Chris Williams, Author Specializing in anthropomorphic speculative fiction
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Independent Claws Episode 15 – The Sandbox

April 10

Sparf returns to chatter at you a little about writing in other peoples’ universes. A little discussion of fanfic, and a little discussion of a more structured setting.

 

The New Tibet submission call can be found at http://www.sofawolf.com/submissions

 

Awards links:

http://www.coyotlawards.org

 

Opening and closing music by Lee Rosevere and found at the Free Music Archive. Used under Creative Commons Attribution. For more by Lee Rosevere, visit this link:http://freemusicarchive.org/music/Lee_Rosevere/

Independent Claws Episode 14 – “That Isn’t the Character I Knew…”

January 24

Sparf discusses revisiting a character after a long absence, either a time-skip between stories, or a time gap in writing by the author.

This episode’s book recommendations:

The Tower and the Fox by Tim Susman

and

Kismet by Watts Martin

 

Awards links:

http://www.ursamajorawards.org

https://furrybookreview.wixsite.com/blog/leo-awards

http://www.coyotlawards.org

 

Opening and closing music by Lee Rosevere and found at the Free Music Archive. Used under Creative Commons Attribution. For more by Lee Rosevere, visit this link:http://freemusicarchive.org/music/Lee_Rosevere/

RAWR Write-a-Thon Update

November 27

Hi all. In my last podcast I noted that I was doing RAWR Write-a-Thon. I had intended to give weekly updates but I realized that I needed to pair that with real episode content. I didn’t want those releases to turn into “what I’m doing” and not much else.

We’ve only got a few days left on the Write-a-Thon so if you’d like to donate, please feel free to visit http://writeathon.rawr.community or use the Paypal donate button on the right side of this webpage.

In addition, I wanted to share with you a little excerpt of one of the things I’ve been working on. It’s set in my Veils universe, which is a magical dark Victorian setting. I’ve been reading on family history a little recently and in doing so I had come across a lot of anti-Irish bigotry. So fair warning, this incorporates that very strongly, as my main character in this story is an Irish hare. This is also only a first draft, before I’ve really had a chance to find period authentic insults to substitute in. But as a content warning, it contains explicit bigotry and violence, so if those things bother you in the context of a story, then I recommend skipping this excerpt. I’ll try to put something a little friendlier out sometime soon.

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Independent Claws Episode 13 – “Where Did the Time Go?”

October 4

Sparf returns with a little rambling about forcing oneself to write, and advice from other, better authors about how to better tell the story your characters demand (or would demand, if you were the kind of author whose characters actually spoke to them).

RAWR Write-a-Thon is in full swing for October through November, and you can donate via the PayPal link at http://www.chriswilliamsauthor.com.

October is Furry Book Month, so use the hashtag #FurryBookMonth to join the conversation and check out the sales from the awesome folks at our various furry publishers, like FurPlanet https://furplanet.com/shop/category.aspx?catid=260

Or look for the 20% discount on their ebook imprint, http://www.baddogbooks.com

If you are interested in learning more about the RAWR Write-a-Thon, or participating or donating, please visit http://writeathon.rawr.community

Opening and closing music by Lee Rosevere and found at the Free Music Archive. Used under Creative Commons Attribution. For more by Lee Rosevere, visit this link:http://freemusicarchive.org/music/Lee_Rosevere/

Independent Claws Episode 11 – Picking Up the Pieces

June 13

This episode, Sparf talks Failure, and offers some thoughts and encouragement as to how to get through it. Anthrocon is coming up, and Sparf will be present, on a couple of writing panels and doing a reading from Bleak Horizons. If you’re on the fence about picking up that anthology, stop in and have a listen! Bleak Horizons is available from http://www.furplanet.com

 

Opening and closing music by Lee Rosevere and found at the Free Music Archive. Used under Creative Commons Attribution. For more by Lee Rosevere, visit this link:http://freemusicarchive.org/music/Lee_Rosevere/

Independent Claws Episode 10 – Why am I Sitting Behind This Table?!

April 27

A brief episode touching on a few tips and tricks about being on panels at conventions, and a few things to avoid as an audience member.

