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Cóyotl Awards 2012 nominations open until April 15

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As an alternative to the Ursa Major Awards, the Furry Writers' Guild (FWG) recently set up the Cóyotl Awards to promote quality writing within furry fandom. Unlike the Ursas, which have open nominations and a rank-based voting system, the Cóyotl Awards are using a more complex scoring structure based on plot, character, setting and literary merit.

Both general and mature works are eligible for nomination, but you can't nominate work you are directly involved with (as specified in the rules). Nominations are to close after April 15.

Nominating and voting is limited to people in the Guild, whose membership requires having stories previously published by other people (i.e., submitted to and accepted by the editor of an online or print publication; not posted to your Fur Affinity or SoFurry page).

Even if you're not interested in either of the awards, give furry writers a try! In a heavily art-based fandom, fiction often gets overlooked unless you've managed to build up name recognition like Kyell Gold. It's easy to look at a picture and immediately know if you like it or not; while fiction requires taking time to read, absorb and evaluate it, and you're not always guaranteed a satisfying emotional payoff.

It's also made more difficult by stories being scattered about and harder to find. This is one of the reasons why the Furry Writers' Guild was created, to be a place where writers can come together to announce and discuss their work. Other venues for furry fiction include the Anthropomorphic Dreams podcast, new online zines such as Allasso; there's also a story site that popped up recently called FurryWords.

So here are some questions: If you don't have word-of-mouth to go by, what are some of the ways to go about finding furry fiction within the fandom? How can you figure out if a story might appeal to you or not, without wasting too much of your time? What can writers do to help?

Comments

Your rating: None Average: 3 (2 votes)

Sadly, as noted by one FWG member, the banner image on the Awards website is a black-backed jackal, not a coyote.

[insert "I thought it was a coyote!" jokes here]

In fairness, the image appears to have been mis-tagged, but perhaps they should be renamed the Lucario Awards for now? If nothing else, it would be easier to type . . .

Your rating: None Average: 3 (2 votes)

They don't even look similar, or occur on the same continent... I've seen them wild though, jackals, not coyotes.

"If all mankind minus one, were of one opinion, and only one person were of the contrary opinion, mankind would be no more justified in silencing that one person, than he, if he had the power, would be justified in silencing mankind."
~John Stuart Mill~

Your rating: None Average: 3.7 (3 votes)

Stories do get overlooked. :( It's not as immediate for enjoyment and it takes a lot longer to produce. I've been writing for the furry fandom for years now, though mostly short adult pieces.

It might be cool to join FWG or something but I get bored of stories if they drag on too long and go to new ideas. Even if I wanted to join where are you supposed to get published? And why would you do that when you can publish for free on various sites? Will those places pay you for writing?

"If all mankind minus one, were of one opinion, and only one person were of the contrary opinion, mankind would be no more justified in silencing that one person, than he, if he had the power, would be justified in silencing mankind."
~John Stuart Mill~

Your rating: None Average: 5 (1 vote)

The fandom is unfortunately limited in terms of places to get published by someone else. :-( There's SofaWolf, Bad Dog Books and FurPlanet, which publish both stand-alone works as well as anthologies; there's a small number of zines (both electronic and print) which tend to be obscure - not so useful if you're not aware of them in the first place; and for non-adult short stories there are also conbooks at furry conventions.

Self-publishing options have increased in the last ten years, at least, but for Guild membership I don't think it counts. For writers who want to hang out with other writers and aren't especially interested in getting published, there are also little pockets here and there if you can track them down and don't mind the specific interests of the groups. Probably the longest-running such group in furry fandom are transformation authors, and outside the fandom there are fan-fiction websites. Not a place to get famous, but great for practice and feedback.

Your rating: None Average: 4 (3 votes)

You can look for publishing opportunities outside the fandom, also. A lot of SF/F magazines will take works with themes consonant with furry. Genetically engineered animal people, animal companions, transformation, all those things are well-recognized SF/F tropes.

Your rating: None Average: 4 (2 votes)

There are several Furry fiction sites like Allasso and Anthro that will accept short stories or novels (probably for serialization), and you do not need to be a member of the FWG to submit to them. Your writing does have to be good enough for their editor to accept it; something that you can avoid if you publish on your own website. And the sites may not pay you, though you can look around for those that do. But people read Furry fiction magazines like Allasso and Anthro, where they may not know about your website. It is from sites like Allasso and Anthro that people recommend good Furry stories to the Anthropomorphic Reading List. And the FWG is a good place to get recommendations of places to submit your writing to.

