Dogpatch Press

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Tag: publishing

April is Furry Poetry Month – guest post by Shining River.

by Patch O'Furr

In the United States and Canada, the month of April is celebrated as National Poetry Month, a tradition in the United States since 1996 and in Canada since 1998. Many literary magazines, libraries, authors, schools, and websites participate in this in a wide variety of ways. Since 2015, writers of the furry community have been celebrating their own version of this, which we may now call Furry Poetry Month.

The writing of poetry by furries, whether they be dedicated writers or occasional writers of poems, is not just a recent development. Poems can be found online in the Usenet newsgroup alt.lifestyle.furry, of the 1990’s. A once-active site that featured furry literature was Anthrozine. Starting as early as their second issue in 2005, twenty-six furry poems were published over the years that the site was maintained by Michael Bard and Quentin Long.

Poetry probably appeared on Fur Affinity user pages soon after it’s beginning in 2005.  Over the years, approximately eight groups have been created to feature poetry and other writing. Most of these groups have had little activity in recent months, some of them not for several years. The Poets Guild began in 2009 features two poetry anthologies and four dozen individual poems that are posted on the site. Their activity declined for a year or so but has recently had an increase in posting. The most active FA group for poetry at this time is Poetic Furs. Begun in 2015, they have featured an interview with a different poet each month.

Over the years there have been some printed versions of furry poetry. This writer still has his copy of the 1999 Conifur NorthWest furcon con book and we find on page 41-42 what might best be described as a rap, but it’s still poetry, titled “I Am The Very Model Of A Furry Individual” by Mee-Shee.  Another example was the first volume of Allasso in 2012, edited by Brian Lee Cook, which contained seven poems along with fiction short stories.

More recently, poetry has been featured on Adjective Species.  Their first publishing of a furry poem, “Whiskey Sour”, by Lunostophiles, appeared in 2013.

In March of 2015 an essay written by this writer, titled “Finding the Animals in Modern Poetry”, was followed by the creation of the “Inaugural Adjective Species Poetry Collection”. It was curated by Lunostophiles. This featured original animal themed poems from thirteen writers of the furry community. The following year in April, Adjective Species published another essay by this writer, “Finding the Animals in Cowboy Poetry”, which was soon followed by the “Second Adjective Species Poetry Collection”, with nine poems contributed. This was curated by a prominent furry writer, Poetigress.  Also at that time seven original poems written by Poetigress were published over three days.

The Furry Writers Guild was founded in 2010 to be a group for writers to share their experiences and to provide information about writing and publishing. In April of 2015 on their site forum, a new discussion board for poetry was created.  Also at this time, Laura “Munchkin” Govednik and Altivo Overo developed the idea for a book of poetry featuring animal themed poems from Furry Writers Guild writers. The sales of the book would be donated to an animal charity.  This successful project, titled “Civilized Beasts”, appeared in December 2015, published by Weasel Press.

In 2016, the project was begun again, as reported here on Dogpatch Press. Poem submissions are closed at this time and the release of the new book has not yet been announced.

Finally, the enjoyment of poetry does not have to be just a solitary, silent, experience. There are many un-traditional ways of creating and experiencing poetry. Recitation and performance of poetry occasionally occurs in the furry community. Fursuiter rap performances on Youtube are a good example, and this writer enjoyed poetry readings by two furry writers at Rainfurrest 2015.  You might find a way to poetically express yourself with some of these activities: https://www.poets.org/national-poetry-month/30-ways-celebrate-national-poetry-month

Poetry comes in many shapes, sizes, and colors, much like the fursuits of the furry community. Poetry written by others can put into words the ideas and emotions that we ourselves may not have the skill to express.  Poetry that we write can be a way to gather together our thoughts and emotions and get a clear look at them.  Somewhere out there in the world there is a poem, or maybe many poems, that is good for each one of us.

– Shining River

Furry literature: Advertising it outside of furry fandom – with Fred Patten and Phil Geusz.

by Patch O'Furr

WPbanner1(Patch:) The Furry Writers’ Guild Coyotl Awards have just opened for voting by members.  This is a good occasion to talk about furry publishing.  Committed operations are putting out a regular stream of content by fans, for fans – but is it healthy enough to support professionals? Can any of them smoothly transition between this niche and the mainstream, to be as well-rounded as they can be? Here’s a look that builds on past stories like:

Let some of the most experienced voices in furry tell you more.  Here’s Fred Patten, with comments by Phil Geusz.

