Dogpatch Press

Fluff Pieces Every Week Day

Month: September, 2018

LondonFurs Gaming presents: Furry Invasion on October 13.

by Patch O'Furr

@LondonFurs are a large community of creative artists, costumers, and fans of anthropomorphised animals. “We host bi-annual seasonal events, too!”

If you’re anywhere near the UK, get ready for their Furry Invasion event at the Heart of Gaming, in Croydon, London. It’s an evening of tournaments, VR, arcade, and e-sports with prizes, and it’s sure to be the highlight of the LFG Online community.

“I’m super proud of the team involved in the set up and am really excited to be able to promote and support gamers in the furry community”, said Londonfurs chair Ani Boxer. The group has just bolstered its committee with new members. It’s currently run by 20 volunteers and is soon to have it’s 300th furmeet. Whatever game brings you to this meet, everyone’s a winner with dedication like that.

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Furries vs. Evil: Habits in geek social spaces

by Patch O'Furr

This was written as introduction for a planned series. I edited it to stand alone in response to recent events of bad things being exposed. Expect to see it reposted in the future to fit a series. It’s kind of a thinkpiece to provoke open ended conversation. Let’s start with a weird question… (- Patch)

Q: How are furries like Catholic Nuns? 

Aside from silly headgear or being anthropomorphic penguins… this isn’t about being moralistic, but it involves contrasting black-and-white appearances.

Do nuns make you think nice thoughts about The Sound of Music or Mother Teresa, with harmless ladies playing guitar and taking care of orphans?

For a huge contrast, now think of scandals with abusive priests, where churches shift them from diocese to diocese to cover it up. It’s easy to assume nuns don’t do abuse like that. Until news comes out that they do, but the church hasn’t been accountable. This news may be loaded with a certain counterintuitiveness that increases the WTF factor. But in both cases, it’s dishonest to blame individuals for an institutional problem.

Furry fandom is made of loose federations of groups. Almost all of them are super positive and friendly and it would be gross exaggeration to suggest an institutional problem like above. It’s not a church with a pope. At worst, dramatic stories like a ring of abuse in Pennsylvania was limited to personal friendships that didn’t go as far as alleged. (Lupinefox, who was accused of hosting it at his house, was found not guilty on all charges in court.)

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There She Is!! Is Here To Brighten Your Day!!

by Pup Matthias

Hey. How are you doing? Is today treating you well? I hope so. Today I want to share something with you guys. Nothing big. Nothing crazy. Just a silly sweet thing I found and want to share if you haven’t heard of it already.

I’ve been really into the animated storyteller side of YouTube lately. You know your TheOdd1sOut, Jaiden Animations, Let Me Explain Studios, SomethingelseYT, I’m obsessed with these guys. The latest one I’ve found is Emirichu. Heard of her? I wouldn’t be surprised if you didn’t. You wouldn’t believe how many of these animated storytellers there are. But I came across one of her videoes in my recommended feed: How I Met My Favorite Animator! (and cried… a lot) Through this video, she shares an old 2004 animated web series from Korea called There She Is!! And if you need a pick me up then you need to watch There She Is!!

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Dogbomb: Not your ordinary canine – by Kijani Lion

by Patch O'Furr

Welcome back to Kijani Lion, who I previously interviewed in 2016. Kijani’s bio includes being a con Guest of Honor and organizer for FurLifeNW and their bowling meet that set a world record for attendance. And he’s been a journalist who contributed to Furry News Network, writing profile articles about outstanding fursuiters in 2011-2013. FNN’s articles seem to have fallen off the web in 2015, but I asked to bring this back.

FNN Fursuiter of the Month (August 2011) was Dogbomb. In 2018, Dogbomb has gotten a lot of love from the fandom with a serious story that you should know before moving on to this reprint. I asked Kijani to write a new update, and that’s in the works. Look forward to it soon. – Patch

Dogbomb: Not your ordinary canine (2011)

By Kijani Lion 

As long as he can remember, dogs have always been a big part of Tony Barrett’s life.

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It’s a bird, it’s a plane, it’s Furflight! West Coast to Midwest Furfest – sign up by Sept. 21

by Patch O'Furr

Sign up to fly: https://canisvulpes.com/furflight/

Super organizer MikeFolf/Canis Vulpes got in touch to share his project of herding an airplane full of furries all the way to Midwest Furfest, taking the good vibes of the con much farther than one city. If you want to go, don’t sleep on this, the seats are filling fast!

He says:

FurFlight is a series of group flights on existing commercial aircraft that extends the convention experience to the journey. That reduces stress of travel there, and eliminates PCD on return, with a lot of friends along for the trip.

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Atlas & Axis [Volume 1], by Pau – Book Review by Fred Patten

by Pup Matthias

Submitted by Fred Patten, Furry’s favorite historian and reviewer.

Atlas & Axis [volume 1], by Pau. Illustrated.
London, Titan Comics, July 2018, trade paperback, $19.99 (unpaged [160 pages]).

