memoir · nonfiction

Book Review: You’re Never Weird on the Internet (Almost) by Felicia Day

I’ve only seen Felicia Day in a few things (Supernatural being the show I know her the best from), but I enjoy her quirky acting style. I have another book of hers on my TBR, but since it’s at a different local library, I hadn’t gotten to it yet – but when someone mentioned she’d written a memoir that included parts about how she was homeschooled and how it affected her life, I knew I had to read it (as someone currently homeschooling/pandemic-schooling my own little weirdo). You’re Never Weird on the Internet (Almost) by Felicia Day (Gallery Books, 2015) went onto my TBR and came home with me my next library trip (usually, books sit there a little longer than that, but everything else was checked out that day! My town is big on reading, which is awesome). 

Actress, writer, and director Felicia Day is known for being super into geeky things like online gaming and is super popular online, but growing up, she was a friendless homeschooled kid (for hippie reasons, not God reasons, as she puts it). Her mom seems to have had a more hands-off approach in terms of curriculum and learning, but she did expect Felicia and her brother to read widely and constantly, an approach that obviously worked well for at least her daughter’s learning style. Felicia went to college early, double majoring in both math and violin performance, ending up with a 4.0, but what she really wanted to do was act. However, along the way, she discovered the internet, the joys of online gaming, and how anonymous camaraderie from behind a screen can change your life.

After college, it was off to Los Angeles, where it took years to build up a career. Sometimes, her online gaming addiction got in the way, big time, and Felicia began to use what she knew in order to develop her own web series, catapulting her into stardom and into the role of Queen of the Internet. It’s not all fun and games – celebrity stalkers are definitely a thing, and Gamergate reared its filthy head and sucked her in as well – but this is a great story of hard work, being true to yourself, and building what you love. 

This was a quick, fun read. It’s eight years old this year, and there were a few things that hadn’t aged super well – a few things like fat jokes that made me wince – but overall, it was a decent read. I didn’t necessarily learn anything that will help me be a better homeschool parent – I think my daughter isn’t quite as motivated and/or dedicated or curious as Felicia was (she’d be content to draw all day or play Barbies, or play games on her kindle and never do another math problem in her life if I didn’t make her do other things), but it was definitely interesting to read about how having the time to develop her own interests directly led to Felicia’s career. I can only hope my own daughter eventually knows herself that well.

Visit Felicia Day’s website here.

Follow her on Twitter here.

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