(Fred:) Watts Martin’s January 2017 novel, Kismet, is being published under two imprints: at FurPlanet Productions, as furry fiction for the furry market, and Argyll Productions, as science fiction for the larger s-f market or mainstream sales; with two different covers, both by Teagan Gavet, tailored for those markets.

This sounds ambitious and imaginative. But how well will it work in practice? The record isn’t encouraging.

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A Decade of Gold: A retrospective of the works of Kyell Gold, by Thurston Howl.

by Patch O'Furr

Thanks to Howl, of Thurston Howl Publications, for his guest post. I’m told it was approved by Kyell.  Enjoy.

Few authors have captivated the mainstream furry audience as famously as Kyell Gold. From his 2004 short story publication, “The Prisoner’s Release” to his upcoming novella, The Time He Desires (Dec 2016), Gold’s works have been award-winning pieces of fiction that have even attracted the attention of non-furry readers. Throughout the past twelve years, Gold has gone through a multitude of genres and such unique characters. Below, I hope to detail many of his milestones over the past almost-decade as well as provide a primer on Gold’s work.

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Gold’s debut to fiction was his Renaissance-era novel series set in the fictional universe of Argaea. While it technically started with his “The Prisoner’s Release,” which was published in Heat #1, it later became a novel series, starting with Volle (2005). The series follows a red fox, titularly named Volle, as he undergoes a spy mission, pretending to be a lord of a small area participating in negotiations in the kingdom’s political mecca. The catch is that Volle is a hypersexual fox who struggles to keep his sex life separate from his political life, neither of which allow him to use his true identity. This series is a prime example of how Gold can meld genres. In this case, historical fiction meets homosexual furry erotic romance in a way that is both believable and evocative. The Argaea series has received stellar reviews and widespread reception. So far, the Argaea series includes the following titles: Volle, Pendant of Fortune (2006), The Prisoner’s Release and Other Stories (2007), Shadows of the Father (2010), and Weasel Presents (2011). While not all of these stories follow Volle, they are all set in the same universe. All except for Weasel Presents (which was published by Furplanet Productions) were published by Sofawolf Press, with Sara Palmer being the primary illustrator for most of these.

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Fred Patten’s new book is a first for fandom: Furry Fandom Conventions, 1989-2015.

by Patch O'Furr

51561577Fred Patten‘s Furry Fandom Conventions, 1989-2015 is out.

Until now, if you looked up “furry” at a mainstream book store, you might find a tiny handful of drawing, costume making or novelty books, but little about the fans themselves. You would have to sift the sands of the internet. This kind of recognition has been a long time coming. (We had TV specials in the early 90’s!)

Fred says:

“This is the first study of furry fandom published by a publisher outside of the furry specialty press itself. It indicates that furry fandom is becoming an accepted subject for academic study. Dr. Kathy Gerbasi of the IARP introduces it (she wanted to write a Furword rather than a Foreword.) I worked on this for more than three years.”

Furry Fandom Conventions, 1989-2015 is from McFarland, a well-known publisher of histories and academic reference books.  It’s $39.95, with 242 pages, illustrated in black-&-white and 8 pages in color, with an index and over 50 illustrations of furry con graphics.  It covers all furry fandom conventions around the world, from the first in January 1989 to the end of 2015.

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Artists and authors, be in the book Furry Nation – January 6 deadline!

by Patch O'Furr

Here’s a special announcement from Joe Strike.  Joe’s a writer and reporter about animation for the New York Daily News and Animation World Network. His website shows work with TV cartoons you may know. He’s a first-wave furry “greymuzzle.”  And he talks like a velvet alligator on the phone.

Joe has an incredibly exciting book coming out.  He’s putting the story of furry fandom in print from an established publisher.  He wants your help.book

I want to tell your story in Furry Nation.

