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Back In Black

In-Fur-Nation - 7 hours 7 min ago

A classic feline furry returns just in time to visit us during lock-down. The adventures of an international anthropomorphic sensation created by writer Juan Diaz Canales and artist Juanjo Guarnido have now been brought together in Blacksad: The Collected Stories Volume 1 — including stories never before published in English. “Celebrate Blacksad’s twentieth year with this comprehensive volume featuring five of the biggest cases. Blacksad is constantly up to his ears in trouble. Sticking his nose into mystery after mystery, often getting involved with women almost as dangerous as the criminals he thwarts. Be it solving the murder of a famous actress or keeping nuclear weapons out of terrorist hands, Blacksad’s grim work often provides a mirror for real world conflict and human issues, never turning a blind eye to racism, political tensions, or brutally sudden violence.” Tasty. And available now in trade paperback.

image c. 2020 Dark Horse Press

Categories: News

Harvest Moon FurFest: New BIPOC-led furry convention comes to Maryland in 2022.

Dogpatch Press - Thu 9 Jul 2020 - 10:30

Written by @Mac_TheWolf

There will be a live Q&A about the event on YouTube from 3 PM EST on Saturday, July 11.

In light of recent events regarding the murder of George Floyd at the hands of the police, activist movements have tried to raise awareness of the racial injustices which are still happening in today’s society. The issue of racial inequality has once again been brought to light by these events, and many people believe we have a long way to go until people of color feel safe in our communities.

Fandoms from science fiction to furry haven’t always been as diverse as they could be. As fandoms grow, previously overlooked members see each other and want to be seen. Now one group of furry fans from Maryland are aiming to take things into their own hands by running a convention mainly with the help of those from BIPOC communities.

Harvest Moon FurFest, which is set to take place on a 200-acre campground in Maryland, is the newest of a plethora of furry conventions that take place around the globe. However, unlike most, Harvest Moon FurFest’s main goal is to build the convention from its original foundation by people of color and of other marginalized groups. The board is mainly run by those from black communities, but the CEO of the con has assured those with concerns that people of all backgrounds are free to attend, volunteer, or apply for staff at the event.

Welcome!

Harvest Moon Furfest is a brand new BIPOC-led furry convention scheduled to take place in Fall 2022 on a beautiful 200 acre campground property in Maryland.

Fire Pits. S’mores. Team Games And Activities. Music. Fursuit Dances. Food Trucks. Camping. And So Much More! pic.twitter.com/2vuSKHv7Bu

— Harvest Moon Furfest ???????????? (@hmfurfest) July 7, 2020

The convention, which invites con-goers to camp on private grounds used for large festivals, is set to host a variety of events. They include fursuit dances, team games, and live music. The idea came into fruition after the CEO, Chise, helped raise over $9,000 for BIPOC communities over a four hour period during a charity stream.

“The idea was tossed around in the past and after seeing how well our stream did, we thought that if the BIPOC community could come together and make such an astronomical amount in four hours, imagine what we could do at a convention,” said Chise. “Not to mention it has been long strived for to have a BIPOC-led con board to help meet the needs and wants of a diverse fandom.”

She also felt as though concerns from the community around these issues have been ignored. “I think a lot of the concerns of those in the BIPOC community have gone unheard. Whether it is them feeling uncomfortable concerning hate groups that may be attending a convention or the lack of representation on certain con boards, this con seeks to eliminate those negative feelings.”

A small group of people on Twitter voiced their concerns about the con and even tagged the developers of the Harvest Moon video game series, Natsume, in hopes to stir up disapproval. The company voiced support for the convention, but one commenter complained that it was “sad to see that Natsume supports racial segregation.” These misconceptions about the convention being only for BIPOC have been quickly quashed by the con board.

The CEO told me that they are committed to stopping the spread of these lies. “You’re hearing it straight from the horse’s mouth. Our convention is open to absolutely everyone regardless of their race. Unless you hear it from myself or my board, it isn’t valid information.”

It took approximately a week to set out the initial plans for the convention. “I am the type of person when I have an idea and a vision, I don’t stop,” said Chise.

With over 6,000 responses to the first announcement, expect a bright rise for the first Harvest Moon FurFest in Maryland in the Fall of 2022.

@Mac_TheWolf is a first time guest writer and 15 year old furry from Barnsley, England.

The campground is indeed ADA accessible. There are permanent structures on the property. We also have an ADA Department Head that will be addressing and taking into consideration all ADA needs to ensure the comfort of our attendees.

— Harvest Moon Furfest ???????????? (@hmfurfest) July 8, 2020

Like the article? These take hard work. For more free furry news, please follow on Twitter or support not-for-profit Dogpatch Press on PatreonWant to get involved? Share news on these subreddits: r/furrydiscuss for anything — or r/waginheaven for the best of the community. Or send guest writing here.

Categories: News

The Fandom documentary: A bid for Netflix and a quick review.

Dogpatch Press - Thu 9 Jul 2020 - 10:00

@MacthePherson submitted his review of this documentary about furries, and here’s how it’s faring so far.

  • Since July 3 release on Youtube, The Fandom has 160K views (on July 8.)
  • Press so far is linked on the movie’s IMDB page.
  • Cartoon Brew ran with a Dogpatch Press tip about it. Their animation industry news site isn’t afraid to roast sacred cows or other fandoms. They even answered the tip that their last furry story was about porn in 2016! The good review was a pleasant surprise for some fans who were bracing for judgement.
  • Animators at a studio that’s not yet named saw and loved The Fandom, and will join a news story about furries in their industry.
  • Options for distribution were hampered by 2020’s shutdowns, but you can help get it on Netflix now.

Requesting Netflix add #TheFandom is really easy!!
Just type "The Fandom (2020)" and click Submit!https://t.co/DsC8ZTk963 pic.twitter.com/hKlLMOp4uE

— Essential Fox ???? (@chipfoxx) July 8, 2020

“The Fandom”. A quick review.
By @macthepherson 

As someone who likes films and has a degree in film school, I like to be honest. This is a very quick review with my first impressions, straight out of watching it. That means these initial impressions regarding the film may change over time, and that this review may lack some polishing and in-depth detail.

The film is well shot, has good pacing and is very informative, but I must say it’s very similar to many other documentaries — and being made by people of the fandom does mean that there’s some subjectivity and it can feel like a promo/advertisement, if the informative stuff is removed. It’s a bit of a mix between a TV report, a documentary and a promo. It does feel a bit like one of those long TV current affairs programs or news magazines television programs, like BBC Panorama. I guess I kind of hoped it would try to be a bit more artistically interesting. Just a bit. Wasn’t expecting it to, and it didn’t, but I still had hope.

Am I saying it’s bad? No. Absolutely not. It is a good film. It captures feelings without being too soppy. It shows some restraint in not trying to make it feel too emotional, but emotional enough. It’s not really a documentary though. It’s not an infomercial either, though it can feel a bit like that at times. I would somewhat describe it as 2/5 informative, 2/5 documental, and 1/5 promotional (out of a total of 5/5).

The style of filming and editing is conventional (a bit conservative), but a lot of documentaries are, and I imagine this is done for the following reasons: it makes it easy to understand; and it reaches a much bigger audience through that somewhat-generic approach. There’s nothing wrong with that, and it doesn’t mean a lot of effort wasn’t put into it. This is, after all, an independent production made with way less resources than a big budget production, and still feels very professionally made by a big company.

There’s nothing inherently wrong with it, that I can point out. It is very much SFW (Safe For Work), which is to be expected, given the wide range of audiences and ages it is intended for, much like fandom itself.

It’s a film made by people who are very much within the fandom, who try to inform but also spread a message. Perhaps it’s that last bit that doesn’t really make it fully documental in nature. An advertisement or propaganda, it most certainly isn’t, but it does feel a bit promotional. If that is its intent, then that’s ok. But it does bring just a small bit of doubt about its objectivity. Sure, it’s understandable that it’s trying to clear up some misconceptions and stereotypes. But it can feel like sometimes it’s still promoting the fandom while doing it. This is sometimes visible through the more emotional bits, even if it’s not a particularly emotionally charged film, and also through some of the informative bits.

I can also understand that many times, when an outsider tries to make a documentary about the fandom, it doesn’t turn out for the best (examples appear in the film). So, it’s perhaps better if people in the fandom portray it, rather than outsiders, because they know what it’s about and the misinformation about it. But while they can probably paint a more accurate and positive picture, I’m still not sure about how unbiased it will be. It might obscure some parts of the fandom that do need addressing.

If some rough edges and uncomfortable parts about the fandom perhaps weren’t entirely addressed, a heavy-toned film probably just wasn’t what they were aiming at. I think the whole point is to be a very lighthearted quasi-documentary for a wide range of audiences and ages. This is backed by a sometimes mellow yet nicely crafted soundtrack.

Do these faults I’ve mentioned bother me? Not really. It’s just that being a film person and having gone through film school means, inevitably, that every film I see will be subject to some criticism based on what I’ve learned. But it’s not necessarily negative. I like to always analyze and criticize film in a constructive manner, especially when I see a lot of effort was put in, or if I see that the makers did the best they could with what they had.

I guess these criticisms also come from someone who is a relative newcomer to the fandom. I’m a foot in and a foot out of it right now. I’m not saying that I would do it better, but no movie is exempt from criticism, and I try to do it constructively with the aim of improving. Like I said, these faults do not make me dislike this film nor does it make it bad, in any way.

As a side-note, in my opinion, one of the best films about the furry fandom is by Youtuber Fredrik Knudsen, in his video titled “Furry”, from his YouTube-series “Down The Rabbit Hole”. It has a very neutral approach, explaining the fandom’s beginnings, lows, and current state. It offers a very fair and objective assessment which I really enjoyed. And it was mostly done with archive footage and screen captures with voice-over, with no filming being done, but still looking very professional. From a person who is not from the fandom (as far as I know), his film is even less emotional, but not riddled with the inaccuracies or misconceptions the media have and sometimes still portray. In fact, it clearly shows he has done his research, and remains very neutral indeed. I imagine that’s why he won the Ursa Major Award for best Non-Fiction Work of 2018. It is still the best film I’ve seen about the fandom.

