Awards for Good Byes
No I'm sticking around but that title, I mean, I had to do it
Today some new and old things to read, places to give your money if you can, photos of my dog, small shops to support. I’ll write about my decision to move off social media in more detail someday (think book length, I have thoughts) for now: thank you thank you thank you, I’m really excited to continue making art and thinking out loud about things so make sure you’re signed up for this newsletter regardless if you pay or not—I’ll be releasing more newsletters in general, a mix of free and paywalled, with links and comics, and updates on whatever happens next.
I really love that page, and that space, but I’m just not in a place personally to be trying to communicate with almost half a million people with what’s going on in my life, in the world. I never really was—I cannot stress enough how much of an accident it all was. I’m just me.
Individuals are not meant to speak to this many people at once, in this way—it’s just chaos. CHAOS. I feel so blessed that I nurtured a project which is so collective in spirit—and as I’ve written about in many places, awards for good boys is very much based on my experiences, but it’s also really not. It’s about patterns, not people—it’s a template, a framework, for others to use. (The end of my book really clarifies this and gives blank awards for people to make their own, which is partly why when everyone following me did not immediately read my book upon publication I was mystified. I was like okay, it’s June 4 2019. Why doesn't everyone acknowledge that I’m handing the project over? You mean people are not running to get my illustrated comedy gift book that’s probably kept at the register or like, under some lint, in the middle of the work day?)
It’s why people around the world could relate even though we all have such different experiences. It’s why we got to hear stories about good boys from Australia and Japan, Spain and Turkey. But “social media” is not collective, even though it can give birth to and nourish amazing communities. It’s personality driven, persona driven. As I find my footing more and more in how to articulate what I believe in, personally and politically, in the world, it just feels weirder and weirder to have this much power as an individual in a virtual space. I realize we’re all trapped in the same system and it sucks, but I’m not in a place to meaningfully explore myself/others while being held up as the arbiter of anything, seen as some sort of expert, held to some pinnacle of “correctness” (the irony, it hurts) while residing within the individualistic, personality-centric world of being successful—and liked—on social media. I just truly don’t give a fuck.
Plus as many can attest to, it’s fucking lonely being an original creator in a sea of Meme Men, of screenshot repurposing and personality driven silos, of lightly redrawn things you’ve made in the past. It’s an eerie split, feeling excited that people are using the framework you’ve made, and feeling like people are running with it, never mentioning you, never looking your way. I started to question my own reality, seeing things I’d written around the internet with someone else’s name attached. Seeing jokes I’d made years ago now floating around, disembodied and seemingly omnipresent. I knew I’d left my thumbprint in certain niches, but it felt like a constant battle of “narcissism on my end or legit people can’t stop regurgitating my work without crediting me?” And then I’d feel the rush of shame—why did I need to be credited? But then, I literally do! It’s not navel-gazing to want to be associated with a project you’ve created, as many would tell me. WOULD U ASK A MAN ETC ETC ETC.
I’m lucky to be able to leave right now, incredibly so, and I recognize that’s not an option for many. It stopped feeling like a decision I could mull over when it started to gnaw away at my IRL health. It was harming me—the potential losses in sales, the blows to my ego, the feeling like who the fuck walks away from half a million followers—those things stopped feeling like theoretical questions and simply facts of a reality that I no longer could exist in if I wanted to exist in my reality. The world—my world.
I hope I can find a meaningful way to repurpose that space going forward but I don’t know what that looks like yet (deleting might be the most meaningful, who knows, or maybe people want an archive of the cartoons, or a platform to share other awesome work from people).
And really, please stick around! I’m also way easier to get in touch with than people think—will I respond? In three months, or a year, besides the point. But if you want to say hi, or chat, or whatever, or if my DMs / the page were a place for you to feel seen, heard, validated, and you still need a spot to do that — my email is email@example.com. I’m still here. And working on ways to connect you all with each other. A Discord? An elaborate mycology role-play, I am very into mushrooms right now did I mention? Anyways, thank you all. So so so so much. I’m excited and honestly, really really terrified, for what is to come. And if you have, uh, thoughts on that, or like, a road map? Or GPS? For my life? Yeah let me get that—thanks!
Read the article above by Nick Martin here, quoted below.
This is a story about two billboards and angry rich people in big houses, yes. It is also, though, more substantially, about generations of land theft, broken treaties, and trust responsibilities—and one of the bluest states in the nation paying shallow lip service to tribal sovereignty while standing in its way.
A refresh on best Covid practices for anyone who needs, here’s a roundup from April in an aptly titled newsletter “Mouse Scream.”
Here’s the mouse scream (NSFW, jk but it is really high pitched heads up):
Gift ideas! Not Amazon! Woohooo!
Wonderful books that make lovely self/friend gifts from people I think are amazing. Also, call your local book shop if you can / check out Bookshop so that you can support local bookstores as well as these fantastic authors.
Here’s a newsletter with a bunch more of my favorite books + a roundup of a few of my favorite sci-fi / fantasy books for Document Journal. Breaking news, I love books !!! I’m unique :) OH also AK Press has great books and a lot are on sale! Bluestockings is one of my favorite bookstores, see below for info on how to support them!
More incredible treats n’ gifts, for self or others:
Know any readers? Pop culture fanatics? Film buffs? Gifting someone (or yourself) a Patreon subscription is a cool way to support independent creators AND give a friend something to look forward to in their email inbox. Here are a few awesome people to check out:
Around the web, generally, and things to read. Firstly, I am so absolutely bewitched with Dionne Warwick tweeting. NO ONE else should be allowed to tweet.
DID YOU GUYS KNOW THE PREMISE OF AWARDING IS A SCAM AND THAT WAR CRIMINALS GET THE NOBEL PEACE PRIZE AND THE WHOLE INDUSTRY IS OPTICS, I MAY HAVE CONSIDERED THIS IN MY WORK ABOUT AWARDS GENERALLY. Which is to say, see: The 2021 Grammy Award Nominations Are a Total Disaster
In “uh sir, WTF?????” news:
Thanks so much guys! Important work.
Sending love, all the good vibes, a glimmer of hope in these bad times. Talk soon!