Well, that took off.

Ok, folks, I can occasionally bow to the inevitable.

Raconteur Press will do a Fluffy Yeet Cow Space Marine anthology — probably to launch 3rd or 4th Quarter of 2023.

This will differ from our normal anthologies in that it will be a shared world type — the universe of the Fluffy Yeet Cow Space marines being my creation, rights will not revert to the individual authors after a year, as is standard with our other contracts.

Participating authors will continue to receive payments as long  s the book is selling, but I’m hanging on to my intellectual property.

Since I am — quite literally — making this up as I go along, I do a set of vignettes about the universe of FYCSM, and the rest of the Uplifted, to give authors a skeleton to hang their stories on, but give me a moment.

The rules I had in my head for a throw-away short-story aren’t gelling with an entire universe, so things are changing pretty dynamically.

Since it’s going to be a Shared Universe, I’ve got some questions.

The Uplifted Species are Dogs, Cats, Foxes, and American Bison — I may throw in Otters, depending on how folks respond, but the list is going to be kept quite short.

No, monkeys will not be Uplifted. Monkeys are the Devil’s Oven Mitts — and that includes chimpanzees, orangs and the rest. Yes, I know they’re not monkeys — I don’t care. Devil’s. Oven. Mitts.

And that goes double for dolphins. Dolphins are just droogs in wetsuits, and they’re all about that old ultraviolence. Sodding serial rapists/killers with fish breath. No.

The stories need to be rollicking space opera goodness. They should be entertaining above all else. On that note, we’ll take any space opera genre — excepting grimdark. Grimdark annoys me. If you have a grimdark story, the grimdark folks need to be the Bad Guys, they need to be idiots, and they need to lose.

The Terrans in this universe are entering a frontier phase. They have discovered how to get to the stars, they have created children to go with them, and they are charging full-tilt into this new frontier.

This is not to say that all humans are good, nor even all Uplifted — but overall Humanity is thrilled, heading out into the Great Unknown, running into civilizations who were ancient when dinosaurs ruled the Earth, and humans are … just being themselves.

I’m … batting around an idea for interstellar travel. Tannhauser Web, and a lot of handwavium.

I’ll post little vignettes from the universe to give interested writers a feel for the bones and and the taste … as I get time.

*deep breath*

Ok, let’s see where this thing goes.


OldNFO has a new one out.
... Complicated, part 2

43 thoughts on “Well, that took off.”

  1. Okay, one question:
    Which cats are uplifted?
    House cats?
    A specific Breed of Cats?
    Tigers are pretty chill, over all.
    Leopards are… well I don’t think I have to tell YOU about leopards!

      1. I was thinking puma concolor, thinking that size matters — easier to scale controls, tools, etc., to critters more-or-less human size — but it’s your universe… and the difference might add some drama to the narrative.

      2. Bobcats are feisty and in your face.
        Cougars are more on the ‘laid back don’t start none won’t be none’ kind of personality (and way more sneaky than bobcats).

        If I do a cat story, just need to know which one to go with 🙂

        I mean you COULD do Jaguars, they are in the southern parts of the midwest US. They’re sorta like leopards who went to weight training and got all bulked up like Hanz and Franz…

        1. Jaguars are the third largest wild cat. Cougars are the 4th, leopards the 5th and snow leopards 6th. I do believe that the largest cat is a Liger, a lion (sire) and tiger (dam) cross.

      3. Lynx! Lynx are sneaky and damn near invisible. I’ve lived in Anchorage 45 years and would have sworn there weren’t any here until I saw one.

  2. Private Spot at Marine boot camp, “yes Sir, I am the goodest boi, Sir!” I have to try to write a story about trying to put a bunch of good bois through boot. I HAVE to.

  3. If I get you a story for this, I want to use an in-world subplot/backstory reference now to the “Devil’s Oven Mits” incident (something about apes and maybe the Statue of Liberty and definitely Charlton Heston…) and a remark about “interracial” relationships among the Uplifted in order to use Bill Murray’s line from Ghostbusters about “dogs and cats living together.”