That said, the Ursa Major Award for this year’s Non-Fiction Work certainly deserves being awarded to “The Fandom”, unless something better comes out before the next award ceremony. It’s not mind-blowing nor a master-piece, but wasn’t meant to be, I suppose. It’s meant to be a heartwarming, sometimes informative, sometimes documental and a bit promotional film about the furry fandom. It’s very good in some bits, with a very professional look. For what it is, it’s a solid final product. And for me, that’s a very high bar already.

Like the article? These take hard work. For more free furry news, please follow on Twitter or support not-for-profit Dogpatch Press on PatreonWant to get involved? Share news on these subreddits: r/furrydiscuss for anything — or r/waginheaven for the best of the community. Or send guest writing here.

Categories: News

Real Pigeons Fight Crime

In-Fur-Nation - Thu 9 Jul 2020 - 01:40

There is no way we could come up with a better lead-in than simply giving you the title of this new series! This is from Animation Scoop: “Nickelodeon has struck a multi-platform deal with James Corden and Ben Winston, and their production company Fulwell 73, to produce an animated movie and TV series based on the recently released children’s book title, Real Pigeons Fight Crime. The movie and TV series are being developed to air on all Nickelodeon platforms… Added Ramsey Naito, Executive VP, Nickelodeon Animation Production and Dev., ‘Real Pigeons Fight Crime is about a secret squad of crime-fighting pigeons, with high stakes and true hilarity making it a perfect fit for our audience. By fusing the humor and expertise of this the incredible team at Fulwell 73 Productions, we are ready to show kids what pigeons really do–fight crime, solve mysteries, take down bad guys, and keep neighborhoods safe!'” In case you were wondering. Oh! Check out the original book over at Penguin Random House.

image c. 2020 Fulwell 73

Categories: News

2019 Cóyotl Awards Ceremony LIVE Tonight!

Furry Writers' Guild - Wed 8 Jul 2020 - 09:00

It’s the moment you’ve been waiting for, the winners of the 2019 Cóyotl Awards will be announced TONIGHT via Periscope on our Twitter account! It will be hosted by guild president and Cóyotl Awards chair Linnea “LiteralGrill” Capps alongside a miniature fuzzy co-host in fur suit. In case you have forgotten, here are the works up for the awards this year:

Best Short Story:

“Dirty Rats” by Jan Seigal (The Jackal Who Came In From The Cold)

“Night’s Dawn” by Jaden Drakus (FANG 10)

“Pack” by Sparf (Patterns in Frost: Stories from New Tibet)

Best Novella:

“Minor Mage” by T. Kingfisher

“Love Me To Death” by Frances Pauli

Best Novel:

“Titles” by Kyell Gold

“Symphony of Shifting Tides” by Leilani Wilson

“Fair Trade” by Gre7g Luterman

“Nexus Nine” by Mary E. Lowd

“The Student – Volume Three” by Joe H. Sherman

Best Anthology:

“Patterns in Frost: Stories from New Tibet” edited by Tim Susman

“Fang 9” edited by Ashe Valisca

“Fang 10” Edited by Kyell Gold & Sparf

So don’t forget to tune in tonight and see the winners. We wish all these writers and editors the best of luck and we hope to see you all there!

Categories: News

A Friend of Rafiki?

In-Fur-Nation - Wed 8 Jul 2020 - 01:58

Baboon! is a new full-color wordless graphic novel from Dark Horse, written and illustrated by Spanish writer and artist Pau (Atlas and Axis). “After the death of its adopted leopard mother, an orphaned baboon wanders the wild in search of companionship and a sense of identity. Luckily for our ape-hero, he stumbles upon the troop of baboons from which he was originally stolen, and falls in love with the troop’s head female. The young baboon will do anything to earn the affection of his new love interest and earn the respect of the animal kingdom while he’s at it.” It’s out now in trade paperback. Comics Beat has a preview.

image c. 2020 Dark Horse Press

Categories: News

Help, My Fursona’s Dick Is On National TV!

Dogpatch Press - Tue 7 Jul 2020 - 10:41

OwO What’s this? *A million people notice ur bulge*

Imagine trademarking ‘UwU’ & ‘OwO’. Here’s a story about owning and using ideas.

Original fandom art can be an oxymoron sometimes. The topic started with one furry’s story about John Oliver’s Last Week Tonight:

My fursona’s dick was LITERALLY on national television. — (Reddit)

It's real: pic.twitter.com/sWi26FV7ew

— Changa Lion (@LurkingGrue) June 22, 2020

Here's @RadiantOtter's statement and I got to say they and their knotted otter cock are amazing.https://t.co/lP2sk0Zepp

— Changa Lion (@LurkingGrue) June 25, 2020

Showing the furry porn wasn’t 100% welcome, and even treated as invasive. It made a discussion about permission to share things posted in public.

There are legal technicalities of Fair Use or seeking permission which may not always match popular/practical usage. Many furry sites and accounts would be gone if copyright holders forced them to take down fan art that they thrive on. It can make a lot of grey zone that some artists dive into.

A lawyer could explain (I am not a lawyer), but remember that social media is media, and sharing is valuable to artists.

Source

I don’t usually look at the Furry_IRL subreddit hosting the discussion about this, because why bother with hordes of people you don’t know on a flood of low-effort memes. (Overusing memes gets into what this is about — especially in a case like mass-scraping content from Furry_IRL and reposting it on Twitter to hack/cheat followers for clout and profit.)

In this case the comments got pretty thoughtful. I looked at complaints about showing a tweet without asking for permission first, then looked up articles about it. Many complaints seemed to belong on r/BadLegalAdvice but many saw good sides to it. Tweeting is like shouting in the public square and if you can’t quote stuff people don’t want you to quote, there’d be no reporting (or comedy).

The shared tweet literally asked to be looked at by outsiders. It was posted to 330 million Twitter users and beyond, who already gave permission to share. You own the stuff you created but Twitter has license to use it anywhere they want including letting other companies use it.

It doesn’t even look offensive by intention. John Oliver looks like an ally to me:

Source

Furry ally: John Oliver promoted a book about gay rabbits, A Day in the Life of Marlon Bundo, to troll homophobic politicians (with charity for LGBT youth.)

The John Oliver Rat Porn is making messages to me by journalists, food banks and more. @Newsweek went beyond and called the 90's TV station manager (and quoted my 5 year old article.)

Here's the true story behind 'Last Week Tonight's' rat erotica painting https://t.co/Yiu5kS9WfU

— Dogpatch Press (@DogpatchPress) March 31, 2020

Keep in mind, I put my money where my mouth is. My articles about the Rat Erotica were a source that got little credit when the media picked up the story 5 years later. For many years I have been putting this content out for free, besides some nice Patreon subscriptions that barely cover a budget to pay artists. (I just love the fandom.) I’m happy to see them shared and sourced by other media.

News is one of the most exploited and least protected areas for this. The news industry is decimated by online sharing, and they don’t know how to preserve revenue and jobs. It’s good for everyone who likes the service and terrible for the service. Especially when it’s so essential in times of crisis. (Do you read the news? Do you pay for it?)

THE WILD WEST OF ART — More about internet creators, influencers and memes.

A tipper talked to me about John Oliver and linked more to think about.

(Me:) I think John Oliver was making a benign wry joke. If he was malicious then I’d say he shouldn’t. It’s nice to blur a handle but I don’t think neglecting to do that is that bad. There’s so many cases where people get mad about credit or call it faked, or it’s a record that matters in the future. I think the TV appearance also helps make it easier for fans to be as bold as you please.

(Tipper:) Here’s some more general copyright/IP stuff with artists, influencers, etc.

The story of Richard Prince and his $100,000 Instagram artWhen does appropriation go too far? (TheVerge.com)

This artist is making mega-millions ‘stealing people’s work’ — (NY Post)

That artist enlarges Instagram posts by others, invokes Fair Use and sells them. That’s reaaally pushing it. “The lawsuits are part of the art” … he must be a masochist!

Illustrator Lili Chin Files $1 Million Copyright Suit against Kohl’s — (Artnet News)

Artist Sees Her Own Adorable Dog Drawings On Kohl’s Products, Sues — (Consumerist)

Between quoting by John Oliver’s media company (HBO) vs Kohl’s copying for a product — I liked HBO adding comment while copying art on socks doesn’t do that? But the real issue is if you can afford to defend your work. For 99% of fandom artists, disputes are way below the cost of going to court.

A million here, a million there; sooner or later, these people are talking about real money. One of the legal firms commenting about the Kohl’s case had a ‘best practices guide’ on how artists can protect their work pre-emptively.

Did you see the recent Twitter fiasco with the Bratz dolls CEO?

The Billionaire CEO Behind “Bratz” And “LOL Surprise” Dolls Called A Black Influencer Who Accused Them Of Plagiarism “A Disgrace To Black People” — (Buzzfeed)

Besides the earlier incident a few months ago with the boyband brother who ripped off art from an artist, I’m surprised it hasn’t become more widespread.

Berlin Artist Jonas Jödicke Speaks Up About Aaron Carter Art Fiasco — (Forbes)

For the influencer in the Bratz story, perhaps her claim looks coincidental… but his response is so awful. There can be a big cost from bad PR. 

Those overseas bootleg shirt sites are such a plague too. They offer a product for just a short time and make it impossible to fight theft.

Yeah, total fly-by-night operation. Double-bladed libertarian heaven/hell. Muh free market, & can’t use the government to sue their ass.

Best word for it. I looked into people making money by churning out meme shirts (with slogans, not stolen art) and it looked like a fun and interesting operation if you’re on top of looking at traffic stats. It had quite a shady side too with people poaching each other.

Do they trademark the slogans like “OK BOOMER”?

Maybe they’ll do “Owo what’s this.”

UwU ????

— U.S. Army Esports (@USArmyesports) June 30, 2020

Trademark ‘UwU’ & ‘OwO’? Imagine doing that, you could be a huge troll on everyone using it.

Well the trollface guy had his original art on DeviantArt, IIRC, he selectively enforced his copyright, disallowing some to not use it.

And Pepe the Frog.

The Maker Of The Trollface Meme Is Counting His Money — (Kotaku.com)

Here’s his copyright claim vs. DeviantArt.

Thanks!

