Returning from my blog hiatus, I welcome new subscribers and send warm wishes to you all.
Along with family, both my romances and women’s fiction celebrate the blessings of friendship.
The bonds I share with friends are amongst the most important in my life and I enjoy reading stories about friendship too.
Loyal. Sympathetic. Trustworthy. Kind. Sincere.
Not only words that apply to Floppy Ears, they also come to mind when I think of my human friends.
The small group of trusted writer friends with whom I share the ups and downs of this career and who nurture me in life as well as work.
The high school friend who’s now a staunch support to “writer me,” buying and reading my books and popping up daily on social media to remind me I’m not talking into a void.
My sister-cousin who’s there for me whenever I need her, both practically and by lifting me up in prayer.
Then there’s the friend of thirty plus years who seems to have a sixth sense for when my life is in crisis. She always calls at just the right moment and not only offers emotional support, but pithy wisdom and an “attitude” that makes her both staunch ally and force to be reckoned with.
The older neighbour who’s become like a second mother, offering maternal wisdom along with home-baking and other “just because” treats.
And the virtual friends I’ve connected with through social media. Boosting and encouraging me in life and writing, they represent the best of the online world, and how it can help us make positive connections and learn from others far beyond our immediate circles.
These and many others make my life better and also shape how I explore friendship in my writing.
Friendship in books
As a reader, I’ve always been drawn to bookish friendships.
In L.M. Montgomery’s Anne of Green Gables, Anne and Diana are “kindred spirits” and “bosom friends.” I first read the Anne books in childhood and Anne and Diana’s bond continues to influence how I approach female friendship in both my life and ficton.
And since I’ve recently been immersed in reading about England in the Second World War as background for a women’s fiction novel I’m writing, I’ve been struck by how important friendship was in those wartime years.
The Wedding Dress Sewing Circle by Jennifer Ryan is a 2022 release and Second World War women’s fiction novel set on the British home front.
I loved this heartwarming story of three women who, at a time of clothes rationing, come together through mending wedding dresses and, while helping others, change themselves and find love too.
The Railway Girls series by Maisie Thomas (a dear real-life friend) is also set in wartime England, and is about a group of women who ‘do their bit’ by working on Britain’s railways whilst the men are away fighting. Each wonderful book (the newest, A Christmas Miracle for the Railway Girls, is out this autumn) celebrates strong female friendships.
I hope you have friends to cherish in life and books. Do you have a favourite book about friendship?