From Slush to Pulp

OtherRealm Studio Blog

A hug for my wonderful readers

Hey everybody,

It’s been awhile. A long, crazy while.

I’m tired.

So I thought, maybe you are too, and I ought to check up on you. You okay?

I found out something that’s helped me regain some peace and have energy for the important things, and I want to share it with you. I’ll try to keep it general so you can apply it to whatever you need.

I’ve noticed that there’s a lot of news going around that’s really just rumors, and rumors go around because the people spreading them want to control what gets talked about. There’s power in getting to set the story, whatever the story may be. There’s power in making people angry, because it makes them talk, and that spreads the story around more – even if it isn’t true, or if it’s only true in part.

As if that wasn’t bad enough, here’s the second part: If you’re getting most of your social interaction online, the algorithms push posts into your timeline for “engagement.” But this “engagement” is usually outrage-bait, and everyone understands the story behind the outrage of the day differently. So then the engagement on the posts is mostly pointless arguments about things that weren’t represented honestly in the first place.

We turned to social media to connect with people, and now the AI has learned what’s most active without having any idea what’s most healthy or most true. We’re being driven apart by mindless algorithms.

Yeah, it sounds crazy. But I’ve been learning about social media engagement for years and seen how the means of getting noticed has evolved, and this is what I think is happening.

This isn’t how people are meant to live.

You’re my readers. You’ve given my stories and art a chance. You signed up for news from me. I only wanted to send you good news, so there hasn’t been much news at all from me for awhile. I love you and appreciate you and I’m so thankful that I’ve gotten to meet so many of you at comic cons!

I want you to know it’s okay to rest. Sometimes it seems like the world is horrible because we’re only being shown the worst of it. But the way forward is to find and reward the best, instead of focusing on the worst. Don’t let people con you into “raising awareness” by feeling guilty and horrible for things you had nothing to do with. The world is broken. We’re aware. Wallowing won’t help.

Just taking the time to take care of your own mental and emotional health makes the world a better place already. I want you to do that. It matters to me that you do.

You’ve got this. We’re going to make it. And there really will be happier times ahead.