Friends, FaceBook and Face-To-Face

Friends come in all varieties of physical distance, don’t they? Those of us who are active in blogging and social networking get pretty sick — I do, anyway — of people who aren’t active on the internet telling us that internet friends aren’t “real” friends.

Remember Pen Pals? People would write to people, pen to paper, for years, and nobody doubted that they developed sincere emotional attachments. Plays were written about pen pals who fell in love, who grieved one another’s sorrows and deaths, who knew one another deeply.

Nobody thinks they aren’t “real” friends.

And what about people you don’t see for years and decades, then you see them again and it’s like you were never apart? Nobody doubts that connection.

Well, listen: communication doesn’t care if it’s done in cyberspace or meatspace, okay?

This past weekend, I went to the 4th annual That Book Place Authors Fair and hung out with some of my friends. Some of them, I’ve known in person for years. Some of them, I’ve only “met” online. All of them were merry met. You couldn’t tell from the hugs and howdies who was a cyber friend and who was a “real” friend. They were ALL real, you dig?

Here are some of my friends, whose books I bought.

My friends -- Jay NoelJay Noel: Writer On Fire is one I just met face-to-face last weekend. You wouldn’t have known it. He guested on my blog once, and his cover boy is my imaginary boyfriend. Visit Jay’s blog for buy links to all the places his books are sold. I bought a copy of Dragonfly Warrior this weekend. Because: imaginary boyfriend.

I bought Blue Spirit by Eric Garrison, a friend with whom I’ve attended many a book fair/signing over the past few years. Blue Spirit bills itself as “a tipsy fairy tale.” Eric brews beer, so I have … er … high hopes for the book. It’s currently out of print (it was self-published), but it’s been picked up by the fabulous Seventh Star Press and is due to be reissued, along with a sequel!!!

My friends - PamelaAnother is my homegirl, Pamela Turner. I “met” Pamela through an online group, then met her in person at Fandom Fest a couple of years ago. We’ve kept up through Facebook and I read her blog, and it’s like Old Home Week when we see each other in person. I bought my first of her books this weekend; she tends toward the erotic end of the spectrum, and I don’t read erotic. Never mind why. We ain’t goin’ there. ANYWAY, I bought her mystery set in Victorian-era Louisville, Kentucky (my home town), The Ripper’s Daughter.


A WRITING PROMPT FOR YOU: A character meets someone in person that he or she has only known by some form of distance.



I was born in Louisville, Kentucky, but now live in the woods in southern Indiana. Though I only write fiction, I love to read non-fiction. The more I learn about this world, the more fantastic I see it is.

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One thought on “Friends, FaceBook and Face-To-Face

  1. Holly Jahangiri

    March 21, 2014 at 9:56am

    My pen pal – snail mail pen pal from Sweden – from when I was about 9 years old – is a friend on Facebook! So yeah, amen to everything you said here!!

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    • Author

      Marian Allen

      March 21, 2014 at 9:58am

      That’s so neat, Holly! FB has reconnected me with friends I had lost touch with. A friend is a friend, right?

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  2. Jane

    March 21, 2014 at 10:30am

    Friends! Friends! FRIENDS!

    You know who you are!

    I used to think how ridiculous that Barbra Streisand movie was where she met up with Robert Redford once a year to continue their romance. Then I met Andy O. Once a year at Rivercon. Generally in the bar and after-parties. When you enjoy somebody’s company, it doesn’t matter how far between are the meetings. Oh! And Tucker! That fellow sure did know how to make friends out of acquaintances!

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    • Author

      Marian Allen

      March 21, 2014 at 11:32am

      Right, Jane: Conventions and SCA events are perfect examples. And I’ll always miss Bob Tucker, forever and ever. He declared himself Sara’s grandfather because the first year I took her to a con when she was ten or so, he introduced himself as Jules Verne and she knew it was a joke. ~grin~

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  3. Pamela Turner

    March 21, 2014 at 11:13am

    Thanks for the shout out. 🙂 Yeah, I just sort of fell into that “erotic” category. Not all of my stories, though. “Family Tradition” and the Ten Tales stories aren’t erotica, except for the possible exception of Beltane, but it’s been a while since I’ve read it, and my memory isn’t what it used to be. LOL Promise if I have any non-erotica books, I’ll let you know. :-)And thanks for picking up Ripper’s Daughter. Hope you enjoy it.

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    • Author

      Marian Allen

      March 21, 2014 at 11:34am

      I’m looking forward to reading Ripper’s Daughter, Pamela. I hope you enjoy the Mr. Sugar story. 🙂

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  4. Holly Jahangiri

    March 22, 2014 at 12:30pm

    @Marian Allen – I think so! Some people think that friends have to have this constant communication, where it’s like a ping-pong match. “Your turn!” And if they drift apart for years, they must not be friends. Or if they can quietly “Like” a status now and then, but not engage in intense chatting and commenting all the time, they’re not real friends. I just don’t buy it. People who matter to me – or mattered to me once upon a time – are still friends, unless we have good reason NOT to be.

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    • Author

      Marian Allen

      March 22, 2014 at 1:57pm

      I’m witcha, Holly. I can’t believe you and I have never met face-to-face. HUGS

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  5. Holly Jahangiri

    March 22, 2014 at 3:50pm

    One of these days, I’m sure we will! 🙂


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