A while ago, I met this girl online though a gaming page on face book. I believe I posted a stupid picture of me, losing to a bottle of paint, (it wasn’t pretty…) and she responded.
A while later, she contacted me again, asking if I would be interested in joining if she wanted to create a game club for girls. You know, a place where girls could meet without being judged for being girls.
I have had my fair share of tiresome encounters with the gaming world, because of my gender. As much as I don’t like discriminating myself, (a girls club? But what if a boy wants to join? Who am I to tell him not to, then?) I kind of jumped on her idea instantly.
Long story short, she is a huge fan of Felicia Day. I knew of Felicia, mostly through my boyfriend, (king nerd around the local community,) and because I am a wee bit obsessed with Supernatural. If by a wee bit, you mean completely… Okay, I’ll stop myself right now. Sorry.
But, my new friend kept talking about how awesome Felicia is and I did not need too much persuasion to buy her book. I was already stalking… I mean following her, on Twitter…
You are never weird on the internet (almost.)
Well, that is a title I can relate to.
It feels like a very honest book. Like a book most women could have written, describing perfectly how to expect too much from yourself, how to cry through the long days where you have to finish up work, you have no idea how to get through.
I sure know what that feels like…
It is written in a very relatable tone and with a lot of smiles and funny comments. It is an easy and inspirational read, despite the many emotional and tearful moments.
I loved reading about the Guilt and how she managed to kick off her web series. That is pretty awesome for me, having been drawn in by Dark Mare Pictures.
Also, as a writer, reading her description of the creative process, was pretty spot on. Water proof keyboards, just saying… They are important.
Okay, I am really picking up on the whole crying part of this book, aren’t I?
That’s not exactly what it is about, but I guess it struck a chord in me. As a reader, you do tend to pick up on the things you relate to the most.
I’ve never played WoW myself. I’ve seen quite a few of my friends get lost in it, and I know myself. That is a game I must never enter. I know how many years of my life I have wasted playing Heroes of Might and Magic… (III, of course…) I would not call myself a real gamer, but I still found this book easy to understand and interesting to read.
Oh, and she had a My Little Pony herd as a kid. Points.
All in all, it was a very uplifting book, about never giving up and never letting anyone tell you not to attempt something, if you really want it. I was smiling through most of it. Until the last chapter.
Growing up in the equestrian world, bullying, and cyber bullying, is something I can relate to. The way one little post, or comment, by a small minded person, can escalate and tear down everyone around them. The way the haters voices always ring louder than the ones who support you.
I am not Felicia Day, or anywhere near her level of awesome or fame, but I have had my own brush with the nasty side of the internet, right here on this blog.
I know, I’ve invited it in, through my book, and by attacking the FEI and their blood rule, allowing the horse to bleed in the show ring, and I have watched in mute disbelieve as the internet imploded around me. I have had days where I have completely singed off, unable to face any part of that digital world, eventually leading to me, deleting myself from most of the equestrian world. I cannot imagine the scale on which Felicia would have had to endure it, for speaking up.
Before I read her book, I supported her t-shirt campaign, “Embrace your Weird,” where proceeds goes to her anti bullying charities. I don’t think I understood (probably still don’t,) what that meant, but I know I’ll wear my Embrace your Weird hoodie proudly, once it shows up.
That last chapter reminded me once more, not to be too familiar with people online. I know, it’s easy to meet strangers you relate to, and somehow, since I left the equestrian world, I have been feeling much safer online than I ever did before. I guess I shouldn’t. You never really know when you accidentally piss off someone and provoke the worst of human pack mentality.
At the same time, I am not going to live in fear of that happening. As much as I got tired of fighting a losing battle, watching the equestrian world decline, I won’t ever let anyone tell me to be quiet about the things that matter to me.
That is what I am taking away from this book as well. I don’t know if that was intended or not, and I know that this post is more about me than about the book, but that is another thing that is cool about it. As a woman, it makes you think about you own life a lot. About how you interact with your surroundings and how they respond to you.
I was always weird. Online as well as offline. Even if my boyfriend keeps telling me that I am not embracing it. Well, we can’t all be King Nerd, now can we…
So, should you read it?
It is a great book. And not just if you are a woman, trying to find a place for yourself in the gaming world. It is inspirational, and beautiful, and I bet that most men, and none gamers too, would do well with reading it. It really is not a nerd book. (Almost.)
It is a book about surviving, living your life while you have it, and making something of yourself you can be proud of. Not necessarily becoming famous. More, about creating a life for yourself you can look back on one day, and be happy with.
I think that is a pretty cool message.
Oh, and I hate writing book reviews. You never really know what the writer was thinking. I could be getting all this wrong. But this is what I take away, as I close the book. I know that I have had people read things into my books I never imagined, and I always thought that was pretty cool.
How the written word can mean so many different things, depending on the reader. As a writer, I strive to move my audience. Felicia Day surely manages that.
I absolutely recommend it.
So, to my friend who made me read it; Thanks. I guess I owe you one…