Liz Danforth and Neoncon

Last year I virtually met Liz Danforth through Facebook and we had exchanged a couple of e-mails. We ended up being not-so-secret santas, primarily because we both thought it’d be something fun and geeky to do. I had given Liz what all women normally want (A chocolate care package… Hah!) and she had been kind enough to provide me with a few prints of her artwork which now adorn my walls.

Liz’s artwork is a study in line art perfection. No, I’m really not just saying that, because it really and truly is. I knew Liz was a professional illustrator, but I was not aware of the breadth and depth of her abilities. She’s brilliant and I’m happy that she’s decided to step back into freelancing.

Well, a year passed by and Liz and I had chatted online a bit about how she wanted to get back into illustrations. (You can imagine I was cheering her on.) Then, we happened to meet up at Neoncon in Las Vegas and we were able to chat about her new beginnings.

Neoncon is a convention held in Las Vegas that has, at its core, a vision that isn’t just about gaming. It’s also to connect creative professionals with others to help them in their quest to develop their careers and find new opportunities. This year, I hosted a few panels to share my knowledge and see how people might respond to my style of speaking. I was happy to finally meet Liz for the first time; we had a great conversation and she seemed really excited about new possibilities.

Well, a few weeks ago Liz had posted Gearing up in the Next Expansion at Earlier, I had asked her to provide some insight about my talk, because that feedback helps me grow.

I’ve met plenty of razor-sharp women and men over the years, many of them willing to share their knowledge. Monica is particularly good at what she does, in my opinion, pragmatic without being dogmatic. –SOURCE: Gearing up in the Next Expansion at

As you can imagine, I was pleasantly surprised. As I’ve gotten older, I’ve tried to adhere to a simple philosophy: There are six billion people on the planet. Everyone has a different way of doing things. That way is not my way. Instead, I want to listen to their stories. Sometimes it’s challenging to balance the listening part with the advising part, but that’s an area that I’m growing in. It was nice to hear that I’m achieving that goal.

I’m hoping to make it out to Neoncon next year, too, though I’m not sure what I’ll be doing. Such is the life of a creative professional, but one that is a lot of fun. After all, I probably wouldn’t have been able to meet Liz otherwise.

One Response to Liz Danforth and Neoncon

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.

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