the fact that no one ever really got hurt, and no one ever really died, despite the author's emphasis on how dangerous and violent this world was.
So when writing my own novel I cranked up the heat. One of the antagonists is a sixty-foot-tall giant with corpses dangling from his horns, and he thinks of killing as a game. This is just one of the servants of the real antagonist, the main bad guy. I have already made some people die, and am not afraid to make my characters be injured, because in real life odds are they would already be dead.
I’m wondering if I am being too violent, and if that would make my book “inappropriate” for younger readers, say, fifth and sixth grade.
I did not include other parts of my story in this question, but the common odds of death for my characters are typically a fifty/fifty chance, and about every three in ten people end up dying. In the past of my story, EVERYONE died until a certain character showed up, so this is a significant improvement for them.
I am not just constantly making people die or get hurt, but it happens to each main character at least once in each book, to emphasize that this actually IS dangerous.
I’m pretty much wondering if you can be too violent when writing and if this would change the kind of audience that reads your work.