    1. Absolutely. Honey badgers need love and their diplomatic skills (!) make them obvious choices for Space Marines.

      1. I suspect that falls under the “horrible failures” mentioned prior.

        Of course, nothing’s stopping you from writing about a Spectacularly Epic Failure.

    1. Are you expressing anti-feline bigotry here? Careful! Someone might stick your sentiments in a story!

      1. Absolutely!

        As long as my sentiments and the reality behind them are portrayed factually, not by a cat-serf repeating the propaganda of their psychotic feline master. 👍

    2. Someone wanted cat girls.
      That’s the only explanation.
      Joke’s on them though. I cannot think of two more naturally contrarian species in existence than felines and women.

  4. I’m reminded of a story seed I played with years back, where a well-meaning geneticist introduced some new traits to African elephants to keep them from being wiped out.

    Unfortunately, the law of unintended consequences kicked in. Cue super-armored, highly intelligent elephants forcing humans out of central Africa and effectively confining them to the coasts.

    1. Have you ever read the web comic Schlock Mercenary? It included uplifted Elephant and Gorilla soldiers.

  5. There’s a few cat breeds, and even a large cat species or two, that behave somewhat canid-like when domesticated. Those would be the ones uplifted, IMO.

    As for the “bad idea” uplifts, you mentioned in passing in the snippet about failures. You could always make them the failures, and of someone wants to write the story of how and why those ended poorly, that’s as valid an idea as any.

    the webcomic Freefall had a hilarious bit about how poorly uplifting chimps went, with the only survivor realizing just what a danger he was unfixed, and castrating himself to lessen his intensity. He went on to be one of their greatest uplift-engineers, but his identity as an uplift himself is a state secret.

      1. They are already large enough to fit in with humans once Uplifted, trying to scale a housecat up to ~5 ft tall would be a challenge.

        And uplifting Cheetahs helps preserve the species so a double win.

  6. You mean after all this discussion of Uplifted cat species nobody has yet referenced Danny John-Jules?

  7. More Foxy Kitsune Girl type uplift with many “human-like” features, or more Dogman – I wander around on 4 legs and only stand up occasionally?

  8. Devil Dogs! HELL, we are halfway there already….

    [Ronald Reagan, U.S. President; 1985] ” Marines I see as two breeds, Rottweilers or Dobermans, because Marines come in two varieties, big and mean, or skinny and mean. They’re aggressive on the attack and tenacious on defense. They’ve got really short hair and they always go for the throat.”

    Hubbeast was the first variety, Dad and Son are the second…..

  9. We all knew that this was going to happen. You just didn’t realize how good what you had come up with was.

  10. If you want a sea animal, please uplift The Octopus. They have the best sense of humor.

  11. Just a thought. Uplifted felines could occupy a position similar to the old west cavalry scouts. Not necessarily part of the chain of command, or formally trained as military, but operate in ones or twos independent of just about everyone. Maybe with the equivalent of a junior officers commission. Could be some interesting interactions between Scout Captain Felix, And Pack Leader Fido back at base.

  12. Are there requirements, principles, that guide which species could be considered for uplifting in this imaginary verse, uni or multi.
    Octopi get my vote. Raccoons too.

  13. Well, that rules out gophers, which species could be useful in planets needing mining.

  14. As a long time fan of the late Sir Terry, I feel I have to ask; what do you have against Orangutans? Totally agree with your perception of all other monkeys/apes…especially Chimps, who always struck me as an odd species and fear too mean to be considered ‘cute’.

  15. Webber and White created a Felinoid race in “Crusade”.

    Described as being independent to the point that their affection for single-seat fighters and passion for single-combat went beyond the entirely reasonable.
    Not uplifts, but a genuinely alien species. I’ve read worse.

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