The Team

Monte Cook: Lead Designer

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Having worked as a professional writer for more than 20 years, Monte Cook can honestly say that he’s never had a real job. As a fiction writer, he has published numerous short stories and two novels, The Glass Prison, a heroic fantasy set in the Forgotten Realms, and Of Aged Angels, a modern day conspiracy and paranormal tale. He attended both the prestigious Clarion West SF&F writer’s workshop and the NASA-funded Launchpad workshop. As a comic book writer, he has written a limited series for Marvel Comics called Ptolus: Monte Cook’s City by the Spire, as well as some shorter work. As a nonfiction writer, he has published the wry but informative Skeptic’s Guide to Conspiracies.

His work, however, as a game designer, is likely most notable. Starting in 1988, he has written hundreds of tabletop roleplaying game books and articles and won numerous awards. Although he started working for Iron Crown Enterprises, managing the Rolemaster and Champions game lines, he soon went to work for TSR where he worked on Dungeons & Dragons, and in particular the Planescape setting.

Monte is likely best known for D&D 3rd edition, which he codesigned with Jonathan Tweet and Skip Williams. In 2001, he started his own game design studio, Malhavoc Press, and published such notable and award-winning products as Ptolus, Arcana Evolved, and the Book of Eldritch Might series. As a freelance game designer he designed Heroclix, Monte Cook’s World of Darkness, and has worked on the Pathfinder rpg, the Marvel Comics massively multiplayer online game, as well as numerous other games and related projects.

Kieran Yanner: Lead Artist

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A self-taught artist born and raised in the Australian coastal city of Darwin, Kieran crossed the pacific ocean at the age of 20 to pursue his dreams in the land of opportunity – The United States of America. With some hard work and many a sleepless night, he has amassed a broad client base from around the world and has produced creative works for a number of leading entertainment companies, including Microsoft, Sony, Disney, Marvel, DC Comics and many more. Kieran currently works as a freelance artist from his home in Seattle.

Shanna Germain: Managing Editor

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Shanna has geekery in her genes, thanks to some form of alien pod-splicing that happened when she was a baby. She is proud to say she was created the same year as Pong and that she fell in love with gaming the first time she held a d20 in her grubby little hands. Now an avid gamer on all fronts, she divides her time between dice rolling, button mashing, card slapping, and the occasional tile swapping. When she grows up, she wants to be the Queen of Air & Darkness. Or maybe Cthulhu.

When she’s not being a geek, Shanna spends her time playing with words. An award-winning writer and editor, she has published more than 350 stories, novellas, novels, articles, essays and books. She is an Associate Fellow at the Attic Institute and has taught classes in writing, publishing, media and photography at a wide variety of places. She’s even garnered an award here and there, including a Pushcart nomination, the C. Hamilton Bailey Poetry Fellowship, the Utne Reader award for Best New Publication, and the SCAA award for Best New Educational Product.

Bear Weiter: Art Director

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Bear Weiter has worked in the design and graphics world for 20 years, with a wide range of experiences: production work, graphic design, interactive design and development, illustration, animation, and beyond. In 1997 he started his own design company, Wombat Studios, through which he and his business partner handled a variety of projects and clientele. Outside of the day-to-day tasks of management and client support, his primary focus was in 3D illustration, animation and video production. As MCG’s Art Director, Weiter brings with him a passion for inspired design, for artists, for high-quality products, and for the art of the fantastic.

Charles Ryan: COO

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With over 20 years in the games industry, Charles M. Ryan has created or contributed to nearly every class of tabletop game—board games, card games, trading card games, miniature games, and roleplaying games—and he’s garnered awards and recognition for game design, editing and development, fiction, and graphic design. As a businessman, he’s worked in every tier of the market, from running his own independent publishing firm, to serving as Hasbro’s global brand manager for Dungeons & Dragons, to heading up marketing at the UK’s Esdevium Games, one of the world’s largest game distributors. Charles served as Chairman of the Academy of Adventure Gaming Arts & Design, the professional organization of the games industry, from 1997 through 2001. He’s also the author of the well-reviewed novel The Mason of New Orleans.

Tammie Ryan: Customer and Vendor Relations

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Tammie Webb Ryan is MCG’s customer service manager. Tammie’s first experience in the game industry was as one of the playtesters for Shane Hensley’s Deadlands, and from that point on she was hooked on RPGs. In addition to non-game-industry employment, Tammie has worked for Last Unicorn Games and Wizards of the Coast, and as a freelance editor on many well-known gaming products and magazine articles. When she isn’t answering MCG emails or paying bills, Tammie can be found gaming with her husband, Charles, and their two children, Olivia and Rowan.