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  1. cherrya

    cherrya Active Member

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    Instant friendships?

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by cherrya, May 8, 2017.

    One of my favourite aspect of this story are two of the main characters and how perfect they are for each other. They're two guys, and in the end they do end up together but since it's much later in the story and they become best friends first, I don't want to focus on the romantic aspect yet. That's why I'm finding it a bit more difficult, it can't just be "I find that person attractive" but it can't also be "That person sounds pretty cool, I hope we become friends" because I want it to happen the moment they get the 'feel' of the other person, if you get what I mean.

    The thing is, they're supposed to be so close later on that they're like brothers. I want their bond to be so obvious in the very first chapter in which they meet that no one, especially the reader, ever questions it. The chemistry has to be there basically right away. I just find it hard to figure out a way to make it this obvious, because it's not just an ordinary friendship, they can't just meet on a street corner and be like "K bye!"

    So I thought about what might make the other like him, and I figured it'd have something to do with the fact that they're both charismatic and both have delinquent tendencies (they are both 12 y/o) but it doesn't get me much anywhere... So I thought I might come here for inspiration hahaha! Please help me solve this!

    This was long, basically what could be a great way of making two characters connect on their first meeting? (I'd get them to have a long conversation or something like that, but they're 12, and 12 years old are so complicated, they're not kids, they're not teenagers either... sigh )
     
  2. Wreybies

    Wreybies Thrice Retired Supporter Contributor

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    What about something situational?

    Having been in the military, this sort of instafriend is something I'm familiar with. It has more to do with being in a strange new situation and looking for someone that can serve as a familiar point of contact. Like when you go to basic training, it's designed to suck, so you sort of make friends quickly because, contrary to popular belief, it's not meant to weed out the weak; it's meant to make you work as a team. And when I went to my training school after that, I made friends quickly because the school was really, really hard and loners rarely made it through. And then when I went to my first assignment, I made friends quickly because, well... because I just did. We were all there after a heavy filtration process, so you knew you were among people who had been through similar things and had similar interests.

    Now, clearly, 12 year-olds are not going to go through military basic training, but anything like this that takes them out of their normal comfort zone and places them together is likely to make them want to find someone with whom they click.
     
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  3. izzybot

    izzybot Transhuman Autophage Contributor

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    Since they're both delinquents, maybe they could meet while independently causing trouble and band together since they're on the same wavelength? My specific thought was that they're breaking into their school to wreck things - and potentially they get caught and their parents let them sweat it out in jail for a while to teach them a lesson, during which they bond. Don't know if that'd fit with your tone.
     
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  4. cherrya

    cherrya Active Member

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    ha, could be interesting!
     
  5. Wreybies

    Wreybies Thrice Retired Supporter Contributor

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    :-D And I was imagining them in some program for youths on a bad path. I can see the two of them in the back row, arms all crossed in front of their respective chests, trying to strike an intimidating lean, one looks at the other and rolls his eyes at whoever is at the front talking, as if to say "Ain't this some bullshit?" Later they strike up a conversation. One of them has just moved to town and already his mom has him in this program.

    "That's cold, man. You ain't even done nothing yet and your momz got you in here?"

    "Yeah, but she's alright. She's got a lot on her plate too."

    "I know we're not supposed to hang out or anything, but I got XBOX. You wanna' come over?"

    "Yeah, that sounds cool."

    There's nothing more delicate and fragile than two guys making friends while still trying to strike their respective poses. :)
     
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  6. Odile_Blud

    Odile_Blud Active Member

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    Maybe this is coming from a personal stance, but perhaps they share a love of the same music. Music is one of those things that can really cause people to bond and create close friendships. Because people tend to really connect with their favorite music and music is something that we really feel understands us and has such power over our emotions, I think a love of music is a really great way for two characters to develop a bond. A lot of genres (metal is one I'm thinking of in particular) can really unite a group of people.

    So maybe one of your characters is listening to a song. Maybe he listens to a genre most people don't like (or even a popular one, it doesn't matter), and the other boy comes along and notices he enjoys the same genre or musician as he does, and like that, a friendship is born. Maybe the song the boy is listening to means something to him on a personal level and it just so happens that song also means something to the other boy on a personal level.
     
