My Books and Games At GenCon 2015

GenCon Indy is less than a few weeks away, and that means its time to update you with my schedule! In the first of two posts, I’d like to share with you which of my books and games you can expect to find at GenCon. The books and games on this list are the titles I have confirmed that will be at the show–there may be others, but this is what you can expect to find. Most of them are fairly recent releases, too, and came out within the past two years.

The “G” in GenCon is gaming, so let’s start with those!

Margaret Weis Productions Booth 1613

At the MWP booth, the entire Firefly RPG line will be available for you to buy. That means, you can pick up a copy of the following:

  • Firefly RPG corebook – Nominated and won multiple awards, plus it’s up for two ENnies this year.
  • Echoes of War: Thrillin’ Heroics won an ENnie’s Judge’s Choice Award recently. If you’re looking to get into the game, but don’t want to make the investment for the corebook and the supplements, this is your best way to do that.
  • Things Don’t Go Smooth is a GM-facing supplement that gives fans more Antagonists and tools to fine-tune your Firefly experience.
  • Smuggler’s Guide to the Rim is for players and GMs. It introduces Reputation rules, iconic characters, and more!
  • Ghosts in the Black is a campaign supplement designed by Robin D. Laws. This is the latest book in the line, and is filled with twists and turns.

Onyx Path Publishing Booth 1103

At the Onyx Path booth, four of the titles I’ve worked on will be available in print. They are:

  • Hunter the Vigil: Mortal Remains – Explore the Vigil as it pertains to mummies, changelings, prometheans, demons, and sin-eaters.
  • Vampire the Masquerade: Dread Names, Red ListDread Names, Red List explores the Camarilla’s “Most Wanted” List, naming those deemed most dangerous by the Justicars and their chosen deputies, the Alastors.
  • Gothic Icons – This was Onyx Path Publishing’s April Fool’s joke for 2015. However, so many people liked it the company kept it available for future customers. Enjoy!
  • Geist Ready Made Characters – Ready-Made Player Characters (Geist: the Sin-Eaters) includes the Crossroads Drifters krewe, who perform for the living and the dead. Characters designed to for instant use in your Geist: the Sin-Eaters game.

Signing and Miscellany

Now onto the books! I will have a signing from 2:00 to 3:00 p.m. in the Author’s Alley area of GenCon. During this time, I’ve confirmed I’ll be bringing copies of:

  • Haunted: 11 Tales of Ghostly Horror – This is an anthology about ghost hunting that I edited for FR Press. Fantastic authors like Alex Bledsoe and Jess Hartley are in here!
  • Queen of Crows – Published early 2010, this is one of the first enhanced e-books to hit digital media. The story explores the gut-wrenching decision a shaman must make, once he realizes what dark future is approaching.
  • Redwing’s Gambit – This is a novella about conspiracy and paranoia in the space-lanes. Redwing’s Gambit is set in the shared science-fiction universe of Bulldogs!

I may be bringing some other books, too, but right now I’m trying to keep the options limited for ease of carrying. There may be other books at the show, like Unframed: the Art of Improvisation for Gamemasters, Gods, Memes, and Monsters, and For Exposure: the Life and Times of a Small Press Publisher. Be sure to watch for them. I’d much rather spend my time signing books than selling them, so come say hello on Friday!

365 Days of Squee Challenge. Day One!

Dancing Chick Avatar

After seeing my cousin’s 365 Day photo challenge, I decided to come up with one of my own in the form of my 365 Reasons to Squee. Over the course of the next year, each day I’m going to find something past, present, or future–a memory, an object, an experience–that is squee-worthy to me. Squee-worthy you say? All those happy little emotions that bubble up to the surface when you say, do, or think something so awesome you can’t help but feel happy.

So instead of photos? You get my squees. And? If you’re so inspired? By all means, do the same! Attribution appreciated, as always.

To kick things off, I’m going to give you one of my happiest experiences as a kid–going to the library. Surrounded by books, by so many stories, by so much knowledge…it was total freedom for me. I read everything, losing myself in worlds I’d never seen, places I hoped I’d be able to visit one day. Being surrounded by books, tomes that people had dedicated so much time and energy into writing, it gave me hope. I was never alone in the library. Never. There was always another book to read, another story to tell, another sense of awe and wonder to feel, another human being to recognize, acknowledge, and listen to.

I’ve joked that music saved my life and writing gave me a reason to live it. Looking back, as I try to quantify those times I retreated into the confines of a book…I suppose this is the literal truth for many reasons. For me, books aren’t stagnant objects that sit on a shelf collecting dust. They are a repository of past and present human knowledge, a gift that’s freely accessible and available to everyone, a way to connect with other minds and hearts to be entertained, educated, and inspired. These feelings have roots in my childhood, in all the reasons why the library became one of the most hallowed places for me, why a book was always nearby.

So thanks and a huge round of applause to all the librarians and teachers who cheered me on to keep writing and reading, who encouraged my reading/writing level to increase despite my age, and who always greeted me with kindness.


