Free Book for you or THAT friend!

Do you have one of those people in your life who you may not see very often…maybe just once every couple of years even…but when you meet again it’s as if there has never been a moment’s separation?

I’m like that with my sister, Cindy. She was there for me through my weird years. (Some might insert here that those years have not yet come to an end.) We live hundreds of miles apart and have for decades. And she’s moved around some: Texas, California, Michigan. We’re both extremely involved with our children. Right now she resides in Washington state to be close to her kids and I’m here in the melting tundra of Minnesota, but when we connect there’s not a moment’s hesitation. Granted…there are some subjects we avoid because it causes friction. But mostly we talk and cook and eat and laugh. We always laugh because she’s funny and witty and brilliant.

I attribute that unbroken connection to the fact that we grew up in a big family–six kids, so we had to share…well…everything. When our older sibs left home I moved into my own room. Eight months later I packed up my stuff and hiked back in to live with her. Just because we liked it better that we. We enjoyed playing games until we fell asleep. We enjoyed giggling until we fell out of bed. Maybe it’s not surprising that when we spend nights at our mother’s house now, we’ll usually share a room so we can talk until the very last instant when sleep finds us. She’s THAT kind of friend.

So years ago when I began writing Unzipped and wanted to give my protagonist, Chrissy McMullen, a friend, I gave her one like my sister. Someone bright and cheery and kind and funny. In fact, I was going to name her Cindy, but we came up with Brainy Laney and loved it so that’s the way it stayed. By book five Laney had become a film star so she’s not around as much as she used to be. But it hasn’t affected the plots much because it doesn’t matter if she’s in Manhattan Beach or Matamata, if Laney calls Chrissy they’re immediately on the same page.

Seven books have been written since I began penning my first mystery. Chrissy and Laney are still best friends. And I still love writing their scenes because they make me happy. They remind me what female friendships should be like. They remind me of me and my sister.

So how about you? Are you lucky enough to have THAT friend. What’s the greatest thing about her?

I’m giving away any Chrissy novel to one commenter to celebrate the online release of Uncorked…and the everlasting joy of friendship.

Oh, and Chrissy is doing a virtual tour of her favorite LA sights if you’d like to visit her Facebook Page at  (But don’t expect  a lot of architecture. She’s not that kind of girl. 🙂

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34 Responses to Free Book for you or THAT friend!

  1. TrishJ says:

    Yup, i have a friend like that. she lives all the way across the country in TX, but when we talk or see each other, it’s is just like we were together yesterday. We can talk about ANYTHING and wont feel judged, just unconditional acceptance. And i love her.

  2. loisgreiman says:

    Trish, isn’t that kind of friendship fantastic?? I have a friend that lives about an hour from me, too, that I feel that way about. Everything just clicks and yet we don’t see each other nearly enough.

  3. Laney4 says:

    Oh my! I never knew you wrote books about (another) Laney! This I must read!
    Yes, I am blessed with many many friendships, both near and far. I am truly blessed.
    My eldest sister (by 15 years) has always lived at least 2000 miles away from me since 1970 when she married. Much as we’re so much different in age and live so far apart, we are the closest siblings in our family. My family tried to visit at Christmastime every year, but one year, we drove there in the summertime as well, and then their daughter had the nerve to marry in October, so off we flew again (this time only for a long weekend). Usually, though, we would see each other once or twice a year. Since my husband’s job changed in 2000 and our kids recently grew up to have full-time jobs, we have only gone there once or twice since then, but we are now blessed to have my sis and her husband visit us every year or two instead. And as always, we pick up conversations as if we had just left the room.
    With my sis and many of my high-school chums and neighbours, I like how they accept me for who I am now or who I was (gasp) before getting married 30 years ago. If they ask if I like their new haircut, for example, I have no qualms in saying, “Not really.” They have your back (and vice-versa, of course), but they won’t forget to remind you about it as often as possible! And if you ever had anything embarrassing happen in your life, God help you in trying to bury that info, as these friends take great delight in passing the hilarious stories on to new generations (grin).

