I stayed up late reading it and woke up early to finish it without doing anything in between. The last time I did that with a book was something written by R.L. Stein 20 years ago.
With a lot of memoirs, I have very little in common with the author. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing because I get to see life through the eyes of someone that is completely different than myself and learn how to empathize with their world view. You’re Never Weird on the Internet by Felicia Day is different because finally there is a memoir that I relate to on a personal level more so than most. I am a nerd, I read fantasy books, I love science fiction, I play video games, I played WoW, I watch Supernatural, I watched The Guild, I LOVE Joss Whedon, I didn’t have many friends growing up, most my friends are online, I create YouTube content, and I want to write. So basically, this book was written for a person like me, and if you are similar in experience, this book was written for you too.
Felicia talks about her life growing up in a home-schooled home, going to college early as a 16 year old violinist, and deciding that her true passion is acting. Felicia was miserable in her life while she was just a commercial actor and developed a gaming addiction. After much guilt and anxiety she got her life turned around because she started writing her own TV show pilot. Two friends and her ended up funding the entire project and putting it online because she wanted to maintain all the rights to the show as a creator. The rest is history and if you are familiar with Felicia Day you know the success that The Guild became.
I absolutely loved this memoir. I have been a Felicia Day fan for many years and when I heard she was coming out with a book, I made sure to get it on release day. I watched The Guild, Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog, Geek and Sundry, and Supernatural, so I was a fan of hers already. However, it wasn’t until I started following her on Goodreads, and I watched the twitch.tv marathon she did for lupus, that I found a new admiration for her. Let me explain. I knew that she was a writer, creator, and a cute actress. I also knew that she was a nerdy girl and a gamer, but I never knew if that was a persona she created, or if that was really her.
When I started getting into Goodreads more heavily and writing my own reviews, I noticed that Felicia reviewed a book I also reviewed. I was a fan of hers so I started to follow her on Goodreads. Come to find out she has read a ton more fantasy and sci-fi books than me. I started to check out some of her reviews and they were really good. She was using Goodreads much longer than me, since 2008, and she has read a ton of fantasy books that I want to read. This showed me two things about Felicia, she is not fake, and she has been reading constantly for many years, while being super busy in her career. I admired that even during her busy schedule that she found time to read speculative fiction.
This past March, Geek and Sundry created a twitch.tv channel, and to make it special hosted a marathon to raise money and awareness for lupus. Felicia was on the stream so much and really put so much effort into this marathon to raise money. She was her normal goofy self but I found that I really admired her for the amount of energy and time she put into this marathon. She looked so exhausted during the marathon but she tried so hard to always put on a smile for the viewers. Because of this marathon and seeing her Goodreads she became someone I admired.
Anyway, back to the book, got a little side-tracked there, but I wanted to talk about why I even got the book in the first place. The memoir was well written and her infectious personality comes through so easily to the reader. Reading about her battles with game addiction had me shaking my head in agreement. Reading her issues about the lack of friendships made me remember times when I was lonely as a child. Her pursuit for perfection was something I could relate to as well. Then the wisdom bombs hit me, “No matter what you feel is holding you back in life, you can attempt anything.” pg 150. In this section she talked about her struggles with writing and her fears to start something. I myself would love to write more but my fears of failure are stopping me. This chapter made me see that it is difficult but attempting it and actually doing it is where it is at. It might be good, in fact it’ll probably be bad, but actually attempting it is where the courage comes in.
Anyway, I loved this book and I am giving it a 5 star rating. After reading it, I realized that my old attitude of wondering if the way she presented herself was a persona was incredibly wrong, and I will do my best to not make that same mistake with individuals in the future. I will believe and accept everyone for who they showcase to the world they are without having doubts.
This will get reread in the future, especially the chapters on writing and depression. Some good things in there. I realize this was a different review than usual but I wanted to talk more about my respect for Felicia than anything else. If you are a fan of Felicia Day and you consider yourself awkward, nerdy, and you have dreams you are afraid of trying, read this book.