    Mood: Grateful
    Caffeinated Beverages Consumed: I’ve had two cups so far. Trying to limit myself to that.
    Work-Out Minutes Logged Yesterday: I took a nap instead. BAD WRITER!
    In My Ears: Lament of the air conditioner.
    Game Last Played: Age of Reckoning: Kingdoms of Amalur.
    Book Last Read: Re-reading His Dark Materials trilogy by Phillip Pullman
    Movie Last Viewed: Lucy
    Latest Artistic Project: Um…
    Latest Fiction/Comic Release: Last Man Zombie Standing. See also: need to write more flipping comics and exercise my art skillz again. Feh.
    Latest Game Release: Hunter the Vigil: Mortal Remains
    What I’m Working On: Primarily tie-in games work, original comics, and novels.

Reading Broadly

The Grinch Avatar

I’ve got some link salad for you today and also some comments on a meme that’s going around. But first? LINK SALAD!

Now that that’s out of the way… There’s a meme going around about the top ten books that have influenced you. This meme, in particular, speaks volumes to me about what people’s personal preferences are. As a professional writer, I cannot tell you how incredibly crucial it is to read broadly. Even if you don’t like a particular genre, there’s always something you can learn from a different perspective. Not only is this technique something to consider if balancing characters from a gender, sexual, or cultural perspective is important to you, it’s also good to help you better understand your readers. Most people don’t read one genre!

On that note, here’s mine. It’s CERTAINLY not everything, mind you… I’ve specifically avoided non-fiction, public domain, mythology, fables, folk stories, comics, books I’ve mentioned before that have influenced my work, and classic literature in this list.

1.) Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe
2.) A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle
3.) Outlander series by Diana Gabaldon
4.) The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho
5.) The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood
6.) Cat’s Cradle by Kurt Vonnegut
7.) The Mummy (or Ramses the Damned) by Anne Rice
8.) Imajica by Clive Barker
9.) The Otherland Series by Tad Williams
10.) The Stand (Unabridged Verson) by Stephen King

    Mood: The end is in sight
    Caffeinated Beverages Consumed: The equivalent of three cupes of coffee.
    Work-Out Minutes Logged Yesterday: Yeah, let me get right on that.
    In My Ears: Background noise
    Game Last Played: Battle Nations
    Book Last Read: An encyclopedia on gemstones
    Movie Last Viewed: RED 2
    Latest Artistic Project: *Still* *still* *still* need to take pictures… It’s on the list!
    Latest Fiction/Comic Release: Last Man Zombie Standing
    Latest Game Release: Freedom Flyer
    What I’m Working On: Primarily tie-in games work and novels.

Celebrating Banned Books Week

Pile of books

This year, Banned Books Week lasts from Sunday, September 22nd through Saturday, September 28th. If you’ve read my blog, you know I support literacy and I do not condone banning, censoring, or burning books of any stripe. The list of banned books may surprise you, for they are oft-lauded tomes ranging from classic stories like Shakepeare’s Romeo and Juliet to genre tales like Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale.

You can find a wealth of resources on the Banned Books Week website and through the American Library Association.

I’ll be reading!

    Mood: Caffeine, caffeine, caffeine.
    Caffeinated Beverages Consumed: Want, want, want, want, want!
    Work-Out Minutes Logged Yesterday: Does sitting on my bum count? Long work day.
    In My Ears: Traffic, caused by… Traffic.
    Game Last Played: Dragon Age II
    Book Last Read: An Encyclopedia of Witchcraft and Demons. Title is misleading; it’s a scholarly tome about the witch trials that occurred up through the 18th century.
    Movie Last Viewed: Lilo and Stitch
    Latest Artistic Project: *Still* *still* *still* need to take pictures… It’s on the list!
    Latest Fiction/Comic Release: Last Man Zombie Standing
    Latest Game Release: Serenity Crew, Wedding Planners Cortex Plus, and Shooting Fish
    What I’m Working On: Primarily tie-in games work and novels. Added an online writing workshop, too!

Non-Floofafy Me! Need More Books for Alchemy

The Grinch Avatar

I am having a hard time trying to find meaty non-esoteric Alchemy tomes. I am full up on “light this candle, summon the power of St. Germaine!” I need history books that talk about the different cultures, possibly in the context of early Chemistry, but also tomes that offer some science about reagents and the like.

Biographies of key folks would be good, too, but again… I’m not looking for ways to paint circles on the ground and bring three hundred year old dead guys back to life. Also: I don’t “just” want Western Alchemy. The world is not confined to Europe after all. Early chemists would also apply here, too. Sadly, that part of my brain is missing. Suffer the science lapse…

    Mood: Non-Floofafy me is now my favorite word.
    Caffeinated Beverages Consumed: Going on number three.
    Work-Out Minutes Logged Yesterday: The gods save me, I went to the mall.
    In My Ears: Computer fan with possible threat of thunderstorms.
    Game Last Played: Sonic and All Stars Racing Transformed
    Book Last Read: Complete Guide to Chinese Astrology
    Movie Last Viewed: Pan’s Labyrinth
    Latest Artistic Project: *Still* *still* *still* need to take pictures…
    Latest Release: “The Button” We Are Dust anthology and for gaming, a fun Scion: Extras (Supplemental Yet Can Be Somewhat Useful On Occasion Scions)


Next Posts

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


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