“Geekdom is the joy of connecting about things you love without fear of judgment.”
– Felicia Day on her site Geek & Sundry.
In his interview with Felicia Day about her memoir, Jevon Phillips notes “the Internet is where Day found her voice. She created and stars in the Web series ‘The Guild’ and is the founder of Geek & Sundry, a multiplatform media outlet that is a hub for the geek community.
“She does all of this, plus is a champion of romance novels and board games, and she still found time to write a book.”
“Memoirs are hard! What I wanted to do was open the door to this new world, which is digital media, since my life is exactly the same years as the emergence of the Internet,” Day said.
“It’s like the industrial revolution, a technological revolution, and hopefully it opens doors for people rather than closes them. That’s why I wanted to have that message of openness and creativity and expressing yourself — the Pollyanna view of technology.” …
“The core of it that people tended to respond to … was embracing your uniqueness and being able to get your voice out there as a unique person using opportunities and places that did not exist before.” …
Depression and anxiety
“At the end of my book, there’s a whole chapter dealing with depression and anxiety and really struggling with success. I think that’s something that no one really tells you about.
“When you achieve what you were aiming for and get the recognition that you were looking for, all of these other problems start piling on.
“It’s not something that you want to complain about because you were always driving yourself toward being recognized, achieving a certain amount of popularity, having so many doors open for you. But that can be almost as crushing as no one wanting to hear you.”
Phillips asks her, “Was writing your memoir cathartic? You talked a bit about depression, and later in your book, about having a nervous breakdown.”
Felicia Day: “Absolutely. Writing this book was an adventure in self-therapy that I never thought I would explore.”
[Photo from her Facebook page.]
You’re Never Weird on the Internet (Almost): A Memoir
by Felicia Day (Author), Joss Whedon (Foreword)
Clip from the audio book version:
Actor, writer, producer Felicia Day is another example of a multitalented creator.
She “studied operatic singing and ballet professionally, performing at concerts and competitions nationwide. Home-schooled throughout much of her childhood, she began college at the age of 16.
“A National Merit Scholar (1995), she graduated as valedictorian of her class. An accomplished violinist, Day was accepted to the Juilliard School of Music but chose to attend the University of Texas at Austin on a full scholarship and double majored in mathematics and music performance.
“She is also the star, script writer and producer of the original web series The Guild, a show loosely based on her life as a gamer.” (From Wikipedia profile – follow the link from her name.)
She says, “I don’t think I ever knew I wasn’t a geek” in the Girls Go Geek video below [posted on Amber Mac – site of Amber MacArthur.]
In his Wired interview article How Felicia Day Recruited Millions for Her Guild [09.29.09] Gus Mastrapa notes “Felicia Day’s stardom wasn’t handed down to her from on high by Hollywood. She’s guest-starred on Buffy the Vampire Slayer and House, but most of her legions of fans still know her because of a show she wrote and produced herself that doesn’t air on any network.
“Now in its third season, The Guild — Day’s microbudget comedic web series about a group of online gamers — enjoys financing from Microsoft as well as cushy placement on the Xbox 360 dashboard. But fans are still discovering Day and her nerdy ways online.”
[Wired mag.: You seem to have intimate knowledge of videogames as a powerful form of escape. How is it that you’re so in touch with that impulse and can also be an ambitious and productive creator?
Felicia Day: “I have a little obsessive-compulsive personality. You can tell because I played online games for eight hours a day. I have a very focused personality. I spent years not doing anything because I was inhibited.
“I didn’t know if people would approve of what I was doing. So just the whole process of getting up the bravery to write something was a huge step for me. But once I got on board and I saw that this is my project — this is actually making a difference and people are enjoying it — I just get tunnel vision.”
[Does that mean there’s less time for World of Warcraft?]
Day: “There’s no resentment when I have to spend five hours online launching a new episode because that’s just what has to be done. I have a producer, Kim — she has as much passion for really taking the reins of our future and doing it ourselves.
“In Hollywood you’re so disempowered. You’re always waiting for somebody to green-light what you do. What we found is a place that, maybe we’re not recognizable. Maybe the whole cast is not recognizable on the street.
“But we have passionate people who care about what we’re making. And that’s enough. It makes it worth all the hard work that we’re not necessarily rolling around in money for.”
Also see her site and blog at http://feliciaday.com
Read about more multitalented creators like Gordon Parks, Julia Cameron, Bryce Dallas Howard, Jamie Lee Curtis, Jane Seymour, Natalie Portman, James Franco, Mayim Bialik, Jeff Bridges, Viggo Mortensen, David Lynch and others in the post: Multitalented Creative People.