Fred Patten

Your rating: None Average: 4.3 (4 votes)

"And the FWG is a good place to get recommendations of places to submit your writing to."

Seconded. Maintaining an up-to-date market list is one of the key services that the FWG provides:

http://furrywritersguild.com/paying-venues
http://furrywritersguild.com/non-paying-venues-1

However, there are also a lot of markets for fiction outside of the furry fandom. Two of the best resources for finding them are www.duotrope.com and www.ralan.com.

Your rating: None Average: 3.7 (3 votes)

"... stories being scattered about and harder to find ..." is one reason that the Anthropomorphic Literature and Arts Association maintains the annual Anthropomorphic Reading List. Found an anthro story that you think other anthro fans would like to know about? Recommend it on the Ursa Major Awards website; you don't have to be an author yourself to do so. recommended@ursamajorawards.org But this is just a list of stories. The FWG as a place for those stories' authors to gather and talk shop is unique and invaluable.

Fred Patten

Your rating: None Average: 4 (2 votes)

Of course there are furry stories at FurAffinity and SoFurry.

An often overlooked trove of stories and poetry appears on FurRag (www.furrag.com) as well.

There are many furry stories available in e-book formats for free or small cost at Smashwords (www.smashwords.com) too.

Your rating: None Average: 3 (1 vote)

The concept is with good intentions, but I can't help but feel having a more specialized awarding program dedicated towards anthropomorphic writing is essentially going to bring about a similar issue with furry art sites in general. Essentially, it's like presenting the same thing with nearly the same procedures and catalysts.

I mean I frankly can't deny that I dislike over-centralization, but I also can't help but ask in this instance why can't there just be one awards program for the anthropomorphic arts, and one good art site? Sure, there's thousands and thousands of furs out there, but it just feels like we're stunting our own growth by over-saturating in certain areas like this.

In any case, it's not like there's THAT many award ceremonies for furry arts, but this does bring to light we as a fandom seem to have a slight habit of diluting ourselves a tiny bit. There again, we're a big mess as a community (which makes it kind of fun in it's own odd way) and practically have been from the start, and it's worked marginally well so far. Though I won't faulter on my standing that having Furaffinity, Inkbunny, Sofurry and Furocity, not to mention several image boards that vary very little other than by base design, is a bit much.

Your rating: None Average: 4.5 (2 votes)

Well the awards are different. One is voted for by the fans and the other is voted for by a committee who hopefully are better qualified to judge than the average fan. They are based on different criteria so give a different set of recommendations for people that have different ideas of what is important.

Needless to say I support many different sites. Yes there is redundancy but that is good in many ways. It let's people have an alternative if they dislike a site, or it's interface or it's community or whatever. You will find very different communities on FA and Sofurry.

I'm not familiar with Furocity but the other art sites do not just differ a little, they are often very different. Inkbunny is a standard art site with a feature for artists to sell their work (we really need a better name for it though because it's not just about art now), FA has art features as well as, seperate, community features while SoFurry has integrated art and community features. Even aside from the features they offer the rules are totally different. FA excludes cub art so SF and IB function as alternatives for those that want that. IB doesn't allow humans in sexual situations, so FA and SF can make up for that.

"If all mankind minus one, were of one opinion, and only one person were of the contrary opinion, mankind would be no more justified in silencing that one person, than he, if he had the power, would be justified in silencing mankind."
~John Stuart Mill~

Your rating: None Average: 5 (2 votes)

Inkbunny is a standard art site with a feature for artists to sell their work (we really need a better name for it though because it's not just about art now)

Inkbunny always provided features for both artists and writers; traditionally both use ink and bunnies in their work.

Your rating: None Average: 2 (1 vote)

I laughed, I face-palmed, but you conquered today's cheekiest bits of corn.

Shame there's no semi-official award for that. :P

Edit: Yet...

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vassalapinage

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Sorry! I really wasn't clear with that aside. Inkbunny is a great name. I meant a better name than "art site" because they do more than art. Art can be understood widely to include stories and music but usually those are actually grouped differently to visual art. And FA and SF are more community sites than just art sites.

