Month: October 2014


In the original “Welcome to Claw & Quill” article from a year ago I said, with unintentional foresight, Part of what’s made Claw & Quill tough to get off the ground is that it’s hard to describe just what it is. It’s a magazine for furries—but not a fiction magazine or a news magazine, not art or comics. It’s not about furry-as-a-noun, in the sense of lifestyle and identity. It’s not necessarily even a “magazine for furries” the way most people might take that phrase. You may not be shocked to learn that this kind of nebulousness makes it tough to write for. So, after a lot of behind-the-scenes shuffling, C&Q is relaunching using WordPress rather than its own custom back end. The rationale for this is two-fold, both relating to making it easier to generate new content. As much as I like the notion of issues, it’s going to be easier to get new articles up if I don’t have to wait to collect four or five in batches. It’s also going to be …

Is Furry Fiction Science Fiction?

The furry fandom originated, according to most accounts, back in the late 80s, when a group of cartoonists got together to share their love of drawing anthropomorphic animals. Many old-time furries cite Steve Gallacci’s Albedo Anthropomorphics as the earliest “modern furry” comic, and Gallacci’s table at a southern California science fiction convention as the focal point that led to ConFurence Zero. Wherever it started, furry fandom diverged quickly from science fiction in practice, if not in theory. Furry tracks at SF cons quickly grew to the point that organizers chose (or, according to some accounts, were asked) to start their own conventions. This began a divide between furry and SF/F fandoms that only grew as furry began to generate its own stories and novels more specifically relevant to its fans. On the face of it, furry fiction would appear to be inseparable from science fiction. The main characters of furry stories are anthropomorphic animals, creatures that do not exist in the real world. What can that be but science fiction or fantasy? And yet SF/F …

Pup Fiction

Astrosaurs. Cows In Action. Ninja Meerkats. Spy Dog. If you happen to be under nine, you’re spoiled for choice in the anthropomorphic literature department, with a range of sci-fi, adventure and action stories starring a whole zoo of creatures. There’s even alternate history: the Spartapuss series explores a feline Rome ruled by Emperor Catligula, while Beowuff, by the same author, applies the principle to doggy Vikings. You may already have guessed that none of these works take themselves terribly seriously. Expect an onslaught of appalling animal-related puns and silly names (the leader of the Pigs in Planes rejoices in the name of Peter Porker, while the ranks of the Space Penguins include Fuzz Allgrin and Splash Gordon). The action usually revolves around a crack squad of heroic critters saving the day with their collective abilities.