I found a lawyer addressing this: MONETIZING INTERNET MEMES & COPYRIGHT LAW.

“As of mid-2015 Carlos had made over $100,000 through various exploitations of the Trollface (both merchandise licensing, as well as settlements under claims of copyright infringement he brought against various parties).”

But — “The Atlantic just published a story about how making money off Internet memes is becoming harder and harder. The pace of online trends and the time frame for what people think is funny (or at least, funny enough to spend some money on) is too fast to keep up with.”

This makes me think that more niche internet stuff is more likely to show up in bigger media.

Look for more fursona dicks on national TV soon.

UPDATE: why all the crazy views? Where are you coming from… Drop a comment! ????

Like the article? These take hard work. For more free furry news, please follow on Twitter or support not-for-profit Dogpatch Press on PatreonWant to get involved? Share news on these subreddits: r/furrydiscuss for anything — or r/waginheaven for the best of the community. Or send guest writing here.

Categories: News

The Other Terror That Flaps In The Night

In-Fur-Nation - Tue 7 Jul 2020 - 01:40

One of DC Comics’ most steadfast anthropomorphic characters returns once again with the new Man-Bat miniseries. “For years Kirk Langstrom has struggled with his monstrous alter ego Man-Bat and the serum that transformed him. But he’s finally hit rock bottom following a devastating setback, and he’s going to take out his anger on every single citizen of Gotham City. Will the combined might of Batman and the GCPD be enough to stop Langstrom once and for all? Or will this just be the start of Man-Bat’s devastation?” Issues are in the shops now, written by Dave Wielgosz and illustrated by Sumit Kumar.

image c. 2020 DC Comics

Categories: News

It’s Important To Keep Things Balanced

In-Fur-Nation - Sun 5 Jul 2020 - 01:52

Have you heard about Dogs Are People Too: A Collection of Cartoons to Make Your Tail Wag? We hadn’t! It’s a collection of full-color dog cartoons (duh) the syndicated panel-comic Speed Bump that writer and artist Dave Coverly published a while ago in book form. Well now, perhaps to give equal time, he has brought us Cats Are People Too: A Collection of Cat Cartoons to Curl Up With. Published under the Square Fish imprint, you can check out a preview over at MacMillan Publishing. Both books should be available now.

image c. 2020 Square Fish

Categories: News

The Fandom movie: Furry paws seize the media

Dogpatch Press - Thu 2 Jul 2020 - 09:48

Premiering JULY 3, 2020 at thefandomfilm.com.

When the media shows furries, do they get it right?

It’s a constant furry worry. In 2017 it was announced that CNN was making a show about them. Backlash rose about sensationalism, but few critics gave a fair shake to the producers of This Is Life with Lisa Ling. Then it came out and it was a flat-out advocacy piece on behalf of Furry“, said Joe Strike, a fan since the 1980’s who wrote a book that covers the subculture’s run-ins with bad media.

Joe Strike’s Furry Nation is the essential fandom history book.

Positive response didn’t satisfy every critic. Some asked why the 3 fans featured by CNN didn’t include more diverse people. But the show (with an asian-american woman journalist) got backlash while asking volunteers to raise their paws and be counted. That seems like damned if you do, damned if you don’t.

In answer to this, The Fandom is a documentary made by the fans. It features outstanding writers (like Joe), artists, animators, musicians, costume designers, event organizers and founders. It celebrates the roots with pro quality and appeal for outsiders who might not have given a fair look before.

For decades this subculture has thrived despite adversity. Bad media is one kind, but not the only kind. Some is internal. Some is homophobic. Some is happening right now with this screwy year. There’s even a villain to tell you about.

$10 million worth of trouble

Anthrocon is the 2nd largest furry convention, led by Uncle Kage (Dr. Sam Conway), the longstanding CEO and fandom public relations figure. It was due to bring $9.9 million to Pittsburgh’s economy in 2020. Now it’s among 70 furry cons canceled by COVID-19. The movie is launching anyways on the con’s dates, without opportunities that could have won distribution. (No film fests either.)

In the parallel universe where COVID-19 never materialized, parallel me is at this very minute climbing into a van with my parallel crew, headed to parallel Pittsburgh.
????

— Uncle Kage (@Unclekage) June 30, 2020

That makes this all-crowdfunded movie even more special and timely.

Time marches on, founders die or get forgotten, and it gets more important to share their stories of how a fandom got its identity. One of them, Mark Merlino, co-founded ConFurence as the first furry con. Imagine seeing one con rise to hundreds! He talks about branching out from other fandoms: “They couldn’t tell what to make of us” (because it’s not based on just one genre or property like Star Wars).

Mark and others define the nature of the beast. Each thread starts with archival sources, then ties them together with current fan interviews.

The story

  • Zines: 1970’s-80’s fans started with APA zines where they could see and be seen. Mail was like “slow motion internet” where a reply could take a month. Furry Library curator Summercat talks about it. (More: Unearthing a cool fossil — A 1980’s letter shows furry fandom before the net.)
  • Conventions: Mark Merlino and his partner Rod talk about meeting each other as fans, and how many felt alone until they met each other and saw “you draw like this too?” Meetings became parties, clubs, and ConFurence. (More: A brief history of the Cartoon/Fantasy Organization, America’s first anime fan club.)
  • Internet: Early BBS and MUCK activity brought furries together before the Web, making them one of the first subcultures to rise with it.
  • Queering: For artists, using characters as ideal selves helped develop freedom to come out with role play, and band together in their own space.
  • Growth: Over time these threads merged into a movement. Artists make a living from it. There’s a new wave of fans turning the old con masquerade into up-close raging dances. Bubbles, the manager of five cons, talks about being one of just a few women among all the leaders.
  • Controversy: Growth and freedom pushes limits, and leaders face hard questions. They say sex is something any humans do. The first fursuiter was kinky and gets compared to pin-up art that’s normal to comic fans. Joe Strike talks about bad media and Uncle Kage talks about the challenge of answering it.

It’s not so much a narrative with stakes and a payoff but it does lead up to a conflict.

The villain

Media relations make Uncle Kage bemusedly address rumors of furry cons being “like a Pride fest on acid”.

Kage isn’t the villain, unlike in some media that have painted him like a “family values” propagandist. You can really empathize with his viewpoint when he asks if you’d like to step in front of a camera and answer sex questions while your grandma watches.

You might miss one of the movie’s most key moments if you don’t think about it. A 1990’s group bent on purifying the fandom is featured: the Burned Furs.

In old video, Burned Fur Eric Blumrich says: “I’m not asking people to behave differently than general society, I’m asking them to behave LIKE people in general society.”

His long-gone group isn’t the villain, though. It’s not publicity-hungry media, or even bigoted judgement. The villain is part of a conflict about losing identity:

UwU ????

— U.S. Army Esports (@USArmyesports) June 30, 2020

That’s a verified brand and a US Army recruiting project using furry fanspeak. Imagine recruiters setting up shop in a con dealer den and making predatory pitches. That’s hyperbole, but it helps show the villain lurking on the edges of The Fandom. It’s conformity.

CONCLUSION

I keep an eye out for all media about furries, and often call the Furry 101 kind boring. The Fandom raises the bar by giving an intimate tour with quality and heart. It’s 95% positive celebration.

Documentaries can show more drama or criticism or bad sides than this really does. But how much negativity do you need in these times? Not to say that this documentary has no opinion — it’s strong advocacy.

The strength in The Fandom comes in context of past fighting about things that come out gently now. They’re natural roots here. In the very beginning it points out that furry fans are heavily LGBT. That developed during the AIDS crisis, and they faced internal member homophobia. But times changed. Elders in the movie are often cis white males, but it also features POC, female and trans members from a newer wave of fans. Publicity about the movie points out the all-LGBT crew, and the director, Ash, is reinventing a career after transitioning and feeling distanced from the industry.

Sex isn’t ignored and that brings up a funny thing. For a few seconds, a vintage 1990’s video lingers on Uncle Kage’s badge and a certain fursona name. It’s like a “dogwhistle” only furries will notice.

The Fandom is recommended to show your friends or family or have a furry movie party. It makes the history time-capsule-worthy. They got it right.

Like the article? These take hard work. For more free furry news, please follow on Twitter or support not-for-profit Dogpatch Press on PatreonWant to get involved? Share news on these subreddits: r/furrydiscuss for anything — or r/waginheaven for the best of the community. Or send guest writing here.

Categories: News

FWG Monthly Newsletter: June 2020

Furry Writers' Guild - Wed 1 Jul 2020 - 15:00

Hello there FWG members, it’s time for another monthly newsletter! We’ve got a good bit of news for you this month, so let’s hop right into it!

First we’ll be streaming the Cóyotl Awards Ceremony on July 8th at 8 PM CST! We know you’ve all been waiting, but we’ve finally managed to get all of our things together for our trophies and managed to get safe shipping set up. We’ll be streaming live from our Twitter account via Periscope, so keep an eye out there for the stream. 

Second, we would like to give a warm welcome to our newest guild officer: Moonraiser! They will be taking over as Markets Manager. If you know of a furry market that should be listed in our Furry Writers’ Market contact them and we’ll get it added.

Don’t forget we have a wonderful beta reading program taking place on our Discord. This month @KILL!Roy beta read the most stories! We had 15+ reads officially documented through the program this month and we hope next month we can have even more.

Last month was Pride Month so we featured several FWG members all across the LGBT+ community. We encourage you to check these out to not only learn more about your fellow guild members, but to learn a bit about how various identities can affect writing.

We would like to remind everyone once more about our Microfiction Monday initiative. Any writer, non-members included, that can write a Tweet sized story has the opportunity to have it featured on our Twitter! You can learn more about the program and how to submit here. We almost ran out of submissions this month, so any stories that get sent in will almost certainly be featured! Take this opportunity to try a writing challenge and get a shoutout.

Last month we accidentally missed a few titles that was released and wanted to fix that! Anyone publishers or writers, with books going out should email us at furwritersguild@gmail.com with any books that are coming out to help us not miss any titles. This includes any self published work! With this in mind, the books we missed include:

We also have some other new releases from this month! Be sure to check these out:

Part of our website update was making our Furry Writers’ Market better than ever before! You can find all of open markets for furry writing we can track down here: https://furrywritersguild.com/furry-writers-market/

Currently, these anthology markets are open:

Consider checking out our page for details and writing up a story for one of these awesome anthologies!

