1. Nitro
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    Nitro New Member

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    Excuse to be in a high school?

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by Nitro, Jun 10, 2013.

    I've got a main character who develops a friendship with a student still in high school (their age difference isn't far apart) and I've found that to develop their relationship and open new story opportunities the MC needs to see them more often during the day. You're probably thinking I should just have the MC in high school too but I'm really against this as I can't stand having to write about school and I don't want my main character confined to that environment. Anyway I was just wondering if there's a way or excuse to occasionally get my main character into the school to witness important parts of the story? This isn't meant to be a regular thing, just once or twice to witness something he wouldn't normally see otherwise.

    I appreciate any help as I'm quite stumped by this. Sorry if it's kind of vague but the story is very rough at the moment.
     
  2. Wreybies
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    Wreybies The Ops Pops Operations Manager Staff Contest Administrator Supporter Contributor

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    Could he work there? Perhaps have a parent who is staff/faculty? Live close by. My high school was an "open campus". We were free to go home for lunch.
     
  3. Nitro
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    Nitro New Member

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    Yeah that's an option I'm thinking of going with. Not sure exactly what kind of job he'd be best suited to. Although maybe being bad at his job will be an excuse to get him out of the school again. Finding a way for him to be fired could be interesting.

    Thanks
     
  4. Wreybies
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    Wreybies The Ops Pops Operations Manager Staff Contest Administrator Supporter Contributor

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    And if you consider making it an "open campus" it gives you the freedom to sometimes get the younger character out from the school instead of always the older MC into the school. Some flexibility. :)
     
  5. peachalulu
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    peachalulu Contributing Member Reviewer Contributor

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    Janitor maybe?
     
  6. chicagoliz
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    chicagoliz Contributing Member Contributor

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    What if he has a parent who works there -- he might occasionally come to the school if he needed to see the parent for some reason.

    He possibly could also come back to the school if he was well-liked by a teacher and maybe was heavily involved in some sort of after-school activity where graduates could occasionally come back to help coach or even see former teammates if he is only a year or two out of high school. (Maybe a mock trial team or debate team, or some sort of business entrepreneur group or model government type of thing?) Maybe even the student newspaper, especially if he is now in college, either on the college newspaper or majoring in journalism? Or a physics team or engineering type competition? Almost any extra-curricular activity could work, especially if there is any sort of competitive element with other schools, he might be a good coach and would still have a vested interest in the school's team winning, if he had been a part of the group while he was a HS student.
     
  7. EdFromNY
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    EdFromNY Hope to improve with age Supporter Contributor

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    If he is a college student, the college could be located near the high school. I went to college at a school that was only about a half mile from an all-girls high school, and there were girls who would come over to the campus when school let out and hang out for a while.
     
  8. huntsman40
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    huntsman40 Active Member

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    It doesn't matter, pick any reason you like to get him in there. If you do anything that would be believable you can normally get away with it.

    I can say when I was in high school I was at one point seeing a girl a couple of years older than me and she got bored one afternoon, came to the school, lied to the teachers about being my sister and got me out of classes for the afternoon. Do anything with enough front that is credible and you can get away with it. So you shouldn't have too much issue thinking of something, even if it’s not the truth that gets your MC inside.
     
  9. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Be sure that any non-staff person over the age group of the student boy will come nder intense scrutiny, unless this is a period piece.
     
  10. chicagoliz
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    chicagoliz Contributing Member Contributor

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    The OP indicated, though, that the age difference was small, so he's probably only a year or two out of high school and he wouldn't necessarily appear much older than the general student body. But these days they might have more intense scrutiny of anyone entering the school grounds, so it might be more difficult for him to just 'hang around' if he doesn't have a good reason to be there.
     
  11. Anthony Martin
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    Anthony Martin Active Member

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    >>volunteer for some organization like Greenpeace or the homeless shelter coming to give an informational session to students interested in getting involved?
    >>announcer for sports events? campus radio DJ?
    >>drops off the lunches that his younger sibling always forgets
     
  12. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Even a couple years out of high school is enough to raise big red flags, the kind that leads to an uncomfortable Q&A session with the police.
     
  13. jannert
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    jannert Contributing Member Supporter Contributor

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    Yeah, that was my first thought, when I read the original post.

    If you're needing this outsider character in the school frequently, I reckon he'll (or she?) will need an official reason for being there. I have a best friend who is a school librarian, and she has outside 'assistants' working part time for her. Some are 'tech' people, who help keep the computer systems working. Some actually work in the library a few days a week.
     
  14. EmmaWrite
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    EmmaWrite Member

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    If your character was involved in any activities while in high school, he could be invited back by a teacher to be a sort of coach's assistant. My Speech and Debate coach invited college students to come back in and work with the team.
     
  15. maskedhero
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    maskedhero Active Member

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    In a college teaching program, and doing observation hours at that school? Still might be seen as kind of creepy if they become more than just friends. Authorities frown on that sort of thing.
     
  16. Rimuel
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    Rimuel Member

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    I wonder....perhaps in the azure blue sky.
    A relative of his who works at that school forced him to be her temporary replacement via some threat. For some reason she could not find a replacement so she had to coerce him. He happens to be good at the subject he is supposed to teach, so there was no problem with the authorities. He then enters the school for a short period and chanced upon the high school character.
     
  17. Vault
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    You could also give him a younger sibling who's in high school. Maybe he's there picking her up or picking up homework for her, etc.
     
  18. mbinks89
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    mbinks89 Active Member

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    Janitor?
     
  19. ithestargazer
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    ithestargazer Active Member

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    Could you make the high school student a year or two older and have them both at university together? One is a first year and the other is further in? I'm not sure if that would effect the story or not but it certainly erases all the age-appropriateness questions.
     
  20. jennym123
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    jennym123 Member

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    Make him a janitor. Cleaning staff are rarely seen and can walk around anywhere unnoticed.
     

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