Writers seldom choose as friends those self-contained characters who are never in trouble, never unhappy or ill, never make mistakes, and always count their change when it is handed to them.
~ Catherine Drinker Bowen ~
Being in the restaurant business most of my life, my work friends were always a little odd. If you've read Anthony Bourdain's books or have ever worked in a restaurant you might know what I mean. Ever since I was 16 I had stories for my "normal friends" about the characters I worked with and met in the back of the house. My "normal friends" had real jobs after they graduated from college, worked 40 hours a week, got vacation time and sick time, bought houses before they were 30, had children and made investments. My restaurant friends spent whatever money they made, partied, were on their 2nd or 3rd marriage, had their kids working as dishwashers or bussers, smoked and drank and generally worked at having fun. I have a lot of stories. Now that I no longer work as a chef, it seems that most of my friends are writers. Another group of interesting, fun yet sometimes odd characters. I love having friends that are writers, I can bounce ideas off of them, have them critique or edit for me, complain about rejections, and celebrate when we get acceptances. I also have my poetry friends, an online group I belong too that will actually read and comment on my poetry.
Today, think about your friends and acquaintances...how are they different from you and how are they similar? How much has your circle of friends changed as you got older? Have your friends influenced your writing? Could you use your experiences in a piece of work? an essay or a poem.Now get back to work?
The Writing Nag