Here are the minutes from the first-ever Furlanda Furry Writers’ Guild Meet and Greet! These have been edited a little bit from the Shoutbox contents for clarity and focus.
[FFWGMAG] Coming to you LIVE from Portland, Oregon – It’s the Furlandia Furry Writers’ Guild Meet and Greet! (FFWGMAG)
[FFWGMAG] Number of physically present furries: 5 (so far)
[FFWGMAG] Number of virtually present furries: ?
[FFWGMAG] Mary is explaining the basics of the FWG, reviewing requirements for joining the guild, and saying a few things about the benefits offered to members and non-members. Membership benefits include: being featured on the website, voting in the Coyotl awards, and more. Forums and Shoutbox available to all.
MrMandolino: I was waiting for this!
[FFWGMAG] Introductions! First, the panelists…
[FFWGMAG] Mary Lowd: aka Ryffnah, whom you know.
[FFWGMAG] Sarina Dorie: Many short stories, a few novels, etc. Sarina was introduced to furry fiction community by Mary. Sarina had a number of werewolf and monster stories that found a home in furry. Before she was even a member, Sarina was using the market listings to find more places to send her work.
[FFWGMAG] Marshall Moseley: 30 years experience writing. Just sold two stories to furry markets (ROAR and Noir).
Ocean: Hi Marshall!
Tembroke: Ocean: Do you have an official title yet?
Ocean: Hello Land of Ports!
Tembroke: (For the noir anthology, I mean. You may have noble titles as well.)
Ocean: I think it’s 95% going to be “Inhuman Acts - A Collection of Furry Noir”
Tembroke: Marshall says “Hi Ocean!”
Ocean is currently working on the noir anthology as we speak
MrMandolino: Real time editing!
[FFWGMAG] (Current number of people physically present: 8.)
[FFWGMAG] Introductions! Attendees (numbered, since I didn’t catch most of their names…)
[FFWGMAG] Attendee #1: Here on behalf of his wife, who recently published a furry (transhumanist) novel on Amazon. She’s busy being a writer, and he’s looking for more resources to help her.
[FFWGMAG] Attendee #2: written one furry story, had non-furry poems published, working on a furry horror novel. He’s here to meet more furry writers. (Sarina mentions ToT as a good venue for horror.)
[FFWGMAG] Attendee #3: working on a number of stories, receiving some positive feedback from readers, not yet published. Trying to expand horizon, make connections, etc. (Mary mentions that there are many new writers on the forums.)
[FFWGMAG] Virtual attendees: 3?
Ocean: Negative Seven
[FFWGMAG] Attendee #4 = Tembroke: I’ve written a few stories, some with Mary.
[FFWGMAG] Attendee #5: Trying to turn ideas into stories, which is much harder than just coming up with ideas.
[FFWGMAG] Mary mentions that hanging out in the Shoutbox is easy and useful. (Much easier than writing stories. Especially when an almost-two-year-old is distracting you.)
[FFWGMAG] Shoutbox and forums are good for brainstorming, learning about others’ expertise, useful blog posts on the craft of writing.
Dwale: They’re also superlatively good for wasting time.
MrMandolino: Someone please shout “DINOSAUR SPACESHIP AI LOVE” at Ryff!!!
MrMandolino: She’ll get it. I promise.
[FFWGMAG] Q: How do you copyright your work? A: It’s automatically copyrighted. Comment: You can register it for a fee, which will give you greater legal protection.
Ocean: I’m not sure what a G-MAG is but I need one
MrMandolino: Me too
Dwale: Don’t forget to mention our sensual massage services.
[FFWGMAG] (I just relayed stuff from virtual to physical attendees – Mando’s comment on dinosaurs etc., Dwale’s comments on the shoutbox and make-Tembroke-laugh challenge.)
[FFWGMAG] Mary mentioned (in response) that the Shoutbox is a great place for brainstorming, and that dinosaur story is a perfect example.
[FFWGMAG] Helpful sites for writers submitting stories: Ralan, Submission Grinder. One attendee mentions that some newspapers like The Oregonian publish fiction.
[FFWGMAG] Number of physical attendees: 9. They do not yet know that I have chocolate cookies for them.
Dwale: I move that you give them to us instead.
Tembroke: G-MAG = “Guild Meet-and-Greet”
Tembroke throws a cookie at Dwale.
Tembroke throws a cookie at Dwale.
Dwale accepts both graciously.
Tembroke: There you go. Virtual attendees get virtual cookies. Physical attendees get physical cookies.
MrMandolino: I want a physical cookie.
Dwale: That’s a ****ing jip.
[FFWGMAG] Discussion of submitting work - standard manuscript format (example provided), no simultaneous or multiple submissions (by default).
[FFWGMAG] Q: Where to advertise commissions? A: SoFurry?
Ocean: FA/ Weasyl / SF / Twitter / etc
MrMandolino: No no, you have to capitalise that
Ocean: You should advertise under Mando’s foot
[FFWGMAG] Sarina and one attendee (Jess?) have some experience with commission requests.
[FFWGMAG] (I mentioned Dwale’s sensual massage services. One attendee misheard it as a “whale’s sensual massage services” and was worried about the dangers of whale massage.)
Dwale: Rightly so. They are not known for their dexterity.
MrMandolino: As in, by whales or for whales?
Dwale: Of COURSE it’s for whales!
Tembroke hands out virtual and physical cookies.
Dwale: A person can’t massage a whale! It would take too long!
Dwale: Wait…I said the opposite of what I meant. -.-
[FFWGMAG] Some discussion of details and writing – which ones to include? The ones that are helpful to the story. Just because something can be described doesn’t necessarily mean it should be.
[FFWGMAG] Recommended: Damon Knight’s book on writing short fiction
MrMandolino: But then, must everything be related to the story? What about details used to create atmosphere?
[FFWGMAG] Also recommended: Algis Budrys - Writing to the Point
[FFWGMAG] Also recommended: Eric Witchey’s writing workshops (local to Oregon). Can also find some of his advice on the Shadowspinners blog.
[FFWGMAG] Willamette Writers Workshop has tons of good panels. Beginning, advanced, self-publishing, and lots more.
Dwale: If those people are so smart, why aren’t they here?
Tembroke: Dwale: Which people? Algis Budrys? …he’s dead.
Dwale: THAT’S NO EXCUSE!
Tembroke appoints Dwale “Guild Necromancer” in order to handle these issues.
Dwale: I thought that went without saying.
[FFWGMAG] Q: How does the guild protect its members? A: The guild doesn’t yet have the resources to do much about that. But it does have resources to support writers – links to info, connections to other writers who can answer questions, and Coyotl awards to help promote quality in furry fiction.
[FFWGMAG] Q: Can you look at my work? A: Check out the forums and find beta readers there.
MrMandolino: Oh oh oh oh oh!
MrMandolino: Did someone say beta?
Tembroke: Mando: I passed your comment along. I think that has convinced at least one person here to come check out the forums.
MrMandolino: Because Dwale owes me a beta.
MrMandolino stares at Dwale.
Ocean: Tell them Dwale gives out free gum
[FFWGMAG] Q: Does the FWG connect with other groups? A: Many members are also members of other groups – Wordos critique group, Mid-valley Willamette Writers, Wordcrafters and other retreats, etc.
MrMandolino: And isn’t time just a human construct?
[FFWGMAG] Mary mentions coffeehouse chats in the Shoutbox.
[FFWGMAG] Meeting over!