"If all mankind minus one, were of one opinion, and only one person were of the contrary opinion, mankind would be no more justified in silencing that one person, than he, if he had the power, would be justified in silencing mankind."
~John Stuart Mill~

Your rating: None

Our posts are exactly one hour apart, to the minute. ^^

"If all mankind minus one, were of one opinion, and only one person were of the contrary opinion, mankind would be no more justified in silencing that one person, than he, if he had the power, would be justified in silencing mankind."
~John Stuart Mill~

Your rating: None Average: 3 (1 vote)

I suppose I should have also pointed those details out to save you the trouble, but I'm an over-inflated windbag enough as it is (I'm trying to cut back a bit on crafting massive walls of text). Needless to say, I follow along with most of what you say completely. A judge panel with more qualified critiquing is always a good solid alternative to people's choice voting.

As for the website bit I mentioned, I do also agree that there are distinguishable differences. I was more or less focusing on the main aspect of both of those examples. By that I mean the buffet of art sites to choose from for the furry connoisseur being fundamentally art sites. I'd dare never say they're all one in the same... :P

My point that I will admit I failed horribly at making was that I really think there should be something that binds all these various sub-communities closer together. OR in some instances, merge them entirely. I know that's kind of unrealistic, but it's been a little idea I've had for ages that I'm still uncertain how to go about myself. I've always wanted to find a way to bring the community closer together, with a minimum by introducing a end-all be-all hub that binds virtually everything furry related together in an easily accessible database without being in a wiki form or something of the sort. The main problem with that is there's A) A LOT to catalog, and B) Due to a personal dislike to censorship and favoritism, I'm torn between having standards or allowing anyone join the 'list', or whatever you would want to call it. The last thing I'd want is it be clean-cut and pretty, only for VIPs and elites, and finally C) It would be difficult to find virtually everything furry related.

Anyway... Before I go waaaay too far into hypotheticals and go farther off the main topic I'm going to cut myself off. Also, I really have to apologize for making poor sense in my last post. My mind is mush lately.

Annnd just cause you managed to accomplish a perfect hour in-between... I waited a few minutes to submit this myself to keep with the trend, even though it's 2 hours apart instead. :P

Your rating: None Average: 1 (2 votes)

I think it's finally time to tell everyone the true story of what happened between me and the Furry Writers Guild.

I was originally told about that site and Flayrah by one of it's members. In fact when I registered for the site, there was a bit of a wait before I was allowed on. But really it was less than 40 mins.

I know what some have said about the membership rules, that you had to have publish a certain number of books or articles. Really I have no idea why I was approved. All I rememeber is talking to the forum's boss shortly after who really seemed like a nice guy. He was eager for me to report on my blog of my experiences at the FWG, so they get new members. I told him of my own goals to eventually get one of my stories published, but to find guidence to help make my blog even better, and he wished me the best. Overall the Furry Writers Guild Forum is not a bad forum, in fact I got some really good advice. Also leads to some writers stories I eventually posted on my blog.

But being always curious, I decided to check out there chatroom. It seems the only ones that would even speak to me was the other newbies, those who had been there for a while simply ignored me. Then I made that fateful post of the truth about Rainfurrest 2015. That was when things started to go bad for me, I was insulted, my post ridiculed, I was even told it was even wrong to ask anything about the fur con that killed the fandom in the NW. Mind you this was on the actual thread. A couple even said I should be punished for asking such a question, while I was in the chatroom, yes that really did happen.

From then on it got worse, no one would even had anything to do with me. My posts ignored, and while in chat being totally ignored. Finally after a couple of weeks of this. Another member told me of the cliches, also called discussion groups. Unless you were apart of one, no one would have anything to do with you. I did not assume that, I was actually told that...directly. It was repeated the 2 other times I tried to use their chat...and I did try to join one. Oh boy, did the shit hit the fan afterwards. There was a few who ripped up my blog, tearing at what they saw was a constant series of repeating the same mistakes repeated over and over again.

I been online for roughly 10 years, I have shared possibly 1000s of links. But with some members, it isn't allowed. I found out they could kick you out if you shared a story of a fellow member ...without asking 1st.

I think that is crazy too.

I could go on about how some of the members took delight in making me the target of their hate and sending 1000's of spams to my blog. But I am taking the high road when it comes to this post.

In short I have no idea if this was an isolated case or the norm with some of their members, all I know is I am never going back to their site ever again.

Your rating: None Average: 4 (1 vote)

Just like you're never coming back here ever again?

You know, this would make a great post for a blog. If only you had one of those.

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