Author has written 20 stories for Bleach, X-overs, Naruto, House, M.D., Shugo Chara!, and Inuyasha.
So there's a lot of high school fanfictions out there... I write them, even. And a lot of people can't stand this category of fanfictions. They refuse to even give them a chance. I for one understand why these fics have gotten such a bad reputation, and yet I still loove a good high school fic. But here's the problem: They're all the same story. they are, they really are. You can deny that until the cows come home, but it's true. I think for a high school fic to be good, it needs to have some sort of twist. Something that separates it from the others and makes it special. If all you're writing is the life of a girl sitting in class next to her crush, it gets kind of boring. There needs to be some sort of noteworthy after school activity. In a lot of the generic high school fics, the characters will meet up for the mall or a fair, but that's about it. Ah, no, I'm forgetting something. Something ever bad high school fanfiction includes without fail: the dance. The school will have some sort of ball, and of course the main characters will attend. It need be mentioned though that the lead female character will try to rebel and claim she doesn't want to go - regardless of her true character's personality. So she'll be dragged along dress shopping and will find some amazingly glamorous designer dress that makes her the most beautiful girl in the universe. Usually she can't afford it, so one of her rich friends will pay. And then once the gentleman friend sees the girl in her dress, he'll be stunned. totally speechless. That in itself bothers me; putting on a dress and makeup does not shock the breath out of a person. Your face might express a look of shock, but it will most likely be VERY quickly replaced with a smile, followed by a compliment. Unless the boy has never seen a woman before, that will most probably be the reaction. Unless he's a douche, of course. he'll never let on that you look nice.
But getting to my point, the biggest problem and the reason - I believe - many people strongly dislike high school fanfictions is because of how far out of character EVERYONE is. all of the standard truths surrounding the anime are often completely disregarded and there are no rules. At this point, it's no longer a fanfiction. It's an original fiction with someone else's character names used in place of your own. For example, I'll explore the naruto high school fics real quick.
It seems a vast majority of them (I'd say 90%) just kind of decide that the love interests of all the girls are: 1) bff's 2) rich 3) super cool 4) so popular that they all have hundreds of "fan girls" that stalk them and will literally kill for them. When in fact, none of these things are true for every character. Let's look at the 4 boys who are most commonly the ones that are given this characterization. Sasuke, Naruto, Neji, Shikamaru. Watch the anime, read the manga, whatever you want to do. you'll come to find that they are in no way "bff's" Sasuke and Naruto have the rivalry thing, so yea, I can see it. Neji and Shikamaru... I would barely call them friends, let alone best friends. They have nothing in common. Neji wants nothing more in life than to be the best, to be recognized. Shikamaru just wants to blend in and be average. Neji wants to train all day to be better, Shikamaru wants to sleep and watch clouds. I can fathom the idea of them being friends with Naruto (because they actually kind of are). but with Sasuke? With the arrogant prick who ran away from the village? I'm not sure Shikamaru ever even spoke with Sasuke, come to think of it. and Neji barely got in his two words before Sasuke ditched... But, whatever. I can deal with it. making people friends with one another really isn't that big of a change. If you can write it well and make it work, then it's fine. Personally though I think it'd be interesting if it's the girls that bring the guys together as friends. I mean, how is it possible for such a coincidence that 4 girl bffs meet 4 boy bffs and they all fall in love perfectly? Often Ino is written to be with Shikamaru, and she never even makes a pass at Sasuke. Like, hello, have you ever seen an Ino episode? She's just as much obsessed with Sasuke as Sakura is. In rewriting Shikatema High, I have chosen to make the boys friends, but I've focused on really showing that it's not just them; all the naruto boys form a large group of buddies that breaks down into smaller groups of close friends. If you're going to make them friends, I feel that's the most realistic way to do it.
So, the rich thing. Why are they always rich? They're not. Naruto lives in a fucking apartment. alone. he doesn't even have living parents to make him rich! But if you keep his parents alive and give his dad a high ranking position in government, then okay. Because his dad was hokage, it's not a huge stretch so see him as mayor or governor. But Shikamaru would never be rich. He doesn't have a mansion. He lives in a small house on a deer farm. Move him to a small house in the suburbs, that's fine. His parents were nothing noteworthy, they can't be promoted to king and queen of japan. Neji definitely is rich. His family is, at least. Whether you give him access to that money or not is a personal choice. Sasuke... it can go either way. If you assume he's inherited all of his clan's money upon their death, then yea, he's rich. If they were never killed, then no, he's not rich. His father had a decent job which could afford a good sized home, but nothing like a huge mansion.
Let's be honest, Naruto's a dork. Yet he's always written to be walking through the halls, ignoring everyone. Because he's too cool to talk to his "fans". But that's not accurate. Naruto would talk to anyone who said hi. Because he's nice. But he's not eloquent. He doesn't have all the best pick up lines, he doesn't make girls swoon. He's the kind of guy who would say "when are you due?" to a fat woman. He'd walk into the girls bathroom on mistake. He'd run out of class screaming that he had to poop, instead of just asking to use the restroom. He's not the "cool" character. Sasuke is. Neji is often portrayed to be a clone of Sasuke, but he's not. Neji doesn't try to be cool. He doesn't ignore people. He'd tell them to stop wasting his time or call them pathetic. And Shikamaru would do whatever he could to stay unnoticed. He'd not walk down the hall beside his rich and popular bffs, showing off his swagger. He wouldn't be cool and ignore the girls like Sasuke, he'd just find a way to avoid them.
The last thing, the fan girls. I could believe that they're the sole reason most people don't like these fics. Sasuke is literally the only one who has fangirls. In other anime, NO ONE has fan girls. And no, it's not hundreds or thousands. It's a dozen. The other three would never in a million years have a hoard of die-hard fan girls. and even Sasuke's would never do what they're written to do. They're not going to try to kill Sakura for talking to him. A couple of them might gang up and try to beat her up out behind the school, but only to give her a warning. Most people do not kill for a crush. But I'm constantly reading and suddenly a fan girl will pull out a knife and try to kill her. Like no, that doesn't happen. And that's all that needs to be said.
Thanks for reading my rant :)
And please don't take offense if you write high school fanfictions like this. We all make mistakes, what's important is that we learn from them. I have made countless mistakes in my writing. I really wish someone had smacked me over the head and told me how ridiculous it all was...