She says: "I was raised to understand work as having direct and immediate impact, and the truth about writing is that it takes decades, sometimes longer, before you can collect your harvest." Making art just seemed audacious, until Liontas expanded her education and found guidance from people outside her family.
In their book A Manner of Being, Liontas and Parker reflect along with more than seventy other writers on the roles mentors played in their development as writers. Booklist called this collection: "Funny, tender, illuminating, . . . splendid in every way." and Poets & Writers list it among its Best Books for Writers.