One last thing before I sign off for the month. We said it on Twitter but I’ll say it here once more: Black Lives Matter. The Furry Writers’ Guild stands in support of all of our Black members as well as any other members of marginalized groups within our ranks. We always want our members to feel safe and to do our best to uplift their voices. If there’s anything the guild could be doing better in this regard, please get in contact with me right away: it’s a top priority. Until next month, may your words flow like water.

– FWG President Linnea “LiteralGrill” Capps

Categories: News

Turtles Back In Action

In-Fur-Nation - Wed 1 Jul 2020 - 01:57

Seems as if we’re never far away from a new Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles project. We just found this article: “Deadline has learned that Nickelodeon is rebooting Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles for the big screen with Point Grey Pictures’ Seth Rogen, Evan Goldberg and James Weaver producing, and Jeff Rowe (Gravity Falls, Connected) directing. Brendan O’Brien (Neighbors: Sorority Rising, Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates) will write the screenplay. Paramount will be handling global distribution on the film.” This would be the first time since Imagi Pictures’ TMNT from 2007 that we’d have a fully CGI Ninja Turtles feature film as opposed to the recent CGI/live-action hybrids.

image c. 2020 Imagi Studios

Categories: News

FWG Pride Month Spotlight: Herr Wozzeck

Furry Writers' Guild - Tue 30 Jun 2020 - 09:00

Welcome to our final FWG spotlight for Pride Month! We’ve featured a lot of awesome guild members this month, and we’re certain this last interview won’t disappoint. Today we’ll sharing our interview with Herr Wozzeck who’s pronouns are he/him. Enough with our introductions however, let’s let him introduce himself!

 

FWG: Tell the guild and our readers a bit about yourself.

Herr: So my name is Herr Wozzeck, and despite the fact that I have a German pen name I’m actually fully-blooded Cuban, born in Miami and now trying to spice it up in Boston. I got my start in writing and snarking fanfiction, before I found furry through the Furry Basketball Association, and I eventually made the shift from fanfiction over to here. I’m also a musician and composer: I play with Trio Menagerie, write opera criticism on the side, and hope to add to the operatic repertory at some point (quite possibly with some furry-inflected opera, if things go my way!) And that, is in addition to my fictional writing!

FWG: What is your favorite work that you have written?

Herr: Oof, isn’t that the question of the century? I find myself coming back to my Agundio Atti-Morales stories that I wrote while still with the FBA: there are definitely things I would change about them, but I feel like it was the first time I actually found comfort in my own literary voice, in a strange way.

FWG: What do you think makes a good story?

Herr: I feel like most great stories really have to start with having good characters: as I’ve said sometimes in the past, you can get away with a surprising amount of implausibility if your story is populated with characters people are interested in, whether they’re repulsed or they relate to them.

FWG: You’re new to the guild right? How has your time with us been so far?

Herr: It’s insane, actually, and it’s provided some validation that I never knew I needed. As a self-taught writer (and someone who used to do fanfic snarks), the impostor syndrome can get very strong. The fact I’m in the guild at all just motivates me to go further than I have before, and it’s awesome to chat with a bunch of like-minded authors and feel like you’re good enough to be part of the big boys, y’know? I mean, Christ’s sake, Kyell Gold is right there!

FWG: What does Pride mean to you?

Herr: Honestly, a part of me is still figuring that out, considering how late in my life I’ve blossomed on this front, but at this moment in time Pride is very much a time of year where I find I can celebrate my gayness just a little more than usual, and for me it includes celebrating how I view my sexuality in more than just the “I like guys” sense. But it’s also a time where I think we need to look back and remember those that paved the way for the rest of us to feel comfortable in our own skins. And it’s also a month to galvanize, because for as much progress as we’ve made, we still have a long way to go!

FWG: You’re not only gay but also a part of the pup and leather communities, right? What is it that you enjoy about these communities?

Herr: Both helped me grow to accept myself in my sexual liberation. However, there are other things that I enjoy about them.

So first, I think I’ll go ahead and use the term “pet play” to refer to “puppy play” throughout the rest: in addition to puppies, some people also will do similar things with cats and even horses, and as my titleholder friend would say we don’t want to exclude anyone! But me, pet play is very much a way to step back and not worry so much about the complexities of the world. Whenever I get one of my pup hoods on (yes, I have two), there’s just something about the way you physically perceive the world that shifts how you interact with it: all sound is muffled inside those things, and you have to speak extra loud to be heard, and something about that forces me to take things more instinctively, more gesturally, to just go with the flow a little more. There’s something about that which is incredibly freeing, and it can induce your stress to melt like nobody’s business. (Note that this does not speak for everybody’s experience: you don’t need gear to be into pet play. This only reflects my experience.)

As for leather, my interest in leather is due to something deeper, far less primal. Men in leather exist in a strange oxymoron: they project a rugged, strong, sometimes violent image of masculinity, but perhaps because of the violence inherent in some of the fetishes related to leather they’re also often the most tender, understanding men on the planet. The best people in the leather community exude a masculinity that portrays caring, nurturing behaviors as a kind of strength, and it’s kept my interest alive because it has helped me rethink what masculinity should be.

FWG: There are leather and pup pride flags out there. What place do you think these kinks and communities have within the LGBT+ community at large? Are these things a part of your gay identity or just another facet of yourself as a gay person?

Herr: I think leather and pet play stand as facets of myself as a gay man, but it is an important facet to celebrate during Pride. One thing that I think is lost in the corporatization of Pride is that, in its origins, Pride never shied away from more open expressions of sexuality beyond the standard “I like the same sex” or “I am not the gender I was assigned at birth”: some would call this a reason people didn’t take us seriously, but considering how part of my journey was breaking past my own sexual repression I say it is an absolutely necessary part of Pride. Leather and pup pride flags are an extension of this, and in my eyes it is an extension worth celebrating.

At the same time, as well, it’s important not to claim leather and pet play as exclusively part of my gay identity: to do so would be to discount women in both, as well as to discount the experiences of my trans brothers and sisters in both communities. Leather and pet play communities have a very predominant gay male lean, but as my titleholder friend would put it, both are for everyone within the LGBTQ+ community, and it should be celebrated as such.

FWG: Was there a bit of a journey or story to you uncovering your identity? If so, would you be comfortable sharing with us? (If not it’s totally understandable!)

Herr: I actually already shared part of my journey in a semi-fictionalized form on my FurAffinity account, so sure, let’s fill in some blanks!

So growing up Cuban Catholic, I found myself having a lot of negative reinforcement thrown my way about the gayness from two angles: the angle of Catholicism, and the angle of how the family used to perceive it.

The first thing: something a lot of people don’t really get about Hispanic cultures is that Catholicism reigns very supreme in all of them, and in my particular case it should say something about how strong a vein it runs in the culture that even Fidel Castro couldn’t kill Cuban Catholicism despite his best efforts. Because of that, I was born into an environment where any kind of sexual expression outside of the norm is frowned upon and considered universally dirty and unsafe, even when it’s heterosexual sexual expression.

Within my family, the first exposure to queer cultures mostly came from the disapproving whispers and eye rolls, including those told to my face: I remember one time when my family and I went to see the touring production of The Producers when it came to Miami that mom pointed out the two men in the row in front of me and pointing them out being like “look at that”. Incidents like that peppered in there over a long period of time, and there was one particular incident when I was 16 that sticks in my mind forever.

These things really set me up for a rocky start for my journey: I was one of those “bi now, gay later” kids in my journey, and in hindsight a big part of the “bi now” was a side effect of the repression that comes with most Catholic upbringings. And that sexual repression was reflected in a lot of what I wrote: I won’t shy away from it, my fanfiction prior to when I finally grew comfortable with my sexuality broached some very messed up territory sexually, and while some of that can be chalked up to ‘dark and edgy’ I also think it was a symptom of how I looked at sex as being inherently bad since I kind of didn’t like my own relationship to sex and my sexuality.

It took until I was 23 and living in Cleveland, just after I’d first encountered the furries and met the man I eventually lost my virginity to. I won’t disclose his name here, but he was a rather older gentleman who was extraordinarily good to me. What I remember most about him, however, was the last time we met: when we were cuddling on my bed, he began talking about his love life. And when he did, part of me got the sense that a reason the relationship he was talking about failed was because he was very deeply entrenched in the closet in some ways: even today, I have no doubt he has never mentioned his trysts with men to anyone else in his life. And I remember asking myself ‘do I want to be like that the rest of my life’; that was the moment I sort of came to terms with myself, and resolved to come out of the closet. It ended up happening in Thanksgiving to my parents (technically before I was ready, but dad popped a question about it and the rest was history), and ever since I’ve started to learn how to be confident in myself as a gay man.

And that has been a slow process, but being part of furry fandom has definitely helped me learn how to express myself considering it is a space that doesn’t simply crush the conversation about sexuality the way Catholicism does. It helped really break me out of the sexually repressive mindset I was born into. What remained of my self-repression finally melted away after I encountered the Boston leather community when I did: I moved back in February of 2018, and encountered the bar party Fascination run by Michael Flowers, back when it was still in the basement of Jacques’ Cabaret. I’d never really had a group of in-person gay friends before, and the leather community provided exactly that. And then through that I met a puppy, got introduced to that circle, and the rest is history!

It hasn’t always been super easy afterwards, though: my family, while ultimately well-meaning, still kind of doesn’t completely get everything about how it is to be gay in that environment. I will also say, there is one thing that happened behind the scenes in November that really rattled me to my core and threatened to reverse all the fandom did to help me grow in that regard.

But on both of those things, there are also aspects that keep me going. I will say my family is a damned sight better about the gay thing now than they were in my teenage years! Part of it is that I’m not the only one in the family to fit under the queer spectrum (one of my cousins is a lesbian), but physical distance also doesn’t hurt that either. And as for the fandom, well, my support system in the fandom and the leather community has been so supportive that it overrode that incident significantly.

So now, I’m much more confident about my sexuality, and am proud to call myself a gay Latino furry. Still, as the old song goes, “don’t tell momma what you saw”…

FWG: How do you think being gay has inspired your stories?

