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chocosune

the Confectioner of Kinks
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Last night I got distracted from drawing things I planned on drawing because that's just the way that I'm built, but also because I discovered that the FA crosspost of my recent journal entry "I'm Genuinely Just So Fucking Fed Up of Posting Art" sparked lots of really thoughtful discussion and suggestions from those who read it, and ended up putting a lot of time and effort into replying to as many of those comments as possible.


(And here I am still procrastinating from making art by writing a journal about the replies but shhhh we don't talk about that part)


Important Sidenote: I don't intend for any of the points mentioned below to come across as a passive aggressive sleight against my peers. I've said it before and I'll say it again: even if I disagree with the ways other artists post and curate their artwork online, that's entirely their own business and what I say about the amount of effort I put into mine has no bearing on what they should or shouldn't do.


Their choices can, and likely will affect if and how their audience - including myself - decides to interact with their work, but that's just the reality that they've chosen for themselves, by setting their own boundaries (as have I), as they are well within their rights to do.


While nobody explicitly nor outright asked me this question, a lot of the comments I received that either gave suggestions, or expressed concern about what I was doing genuinely felt like they revolved around a single unspoken issue:


"Chocolate, why the fuck ((polite)) are you doing this to yourself?"


I didn't directly address this in every reply to those who took the time to comment, since it wasn't always relevant to the points and suggestions being made, but It really got me thinking about the why that's mixed in amongst all of this stress and hassle I put myself through. My motivations don't change the fact that crossposting is a catastrophically disastrous problem for any artist doing their work online, but why do I insist on subjecting myself to so much of the pain when I could so easily trim it back and lighten my load?


Being encouraged to think and write about that really made me dig deep and rediscover some things about myself and the work that I do. Things that have gotten a little lost over time; in the grind of making this happen, as it were.


Recently, I've been following Louis Rossman's whole YouTube adblocker saga and I swear it's been the single most enlightening thing I've watched or read about recently insofar as helping me rediscover my own philosophies on why I do what I do.


While I was writing up all those comments, it just so happened that Louis posted a video that had this in it. Watching it today felt like he was speaking on my behalf:

(The entire video is very good and has other points I'd say are worth discussing with regards to "free services" online, but that's not what I'm talking about here today)


Granted, there's a little mental work needed for the analogy to make sense from what he's saying about how he runs his business, to how it relates to my own; but a few of the things translate rather directly to what I do and why I do it:


I want people to have as much [content for them to enjoy] for free
I don't want people coming to me because I've made their experience more annoying
I've always tried to make the experience better for people even if they're not paying me

Yes, I left in the part about "being here if you want to pay me" because it's also relevant, but the bottom line remains the same.


I do this for my audience. My fans. Perhaps those who would be my customers, too.

I am always taking stock of my experiences while browsing other people's work. All these different websites. Admittedly, a lot of things bother me way more than they perhaps should, but there's always a nonzero chance that there is someone else in my audience who feels the same way that I do about any one of my personal pet peeves.


So, why wouldn't I curate my work to address them?


A large part of this issue relates to accessibility, and while I think that accessibility for those with disabilities is important (also why I made scripts to help me add Alt Text to my posts), I'm talking about accessibility in the sense of how easy it is to access my stuff.


A major problem I've dealt with in my life and that led to me needing therapy for the past 2 years or so has dealt with what motivates me to do what I do.


Throughout the process of practicing better mental habits and emotional resilience, I've learned to focus inwards and do things for my own sake, and if that's not possible, then for the sake of doing them at all. I'd been wasting a lot of time trying to do them for the sake of other people's approval, which is a fool's errand - especially with how difficult it is to get and hold people's attention online nowadays (if you're still reading this, thank you).


Although I've made massive progress on this front over the years, that doesn't mean I've stopped making art for the benefit and enjoyment of other people. Far from it. I just feel like I rely on it way less now, but my drive to share and share alike is still there and I don't want to lose it either, because I know that people genuinely enjoy seeing my art.


My frustration and upset in my prior post is with how much harder this has gotten in a very short amount of time. Having a single point of failure (*cough cough* FurAffinity *cough*) is never a good thing, but the sheer amount of fragmentation and proprietary barriers put up within the community's online presence is fucking staggering now when compared to just 2 years ago, and it was pretty goddamn bad even back then!


I just want people to get to see and enjoy my art because I want it to be free, and the sheer glut of all these platforms popping up aren't facilitating that any more. They feel like a hindrance put between me and my audience, and that's what pisses me the fuck off.


Yes, PostyBirb exists and I use it too, and bless the devs who still maintain what feels like a Sisyphean task, especially given how bad it's gotten lately. But the choices that they make with how they maintain their software can and does act as another barrier in this painful layer cake of misery that is "Posting Online" for artists like me. I'm not a fan of having another third-party piece of software influencing and potentially dictating who can post and where they can do it, which is why I do it anyway even if it's unsupported and really annoying.


It sucks for me, and it sucks for the sites, but that's what I chose to do for myself


and my audience, too.


Thanks for reading.