I reviewed the original French editions of Jean-Marc Pau’s four hardcover albums of 80 pages each, La Saga d’Atlas & Axis, on Flayrah and here, from 2013 to 2017. Now here is a trade paperback graphic novel in English of the first two albums combined. (There’s no translation credit. Did Pau translate it himself? See his blog Escápula News. It’s mostly in Spanish, but there’s enough in English to show that he speaks fluent English.) This was published by Titan’s Statix Press as four comic-book issues from February through May 2018. This trade paperback graphic album has followed promptly.

Atlas & Axis is described as a funny-animal Astérix & Obelix, or in the vein of Stan Sakai’s Usagi Yojimbo or Jeff Smith’s Bone. I can add Carl Barks’ and Don Rosa’s best Uncle Scrooge/Donald Duck stories, and some Japanese graphic novels by Osamu Tezuka or Shotaro Ishinomori. It’s both funny and adventurous/dramatic, with rich, lush art brightly printed on glossy paper.

Atlas and Axis are two dog adventurers, an Afghan hound (Atlas) and a terrier mix (Axis), in the talking-animal world of Pangea, apparently around 1000 A.D. (But events in volume 4, not yet published in English, completely disprove this.) They live near the village of Kanina, somewhere on the coast in what might be northern France. Atlas returns from a mission for their friend Canuto (translating a parchment with a clue to a bone leading to endless food), and he & Axis go to Kanina for a festival. They find it destroyed by Viking raiders, and all their friends killed or kidnapped. Their first adventure together is for revenge against the Vikings and to find Atlas’ kidnapped sister Erika. After that, as Atlas says, “Without our FRIENDS, there’s nothing to keep us here anymore. This is no longer our HOME.”, and later, “What do we do NOW?” They still have Canuto’s parchment with the clue for Chimera’s bone. Axis says, “Oh, yeah? Well, let’s go FIND it then. We’ve got nothing better to do.” And that’s their justification for one quest after another. This volume ends with them taking part (against their wills) in a war against the pirate nation of Escapula (an ingroup reference to Pau’s blog).

One of the quests is started by two academics debating in Mrs. Honey’s Tower Bar over the origin of dogs. One argues that dogs have evolved from wolves, while the other argues for a divine creation by Toby, the dog god. Atlas and Axis go on a quest to far northeastern Sabakistan to look for a tribe of nomads who are rumored to be half dogs and half wolves; “the MISSING LINK in the evolutionary chain between wolf and dog.” They do it because they’re bored. “We’re going on another ADVENTURE!”

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Ragged; or, The Loveliest Lies of All, by Christopher Irvin – Book Review by Fred Patten

by Pup Matthias

Submitted by Fred Patten, Furry’s favorite historian and reviewer.

Ragged; or, The Loveliest Lies of All, by Christopher Irvin. Illustrations by Conor Nolan.
Boston, MA, Cutlass Press, October 2017, trade paperback, $16.00 (250 [+1] pages).

“Cal sat along the riverbank atop a wind-swept pile of dry, dead leaves. Bare feet at the water’s edge, pea coat buttoned to his chin. The ancestry of his mixed breed had been lost to time, but if you’d been fortunate to be in the company of a variety of the Canis lupus familiaris, you might think his facial features resembled that of a beagle: dusty white from nose to top of skull blending with a reddish-brown along the sides of his face and lower jaw, eyes sharp with a tinge of sadness, and long ears that dangled near his shoulders, that at first glance might cause one to mistake his nature for more playful than it was. Cal would deem himself a proud mutt, but when you’re head of the sole family of dogs to make their home in the Woods, you become the dog; the definition your face, your actions. All in all, it was a mixed bag – especially considering his past. When you grow up with an exiled raccoon with a penchant for poaching for a mentor, life in the Woods is an uphill battle. Cal clutched a makeshift fishing rod loosely in his paws – a slightly gnarled branch with a bit of moss-dyed twine […]” (p. 11)

Well, this paragraph goes on for another half-page. Author Irvin describes Ragged as like “Fargo meets Wind in the Willows”. The back-cover blurb begins, “In a feral twist on crime fiction, Cal, a mutt with a criminal past, must avenge the death of his wife and protect his pups from the inherent darkness of nature and the cold cruelness of the looming winter.”

As you can tell, Irvin has a laid-back, wordy writing style. Considering the rural backwoods setting, and the animal cast – Duchess, the old hedgehog who runs the General Store, Roderick rabbit with his 26 children (he’s almost immediately killed), Gil the argumentative catfish, Maurice the sly raccoon, head of the Rubbish Heap gang, Billiam Badger the officious town bureaucrat (“I’m the elected official of the Woods […]”), Nutbrown Squirrel the matronly schoolteacher, Ted and Helen Pig, Hugo and Mol Otter, Hank and Myrtle Tortoise, and many more, Ragged at times seems more like Walt Kelly’s swamp community in Pogo. But then:

“Old Brown [a bear] burst from the river, paws outstretched for Cal, who was tense and ready this time, yet Old Brown’s reach was too long and he snatched Cal by his coat as he tried to back away, popping a button loose, wrenching him to the river’s edge, face-to-face. As Old Brown pulled him in, Cal ripped the pistol from his pocket, pulled back the hammer and pressed it into the side of the bear’s skull. The rivals snarled, bared their sharp teeth with clenched jaws.” (p. 21)

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Dissident Signals, Edited by NightEyes DaySpring and Slip Wolf – Book Review by Fred Patten

by Pup Matthias

Submitted by Fred Patten, Furry’s favorite historian and reviewer.