Herr: A lot of times, I think of storytelling as being very therapeutic for me: Agundio Atti-Morales came when I was figuring out my relationship to God, family, and sexuality, my Colton and Darren stories are expressions of my joys and fears surrounding sexuality, Whip and Boot was very much a celebration of what I love about the leather community and what it did for my own identity…

…When you put it that way, I think it’s inspired quite a bit of my storytelling, really! And not in the least because of what protagonists I commonly write these days!

FWG: Do any of your stories feature leather or pup play?

Herr: My novel Whip and Boot is all about leather, and does include some of the kink involved with it! I haven’t written any fiction featuring pup play yet, and right now I don’t really have anything in the cards for that. I do have a chap book of poetry on the backburner about my friends in the Boston pet play scene, but I think I need to edit that a little more and try to add a couple more poems to it before I’m comfortable releasing it to the world. 

FWG: Do you feel like the issues that affect the outside world involving your identity affect your writing or publishing within the fandom or not?

Herr: My Agundio Atti-Morales stories were my therapy involving my identity as a gay Latino with a complicated relationship with his Catholicism, actually: the character and his family were conceived around the time I left Cleveland, and he ended up being the way I sorted out a lot of my feelings on sexuality, religion, and family. Outside of my sexuality, too, I have felt my writing affected by politics related to being a second-generation immigrant. One of my other FBA characters touched on this aspect of myself in the wake of Donald Trump’s election and what it would mean from an immigrant perspective.

FWG: Do you have favorite queer authors and has their literature affected your writing in the fandom?

Herr: I’m going to go with two answers, because I actually have very different answers to this.

For queer writers in general, I would say I’ve always loved the poetry of Federico García Lorca, because how do you have that kind of relationship with Salvador Dali and not find yourself on the queer spectrum somehow? His use of poetic image has been a pretty big influence on my poetry, but I haven’t graced the fandom with that yet so I can’t say it influenced my writing within it. My puppy chapbook idea that might fix that, though…

For queer writers specifically in the fandom, I have to go with Kyell Gold. It may sound like a standard answer, but he’s one of the most venerated furry authors working now for a reason! While I can’t say it’s affected my fiction in the fandom, I will say that one of my current backburner projects is an operatic adaptation of his novel Green Fairy, and it is one that I am hopeful I will have in a state to be workshopped by the end of the year!

FWG: If you could convince everyone to read a single book, what would it be?

Herr: This is going to stray so far away from queer writing that some folks will probably balk at it, but I would highly, highly recommend anyone interested in writing to pick up the Lexicon of Musical Invective, by Nicholas Slonimsky. It’s a collection of reviews of all the major composers, primarily the scathing reviews: if you need a dose of reality on how harsh some critics can be even to the greats, well, it’s a great book to have on your shelf! Also, old-timey critics have a gift with words that’s just indelible to witness.

FWG: Any last words for our readers and guild members?

Herr: Just wanted to take this moment to give a quick shout-out to queer opera, which is finding a foothold in the operatic repertory as of late. With operas like As One and Fellow Travellers finding a place in the modern operatic repertory, as well as companies commissioning operas like Wuorinen’s Brokeback Mountain and the Stonewall opera that premiered in last year’s New York City Opera season, it’s never a bad time to start looking into the world of how queer storytelling has started to permeate one of the oldest forms of theater in the world!

We would like to once again thank Herr Wozzeck for this fantastic interview! He can be found on FurAffinity, SoFurry, and Twitter @HerrWozzeck. You can also support him and his writing and musical works on Patreon. For more on his musical pursuits follow @TrioMenagerie on Twitter, or visit their Facebook page at Trio Menagerie. His newest book Whip and Boot from Bound Tales is currently available here.

We hope you enjoyed this spotlight as well as all of our other spotlights for Pride Month! We hope to keep featuring our members in the future. If you have ideas for a member spotlight, please contact our guild president Linnea “LiteralGrill” Capps. Until next time, may your words flow like water.

 

Categories: News

Careful — They’re Organized

In-Fur-Nation - Sun 28 Jun 2020 - 01:55

Animation World Network let us know that a sequel to the hit animated film Chicken Run is finally in the works. (Did you know that Chicken Run was the highest-grossing stop-motion animated movie ever?) “The unnamed sequel is set to enter full production in 2021 with Sam Fell (Flushed Away, ParaNorman) at the helm. Aardman co-founder and creative director Peter Lord, long-time Aardman producer Carla Shelley (Shaun the Sheep Movie, The Pirates! Band of Misfits) and Karey Kirkpatrick (Smallfoot) are returning as executive producers; Steve Pegram (Arthur Christmas) is producing. The script is being written by Kirkpatrick, John O’ Farrell and Rachel Tunnard. Nick Park, the Oscar-winning creator of Wallace and Gromit and Shaun the Sheep, will consult on the film… The sequel will revisit the world of Ginger, who has finally found her dream – a peaceful island sanctuary for the whole flock, far from the dangers of the human world. When she and Rocky hatch a little girl named Molly, Ginger’s happy ending seems complete. But back on the mainland the whole of chicken-kind faces a new and terrible threat. For Ginger and her team, even if it means putting their own hard-won freedom at risk – this time, they’re breaking in!” Stay tooned for more information on a release date as we get it.

image c. 2020 Aardman Animation

Categories: News

Looney Tunes gets a reboot (Part 3): How an iconic cartoon forged a wacky and lovable side of the furry fandom — By Rocky Coyote

Dogpatch Press - Tue 23 Jun 2020 - 10:00

Meet “Toon Furs” in Part 3: Charlie Tinn, Zen Fetcher, and Toothpick the Woodpecker. This story features the side of fandom where you can watch NEW cartoons with classic animal characters, and even turn into one! HBO Max has 80 eleven-minute episodes of fresh-but-faithful animation from WarnerMedia. Furries discuss their influence in this 3-part story by Rocky Coyote. (Rocky previously covered fandom in America’s biggest city on his tag here.)

Charlie Tinn is a monochromatic mustachioed mutt, self-proclaimed hat enthusiast and classic cartoon lover. He discusses how the toon side of the furry fandom drew him into it.

I grew up watching them a lot as a kid, they were on basic satellite TV during certain hours of the day usually in the middle of the day or late at night. The theme song was always memorable, you can always tell what kind of cartoon is about to play even if most of the ones I watched were Tweety and Sylvester. Anytime it was a heavy emphasis on Bugs and Daffy it was a delight.

I enjoyed the unique ways of slapstick and visual humor like with Wile E. Coyote and his signs along with the word trickery that Bugs would do to Daffy, just so Elmer would shoot him in the face. Duck Amuck is a really good episode, I loved how they broke the fourth wall and they did a lot of elements like that.

I wasn’t really fully interested in the fandom until I discovered there was a toon side to it. Definitely made me interact with more people and got more friends from it and all while getting to enjoy just the wacky and zaniness that is Looney Tunes.

Honestly so far it’s a perfect successor from what I can see from the two episodes. I was able to watch the Porky and Daffy cement short, and Bugs running away from Elmer Fudd. They seem like great honorary successors; they got the right slapstick comedy, and the pacing and timing of the gags are all great from what I’ve seen.

Hate being home? Why not go out for a ride!

Art by @illimearu pic.twitter.com/NFaN8N2ttt

— Gay-Scale Toon ????️‍???? (@AWittyGentleman) May 15, 2020

Zen Fetcher is a toon artist, and he describes the appeal of the characters themselves in Looney Tunes.

Admittedly, I didn’t start watching Looney Tunes until I was in my teens. Before then, I ended up watching a lot of Animaniacs, Tom and Jerry, and Tiny Toons Adventures. Being a fan of Tiny Toons, I wanted to know more about Looney Tunes and quickly became hooked.

While Tiny Toons or Animaniacs probably had more of an impact on my love of cartoons, Looney Tunes was probably my first exposure to cartoons. I was quickly drawn in by the character’s designs, the chaotic nature of its humor, and how expressive each character was. If I’m honest though, the characters alone were enough to keep me hooked. I remember watching Baby Looney Tunes simply because Sylvester was my favorite out of all the Looney Tunes.

As mentioned before, I loved how expressive cartoons were and their designs. When it came to learning how to draw and designing my own characters, I wanted to recreate that aesthetic. That’s why my characters have such large, expressive eyes, three digit hands and paws, and don’t wear pants or shoes unless it’s for comedic purposes. As for how it influenced my place in the fandom, I would seek out other artists and furs with an affinity for cartoons to both learn more (and gush) about cartoons and improve my own style.

I’m really happy to see that Looney Tunes is getting a reboot. Even if it doesn’t live up to my nostalgia’s high expectations or isn’t that good, I love the thought that it could be what introduces someone else to cartoons. Many would argue that Baby Looney Tunes was probably one of the worst Looney Tunes shows, but it still holds a warm place in my heart simply because I loved cartoons. I wouldn’t want to rob that feeling from anyone.

Toothpick the Woodpecker is an artist who specializes in the 90’s toon aesthetic. He talks about growing up with shows directly inspired by Looney Tunes.

Truthfully, I was more of a Tiny Toons and Animaniacs kid growing up, but I always enjoyed Looney Tunes on the rare occasion I was able to catch it anywhere. Even as a kid in the 90’s, I found Looney Tunes to be timeless, unware the shorts were made several decades before I was even an egg. I was a child during the wave of wacky animal cartoons after Who Framed Roger Rabbit incited the entire animation industry to revive that genre. Looking back, I can tell there was a huge push to bring that Looney Tunes nostalgia back.

I’d say the aspect of the show I enjoy the most is how much of a “safe zone” it is for slapstick, no matter how painful the slapstick would be in real life. Not only are these characters brimming with personality, they’re indestructible! You could flatten them with a steamroller and they wouldn’t be any worse for wear in the next shot. There’s something about the way these characters can be exceedingly cruel to each other and never be in any real pain that appeals to me, especially when it’s treated as comedy.

