9. You’re Never Weird On the Internet (Almost) by Felicia Day
Reading was something that was always encouraged by both of my parents and one of the things I’m most grateful for in life. Reading is like breathing for me. I love to read and feel sorry for those of us who don’t. I strongly believe it’s because they haven’t found the right genre of book yet because I refuse to believe that there are people existing right now who don’t like portable stories that you can only see in your mind. Long story short, I read. A lot. As a matter of fact I’m currently wrestling with some book ideas for the site. I’m torn between doing a book club or a “hey check out what I’m reading right now” column. Opinions are most welcome.
When it came to drafting this top ten list I quickly discovered that the majority of books I read this year weren’t published in 2015 (*gasp*). My philosophy is if the story sounds interesting than who gives a crap what year it came out? Although this proved to be problematic for the top ten list. How could I be expected to make a best of 2015 list and include a book that was written four years ago? Seemed sort of lame, yes it contributed to my geeky year, but this list is supposed to focus on the best of 2015 not 2011 (yay simple math problems). So I did the only reasonable thing I could do, I went back and counted how many books I read that were actually published this year, and out of the 30 or so books it turns out that number was only about five (maaaaaaybe sevenish). I would be damned if I was going to do a top ten list and not include a book. You know, like an actual book with paragraphs and chapters not just one where Batman battles the Joker, in an underground Gotham cave, to the death (this actually happened in Batman #40 and it’s a face melter).
Out of all the books I read this year I would have to say that You’re Never Weird On the Internet (Almost) by Felicia Day resonated the most. I don’t read a lot of nonfiction (that’s what Wikipedia is for people) so when I do there is a genuine interest to learn more about this person. Going into this book I knew very little about Felicia Day outside of her work on Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog and being an internet personality who also happened to be kind of a geek. That’s pretty much all I needed. I find it comforting to find like-minded people and read their thoughts and/or stories. Helps me feel like I’m a part of a larger community of people. “Hey you like stuff?! I like stuff too! Let’s be friends.” One of the downfalls of being geeky is sometimes I do feel kind of alone, and that people look at me as if I’m crazy because I’m a thirty-four year old man spending adult dollars on multiple Pop Vinyl figures. I don’t like to think of myself as crazy just passionate. Although I would accept the term crazy passionate. I’m very comfortable being who I am. I like me, he said in his best self-help voice. But despite that comfortableness I find myself looking for other geeks too just to be reassured if only for a moment.
In You’re Never Weird On the Internet I found that geek reassurance as well as something even better. Inspiration. Felicia Day provided a book that was all types of entertaining, humorous, insightful, and motivational. Felicia (cause we’re total besties and I can refer to her this way. Plus you know I may or may not have a crush on her. What?!) has created her own niche in the world through hard work and creativity, and it was almost impossible not to find that inspiring. If I’m being totally honest, her book is one of the main reasons I started this site.
“The creative process isn’t easy, even for chocolate-fountain people. It’s more like a wobbly, drunken journey down a very steep and scary hill, not knowing if there’s a sheer cliff at the end of it all. But it’s worth the journey, I promise.”
“Find a group to support you, to encourage you, to guilt you into DOING. If you can’t find one, start one yourself. Random people enjoy having pancakes. Make a goal. Then strike down things that are distracting your from that goal…Put the fear of God into yourself. Okay, I’m not religious. Whatever spiritual ideas float your boat. Read some obituaries, watch the first fifteen minutes of Up, I don’t care. Just scare yourself good. you have a finite number of toothpaste tubes you will ever consume while on this planet. Make the most of that clean tooth time. For yourself.”
She just seemed to be speaking to me. Specifically to me. No one else. I was tired of not doing anything, you know? I have all these ideas running around my head at all times and very little time to actually get them out. I work two jobs and by the time I get home all I want is to watch TV, have bro time with Hudson the Cat, and eat dinner in my Fortress of Nerditude (a.k.a. my apartment). Reading Felicia’s book (Hiiiiiiiiiii Felicia) I found myself outlining my day and trying to figure out how to work in more time to be creative. You’re Never Weird On the Internet totally lit a fire under my ass and helped usher in the age of I Am Geek.
On top of all that Felicia Day is just a straight up fascinating human being. From being home schooled most of her life with little social interaction to going to college at age fourteenish to major in math and violin. Then she picks up and moves to L.A. and finds success as a commercial actress but wants more so she starts her own critically acclaimed webseries, before it’s time I might add. I couldn’t help but be in awe. By the time I finished the book I was a complete and utter Felicia Day fan. For those interested she’s going to be a part of the new Mystery Science Theater 3000 re-launch that will include Community’s Dan Harmon in some capacity (eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee). She comes across as humble, experienced, determined, witty, vulnerable, and down to earth. The book is written in conversational tone and you can’t help but walk away feeling that maybe you actually are friends with Felicia Day. But what I took away most of all was there is no time like the present to do something you love despite how scary it may seem. You have to make your own things happen, they’re not just going to show up at your door. So now I take that mentality and we’re off and running here. Great things ahead. Thanks Felicia!