You're Never Weird on the Internet (Almost) - [Review]

Author: Felicia Day
Publisher: Touchstone
Release Date: August 11, 2015

From online entertainment mogul, actress, and “queen of the geeks” Felicia Day, a funny, quirky, and inspiring memoir about her unusual upbringing, her rise to Internet-stardom, and embracing her individuality to find success in Hollywood... 
 ...Hilarious and inspirational, You’re Never Weird on the Internet (Almost) is proof that everyone should embrace what makes them different and be brave enough to share it with the world, because anything is possible now—even for a digital misfit.

First off, I have to say that I just love Felicia Day. I have for years, ever since I was killing some time and tried The Guild on Netflix one day. I watch her on Geek and Sundry, and I participate in the Vaginal Fantasy Book Club on goodreads when I can, even watching their monthly Vaginal Fantasy Google+ Hangout. Basically, I’m a fan.

Last night I finished her new memoir You’re Never Weird on the Internet (Almost). I quietly put my iPad down, got ready for bed, and instantly burst into tears. Needless to say my husband was alarmed and didn’t expect this reaction from me after finishing Felicia’s book! There were many levels to these tears, but I can tell you the immediate source of the tears was anger.

(Reason for Tears #1)
I had no idea that Felicia was so cruelly attacked on-line during the #GamerGate thing. Over the years she’s referred to “trolls” having awful things to say, and I think that’s the Internet’s version of the paparazzi; if you get big enough to get noticed, you get noticed by everyone, including some pretty despicable people, and from all around the world!! (Dream big, kids.)

I don’t pretend to understand #GamerGate; it’s just not a part of my world. I remember Wil Wheaton saying something on a “Not the Flog” (I think?) but that was really my only exposure to it. What I do understand is bullying. But this level of bullying, (and I’m not just talking about #GamerGate, as she’s apparently had plenty of other trouble before that clusterf*ck) borders on psychotic. There’s having garbage thrown at you (me, grade 7) and then there’s someone breaking into your house and/ or threatening you serious bodily harm.

But I don’t want to make this review about that one part of Felicia’s extraordinary journey! (I just wanted to explain the Tears of Indignation.)

Initially my review was going to be in a fan letter format, because I honestly was going to write her a fan letter last year, but was too shy. And also I’m 37 and thought that if I were to write a fan letter at a time in my life it would have been to Milli Vanilli or MC Hammer. But I would have had to send it by Canada Post, and by the time it got to them I assume their careers would have already been over… (Ooooh, Canada Post burn!!)

Felicia came to “The Calgary Comic and Entertainment Expo” last year, and I stood in line for an hour to get her to autograph a copy of The Guild comic, as well as sign the comic Dr.Horrible and Other Horrible Stories for my friend in Scotland. It’s funny that she writes about being awkward and star-struck in certain situations, because that’s exactly what happened to me! I froze. My brain left for greener pastures. When she asked what she should write in my friend’s book, I think I said, “oh! Ahhh… *forgets best friend’s name*… just sign it. Please.” And she was so gracious. Like with a capital G. Even after sitting there for over an hour and meeting about one hundred people a few minutes at a time.

And it’s funny, because the guy controlling the line was asking some of us fans who Felicia was, and we all rattled off different things from her resume. And I looked around at the people waiting to see her, and they were dressed up in so many assorted costumes I could only guess at about half of them. But everyone was so happy to be there, just waiting! I think because Felicia means a lot to many different people for many different reasons.

(Reason for Tears #2)
I struggle with anxiety and depression, and hearing that Felicia has anxiety attacks and then goes to speaks to a thousand people boggles my mind. As Joss Whedon said in his Forward: “… that’s part of her gift: she makes crippling anxiety look easy.” I won’t go into how hard it is in this society to make people understand that I, personally, don’t have the same energy that the majority of people do. And that I have to take care of myself, and be an advocate for myself. Felicia writes about cutting back at Geek and Sundry, and saying NO to people:
Once you tell people exactly what you will and won’t do, it’s amazing how they’ll adjust. Or they won’t. And then an opportunity or relationship goes away. And that’s okay.
Which made me want to hug my iPad. Because I don’t know very many people that have had to embrace their “different” and be uncompromising about taking time for themselves.

(Reasons for Tears 2.5: Good ol’ fashioned guilt)
I love shows like "Co-optitude" where Felicia plays video games with her brother, Ryon (and he plays games with his sister). And "The Flog" (her personal vlog). And now I feel like I was part of the machine that was selfishly taking, taking, taking, and I didn’t know how hard things were for her, and that she was spread so thin for fans like me...

Hmmm… How can I explain this to people who aren’t co-dependent and feel responsible for other people’s problems… I feel like I should have been more forgiving when, say, "The Flog" went off the air. But, alongside “trolling,” I think that sometimes the people in the audience feel an ownership, of sorts, towards the people who are the entertainers, whether they are online or on TV. And they/ we can be pretty demanding on these pop-culture stars! (Don't even get me started on those poor Kardashians!!!)

Which sort of brings me back to the whole cyberbullying thing. This morning, a co-worker of my husband’s came to talk to him about Felicia’s book and how she was bullied online. (I’m not kidding. This guy is around 50, a big gamer, and a super-fan of Felicia’s.) To which my husband replies, “ya, my wife burst into tears about it last night.” And we are just “randos” in Canada! Felicia’s book is making people talk about this awful emergence of hateful people of all ages, from all around the world, having a new(ish) platform to spread their awfulness via the Internet.

[Just as a side note: this September Felicia ran a short campaign selling “Embrace Your Weird” t-shirts to raise money for the non-profit anti-cyberbullying charity 'Stomp Out Bullying.’ Their goal was to sell 500 t-shirts, and they sold 4,680! (http://www.stompoutbullying.org/)]

Oh yeah, this is a book review. Basically, Felicia had an awkward childhood, which has made her into an awkward-but-loveable hero to thousands, if not millions of people. She has an awesome, quirky writing style that is easy to follow and wholly engaging.

Towards the end of the book, Felicia encourages anyone and everyone to take a chance and follow their dreams, and to possibly use the internet as a means to reach those dreams. She writes, “if you enrich one other person’s life, it will be worth it. If you find one friend, it will be worth it.”

It’s hard not to love Felicia Day; after reading her book, you will love her all the more, I promise.

Quotable from: You're Never Weird on the Internet (Almost)

"Felicia's place is always off the edge of the map, where dragons wait, and this story is more than a memoir. It's a quest. If you wanna survive, stay close to the redhead.
             She knows her way."
- Joss Whedon, Forward

"I hope all my copious oversharing encourages someone to stop, drop and do something that's always scared them. Create something they've always dreamt of. Connect with people they never thought they'd know. Becaues there's no better time in history to do it... Plus, the apocalypse might be right around the corner..." [590]


  1. This book! I loved it. It is why I keep going on blogging and crafting even though sometimes it seems totally pointless!

  2. Me too! She's been a hero of mine for a while!