  7. Teresa Mendes

    Teresa Mendes Member

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    You can put your characters in a situation in which they both realize "yup, this guy understands me". Something they share which each other that's hard to find in other people, it can be the past, the situation, the view on a subject, etc. It then grows from there, and their differences can be sources of conflict too.
     
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  8. Ulquiorra9000

    Ulquiorra9000 Member

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    What if one of them, or both, often feels misunderstood, but they understand each other right away? In terms of personal taste, or lifestyle, or background. The feeling of "you totally get me" is a solid bonding glue.
     
  9. ChaseTheSun

    ChaseTheSun Senior Member

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    Dialogue is an excellent tool to explore this sort of chemistry. Explore the way they might banter and bounce off each other, agreeing on some things, animatedly disagreeing on other things. Maybe they finish each other's sentences. Not in a super corny, OTT way, but it could happen once or twice and make them laugh. One of them is saying they went to see a movie "Dude, it was, like," and the other guy jumps in and they say at the same time, "super cheesy!". Horrible (cheesy?) example! But having a complementary energy within a conversation is one of the best ways you can show chemistry. I know, easier said than done! All the best. :)
     
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  10. cherrya

    cherrya Active Member

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    This is a really good idea, hadn't thought of that at all! Thank you.
     
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  11. karmazon

    karmazon Member

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    Here's my take on it. Establish the first character. Have him be insecure about something(silly example: he likes peanut butter and mayo sandwiches, and he knows that it's weird so he hides it from his peers). Then, when he meets the second character, he watches him take out a peanut butter sandwich, take off the top slice, put some mayo, put the slice back on and eat it without shame. From then on he knew they were going to be friends.
     
  12. jannert

    jannert Retired Mod Supporter Contributor

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    Shared laughter often works. I have no idea how these two will 'meet' in your story, but something that they both find funny? Or one of them gets into a bit of bother, and the other one helps to sort it, and they end up laughing about it?
     
  13. Ettina

    Ettina Senior Member

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    Since they're delinquents, I'll mention that my delinquent cousin, who would have been about 13 or so at the time, managed to instantly pick out and befriend the only troublemaker in a church group pretty much instantly.
     
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  14. GB reader

    GB reader Contributor Contributor

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    They could play rock, paper, scissors and always chose the same (or at least the five first times) and then give upp.

    As several posts has said.

    For a given external trigger, they act/think/say/[long list of verbs] the same. Choose an interesting verb (or two).
     
  15. peachalulu

    peachalulu Member Reviewer Contributor

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    Whenever I get stuck I look at the surroundings - all the places in my story and see what I can use. My mc is a fourteen year old boy with a rather messed up best friend whose a year or two older. I decided to have the story take place in California but they're not from a good neighborhood so they kind of prowl around skateparks and arcades and the local 7-eleven. All these things can help me with deciding
    on the action. For instance at the 7-eleven he could be the kid that digs into his pocket and helps you out when you come up short. Or the only guy who doesn't laugh when you do a massive wipe out on your skateboard after you've been bragging about your skills all morning. Etc.
    Also determining what type of characters they are helps. In my story the kids met when they were 7 and 8 in a rather bizarre incident at a playground - it only works because of the characters and becomes a metaphor for their friendship. The older boys rather twisted behavior and the younger boy's tolerance of it.
    What do you want the key take away to be from their meeting - that they always have each other's back? That one will always support the other? etc.
     
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  16. differentjasper

    differentjasper New Member

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    I've found that mutual friends can cause instafriendships. Maybe there's another delinquent who brings them together, and they already realize they have so much in common because of this mutual friend(s)?
     
  17. cherrya

    cherrya Active Member

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    This is really helpful, thank you so much.
     
  18. Partridge

    Partridge Active Member

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    In my experience sharing the same basic beliefs and outlook on the world can bond you.

    I've "clicked" with people from very different backgrounds, in very different situations. Thinking back, we both always voted for the same political parties, shared the same work ethic and read the same newspapers. But as Wreybies pointed out, being in a strange new situation can encourage these relationships. Consciously or sub-consciously, I think we say to ourselves: "We think in the same way and like the same things, so we won't have conflict. You're safe. I'm sticking with you."

    I "clicked" with someone I met in a strange town while doing work experience at a classic car magazine. We both liked old cars, both vote for the same political party, both drunk a lot of real ale at the time and both dress like washed up '80s stock brokers. :bigmeh: We later became housemates.

    Go figure, as they say.
     

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