Let me level with you on something; the furry fandom needs more toon OC’s (original characters). There’s so much potential for character interaction, and you can explore themes you simply can’t with a standard furry OC. It’s not very often that potential is tapped into, but when it is, it’s always very refreshing. If you have a toon OC, you can inflate them like a balloon, flatten them with various heavy objects, or stretch ‘em like a rubber band! Finding other toon furs who appreciate that wacky toon aesthetic, and knowing they feel the same way I do, makes me feel like I do have a place in the fandom.

From what little I’ve seen so far, I think it’s going to serve as a further reminder that toons have a place to thrive in today’s world, and I really look forward to seeing how the reboot will pan out. Like a frying pan. To the face.

Meet ten Toon Furs in Parts 1-3 of Rocky Coyote’s story.

Looney Tunes Cartoons is among the countless shows, movies and features available for HBO Max subscribers at $14.99 per month. A handful of trailers and episodes, however, can be viewed by anyone on WB Kids’ Youtube channel.

Like the article? These take hard work. For more free furry news, please follow on Twitter or support not-for-profit Dogpatch Press on PatreonWant to get involved? Share news on these subreddits: r/furrydiscuss for anything — or r/waginheaven for the best of the community. Or send guest writing here.

Categories: News

Pride Month Spotlight: Madison “Makyo” Scott-Clary

Furry Writers' Guild - Tue 23 Jun 2020 - 09:00

Welcome to another Furry Writers’ Guild spotlight for Pride Month! We’ve been so excited to share the viewpoints and stories of several of our guild members this month. Today we have an interview Madison “Makyo” Scott-Clary! Her pronouns are she/her. She is a transgender author, poet, programmer, and the editor-in-chief of Hybrid Ink. But why say more when she can tell you about herself? Let’s get right to the interview!

FWG: Tell the guild and our readers a bit about yourself.

Madison: I’m an author and editor living in the Pacific Northwest with my cat, my two dogs, and my husband who is also a dog. While I majored in music composition and work as a software engineer, I’ve been writing seriously for more than a decade. A lot of my work focuses specifically on queer folks, and often on exploring their lives in normal, comfortable situations – that is, genderqueer folks where their identity doesn’t define them, though it may influence the ways in which they interact with the world and vice versa. I also have a soft spot for metafurry works, where furries qua furries, rather than anthropomorphic characters, are at the heart of the story, as is perhaps obvious from my interaction with [adjective][species] in the past.

A lot of my writing is also defined by my identity as an ace trans woman and a polyamorous individual, and this crops up quite a bit in my writing. I can’t stop talking about it, really.

FWG: What is your favorite work that you have written?

Madison: Oh gosh, hmm. I think in terms of non-fiction, I wrote wrote a semiautobiographical work that took the form of a long, wandering website and book. In terms of fiction, while I’m fond of most of the pieces in the book, the story “Disappearance” in my collection Restless Town is probably my favorite, though I’ll be damned if I could tell you why. In terms of poetry, I wrote a cinquain ode called Growth that I’m very proud of.

FWG: What do you think makes a good story?

Madison: A good story should be emotionally impactful, have a consistent voice (or a well-reasoned and consistent change in voice throughout), and the characters should change throughout.

  • Emotionally impactful — I don’t necessarily mean that every story should leave me crying, but that a story is best when it inspires an emotional reaction in me, something that inspires empathy. To rip off Winthrop, the characters and I should “rejoice together, mourn together, labor and suffer together”.
  • Consistent voice — One of the things that can turn me away from a work — novels especially — is a widely varying voice that leaves me liking some parts more than others, because it reduces cohesion. Voice need not be static, but if it is not, it should have a reason for its change. A good example of consistent tone is Frank Herbert’s Dune, which sets its tone immediately and sticks with it throughout. A good example of a well-used change in voice in a book is Mark Z. Danielewski’s House of Leaves, which follow’s one character’s struggle with sanity through their prose and follows another character’s growing obsession through unique typography.
  • Character growth — One thing that drives me bonkers about 90s/00s rom-coms (aside from the fact that 90% of them would be non-issues if the characters just talked with one another) is that the characters never grow or change. It’s usually the world changing such that they can suddenly wind up together. At most, the deuteragonists will change, and even then, it’s usually to disappear. A good counterexample would be Kevin Frane’s The Seventh Chakra in which both Arkady and Il-Hyeong both have well defined character arcs that leave them vastly different people than when they started.

FWG: How long have you been in the guild, and what changes have you seen with regards to how writing is handled since joining?

Madison: Oh gosh, since…2014? 2015? Hard to say! One of the big changes that I’ve seen within the guild as time has gone by is that it has gotten a lot more active along the writing front. When I joined, there was discussion about writing occasionally, and the coffeehouse chats were certainly a thing, but in a lot of senses, it felt more like a social gathering of like-minded folks than a guild. There’s no issue with that, to be sure, but I’m glad to see it heading in a direction more focused on craft and the growth of the individual members now.

FWG: You’re not only transgender and ace but also polyamorous! What kind of poly relationship do you find yourself in and what do you enjoy about polyamory?

Madison: As a loose believer in many of the tenets of relationship anarchy, my relationship structure is complicated and at times nebulous. I’m married, have a few partners, a datefriend, a power-dynamic influenced relationship, and several folks with whom I share a mutual fondness without necessarily being in a well-defined relationship. As the polycule has grown (we shall soon overtake Wyoming in terms of population, thanks to the Greater Seattle Postfurry Polycule), I have found myself more and more fascinated with various relationship structures and their rammifications. Probably the best thing about it is the feeling of compersion, that opposite of jealousy that goes along with seeing someone you love happy and complete in their life, even if it’s not necesarily with yourself. Just makes my little heart overflow.

FWG: What does Pride mean to you?

Madison: Pride goes beyond simply the opposite of shame, vanity, or celebration, but it is thoroughly enmeshed with a sense of community and with responsibility. When I was coming out to myself as trans, it was a halting and occasionally isolating process, and it wasn’t until I started interacting with more trans friends that I started to blossom. This is part of a psychological process called “mirroring”, when you see in others some aspect of yourself.

The moment at which I started to feel pride in my identity was the moment my partner somewhat jokingly referred to me as a “trans psychopomp” (someone who guides souls to their destination, such as Charon across the river Styx), and I realized that, at some point without me noticing, I became someone whom others would look to and see some aspects of themselves in. It came with a sense of weighty responsibility, but one that I was, yes, proud to take up.

FWG: Was there a bit of a journey or story to you uncovering your identity? If so, would you be comfortable sharing with us?

Madison: I mentioned character development and growth when it comes to what makes a good story, and I think that that also applies to our lives outside of fiction. My story of self-identification has its own arc, its own pitfalls and high points, and its own character development, even for those who were perhaps at one point seen as antagonists. At points, the act of transition was deliberate and considered to an almost fractal level of detail (my journey to starting HRT being a good example), while at times it was taken with a lightness of heart that seems almost maddening in retrospect. My journey to gender affirmation surgery began with a friend mentioning that they had surgery, me saying “holy shit, you can just do that?” and then calling up an office and scheduling a consult within a week. As a bit of self-promotion, I wrote extensively on the process in my most recent interactive-project-slash-book, ally, which is perhaps one of the things I have made of which I am most proud. I hope you’ll consider checking it out!

FWG: How do you think being transgender and polyamorous has inspired or affected your stories? Have you written transgender or polyamorous characters into your works?

Madison: I have come out probably five or six times throughout my life — gay, genderqueer, trans, polyam, ace, etc. — to the point where I’m all but convinced that life is the process of continually growing and coming out. This leads to an awful lot of dealing with the inherent coarseness of identity. After all, identity is psychopathological: we only feel identity when it is something that we struggle with (or, as mentioned above, something we see others struggling with.

Because of this, most if not all of my writing focuses on identity. I jokingly describe Restless Town as “sad queer furries in Idaho”, because just about every character in those stories is dealing with identity, many of them queer identities. Often this is taken as a given, since I really like stories in which minority identities are treated as No Big Deal™, but it always plays some role. I’ve been told I write too much about gender, and been accused of writing parables, and you know what? I’m okay with that. It’s what’s important to me, and I think that it’s important to others as well.

FWG: You run and operate Hybrid Ink, do you think your identity has inspired what you choose to publish? If so, how so?

Madison: Hybrid Ink, as a publishing house, is explicitly focused on LGBTQIA+ stories. It’s in our tagline, in our mission statement, and in everything we focus on, so, not to be glib, but yes, and that’s very much the point!

FWG: Do you feel like the issues that affect the outside world involving your identity affect your writing or publishing within the fandom or not?

Madison: I struggled to answer this at first, as I would like to say that I am a flexible enough writer to be able to separate myself enough from my work, such that I can write any story. I really don’t think that’s totally true, though. As I’ve worked through my identity, and as I have seen it challenged politically and socially over the years, my writing has shifted drastically to this aforementioned need to show it normalized. There have been times when I have been tempted to take out my frustrations on my characters and write all sorts of horrible situations of them dealing with transphobia or the like, but every time I start a story like that, I immediately realize that that’s just not what I need. What I need is a bit of proof, however fictional, that happy queer people exist, and that this is okay.

FWG: Do you have favorite queer authors and has their literature affected your writing in the fandom?

Madison: Hmm! A few, I think, though with some of them, I don’t know their identities, but they have still written formative works. Jen Durbent, who wrote Hybrid Ink’s first publication, My Dinner With Andrea, is a pretty big inspiration for me. Ditto Blue Neufstifter/Azure Husky, whose microfiction works have often left me in awe. In terms of works, Max Gladwell and Amal El-Mohtar’s This Is How You Lose The Time War has had a huge influence on both my queer-writing-ness and personal style, and Hanne Blank’s Straight: The Surprisingly Short History of Heterosexuality has very much influenced my non-fiction within this realm.

FWG: If you could convince everyone to read a single book, what would it be?

Madison: Aaargh, this is such a hard question! It probably changes by the month! Right now, I think it would be the aforementioned This Is How You Lose The Time War. That book wrecked me over and over again. Tore me up, spit me out, left me more whole than when I started. It’s scifi, but somehow manages to be so without being particularly “hard” or “soft”. It’s romance without being saccharine. The voice and style is just heartbreaking.

