My GenCon 2009 Writer’s Symposium Schedule

Folks, things have been a bit crazy on my planet as I get ready for GenCon: Indy. This will be my first year I’ll be speaking on panels through the Writer’s Symposium, even though this is definitely not my first speaking engagement. I’ll be bringing along some mini-flyers for those of you that are interested in picking up the games or some of the fiction I’ve written for, with info where they’ll be at the con. I’ve received word that my latest contribution in Family Games: 100 won’t be available until after GenCon, but that doesn’t mean you can’t pre-order a copy. (Shameless plug, I know. Please forgive me!)

Please keep in mind that there will be a ton of really great authors in the Writer’s Symposium that you might recognize. Jean Rabe, Patrick Rothfuss, Paul Genesse, John Helfers, Anton Strout, Mike Stackpole, Ed Greenwood and many other wonderful authors will be here, so be sure to bring your books and get them signed, too!

Without further ado, here’s my schedule for the GenCon: Indy 2009 Writer’s Symposium:

Thursday, August 13

    2:00 p.m. Main Hall – Author’s Alley – Come say hello! John Helfers and Kerrie Hughes will also be around in this area where you can meet-and-greet your favorite authors!
    4:00 p.m. The Marriott (Santa Fe)Switching Gears: Fiction to Game Writing and Back Again – Jean Rabe, Marc Tassin, Robert, Farnsworth, Monica Valentinelli – The genres require different styles of writing, and if you want to work in both industries you have to be able to switch gears…and don’t let them hear the dice rolling when you do it.
    5:00 p.m. The Marriott (Santa Fe)Shameless Self-Promotion – Paul Genesse, Donald Bingle, Monica Valentinelli – Web pages and blogs and going to conventions…oh my! Promoting yourself andyour writing is necessary in today’s market. But how far should you go? Just how do you promote yourself without sounding desperate? Our panelists offer their sage advice on how to draw attention to you and your work economically and ethically.

Friday, August 14

    9:00 a.m. The Marriott (Lincoln)Urban Fantasy – Anton Strout, Kerrie Hughes, Monica Valentinelli – Is there still room in the market? Can the public handle another vampire detective? Our panelists have written urban fantasy and discuss the ingredients, what makes a successful fantasy city yarn, and how you can try to break into the genre.
    12:00 p.m. The Marriott (Santa Fe)Author Reading – Anton Strout, Monica Valentinelli – Come and listen to us read from our published (and maybe even unpublished!) works.

Saturday, August 15

    8:00 a.m. The Marriott (Lincoln)Worldbuilding: Mythology – Chris Pierson, Sabrina Klein, Monica Valentinelli, Robert Farnsworth – The mythology of your world makes a huge impact on how your story is perceived. Should you lift a mythology from an ancient culture? Twist a current one? Or create one from scratch? Our panelists take on making mythologies convincing, realistic, and interesting.
    9:00 a.m. The Marriott (Lincoln)Worldbuilding: Magic, Technology and Evolution – John Helfers, Kerrie Hughes, Chris Pierson, Monica Valentinelli – We’re living in a time when technological evolution has made a tremendous difference in most of our world’s societies. What would your characters’ evolutionary paths be if they used magic instead of computers? How does magic or science affect a society’s evolution? We’ll examine how patterns of change affect your world and characters and how to twist technology with magic or vice versa.
    1:00 p.m. Main HallAuthor’s Alley – Paul Genesse and Monica Valentinelli

Sunday, August 16

    8:00 a.m. The Marriott (Santa Fe)Tough Guys and Gals in Fiction – Elizabeth Vaughan, Kelly Swails, Monica Valentinelli, Robert Farnsworth – Hard-edged characters are very popular…Conan, Xena, Laura Croft, the Terminator, and the Punisher. Why do we like the shoot first, ask questions later characters? What is their place in modern fiction, and how can we use them in our own stories?
    9:00 a.m. The Marriott (Santa Fe)Pardon Me, But I’m a Writer… – Kelly Swails, Robert Farnsworth, Elizabeth Vaughan, Monica Valentinelli – …and I’d like to know all about…Do you need to know what goes on in the kitchen of a Japanese restaurant? How a horse moves? Which everyday plants are poisonous? What ratlines are? Research in an important part of writing, and sometimes it involves approaching others for information. Join us for a fun panel on how to get information from mundanes without appearing to be crazy.

Special thanks to Jean Rabe for allowing me to be a part of the Writer’s Symposium this year. Hope to see you there!



Monica Valentinelli is a writer, editor, and game developer. Her portfolio includes stories, games, comics, essays, and pop culture books.

In addition to her own worlds, she has worked on a number of different properties including Firefly, Vampire: the Masquerade, Shadowrun, Hunter: the Vigil, Brandon Sanderson’s Mistborn, and Robert E. Howard’s Conan.

Looking for Monica’s books and games that are still in print? Visit Monica Valentinelli on Amazon’s Author Central or a bookstore and game store near you.

Want to Interview or Hire Me? Send Fan Mail?

Would you like to hire me? Because my projects and manuscripts are in flux, I am always open to discussing new opportunities with publishers and studios. As a full-time writer, I spend a portion of my time seeking new gigs–so don’t be afraid to reach out. If you’re interested, please e-mail me via my Contact Page. I typically reply to work-related e-mails within one-to-two business days.

Want an interview? If you’d like to interview me or request a guest blog post, please connect with me via the contact page, too. Due to time constraints and other communicative concerns, I typically don’t follow up on requests via social media.

Keen on sending fan mail? I am also happy to engage with readers and fans. Please note that I am unable to reply satisfactorily to certain types of queries related to the companies I work for due to the agreements I typically sign. If you have a question about a TV show or a line of books, the best way to get your answer is to contact the studio or publisher directly.

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