Okay, so these next folks aren't necessarily "friends" (well some of them are), but they've all helped me in some way during my writing career (are you allowed to call it a career if you don't really make any money?).
Paul Tremblay: Besides writing me a really nice blurb for my (still unpublished!) collection, Paul has offered advice along the way. More importantly, he's always been gracious about it even when I email him out of the blue with dumb questions. If you haven't read any of Paul's stuff, you really, really need to do so because the man can flat out write. Here are a few options to get you started: The Little Sleep, No Sleep Till Wonderland, and the soon to be released In the Mean Time. Check them out.
Douglas Clegg: I met Doug at Borderlands in 2006 when he was nice enough to say some encouraging things about my short story Halloween Comes to County Road Seven. Since then, he's always been responsive to my emails, providing timely and valuable advice. He also read my (still unpublished!) collection and wrote a nice blurb. He also said some other things to me in the email that made me feel really good about my writing. Doug has tons of stuff out, but here are some highlights if you'd like to check him out: Neverland, Isis, and many more.
John Rector: Another nice guy, who hasn't let all of his success go to his head (a rare thing, I think). I met him when he was writing short stories and being a general smartass at RJ Cavender's Horror Library at Zoetrope.com. Now he's got book deals coming out of his ears and has already garnered some rave reviews for his upcoming novel The Cold Kiss. He's offered me great advice on pushing through the inevitable wall when writing a novel and helped me focus my query letter.