  4. loisgreiman says:

    Laney4, did I mislead you? Laney doesn’t have her own books. She just contributes to the Chrissy experience. 🙂

  5. Had to laugh recently when I heard Jane Fonda’s answer to interview question, “Which of the men in your life would you choose to be stranded on a desert island with?” She said, “I’d much rather be stranded with my women friends.”

  6. I dearly love my baby sister, first of all. And the BFFs throughout my life are treasures. Golden relationships, all. I try to keep in touch across the miles. Over the last 25+ years I’ve held dear through thick and thin, laughter and tears a group we call Prairie Writers Guild–5 sisters of the traveling pants, pen, and now the collective memory because separately the heads are getting a little scattered.

  7. loisgreiman says:

    I’m with Fonda. I prefer the company of women for the most part. Shrug.

    • Mary Louise says:

      Hi Lois. I love Chrissie and Lanie’s friendship. What a great way to celebrate your relationship with your sister. You pose an interesting question….. I have been blessed to have had friends who enjoyed long phone calls, nights spent laughing and sharing. We did not live close by but every year meet up in Vegas for a lot of fun and laughter. Now, life has taken us on different journeys, but I cherish those times. You know, it may be a perfect time to reach out to a friend I haven’t spoken to in a while. take care…. Mary Louise

  8. Leanne Banks says:

    I’m a lucky duck because I have a few friends like that. We get together and it’s as if we were never apart! You’re so lucky and blessed to have that kind of relationship with your sis!:) xo, Leanne

  9. Jeanne in AZ says:

    Yup, I do. I was interviewed for a temp job in ’97 by her–she later told me “you’re my soul sister.” She’s supported my business office coming(s) and going(s), my spirit through every psychic experience I’ve had (which began right after my dad died suddenly in ’97), my novel and short story writing, and most recently, my stint of childcare while living at my daughter’s house after my 2nd granddaughter was born…

    God must love her! I know I do!!!

  10. loisgreiman says:

    Mary Louise, I’m touched. Thank you.
    And I think you’re right. Now’s the time to reach out to the people who have really made a difference in our lives.

  11. loisgreiman says:

    Jeanne, I’m fascinated by the psychic experiences. Tell us more??

  12. Cindy Gerard says:

    Lois – I’m your long lost sister? Wish I’d known … I think I’ve missed out on a lot of fun.
    Oh – it’s another Cindy. My bad.
    But yea for you and your sister for being so close.
    I love my sister too but we’re as different as night and day. We still have tons of fun together and I also feel so blessed to have and entire handful of friends that, although they live in different parts of the country, every time we get together it’s like we never left off. My mom would say that our friendship is as comfortable as an old shoe :o)
    Can’t wait to read Chrissy’s new adventure, btw! Love that girl.

  13. loisgreiman says:

    Cindy–let’s BECOME sisters!! I don’t think it’s too late. 🙂

  14. Tasha Clanton says:

    Yes I have that friend. We were inseparable in school from the 6th grade all the way to college. Then she moved to a different town and we don’t speak as much. However when we do, it’s as if we pick up right where we left off. I think it’s because we have such a history and have seen each other through some pretty rough times. I love her and hope she knows she’ll always have me as a friend.

  15. Tracie Travis says:

    I have a few friends like that. Our contact is sporadic because of schedules and life getting in the way but when we get together it’s like we just saw one another yesterday and we always leave swearing that we won’t let as much time pass between visits but thankfully no matter how much times does pass we always fit right back together as if none has passed.

