Writing about Social Hierarchy in Young Adult Fantasy Fiction

Social circles exist throughout our lives, but are most prominent and frustrating in high school. When writing a young adult fantasy book, this can’t be overlooked.

As I edit my next book series about kids in high school who can see ghosts, I have been thinking about these social circles. Navigating the many forms can be tricky, just check the convoluted social map in the movie Mean Girls.

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John Hughes’ Pretty in Pink is a great example. Andie Walsh (Molly Ringwald) is a girl from the wrong side of the tracks who has a crush on one of the “richie,” preppy boys in her school, Blane McDonough (Andrew McCarthy).

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Another classic example is Grease. Danny Zucco (John Travolta), a bad-boy greaser, is a member of the T-Birds, while the girl of his dreams, Sandy Olsen (Olivia Newton-John) is a cheerleader.

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In my series, (after)life lessons, Logan is very candid about the social hierarchy at Vita Post Mortem Academy:

“There are three unofficial school alliances that determine where you fall in the school’s social hierarchy, but don’t worry; attend important events and make the right friends, and you’ll be set for the next four years.” His words dripped with sarcasm.

Which one will Jules choose? Corpus, the jocks?

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Mentis, the preps?

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Or Viscus, the leftovers?

Check out (after)life lessons pinterest page: https://www.pinterest.com/alanasiegel/afterlife-lessons/

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