You’ll have to forgive me a pair of honorable mentions, but I hope you’ll understand the reason. I have been very much pushing that writers learn about their craft from media other than just the novel and the short story. Please, please, fellow writers, give graphic novels a go if nothing else. Both Nate Powell’s Swallow Me Whole and Craig Thomson’s Habibi similarly wrecked in in the best possible way.

FWG: Any last words for our readers and guild members?

Madison: You’re more important than you realize! I quoted John Winthrop earlier, and his words are well worth keeping in mind: “We must delight in each other, make each others’ conditions our own; rejoice together, mourn together, labor and suffer together — always having before our eyes our commission and community in the work, our community as members of the same body.” Keep up the good work, and keep on supporting each other!

Also: back up your work.

We would like to thank Madison once more for participating in this interview! You can keep up with Madison’s writing on her writing twitter @makyo_writes and her Mastodon. You can also support her on Patreon or Subscribestar. Finally, you can find her writing at makyo.ink and you can find Hybrid at hybrid.ink.

We hope you all enjoyed reading, be sure to stay tuned for our final Pride Month spotlight next week!

 

 

 

Categories: News

Looney Tunes gets a reboot (Part 2): How an iconic cartoon forged a wacky and lovable side of the furry fandom — By Rocky Coyote

Dogpatch Press - Mon 22 Jun 2020 - 10:00

Meet “Toon Furs” in Part 2: Billy the Collie, Clawy the Cat, Chaos Coyote, and Dunhall the Dingo. This story features the side of fandom where you can watch NEW cartoons with classic animal characters, and even turn into one! HBO Max has 80 eleven-minute episodes of fresh-but-faithful animation from WarnerMedia. Furries discuss their influence in this 3-part story by Rocky Coyote. (Rocky previously covered fandom in America’s biggest city on his tag here.)

Billy the Collie is an artist who grew up watching Looney Tunes with his younger brothers. He talks about the flexibility the toon world gives him when depicting his characters in various scenarios.

I do have strong nostagic feelings towards Looney Tunes, and as a result the show has played a significant part in developing my toon persona and toon art as a whole.

Looney Tunes is definitely the king when it comes to executing that classic ‘toon gag.’ The show wasn’t entertaining because it had silly slapstick, it was entertaining because it set-up a comical scene with wit and personality that concluded with silly and creative slapstick. That’s what I enjoyed about the show, and is a big reason why I do enjoy cartoon stuff to this day.

Considering my fursona is a toon border collie, I’d say that it’s had a pretty big influence on me! The creativity that toon-stuff lends me in playing around with the toon physics, effects and logic is highly entertaining as an artist. The toon concepts pioneered by shows like Looney Tunes has also been a fantastic way for me to connect with other furries in the community, as the majority of furries are familiar with a lot of these ideas and concepts so it’s been fun engaging with them on this innocent but silly level.

Despite very clearly being computer-drawn, I do appreciate that the reboot keeps the original character designs rather than going down the current animation trend of using a “Cal-Art” inspired art-style. I do worry that the show will overly-focus on slapstick and cheap throwaway jokes, rather that the wit and personality which made the silly slapstick far more entertaining. But, I think the show is worthy of a chance to prove itself.

Clawy the Cat is a toon artist, and she describes how Looney Tunes was a main fixture on television growing up.

In my younger years, I would watch Looney Tunes pretty much daily. As I grew older I would catch them as I’d find them on TV. Now I just watch them on the Boomerang app when I find the time to.

Looney Tunes had probably the biggest influence on my love of cartoons with Tom and Jerry coming in second. The Wile E. Coyote shorts were my favorite, followed by the Sylvester shorts. Clawy as well some of my other characters are slapstick centered toons. The toon subgroup has felt like its own community.

I honestly enjoy the new reboot. It feels like a present day revamp of the classics as well as the short revival of the 90s.

Chaos Coyote’s character is based off the 90’s cartoon Tiny Toon Adventures, which regularly features the original Looney Tunes characters. He talks about these shows forming an interest for writing toony stories.

I watched Looney Tunes an awful lot growing up. Like, a lot a lot. It was part of my Saturday morning rotation. I’d be up around 6 a.m. just to catch Bugs Bunny and his friends, dropping anvils on each other.

My fursona is based off of a story I wrote based on Calamity Coyote being tasked with keeping an eye on his younger brother (Chaos) while their mother is out shopping in the city. A prototype cartoon script I wrote based off of the Animaniacs sketches “Buttons and Mindy.” Realizing I could create new sketches, and opening new branches for storylines made me want to write even more.

I am exceedingly influenced by Looney Tunes. When I was much younger, animation was my all-time favorite form of media to ingest. I had wanted to become a cartoonist in the vein of Chuck Jones but I didn’t want to draw, I wanted to write them. Short little silly snippets of characters interacting with each other. Cartoons gave to me a sense of visual sight gags, and subtle puns. But mostly, cartoons gave to me a sense of slapstick humor you can’t find anywhere else. Three Stooges and Charlie Chapman are all well and good, but nobody can do slapstick like cartoons can. Specifically, for me, the best came in the form of Wile E. Coyote and the Road Runner.

I found the new Looney Tunes show hilarious. I hope they bring in a clever mix of slapstick and sharp writing to the table. I’m looking forward to it!

Dunhall the Dingo (aka Prince Toon) is an artist that started watching Looney Tunes at a later age. Nevertheless, the cartoons he enjoyed had an influence on the characters he created.

This might surprise you, but I didn’t watch Looney Tunes all that much as a little kid. I LOVED Tom and Jerry though. I really started getting into Looney Tunes when I was around 13. Still, Looney Tunes played a huge role in shaping my love for cartoons! I was very lonely at the time, so I was looking for other things to watch. Taz-Mania caught my eye, and it made me feel so much better. After that, I watched TONS of Looney Tune stuff. Unsurprisingly, my favorite aspect are the characters, they just feel like real people to me.

My character, Dunhall the Dingo In terms of design was inspired by Stimpy the Cat, but I think Looney Tunes and Taz-Mania overall helped form who he was character wise. As for the new reboot, I’m beyond excited!

Meet ten Toon Furs in Parts 1-3 of Rocky Coyote’s story.

Looney Tunes Cartoons is among the countless shows, movies and features available for HBO Max subscribers at $14.99 per month. A handful of trailers and episodes, however, can be viewed by anyone on WB Kids’ Youtube channel.

Like the article? These take hard work. For more free furry news, please follow on Twitter or support not-for-profit Dogpatch Press on PatreonWant to get involved? Share news on these subreddits: r/furrydiscuss for anything — or r/waginheaven for the best of the community. Or send guest writing here.

Categories: News

Creatures of Science — Get One Today!

In-Fur-Nation - Mon 22 Jun 2020 - 00:18

GenPet is a new full-color science fiction adventure graphic novel, written by Damian and illustrated by Alex Fuentes. “In the year 2036, advances in genetic engineering have made it possible to create personalized pets genetically designed and linked to their owners. These ‘Gen Pets’ are still a toy for the elite, including young Nat Kanan’s dad, who is the new owner of the New York Knicks. But he might have another reason to buy little Nat such an extravagant pet: Protection. It soon becomes clear that Gen Pet ‘Niko’ was designed to be Nat’s ultimate bodyguard, with talents that attract the attention of the local mafia boss who has other ideas about how to put those skills to use…” It’s available now from Magnetic Press. Take a look at the preview over at Pop Cult HQ.

image c. 2020 Magnetic Press

Categories: News

Looney Tunes gets a reboot (Part 1): How an iconic cartoon forged a wacky and lovable side of the furry fandom — By Rocky Coyote

Dogpatch Press - Fri 19 Jun 2020 - 10:00

Meet “Toon Furs” in Part 1: Duino Duck, RomeTwin, and James the Duck. This story features the side of fandom where you can watch NEW cartoons with classic animal characters, and even turn into one! HBO Max has 80 eleven-minute episodes of fresh-but-faithful animation from WarnerMedia. Furries discuss their influence in this 3-part story by Rocky Coyote. (Rocky previously covered fandom in America’s biggest city on his tag here.)

Check it out here.

Looney Tunes gets a reboot: How an iconic cartoon forged a wacky and lovable side of the furry fandom.

Bugs Bunny and the rest of the Looney Tunes gang found a new home on May 27 as WarnerMedia launches its newest streaming service HBO Max.

Looney Tunes Cartoons is the latest show to marquee the iconic characters that have entertained viewers around the globe for over 80 years. Unlike recent reboots such as The Looney Tunes Show (2011) and Wabbit (2016), HBO’s series will closely resemble the format and art style of the original shorts crafted by the likes of Tex Avery, Bob Clampett, Chuck Jones, Friz Freleng and Robert McKimson.

Naturally, the show’s wacky yet lovable characters have had an influence on the furry fandom, but this goes beyond the cartoon’s anthropomorphic nature. Shows like Looney Tunes paved the way for a subculture within the subculture, where furries create their own characters in the ‘toon mold.’ This includes big eyes and exaggerated body proportions, personalities that range from goofy to outright insane, and a penchant for slapstick comedy aided by an endless supply of mallets, dynamite and anvils.

To get a better idea of Looney Tunes’ impact on the furry fandom, Dogpatch Press reached out to a number of self-identified toon furs and let them describe how the series influenced their love of cartoons and helped them find a place within the fandom.

Think about it. There are ZERO downsides to being a toon.

-full of energy
-powered by laughter
-can play ANY instrument
-cute as a button

“But Duino, what about all the bad stuff that hap-“

Bud, if you don’t think having a piano dropped on you would be KINDA fun, you’re wrong.

— Duino D. Duck (@MainMandarin) May 13, 2020

Duino Duck is a writer for the Plotsburg Press and a slapstick aficionado. The self-described cartoon antagonist recalls how Looney Tunes forged his passion for all things animated.

Cartoon Network used to air an hour of Looney Tunes from noon to 1 p.m., and I’d watch them every time I was home sick. All I did on those days was watch TV, and Looney Tunes was a welcome reprieve from the slow-paced Nick Jr. and Playground Disney kids’ shows. I watched them and Tom and Jerry a bunch on the weekends, too. A lot of it blurs together, so I don’t have a thorough knowledge of the library of shorts. But I always remember feeling a wave of satisfaction wash over me as the first orchestral swell hit come noontime.

