My creative writing teacher said that the tone, vocabulary, and sentence structure of my novel isn't for young adults (like I thought it was), it's more for middle schoolers. I'm okay with that (the class suggested that I make the main character 14 or 15 instead of 17 in high I would assume that's a HS freshman...which I can do), but I'm just confused as to what "middle school" means, exactly. As in, does middle school fiction refer to upper middle grade, all of middle grade, low YA (is there such a thing as low YA)? Like, I guess I'm wondering because I've already written the whole book, but since she only read the first two chapters, she hasn't read the chapters that involve sex and some violence.

So I guess my next question is, can middle school books have sex and violence? Neither of these things are super intensely written or anything in the book. Like, I don't describe the sex scene at all; I just say that they are making out and get undressed at the end of one chapter, and wake up in the same bed at the start of the next chapter (and one character says the word "sex" once, but that's it). And by violence I mean someone gets cut up on glass and has blood rushing from their body, and there's a school fight scene, but that's it. So should I delete all the sex (and I guess nudity) and violence (like they suggest in middle grade novels), or is okay to mention them without making the content too mature?