  16. Pam Rapp says:

    Do I have a friend like that… we get into trouble when we are together… like at the Rapid City Stock Show we were trying to get the people to come and get their boots shined for a fundraiser for a non-profit we supported. Well, to get people’s attention, we bought some balloons, blew them up and had “bazoombas” boy oh boy. Funny thing is, we sold bazoombas to many women for 50 cents a pair! It was great. We do things like that way too often. But, it is always good clean fun and we encourage others to join in… and usually they do! 🙂

  17. loisgreiman says:

    Tasha, it’s one of my resolutions to contact the people I love to tell them how much they mean to me. Life’s short. Don’t miss the opportunity.

  18. loisgreiman says:

    Pam!! You’re a genius!!! And you make me laugh. Thanks for joining us.

  19. Lois – Yes, most definitely. She knows who she is, too, and the bond can never be broken. We know where each others bodies are buries. Plus, when traveling together we’ve just about got this snoring thing down. I believe I remain one of her biggest challenges because she finds it impossible to teach me a card game but she never gives up. And anything with dice would have my other friends shouting at me about the remedial help I need, but she just keeps on tossing the dice. (Right, Pea?) I’ve dragged her into questionable places, had her dancing on a table top and even convinced her to zipline (eventually up side down!). We’re good for each other – and we make each other laugh.

  20. loisgreiman says:

    Ooohhhh, I really want to get a friend to dance on a table. That’s my new mission. How much alcohol has to be involved in a thing like that?

    • Lois – Since I was imbibing too I’m not quite sure how much but it involved bottomless glasses of Italian wine, a few impossibly handsome waiters and a live band.,,and to think she was thinking about backing out because she thought the evening would involve violins. It’s like a character says in my next book, “Every day should have a surprised in it.”

  21. My BFF lives two thousand miles away and I haven’t seen her in years, but I’m sure that if I find a way to get from Anaheim to Santa Barbara this summer when I’m in CA for the RWA, we’ll pick up right where we left off. Her only flaw is that she doesn’t write letters, email, or make phone calls. *sigh* I’m lucky — I have a sister-in-law I love almost as much, but being family, I see more of her.

  22. Absolutely! I have two of them and I just got back from seeing them. We danced together from elementary school through high school and still keep up now (almost 7 years later)! We even still have movie nights, when we can all be in one place at the same time…

  23. loisgreiman says:

    Nancy, I hope you find time to get to see her.

  24. catslady says:

    Actually I don’t really. I have current friends but no one from the past. I married young and everyone else seemed to go off into the world. My husband and I grew up together lol.

  25. Quilt Lady says:

    I am like that with my sisters. I also have a friend that I stay in touch with. We met when we were five years old and have been friend ever since. She is there when I need her.

  26. Jennifer Wilson says:

    It is my best friend Heather. No matter how long it is between seeing each other it seems like yesterday. We fall on to the groove that you can only have with your BFF.

  27. bkrahn007 says:

    Lois, you hit it on the head for me today. My sister and my niece (who is more like my sister) have always been like that for me. Another friend– Thea– is very close to that. We’ve been writing buds for 20 years now! But you know, that desert island thing. . . personally I’d rather be stranded with Bear Grillys. He’d make a shelter and catch fish and make sure I survived. I’m not sure my beloved sister’s hut-making skills are up to par! LOL!

  28. Heather says:

    my BFF Becki is that for me she has 3 siblings and I have 3 siblings, be we are more like sisters then we are with our own blood. she is the aunt to my son that his real aunts aren’t and she is the one who is there no matter what time and no matter what is going on who will take 5 minutes and say Hey! Did you remember to SMILE Today!. I am truly blessed to have her in my life and I am not sure how sane i would be if she wasn’t it…..

    PS. melting tundra of Minnesota, you mean you ire not enjoying this lovely heat wave that we are having. I am constantly praying for snow. Feels like spring and I so love our MN Winters!!!

  29. Penny S says:

    I had two brothers and no sisters. My BFF Pam is my sister from another mother. We have raised our children together and they are part of the family. If she calls, no questions asked – I’m there and she’s there for me. Don’t know what I’d do with out her.

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