First Samuel twenty reveals a very special friendship between David and Jonathan. This was a difficult situation since Jonathan’s father was King Saul who wanted nothing more than to see David dead. Jonathan and David swore their friendship with each other in the name of the Lord the Bible says. When Jonathan realizes his father’s hatred and desire to kill David, he helps David to escape to a safer place.
In writing our stories we often employ friend characters for our main characters. Why do we need them? For what they reveal about the main character.
If we want to utilize a deep point of view for our readers, we can’t have our main character wax on and on about his qualities. However, we need our readers to know these qualities to truly understand our character. Here’s where that friend character comes in handy. Through interaction with the friend, the main character’s qualities can be revealed.
Let’s try a little exercise. Choose a character in your work in progress or maybe a character you are considering for a future project. Write a description of that character, thinking about what traits need to be revealed to understand that character.
Take that description, choose a trait to be revealed, and write a scene between that character and a friend character. Allow the interaction between the friend and main character to reveal that trait.
Takes some real thought, right? But it’s worth it if you achieve that deeper point of view for your character that the reader really wants.
What about you? Do you have a writer friend? Let’s face it, not a lot of people “get” writers. It’s a lonely occupation and calling to be a writer sometimes. Family, spouses, and even friends may not understand like another writer can. Search out a writer friend. I’m not talking about a critique partner, though sometimes she might be that. I’m talking about a writer friend you can talk to about disappointments and successes. A friend who will pray with you.
From personal experience, I found my writer friend by praying that God would send me a true friend to share this writing calling and passion with, and He led me to her.