I’m in the final stages of writing Furry Nation, the first book to chart the birth and growth of furry fandom and its relation to the anthropomorphic instinct that’s been part of civilization from prehistoric cave paintings of animal people and animal-headed Egyptian gods to the modern day. Furry Nation will be published fall 2017 by Cleis Press. To learn more visit www.furrynation.com

Furry Nation will include a handful of profiles of furry artists, published authors and craftspeople. (Furry sculptures, clothing, accessories, etc.) If you’d like to be in the book, please contact me by December 26 at info[at]furrynation[dot]com. I want to hear about your work, your first interest in anthro characters, and how you found the fandom; please include links to your work. (Sorry fursuiters but that section of the book has already been written.)

Thanx much!
– Joe Strike

Write to info[at]furrynation[dot]com, by January 6.

 

Personally, I have been urging the creation of a coffee table furry book for years – from the history and graphics, to fursuit fashion photography.  Like the kind of beautiful but info-packed bibles that Taschen is known for.  (I even outlined such a book – but what a big project that is!)

Now I’m delighted to hear that Joe has a contract with Cleis Press to publish Furry Nation in fall 2017.  Cleis has an eminent 36-year history as “the largest independent sexuality publishing company in the United States.” Don’t get too mad about being grouped with erotica; emphasize independent.  It’s a chance-taking, open-minded platform that can do justice to an alternative subculture.  They explain on LinkedIn:

Cleis Press publishes provocative, intelligent books across genres. Whether literary fiction, human rights, mystery, romance, erotica, LGBTQ studies, pulp fiction, or memoir, you know that if it’s outside the ordinary, it’s Cleis Press.

51561577Don’t overlook more cool books! Dogpatch Press’s own star guest poster, Fred Patten, has Furry Fandom Conventions, 1989-2015 from McFarland Press.  (That’s an academic/reference publisher where you’d find the book in a library.  So you might consider Joe’s the “first” as a narrative history on the shelf at an indie or alternative bookstore.)

Fred’s Publishing for Furries article helps to show how special these are in the publishing world.  Until now, there’s been almost nothing at book stores.  Whatever you’re looking for in a furry book, these are extremely cool happenings.

And I can’t wait to see more. Grubbs Grizzzly (of Ask Papabear) has The Furry Book on the way, too.

Book by Grubbs, cover art by Charleston Rat

Book by Grubbs, cover by Charleston Rat

SITE UPDATE – The first fursuiter, and Otaku Trucker: Furry Road.

by Patch O'Furr

You might see less posting here for a week – I’m busy writing for a book. That’s Furries Among Us (part 2) from Thurston Howl Publishing. (The Ursa Major Award went to Howl’s first book of essays about the fandom, so they made a new “nonfiction” award.)

My chapter is “The Furclub movement – independent furry night life is thriving!” Furry dance parties happen around the world, so if you see new dances start anywhere, please send info for the list.  (To San Francisco furs, I can’t say anything now, but expect some good news soon.)

It’s Furry Book Month, so check out some more of the fandom’s awesome creativity. Flayrah finally started approving new posts about that. Their slowness might have to do with a big rise in great reader comments here.  And so does this…

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October 2016 is Furry Book Month!

by Patch O'Furr

Huskyteer of the Furry Writers’ Guild sends a super cool announcement for fandom book lovers.  Furry Book Month is an initiative to promote anthropomorphic literature. Please give some love to the authors and publishers of the fandom – not just established ones you know, but also newer ones like Thurston Howl and Weasel Press.  Learn more in Fred Patten’s recent article, The State of Furry Publishing.

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Furry Book Month logo by Ultrafox

October 2016 is Furry Book Month!

This October, we’re raising the profile of anthropomorphic literature and bringing it to a wider audience.

The Furry Writers’ Guild has joined forces with some of our fandom’s great authors and publishers.  They will offer special deals during the month, from free shipping and discount codes to free books.

Even if you don’t read furry fiction yet, try the special offers for a furry book in October.

Already a reader? Give a book to a friend, try a new author, or write a book review!  Reviews on Amazon and Goodreads can be short, and really help authors. Got lots to say? Submit a review to Flayrah, Dogpatch Press, or Claw & Quill.

What will you do this Furry Book Month? Please spread the word on social media using #FurryBookMonth!

Visit furrywritersguild.com/furry-book-month/ for the list of offers.

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Fred Patten Presents – his articles about Furry publishing, animation, and history.

by Patch O'Furr

Discussion of the history of furry fandom with Fred Patten, at ConFURence 9.

