Why do we like friendship fiction so much?
Think about it. What would your favorite story be like if the hero or heroine had no friends? Think about Frodo without Samwise Gamgee, or Harry without Ron and Hermione. I’m betting your favorite romances have at least one friend character, either the hero’s or the heroine’s or one of each. I like to write romances with a friendship group, such as the Bumblebees in my Bad Boys for Hire series or the Girl Crew in my Not Mine romantic comedy series.
Having friends is one of the most basic joys of being human. A friend is someone who wants to be with you because he likes you and enjoys spending time with you. It’s a voluntary association and it makes you feel special and recognized. Friends help you celebrate the good times in your life as well as support you through the bad times. They provide you with social cues and help you understand yourself, and of course, they give you a chance to care about them too. They also reveal things about your personality, either directly through feedback and counsel or indirectly as a foil or contrast or comparison of how they would have handled a situation.
Having a group of friends provides even more feedback. The love and caring as well as fun times and sometimes, friction, bring out the best in group dynamics. That’s why books and TV shows about friendship groups are so popular. We enjoy the drama, the loving, the hijinks, and even the support during sad times. When we read about friends and relationships, we learn how to relate to other people and we can vicariously feel the love and emotion, as well as taste the strife that sometimes breaks up a friendship. Of course, we root for the characters, individually and as a group, and when they are back in harmony and celebrating, we get to go along and party with them too.
These are some of the reasons I enjoy friendship fiction. It invites me into the group as a participating member and also allows me to hone my friendship skills by experiencing the drama and angst the characters go through. Do you enjoy friendship fiction? If so, please check out my Bad Boys for Hire series, where my group of Bumblebees met in preschool dance class. They’re all grown up now and still dancing together, and as each one of them finds their bad boy, the others are there to support them and celebrate and give advice. The boys become friends too, but only after meeting the girls. Check out all seven Bad Boys for Hire.
Rachelle Ayala is a USA Today bestselling author of contemporary romance and romantic suspense. Her foremost goal is to take readers on a shared emotional journey with her characters as they grow and become more true to themselves. Rachelle believes in the power of love to overcome obstacles and feels that everyone should find love as often as possible, especially if it’s within the pages of a book.
Her book, Knowing Vera, won the 2015 Angie Ovation Award, A Father for Christmas garnered a 2015 Readers’ Favorite Gold Award, Christmas Stray received a 2016 Readers’ Favorite Gold Award, and Playing for the Save got the 2017 Readers’ Favorite Gold Award in Realistic Fiction.
She is also a writing teacher and founder of the Romance In A Month writing community. She lives in California with her husband and has three children and two birds.