[Dragonmun Studios] Slowly Marching Away From Social Media

It's really kind of hard to be in an industry that panders to whim more than necessity. As you all know, Lannie and I released a children's book on February 24th - which was her adorable kiddo's first birthday. It was also the day that Russia attacked Ukraine. All of a year's worth of build-up/planning and months worth of organic marketing just *poof* vanished in the flood of people taking to social media (and Facebook in particular) to share their usual brands of panic, outrage, and vitriol. My heart was broken on so many levels that day and I just gave up trying to promote anything on social media.

I am aware that my woes are nothing compared to those of the poor people caught up in the conflict. I've done what little I can for them, but that's also kind of not the point of this letter. The point is that I've come to realize that social media isn't good for my mental health. I won't go into detail, but I decided to lock down my personal profile on Facebook and purge all of the acquaintances I've added from chance meetings or friend suggestions. Instead, I'll be interacting with Facebook through the limited confines of my creative studio page. I forgot that IG had a messaging system and I'm not going to start using it now. My use of Twitter will basically remain the same.

I actually started this on Wednesday and these past couple of days away from that environment gave me the chance to think on just how much of a mistake that might have been and I realized that it felt like how Neil Gaiman briefly described his email addiction in his "make good art" speech. TLDR: I probably should have done this years ago.

It's not that I don't want to interact with people online. It's more that I realized that my favorite means of doing so is through a community that I had some hand in setting up. I can't even recall how many iterations of forums and message boards I have hosted on my own sites - which always wound up with the server admins nuking them in some way. I stopped trying with those when I signed up for Facebook in (I think it was) 2007, thinking that it would be the new solution. For a little while it was, but then they started throttling post delivery. Without really thinking about it, I built up a new community through the Patreon /Discord thing, which I love. Now that I'm mostly done fighting algorithms, I'll be shifting my focus there - and if you're not already a member you're totally welcome to join! Just click the links. 😊

I think I'll also be working my way back into more live events. I know that the pandemic is still a concern, but I'm vaccinated, like wearing masks, and the precautions that I take in public seem to work as I'm one of the few people I know that hasn't caught Covid yet (knock on wood). More than just being fun, live events made up about a third of my business income so being generally without them really kind of hurt. My lineup for this year (so far) can be found at https://www.dragonmun.com/events


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