Fred Patten is the most valued contributor at Dogpatch Press.  He came here during editor down time at Flayrah, seeking a stable place for his reviews and history articles.  (For those who aren’t acquainted with Fred’s impressive resume as a fan historian and curator, he has spent a lot of the recent decade in a convalescent hospital.  Writing is a major benefit to his life and a good cause to support.)

The “Fred Patten” tag has everything he has contributed here.  

Without Fred’s guest posts, there would be no five day a week schedule here.  Assisting and formatting his articles takes a lot of work, and five days a week makes a very demanding pace.  But I think the promise of regular content should inspire anyone who contributes.  It makes this the most active “Furry News” source.  It’s all non-profit, so thank Fred for doing what few people can do without being paid – and volunteer helper Poppa Bookworm – and (ahem) anyone else who helps, reads, shares or comments to make this a community thing.

Fred recently shared a bibliography listing an incredible abundance of his book reviews.  It covers years of writing and hundreds of posts.  At the very least, it’s worth browsing to get an idea about the variety of Furry published work.

“What the Well Read Furry Should Read”: All of Fred’s book reviews at Dogpatch Press, Flayrah, and Anthro magazine.

The list doesn’t include Fred’s other amazing articles that aren’t book reviews.  Here’s everything else.  You don’t want to miss these, if you’re interested in learning about anthropomorphic art, how furries came to be, and what they do and like.

FURRY PUBLISHING, ANIMATION, AND HISTORY:

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Exclusive: Nordguard game and Windfall novel coming out at Anthrocon, from Tempe O’Kun.

by Patch O'Furr

tempo321In November 2014, I shared news about the very active Furry author Tempe O’kun.  Public Radio interviewed him about his writing – and they treated Furry writing as just a genre, not a “weird news” item.  Even the romance kind!  That was refreshing, and I thought he did a great job representing it.  So do other furries, it seems, because he’s been honored as an award winning Furry Writers’ Guild member and a convention guest of honor.

Tempe got in touch to share exclusive news about upcoming projects.  His novel Windfall sounds like a unique genre-mixing delight, with cute furry romance and paranormal horror.  There’s also art from the Nordguard card game below.  They’re coming out at Anthrocon 2015.  If you can’t wait to see them in person on July 9-13, here’s a taste.  I asked Tempe to round out his news with personal chat about how his year has been – and if he had stories about making projects happen.  I asked: “Are you excited for Anthrocon, and what else do you plan to do there?”

Tempe responds:unnamed

My year has been great thus far! I was guest of honor at Camp Feral 2014, and I have been invited to GoH another con in the spring.

ThinkTank Games and I started work on what would become Nordguard: Tribes of the White Land expansion before the game’s core set even came out. Originally, we’d planned it as a series of smaller expansions (about the size of Magic booster packs), but eventually took the most interesting elements from each set and combined them into a 36-card pack. It shuffles directly into the main set and, just like the original, it’s a boxed set—no buying multiple packs to get the cards you want, like in a CCG. The highlights include two canon characters (Iyoto and Manny) who were mentioned in the first book, but haven’t been seen yet. It also has Team Fortress 2-style side-grades for every character. BlackTeagan also developed an entire new tribe—the Nituuyik, arctic lynxes—for the expansion, who will later appear in the books. So this is the first time the card game will have a direct influence on the graphic novels!

We’re also reprinting the core set. We’ve gotten some great feedback over the last two years and we’re pretty confident about the streamlining we’ve done for the second edition.

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A complaint: Furry fan publishing is overlooked – by Fred Patten.

by Patch O'Furr

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

I feel like complaining, and I’m not sure who to complain to.

It’s about the review of the recent FurCon in Science Fiction/San Francisco #161, (PDF), Spring 2015, “Furries in the Fog: Further Confusion 2015” by Christopher Erickson, reprinted in the DP newsdump of April 16. It’s a typical review today of a furry convention for the general public, both accurate and highly favorable. But Erickson said, “I was also able to see all of the dealer room. There was a lot for sale. There were numerous artists to choose from. There were also dealers selling ears and tails. There was a stand with puppets. One stand was selling custom collar tags and license plate covers. Others were selling artisan crafted soaps and lotions. I purchased a few pieces of badge art from one dealer that featured various fandoms.”

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