Tuesday, April 5, 2016

You're Never Weird on the Internet (Almost) by Felicia Day

The Internet isn’t all cat videos. There’s also Felicia Day—violinist, filmmaker, Internet entrepreneur, compulsive gamer, hoagie specialist, and former lonely homeschooled girl who overcame her isolated childhood to become the ruler of a new world... or at least semi-influential in the world of Internet Geeks and Goodreads book clubs.

As much as I like Felicia, I had no idea about her past (prior to appearing on Buffy The Vampire Slayer). I just know her as a geeky redhead who kept popping up in the things I kept watching. So now I know she was home-schooled, is a violin prodigy and an amazing singer (for proof of the latter, be sure to listen to the audio book).

I usually astound people with the"Yes, I'm a programmer and in IT. No, I can't stand video games/computer games" I try, I really do. I always think computer games would be fun but when it comes down to it, I'd rather pick up a book and/or knitting. My passion for those hobbies is off the charts, so I do relate in that way to Day's passion for gaming. She has done quite a bit to bring gaming to the forefront, that women CAN be gamers, we CAN go to GenCon and we CAN be geeks. Day details her very first foray into gaming and it speeds along from there. Again, listen to the audiobook. She's a very enthusiastic reader.

Felicia devotes a chapter to GamerGate, and even I, outside the world of gaming, knew about this. Internet trolls are the pond scum in the online world. People, pre-internet, sucked pretty bad but give them anonymity and WiFi and those bastards have a field day.

Felicia also shares her struggle with mental illness. As someone suffering from depression and anxiety, it's reassuring to hear that other folks deal with it and keep moving forward. She makes a damn good point about how difficult it is to get anyone to be sympathetic to mental illness ("Chin up! Try to feel happy!").

I liked Felicia before and really like her now. You don't need to be a geek to read this book because it will entertain you regardless (but being a geek helps!).

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