I loved cartoons growing up, but was raised in a strict and serious household. I put a lot of pressure on myself to be academically successful, so cartoons with this antithetical escape- nonsense, zaniness; freedom, in a way. I wanted to watch them, make them, BE them. It felt like making up for lost time.

There was also a level of intelligence that went into the shorts. I’m not going to call them educated entertainment, but there’s an incredible level of finesse and style involved in pulling that medium off. Making characters who you like, but don’t mind seeing blown up in an abandoned mine shaft. Witty one-liners that perfectly contextualize why this person is getting knocked on the head repeatedly. Mindful violence.

Soup to nuts, I’m a toon. I walk funny, I talk funny, I can’t stop talking about dropping bowling balls on my friends. I fell in love with larger than life comic characters, and I want to be one myself. I’ve been yelling about toons for years now, and most people recognize me as “that slapstick bird” which I take as high praise.

(For the new reboot) cautious optimism feels like the best way to put it! I was apprehensive upon the announcement, but the clips I’ve seen thus far have been entertaining in their own right, and it certainly lets me know there will be some real treats in store. I’m very skeptical of reboots since… well, we all know how many of them go. But there’s clearly a lot of care, talent, and passion thrown into these, and it’s looking like it’ll pay off!

Gwen “RomeTwin” Romer, creator of the “Paper and Plastic” comics, talks about the show’s wit and how the character design influenced her art style.

Though I was born in 1996, I watched Looney Toons as often as it was put in front of me; which was a lot as a kid. My grandparents recorded the shorts on VHS, and my parents were keen on having me watch classic cartoons like Popeye, Under-Dog, Tom & Jerry, etc.

The show was very particular in that while Tom & Jerry also used slapstick humor, Looney Tunes was very witty in its dialogue and visual gags that helped shape an idea of what made cartoons funny for me. Even as a kid I appreciated how clever it was and it never felt patronizing. I feel that the shows I grew up on (though I hold them close to my heart) needed to be loud for the sake of holding my attention, and Looney Tunes never needed to do that.

The show had no influence for my fursona personally. However, Wile E. Coyote and characters inspired by him have had an influence on how I draw my canines! That and Pepe Le Pew. They had the PERFECT snouts.

This is much more faithful than any Looney Tunes project I’ve seen in a long time. I was a kid when Lunatics Unleashed was on the air and even then I didn’t really get it. The Looney Tunes Show on Cartoon Network was fun, but it was trying to be its own thing; whereas this new show attempts to be faithful to a T and I’ve loved what I’ve seen of it so far.

James the Duck discusses how the show developed his affinity for toony mallards.

I watched it quite a bit growing up. I didn’t really get into them until I was around 8, when they had the Looney Tunes New Year’s Day Marathon on New Year’s 2010. Being a child of the 2000’s, you couldn’t really see Looney Tunes unless you were home from school for some reason, or it was summer vacation. During the summer, I’d always watch Tom and Jerry at 1:00, and then Looney Tunes at 2:00 on Cartoon Network.

Looney Tunes did have an influence on my love for cartoons. Personally, I’m more of a Fleischer/Famous Studios type of guy, but Warner Brothers is a close second. My favorite era is from 1935 to 1948. I love the music, and the fluid, detailed animation, as well as the somewhat “adult” humor. Back then, cartoons were made for adults as well as kids, and it really shows.

My favorites are The Daffy Duckaroo (1942), Nasty Quacks (1945), and Mexican Joyride (1947).

Daffy Duck was my “gateway drug” to my love for birds, especially toon birds. I love the bills and webbed feet. I’ve always secretly wanted to be one and mess around in a surreal universe. When I decided to join the furry fandom, I knew what I wanted to be.

I honestly don’t know much about the new version, but it looks great! I especially love how they seem to have reverted Daffy to his 1940’s “Screwball” personality. I never liked the post-1951 Daffy. They made him so unlikable then, and it hurts to see how that’s the Daffy that everyone knows now. So it’ll be great to see more love for his funny and likeable screwball incarnation! The animation also looks really good. I almost can’t tell it from the 1940s cartoons!

Meet ten Toon Furs in Parts 1-3 of Rocky Coyote’s story.

Looney Tunes Cartoons is among the countless shows, movies and features available for HBO Max subscribers at $14.99 per month. A handful of trailers and episodes, however, can be viewed by anyone on WB Kids’ Youtube channel.

Like the article? These take hard work. For more free furry news, please follow on Twitter or support not-for-profit Dogpatch Press on PatreonWant to get involved? Share news on these subreddits: r/furrydiscuss for anything — or r/waginheaven for the best of the community. Or send guest writing here.

Categories: News

Capital City Fur Con’s Nitro-powered crash and burn

Dogpatch Press - Thu 18 Jun 2020 - 10:40

CCFC on Wikifur

Contact-starved furries are having a bad year. Only a few conventions opened before COVID-19 made so many cancel and cut off the hug supply. (Quick, send emergency plushies before the furries go rabid for hugging anything that moves! Or set them loose in riot zones and tell them the cops need hugs.)

Capital City Fur Con was among the few that happened successfully, and it was a first-year con… so months later, it’s extra noticeable to see it blow up with a mushroom cloud of absurd drama. At least it makes a show. It also makes a lesson about a fandom full of DIY power. Uncritical nerdy love is good for starting your own art, stories, or even a sexy furry news site — but not just any dummy should start a con.

The dummy of this story is CCFC’s (ex-) chair, Nitro. He may now be hiding out in a luxury yiff bunker, with hopes to be forgotten in the furor about a pandemic/recession/uprising, because he allegedly took thousands of dollars for charity but failed to give it to them. That’s illegal.

I try not to go too deep into the drama of cons. It has to be egregious, and even some with clowns on staff have great volunteers who strive to make others happy. Even when cons don’t go right, they still make happy experiences. (Spoiler: which aren’t included here.)

Of course it’s the law that every con has to have weird stuff, and it’s hard to get the truth about it from all sides, like learning about orgies in private rooms and which ones are really worth getting into. (For example, the failure of Rainfurrest has a popular video from Internet Historian, but we might not verify all the bonkers stuff in it unless the infamous Diaper Guy was an undercover cop with a wire hidden in there.)

You can still watch this helpful summary of the controversy, then CCFC staffer Shadow the Wolf’s recounting of “gross financial mismanagement” by Nitro.

From Shadow the Wolf’s video.

See, it’s special to get inside info about how things went wrong. And there’s more than the outstanding financial stuff. It’s a lot to cover so I’ll just tell a few lowlights from memory. (Imagine you’re hearing from a sincere furry doing their best after a couple of marijuanas.)

  • Before the con, I was tipped about controversy with a potential alt-right security staffer who you might not want to trust with securing you or your info.
  • Controversy boiled over when the con denounced staff of another con for pointing this out, with an official letter. (When do cons bicker in public?)
  • That furry was seen visiting the White House in a used murrsuit. (Look, no shaming, I’d deploy the SPH to disrespect Cheeto Mussolini and Make America Great, but being on his team? I’m not that dirty.)

Hey wanna laugh? #furries #fursuit #murrsuit #politics #MAGA2020 #MAGA #Murrsuit4Trump #keepingitclassy pic.twitter.com/YiwkySi8iI

— Dogpatch Press (@DogpatchPress) June 7, 2020

  • “Popufurs” were spammed to death about being Guests of Honor, until CCFC had 2.7 GOH’s per attendee. (OK, actually 7 for a few hundred attendees.)
  • Some weren’t actually announced, and pricey room compensation wasn’t paid (to staff and maybe GOH’s.)
  • On the first day of the con AN AVALANCHE OF SHIT got unleashed…
  • Furries risked getting shot? That was the fear when a “rich people inauguration ceremony” happened in the hotel, with politicians and armed security giving beady eyes about potential costumed assassins. Con-goers were told to avoid giving them a reason for hunting season. No pup masks OR ELSE!
  • Due to this genius scheduling, a bunch of panels were rescheduled to nonsense times without notice and didn’t happen.
  • The hotel contract hadn’t been honored with payment on time, and there was a deadline. If not paid NOW the con would get shut as firmly as I’d get kicked out of the White House for peeing on Trump’s rug (or whatever you call that thing on his head — hey can you imagine him doing a pee tape with a furry? Yes, you probably can if you’ve been watching the news, that wouldn’t even get 15 minutes of notice.)
  • A con bickering online with another con is one thing, but how often to they BEG other cons for thousands of dollars?
  • A staffer was badgered about paying $15 grand in college money (I don’t think the money was actually given though.)

  • No Non-Disclosure Agreement HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA
  • For months after the con there were ALL CON MERCH 50% OFF sales (were there any sales accounted for?)
  • Finally, when all this came out, the allegations of charity money deception led to a lawyer assessing the potential fraud charges.
  • Read his Twitter thread about this Fandom’s Most Wanted Public Animal #1. It’s conveniently blog-formatted for you here.

I don't have time to sit down and write a blog post about this right now, which I normally do to address issues that pop up in the fandom. Instead here's the summary in thread form:

1. Capital City Fur Con, a convention in Harrisburg, PA, folded yesterday. /1

— Boozy Badger (@BoozyBadger) June 12, 2020

View this document on Scribd

Great idea from @trippwubb: a form to collect details from anyone owed money by #CapCityFurCon to total up the damage. https://t.co/bI6tzXJkJe

— Con Staff Watch (@ConStaffWatch) June 14, 2020

Capital City? More like Crapital City… if I had a band, that would be the name of it, and the album would be Presidential Furry Pee Tape.

Here’s the part where I give sympathy to everyone who had a good time and put in their hard work, and hope this all gets sorted out!

UPDATE: You wouldn’t think it could get worse. It gets worse.

I absolutely know what a receipt for the Greater Philly Chapter of the ALS Association looks like.

And what their logo looks like.

You do NOT fuck with the charity.

— Boozy “Slightly Used Coffin Reseller” Badger (@BoozyBadger) June 27, 2020

Like the article? These take hard work. For more free furry news, please follow on Twitter or support not-for-profit Dogpatch Press on PatreonWant to get involved? Share news on these subreddits: r/furrydiscuss for anything — or r/waginheaven for the best of the community. Or send guest writing here.

Categories: News