Dissident Signals, edited by NightEyes DaySpring and Slip Wolf.
Dallas, TX, FurPlanet Productions, July 2018, trade paperback, $19.95 (349 pages), Kindle $9.95.

“Everyone wants to create a perfect world.

Whether crafted by benevolent computers or drafted in the boardrooms of corporations that own all we ever know, shining cities and indomitable Empires have risen to reveal the very best of us. The leaders we choose, and those forced upon us, can create hell or paradise. Sometimes they create both at the same time.” (blurb)

Of course, things don’t go as intended. This anthology contains “sixteen dystopian stories about greed, power, and control from worlds like ours but not ours. Stories about hope, despair, and those willing to stand up to their oppressors to resist.” (blurb)

The frame, created by the editors and illustrated on the cover by Teagan Gavet, is of a nameless individual holed up in a ruined building, broadcasting sixteen accounts of what went wrong all over the world.

In “0.02%” by Faora Meridian, 0.02% is the amount of the world population that is immune to Core’s brainwashing additive to the air, called Whimsy, making everyone happy and peaceful and docile. Since Core can’t Whimsy-fy the entire atmosphere of Earth, people are brought inside enclosed Colonies all around the world. The 0.02% of the population who are unaffected by Whimsy are considered unmanageable and warlike, and are regretfully euthanized. Jordan Mulley and her brother Blake are freedom fighters among the 0.02%, trying to infiltrate Core Colony Sixty-Two to rescue a youth about to be tested for his susceptibility or resistance to Whimsy. The characters debate whether a world where 99.9998% of people are happy and peaceful in a idyllic setting is bad, if the other 0.02% are killed.

“Chasing the Feeling” by Mog Moogle is like the previous story, but much bleaker. Mirra is also inside an enclosed dome, but the entire world outside is uninhabitable:

“The reddened sky dissipated over the wall. Behind the emitters, the deadly cloud was repulsed and the original shades of night stretched on in its place. With a hiss, the access hatch opened and the vixen crawled in.” (p. 39)

Again, everyone is brainwashed, but the regimentation is much harsher. Mirra also fights against the system, but subconsciously rather than deliberately, and it is implied that it is too late to oppose the system if any life is to survive. “Chasing the Feeling” is better-written than “0.002%”, but more depressing. Both “0.02%” and “Chasing the Feeling” are funny-animal stories. Their characters are described as anthropomorphic animals, but they might as well be humans.

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Furries You Meet at Camp Tiny Paws (August 2018)

by Patch O'Furr

When you’re tiny, less is more. When you’re a real-life 4-legged guinea pig named Tiny, having a convention named for you is a big honor. And for a moderately sized community, a smaller con can bring outsized fun.

That’s the vibe I got from my trip to this 2nd-year convention in Danbury, Connecticut. It drew around 300 attendees. Where I am in the San Francisco Bay Area, “the world’s greatest concentration of furries per square mile” (wikifur) has casual monthly meets that bring hundreds. It can be too much to keep up with. Do you ever get that feeling? Try events where furries are less dense. It’s like a throwback to a fresher, younger fandom.

Organizers K’gra and Nobody bring lots of positive energy for that. It cuts through negativity of current events like a rainbow laserbeam. They laughed about me being a mild, laid-back California dog person, and said “I can’t believe you came all the way here for this!” I said, “I can’t believe you invited me!”

Being a Guest of Honor came with a duty to support the con. The panel I did on self-employment (and DIY power of fandom) was well attended.  Other well-known furry names gave support too. Meeting Uncle Kage and Boozy Badger made me appreciate them for bringing their mix of long experience and newer yet super vocal membership. And not just themselves, but their family and friends.

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Explore “The Depths” adult furry webcomic – interview with the creators.

by Patch O'Furr

Meet webcomic writer Leilani. She’s interested in discussing furry webcomics, experience working with them, and how furry artists can be more successful with them. We chatted together with artists ABlueDeer and Kino Jaggernov about their project.

What is “The Depths”?

The Depths is an adults-only webcomic featuring anthropomorphic creatures in a historical alternate-Earth setting from the 1920s through the 1930s. The narrator is Leilani Perierre, a beautiful, brave, and savage sea otter. The webcomic focuses not only on Leilani’s origins growing up on a remote paradisaical island, but also her tales of romance, mystery, and epic adventure – above and below the deep blue sea. “The Depths” doesn’t just relate to the sea, it also relates to the soul. The cast includes Leilani, daughter of a tribal chieftain in the South Pacific, David (Leilani’s main love interest), Malana (Leilani’s foil), Kalea (Leilani’s BFF), Jamie (antagonist and foil to David), and Thierry as a French detective whose story is mostly unknown.

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