As I began writing the story Intimate Nightmares, my goal focused on Arianna as the heroine. Her friends were supposed to be supporting characters enhancing her role in the story. But as I began to write, and develop these awesome women, they took on a life of their own. They became just as important. If I had taken away just one character, erased her from the pages, the Arianna I had created and come to know so well would have morphed into another character. Her conversations, dialogue, and to some extent mannerisms, would have failed to evoke all she was supposed to be and, the chemistry between these diverse women would have vanished.
In other words, I realized that, if I had rewritten Arianna’s circle of friends, I’d have to rewrite her too.
I think this is true in real-life friendships. When we find genuine, honest connections with people with whom we can relate, or they can relate to us, that’s special…and it’s rare.
Our closest friends become a part of who we become. This is why surrounding ourselves with people of good character and happy heart is so important. The last thing we need to do is grow old and bitter because we’ve submersed ourselves in a sea of negativity for so long, or that we’ve spent our time with people who, at their core, can’t see the joy or promise in a single thing, the people who are pre-wired to hate and judge life instead of tackling problems and moving on to more positive things.
We all get down sometimes. That’s natural. We aren’t positive every minute of our lives. This is why the friendships in Intimate Nightmares work. While each woman faces her own problems, all of them are able to at least find joy in simple things and support in each other.
Each woman brings her own flavor to the friendship. The strengths comprising each woman balance out the weaknesses inside the other three. These four women complete the picture, and in some ways, each other.
I’m not saying we should limit our social circles. On the contrary. We need to network, we need to help each other and lift each other up. I just think having a small number of close, honest friends beats a crowd of acquaintances any day.