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Non-fiction magazine 'Claw & Quill' seeks (re)launch material

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Claw & QuillFurry author/editor Watts Martin has announced a new online magazine about furry fandom, Claw & Quill.

The magazine's submission guidelines call for unpaid reviews, interviews, profiles and nonfiction narratives in the 1000–2000 word range. While acknowledging a "definite overlap" with Flayrah, Watts expressed a wish for C&Q to be "less “newsy” and more curated."

Many know Watts as a story writer, but he has a long history of publishing and contributing non-fiction to furry 'zines. He previously launched a fiction webzine under the same name Claw & Quill in October 2004, although it proved short-lived. Watts planned to reuse the name for a curated, social story archive similar in concept to Yerf, but the project stalled.


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To throw in a bit of context for the last sentence, while I still think there's a potential place for a curated story archive site, the truth is that it's an awful lot of work for a dubious return value. As it turns out you can't really "scale it back" very much from something like FA, and even if you do everything that FA does and do it "better" you've got an uphill battle. At this point you have a choice of five (uncurated) archives that can handle fiction -- that I know of -- and while they all have their strengths and weaknesses, it's hard to make the case that the fandom is clamoring for a sixth one with a different set of strengths and weaknesses.

While clearly there are other non-fiction sites like Flayrah and [adjective][species] available, magazines and news sites don't "compete" in the same way that archive sites do, nor are they in a "business" so wildly dependent on the network effect. I imagine that Flayrah and [a][s] have considerable readership overlap and assuming C&Q takes off, I'm assuming there will be considerable overlap there, too.

(And for the record, C&Q's "new" code will be available on Github; it's written in PHP 5.4, rather than Python. Go on, nerds, get into an argument over the technology stack now.)

— Chipotle

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The more original content being published, the better. Plenty of good stories are not yet being told. Adding a new site seems to draw new readers and writers to the non-fiction ecosystem, rather than result in competition for them.

(The above is why we liberally license and syndicate our content. Sure, it'd be nice if readers got Flayrah's content through our own site, but we reach a far larger audience with syndication, and ~15% of our visitors arrive through it.)

As for PHP, I don't think you'll see much argument there. Both Flayrah and [a][s] use frameworks running on it.

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I don't see competition as a bad thing, and I am kind of disappointed the FurryNewsNetwork fell through the cracks as it did. It was interesting to see original content on stuff from another place and when there's competition readers seem more invested in their products. You know FA vs (X site here). There are always going to be people who pick and choose, I'll just take the best that each offers.

At this point though, there is enough to really like all of the above. It's not like we print so much stuff that a person wouldn't have time for more stuff somewhere else.

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About the author

GreenReaper (Laurence Parry)read storiescontact (login required)

a developer, editor and Kai Norn from London, United Kingdom, interested in wikis and computers

Small fuzzy creature who likes cheese & carrots. Founder of WikiFur, lead admin of Inkbunny, and Editor-in-Chief of Flayrah.