Friday, January 27, 2012
|John Green reading/signing in Indianapolis|
Unless you've been living under a rock, you probably know who John Green is. (And if you don't, here's his Wikipedia page.) We here at We Heart YA have a LOT of respect for Mr. Green and all the things he does. Write books, vlog, raise money for charity, win awards, decrease world suck, put on concerts...
Wait a minute. Concerts?
Yes, concerts. Well, sort of concerts. Part concerts, part readings, part puppet shows... It's an odd but wonderful mix, and I had the privilege of watching it live on the internets.
|John Green and brother Hank, livestreaming their show from Austin, TX|
John and his brother/co-vlogger Hank are on tour, and they're streaming some of their events on YouTube. There are only 3 more events, so keep an eye on John's Twitter feed for details on how to attend/view.
Actually, most of their tour has sold out. Yes that's right, HUNDREDS (in some cases at least a THOUSAND) people paid to see John and Hank be goofy for a couple hours. Needless to say, this is not your average book tour.
I'll be honest, I was skeptical of John Green. In general, things that are hyped up that big pretty much never live up in my eyes. I usually have to wait for them to die down before I can check them out objectively. (Ex: Could not read/enjoy Harry Potter until all the books had come out. Ditto Twilight.)
But after reading John's latest, The Fault in Our Stars, and then watching him and Hank live on YouTube, I started to get it. No wait, that's a lie. I FULL OUT get it. I am a NERDFIGHTER.
And here's why:
John is funny. John is smart. John is honest. AND SO IS HIS WRITING.
I don't mean to sound like a gushing fangirl, but I have a tremendous amount of respect for those 3 qualities. I aspire to them myself. And though I may never be a vlogger, or sell out 1000+ seats on my book tour, there's a lot I think I can learn from John Green, both as a writer and as a human being.
Here are a few notes I jotted down from the Austin livestream, mostly about TFIOS:
- "Even the biggest lives are temporary."
- John wanted to write a book about "the small heroism" that most of us will have to choose.
- Being aware of our mortality "helps us use our time here wisely."
- Re: his characters being so intelligent/eloquent -- (paraphrased) First of all, yes, he really does believe that there are some teenagers that smart and eloquent. Not many, but some. And second, fiction doesn't need to pretend not to be fiction. He doesn't consider it his job to present a technical reality or to stick to what's "common." Obviously. After all, he wrote a book about a guy who dated 19 girls all named katherine. "That is not common."
- Re: Markus Zusak (author of The Book Thief) -- "He's like the nicest guy, and a genius, with big muscles... It's very frustrating."
PS: I don't mean to snub Hank. Hank is great too! He's sort of the concert-y part of the concerts. Which is obviously key.
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