No book recommendation this week, as it’s Fur the More weekend! Though, if you were so inclined, Bleak Horizons could use some love over at http://www.furplanet.com

 

Opening and closing music by Lee Rosevere and found at the Free Music Archive. Used under Creative Commons Attribution. For more by Lee Rosevere, visit this link:http://freemusicarchive.org/music/Lee_Rosevere/

Independent Claws Episode 09 – No, It’s Okay. I Know You Hate It…

April 7

Sparf is back with a discussion on beta reading and critique, with some cautionary tales. As always, feel free to e-mail the show or contact us on Twitter @clawspodcast.

This episode’s recommended books:

The Writing and Critique Group Survival Guide

Bleak Horizons, edited by Tarl Hoch

Bad Dog Books

Furplanet.com 

Opening and closing music by Lee Rosevere and found at the Free Music Archive. Used under Creative Commons Attribution. For more by Lee Rosevere, visit this link:http://freemusicarchive.org/music/Lee_Rosevere/

Independent Claws Episode 08 – Wuv. Twue Wuv

February 23

This episode, Sparf discusses Romance (big R) as a genre, as well as its bleedover into erotica and some tips and thoughts for writing both.

Also, There are fewer than 5 days remaining to nominate works for the Ursa Major Awards http://www.ursamajorawards.org. If you are so inclined, Independent Claws is eligible in the Magazine category, and two of Sparf’s stories—The Torch, from Roar vol. 7 (available in ebook here) and Apostasy, from Fang vol. 7(available in ebook here)— are also eligible. They’re also available in print form from http://www.furplanet.com.

This episode discusses sexual behavior between consenting adults and should not be listened to by anyone under the age of majority in their location.

Book Recommendations and links below the cut

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Rogue One

December 16

I’ll be seeing it again on Saturday, but I wanted to get a couple of brief spoiler-free thoughts down.

I don’t think it’s as good a movie as Episode 7, but I don’t think it’s meant to be.

This movie is a different kind of Star Wars movie from the word ‘Go’ and it carries that difference all the way through to the end.

I’ve already heard some kvetching that the characters are flat with no growth, and I disagree insofar as it comes to our two principal protagonists. There is growth in both of them. As for the remainder of the ‘good guys,’ they’re stock characters for a war film. They’re jobbers. There isn’t a lot of growth there, but this is an ensemble movie in the way that Ocean’s 11 is an ensemble movie. There’s a little time for character development but not everyone gets a complete arc.

This is the first Star Wars movie that felt like it understood war and armed rebellion. In the past Star Wars has mostly been about machine combat. There are stormtroopers here and there, and rebel soldiers, but the foot soldiers exist to be slaughtered to show how powerful the machines are. There’s a little of that here, but there’s also the sense, for the first time, that the rebel soldiers are fighting for their lives against a nearly-unbeatable foe. I think that’s desperately important.

The galaxy isn’t just Jedi and smugglers and star pilots and cantina-scum. At the heart of it all is people, and when people choose to fight, there’s going to be infighting. There’s going to be collateral damage, and there are going to be visceral moments where the combat is bloody and close and painful.

So how well do they tie this movie into the original, A New Hope? Remarkably well, I would say. There are enough cameos and bit part hooks to place us back into the galaxy on the brink of civil war, but it also manages to tie up its loose ends. Nothing fails to make sense. Things that happen are tied up in such a way that there would be no need to mention them in Episode 4.

This is a prequel done right. If this had been the way the Clone Wars had been depicted in the film version, and a better story told, we wouldn’t be talking about the awful prequel trilogy to this day. We’d instead be talking about the dark turn Star Wars had taken. And sure, that’s not to everybody’s liking. Some people want philosophical battles between space monks with laser swords.

If you’re one of those people this movie is definitely not for you. However, if you’re the sort of person who would run a Star Wars tabletop RPG game and exclude certain character types in order to tell a different story in the universe, this movie will feel like home.

I definitely give it a recommendation and I look forward to seeing it again in a few days to catch bits I may have missed this go-round.

Independent Claws – Episode 06 – Dystopia

December 9

Wait, wasn’t Sparf going to talk more about horror? Well, that episode is still coming. In light of the opening of submissions for a new dystopian fiction anthology from FurPlanet, it seemed prudent to help get word out and talk about writing furry dystopian fiction, and some ideas to consider to make yours stand out.

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