Thus revealed, the creature buried its nose in the tire-tilled soil...
October 24, 2013
Fans and Friendship?
Category: Miscellany

Hey, all! It's been a while, hasn't it? I've been somewhat more active on tumblr -- and much more active on Facebook -- but not so much here. I'd like for that to change. (I never did figure out how to reliably integrate the tumblr content into this blog; I'll have to look into that again.) We'll see.

Anyway, if you're friends with me on Facebook (or in real life), you've probably noticed that lately I've been really into Sirena. The group consists of a trio of ladies who travel to renaissance festivals and put on a show in which they pretend to be mythical sirens, singing and dancing and drumming with purported intent to draw in the audience members and ensnare their souls. If you know me, you know that sort of thing is right up my alley -- the rennfest stuff is less my deal, but I'm all about mythology and monsters and such -- so you're probably not surprised that I dig the group based on my description alone.

Anyway, I liked the group enough to want to bring them some token of appreciation -- which is also kind of unusual for me. So I went to Hobby Lobby, bought a few things from the faux floral department, and constructed a sort of bouquet that (I hope) gave the impression of having been made of seaweed and other plants that might evoke the sea. It wasn't a super elaborate or complex project (I did nearly glue my fingers together at one point, but that was more due to my own clumsiness), but it was kinda enjoyable to put together and I felt really good about giving it to the sirens despite being unsure how they'd react to it. (I think one of them was kinda bothered; the others less so.) I'll update the post with a few crappy pics once I pull them off my phone.

Anyway, like I said -- that I felt compelled to do something for performers I don't know personally was unusual for me. What was less unusual for me, though (and this might actually be the thing that bothered the one member of the group), was my suggestion that the group members and I keep in touch. Granted, it's somewhat different with folks who publish content on the Internet -- anyone can publish content on the Internet -- but a good number of the people I interact with are people of whom I'm sort of a "fan," whether it's because I enjoy their artwork or photography or writing or whatever. People have also come to me because they've found my insights on Wesoteric interesting or enjoyed Scary-Crayon articles or whatever -- which, again, suggests that at least in some sense they are "fans" of my work. Does that sound odd, that we should be fans of our friends, or that we might want to be friends with people whose work we admire? I don't know; it's just something I've been thinking about.

And given the possibility that I did freak out the sirens -- and considering some of the interactions I've had lately through friends who run a rising comics studio -- I've been thinking about the kinds of fans I'd like to have if I were, say, creating content in a more outgoing fashion. If a fan approached me with a weird homemade present, would I be flattered or frightened? If an enthusiastic fan met me after a performance and expressed a wish to be friends, would I entertain the idea? I certainly wouldn't want to attract fans who are obsessive to a dangerous degree -- that's kinda scary (though I might take a little pride in being so skilled that my worked helped to break a human mind?) -- but I think, if people found my work so appealing that they wanted to get to know the person behind the product, I would be very glad to give those people the opportunity.

In fact, in some ways, I think that would start the friendship out on second base? Like, we spend a lot of time stumbling over small talk when we first meet people, and often we never get past that point because small talk kinda sucks and makes people sound boring. But when people meet as fans and artists, they're sort of past that? Or at least the small talk is helping to fill in background gaps rather than being a starting point. If you were a fan of my work on Scary-Crayon (for example), you'd already know about my interests -- and, if you shared them, we could talk about those instead of about weather forecasts and jobs we don't especially enjoy.

Speaking of jobs, I have to run off to work now. Perhaps I'll continue with this discussion at a later date! And if you've got any ideas on the subject, please feel free to post a comment! You can totally do that, because this is the Internet and stuff. 😀

(And yeah, I know this is a blog post and I could totally just save the draft and return to it later -- but this is also a blog post and not an essay for academic consideration! Also, you should see the number of unfinished entries sitting in my drafts folder... it's kinda where my blog posts go to die. 😛 )

-posted by Wes | 1:32 pm | Comments (0)
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