Me: In real life, you do fashion design. In Second Life, you make a line of BDSM toys and accessories. How did you make that jump?
I alluded to this earlier, but I was going through a pretty dark time when I joined Second Life in 2011. I was very angry at some of my fellow students and, being someone sadistic at heart, I decided to make the Breast Vice. At the time, I was somehow able to rationalize it as being a form of therapy or performance art. I have to admit that, during this period, I was terribly “distracted” while making my work. I kind of “got off” on it. Now that my anger has subsided, however, I am able to build things without getting all hot and bothered. I’m rather detached, emotionally and sexually, during my product development. I am not sure if that is a good or bad thing, but my productivity has increased dramatically.
Ironically, I had a gorgeous thirty-something flirt with me while I was working in candy shop a few months ago. I went home that night and churned out some of the most despicable products ever, imagining her to be the victim of them the whole time. It was one of my most creative periods. I have changed jobs since then and I’ve never seen her again… but I still can recall her if I need some “special” inspiration to get my creative juices flowing again. I guess, in a sense, she’s my muse. Since I never got to know her, I can imagine anything I want about her. I imagine her to be an aggressor, mostly.
I wasn’t able to finish fashion school… so I guess I’m just trying to move on in the only way I know how. My experiences there affected my life so adversely that I am happy for it to be part of my past.
Some of your toys strike me as funny, like the Tijuana Tart Package. Some are just a mess. What are you trying for in your toys’ designs?
Yes, I have a few products that are very tongue-in-cheek, the Tijuana Tart being chief among them. I made this product while brainstorming with a Second Life friend of mine, Darcia Gothly. She’s inspired a number of products—all of which are far more sinister (the Bushing Bush, the RipperBelt). She also lets me use her luxurious build space (I can only afford a crappy little home.) We’ve been known to collaborate and inspire one another quite a bit. But yes, I have a few funny products: the “Hello Buttons“, the “Let ‘em Know Ribbons….”
I think I know what you mean when you say my other products are a mess… I hope you mean a “hot mess!” They’re definitely a little gory and not for the faint-of-heart. The most horrifying one to me, personally, has got to be the Dismembered Torso—that was very hard for me to make. However, that is also one of my hottest selling items. It’s a good thing I don’t judge my clientele.
I think that’s why my advertising text is so bizarre; sometimes I use the characters of my “captors” to separate myself from my products. My backstory, that of a kidnapped fashion student, is something drawn from my real world experiences—at least in part. And this idea that I am producing my products unwillingly or under duress helps me separate myself, intellectually, from what I make. I found this onion-skin-thin level of psychological indirection to have been particularly important in the development of my latest creation, “The Frenemaker” to be essential. That product is psychotic, pure and simple.
To be fair, however, customers have commented on the fact that I seem to have a weak spot in my heart for “cowgirls” or “hucows” as I’ve learned they’re called. I don’t know what it is about them… they’re such a sharp contrast to my pent-up animosity toward my old colleagues that I find a respite in them. I can easily imagine myself nestled in their bosom and I just go all gooey. Maybe I just have absent mommy issues. They say that if you snatch a puppy or cat away from their birth mother too soon, they never lose the urge to suckle. Sigh… even now, I want to build more products for that crowd… I just need some inspiration.
I’m honestly very sweet, I swear! So if you have to judge me, try to take my cow girl products into account.
How many products do you have in the Marketplace?
As of today, I think I just made my 100th product—but some of my products are very similar, such as my assorted “Extortion Photo” sets. Other products are roll-ups or “fat packs” of other products sold individually. I’ve also retired a few products, since they’re a bit hard for people to understand or operate.
I suppose the point of your blog is to help your sales. The first article I read is “Party Girl” (NSFW) and I found it hilarious. When I read through the rest of the blog, it is rather dark. The articles are written in an “in character” role-playing style. What do you plan to be writing in the future?
First of all, thanks for checking out my blog. It’s a combination between a marketing tool, labor of love, and a way of distancing my creativity and intellect from my products. Like I mentioned earlier, the “role-playing” aspect of it is very therapeutic for me… I find it much easier to write that way. They say that writing in the first person is sheer intellectual laziness, but I find it to be very intimate—almost like you’re reading someone’s diary. It’s sexy, in a way… and I think my readers find it more evocative.
It is, ultimately, for my fans—or “Frenemies” as I’ve taken to calling them.
I don’t think I’ll be changing the style or the tone of the blog, but I do plan to try to cover all my products, past and present, because when I sell a product, I want to be selling a “story.” It’s a bit of a role-playing aid, like when guys play D&D. It is backstory; it adds color to their role-playing experience. So many products in Second Life are like Platonic forms—they haven’t any history. I want my products to feel like they’ve been around a bit, as though they have a provenance, a patina.
Anyway, I like to think of my stories as a “value-add,” in marketing parlance. Perhaps I’m just deluding myself so I can indulge my penchant for creative writing and working in AfterEffects.
Without being able to read the small text on the posters you can’t see the tongue-in-cheek humor. So, check them out in the Market Place for a sense of Myrylyn’s humor. You’ll also have to visit her market place store to see her dark toys. Most of those pictures are way NSFW, so I won’t show them here.
Frenemies is a unique brand, not for everyone, but Frenemies is gaining a following.
Following is the code Myrylyn provided. This is the PHP used on the web side to catch the ANS data.
See the code in the comments… this newly updated version of Wordpress seems to be having a problem with the <PRE> tags. I’ve tried a number of times to get them to work and things just get worse. Each time various parts of the code are missing and on several edits all the code is missing from the WordPress editor. I think this is a WordPress bug. But, I’m still looking to see if it is me or them.