On Group Chats and Found Families

Hello friends!

One of my favorite tropes, in life and fiction, has always been found families. I always found myself attracted to stories that explored that idea, like The Thief Lord and Maximum Ride. As I got older, I found that I was still really into the idea, and I started noticing the trend in my personal life as well.

Though I’ve never been the type to surround myself with an abundance of friends (yay introverts!), I have consistently gravitated to small, tight-knit groups. In middle school, I had a very close group of girl friends. In high school, I found myself surrounded by some of the best and nerdiest folks I could’ve stumbled across. And in college, surprise surprise, I discovered another group of fun, nerdy, and very queer friends.

A very blurry picture of just a few of the aforementioned friends. Circa 2016.
And yes, I am the shortest one.

Though I haven’t been in college for almost five years now, the friends I made during undergrad continue to be some of the best friends I have. We haven’t always been that way. We’ve had our ups and downs and grievances, but when it’s mattered, we’ve always loved each other. Currently, this love manifests as a group chat called “Queer K,” K being the nickname of our alma mater. We’ve helped each other through sticky break ups and drunk nights and so many tears, but we’ve also celebrated birthdays and opening nights and graduations. Though several of us don’t live in close proximity anymore, video chats are a wonderful thing.

So, what does this have to do with writing and storytelling?

Maybe nothing, but maybe something. As I already mentioned, I love reading this trope in fiction. I love seeing it in movies and shows. Give me a group of friends who are ride or die, and I will eat it up. Give me those complex relationships and show me how they grow. Give me a found family, and I’m invested.

I like to write things that I know about, even just a little. I obviously don’t live in a pseudo-medieval world with gods and magic, like Kita and her cohorts, but I do know what it’s like to have a group of friends that feel like family. I do know about human connection and emotion. I love looking at the powerful bonds between women that make them so much stronger than they are alone. That’s an important part of Kita’s story, and I truly hope I do it justice by drawing on my personal experiences.

And if I don’t, that’s entirely my fault and has nothing to do with the incredible friends who have my back.

What I wrote this week: Draft 4, Eva’s arc. Yes, still.

What I read this week: Caliban’s War by James SA Corey; The Only Good Indians by Stephen Graham Jones.

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