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Some sites have tags


Others don't


This one doesn't let you paste them as plaintext


Some let users filter content


Others don't


Some have alt text


Others don't


Those that do have their own ways to add it


Some have Content Warnings


Some that do have plaintext fields


Others have them in tags


This one also doesn't let you paste them as plaintext


Content warnings work differently on different sites so you need to account for that


Some use markdown


Some use BBCode


Some use HTML


Some apparently use some fucking batshit asinine combination of the above


At this rate I'm just going to give up, dump it all into a web folder somewhere and occasionally post a link to it to remind people where to find it all cause I'm just about at my fucking limit I swear to god


I am so fucking tired of it all and I've posted 3 things today


It's genuinely discouraging as an artist with a middling following and doing this full time cause it's entirely in my best interests and feels like a requirement to put up with this shit and subject myself to as much of it as I possibly can so I can reach my audience on all 50 of the currently existing platforms that will consider hosting my work, so long as I learn their content policy and upload processes or hope beyond all hope that PostyBirb's solo dev has had the time to support it and implement its upload process without any issues either


The sheer amount of ifs and elses in my glorified clipboard manager script is fucking asinine and even after having implemented like 95% of the features I'm still finding things that are missing or broken and which I'm having to do manually until I go back into the code to add them in as well and it's driving me insane


I literally have an entire little code loop including UI buttons to fetch and paste ***just*** the content warnings of a post on cohost, and another one for Mastodon, and it involves a motherfucking array and a goddamned loop


I shouldn't be having to do this shit just to save myself some time to maintain my online presence. This shouldn't have to be the thing that causes me burnout when I could instead be wearing myself down to the bone by making the fucking art in the first place. At least we'll have the art at the end of that strangled path


I not only want but have a physiological need for you all to know that this shit is really fucking difficult and extremely tiresome and there's a reason why I've been posting just about exclusively on my website for the past year or so

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I've been terribly ill this past week, and even still it hasn't stopped me from moving forwards.


Without going into too much detail, I had the beginnings of a sore throat just before catching a very nasty stomach bug that surfaced this time last week, on Saturday night. The combination left me extremely weak and very much worse for wear, and even after recovering from that weekend from hell, it ultimately culminated in an agonizingly bad throat infection that lasted the rest of the week, denied me sleep, and has only started abating as of this morning.


Both episodes came dangerously close to delaying major stages in my transition journey, even after enjoying an entire year of decent physical health. The timing was abysmal.


The final major appointment for obtaining my HRT prescription was set for Monday morning, meaning that I had just about 24 hours to recover from a very unpleasant and physically draining night. Rescheduling would more than likely result in postponing the process by another 6 months, and I couldn't get confirmation on whether or not an exception could be made for me for a followup session any sooner than that.


Fortunately, this didn't stop me. I was definitely worse for wear and very much running on fumes given that I hadn't eaten any solid food in over a day, but I went in with my head held high, knowing exactly what I wanted from the doctor, and how to ask for it. After another week of agony and discomfort, I had a secondary appointment at the hospital just this morning, which wasn't quite as mission critical but that I needed to do before starting on HRT, and wanted to get done for my own sake.


With that done, I now have the all-clear to start medically transitioning. Just about a year late, thanks to my depression and the slow government process, but I finally got there. The timing might not have been what I wanted when I first set out on this journey, but in hindsight it all worked out well enough in the end. All that's left is to receive my entitlement letter for the meds, fill out some final paperwork with my doctor, and I'm off to the races.


Reflecting on all this while sitting here this afternoon, I came to the pleasant realization that despite spending an entire week struggling with and recovering from a lot of illness, I still managed to get past what are effectively two major milestones and barriers to entry for something I've wanted for several years already, and it's all very surreal to me right now.


The start of my TF into a bunnygirl is right around the corner. Needless to say, I'm pretty excited.

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Hi everyone. I've been quiet following my last announcement.


I'll cut right to the chase - I've fucked everything up. I seriously hurt some of my partners and closest friends with my recent actions and caused a lot of lasting harm to many of those who've been most actively supportive of me for the past several years.


Without going into specifics or over-explaining things, quite simply: I betrayed the trust and disregarded the feelings of those I love the most in an egregious way. To make matters worse, it had a knock-on effect which caused a massive rift within several groups we shared.


I've done what I can to own up to my mistakes and try to help wherever possible, but the damage has been done and there's no way for me to take it back. I'm working on myself to figure out why this happened and how to avoid it in future, and slowly salvage my friends' trust after undermining it with my actions.


I'm choosing not to name names because while I think I can trust folks not to bother them about this, I don't want to even try taking that risk. I am taking responsibility for what I've done and working on accepting the consequences, as painful as that may be.


I didn't write this to ask for pity or support. It just didn't feel right being active online again without at least addressing the situation and why I've been absent.


Don't do like I did. Communicate actively with your partners.

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On this first day of what I aim to make as affirming and positive a pride month for all as possible, I want to take a second to address something very important to me and close to my heart.Up until two months ago, I was afraid of being seen. I wasn't ready, and deeply envied those who were. Just because I'm now in a happier, more motivated place than I was just a few months ago, I won't act like I was never struggling.I won't act like I was never confident in my own delusion that I was fine presenting as cis. That I could get by. This isn't easy and it never was.I don't want to have the same effect on those who are still struggling on their journey, or who have yet to even learn that they have one ahead of them. Pride is for everyone - even those who are figuring things out.So for those of you who feel left out of pride because you can't celebrate alongside everybody else: I see you, and you're valid too. It might not feel like it right now, but we're all here waiting for when that day might arrive.Hopefully sometime soon, whenever you're ready.

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