Although he has been a Youtube superstar for years, I only discovered Shane Dawson’s vlogs a couple months ago. That led to his podcasts, and now, to his book. At first, I loved him because he was awful–he said the most outrageous things, and I delighted in someone’s complete disregard of societal politeness. But the further I fell into the Shane Dawson world, the more I realized he’s a genuinely good guy whose ability to be brash is layered on top of a lot of pain and compassion. He’s a total sweetheart, and this makes me love him even more than when I thought he was a jerk.
I Hate Myselfie gives readers a peek into Shane’s past, a fuller reveal of topics he’s hinted at in vlogs. His abusive father, being a child of divorce, enduring harrassment for his teenage obesity, becoming an internet phenomenon–his essays cover some seriously dark topics while managing to make me choke with laughter (like his mental breakdown resulting from a Splenda addiction). His honesty about his neuroses and self-doubt feels like an invitation to admit and accept our own embarrassing secrets, and maybe, just maybe, even to laugh about them. I could choose literally any paragraph to demonstrate his wry sense of humor, so here’s one at random:
When I was seven my first job was getting the newspaper every morning from the front porch and taking it upstairs to my grandma. I know it sounds simple, but I was obese and my front porch had like six steps, so it was a daily struggle. Also the fact that I had to walk up another thirty steps to get to my grandma’s bedroom made it damn near impossible. I saw a commercial for one of those electronic “stair chairs” for handicapped people that literally lifts you from the first floor all the way up to the second story of the house. It was on my wish list to Santa every year. I never got it. But I did get a Princess Diana Beanie Baby in a glass box, so all is forgiven.
I hope I Hate Myselfie is the first of many books Shane writes. He’s a creative powerhouse, and whatever he does will be brilliant, I’m sure. Below is an introduction to Shane’s life in all its irreverent and heartfelt glory.
From his first vlog back in 2008, to his full-length film directorial debut, Not Cool, Shane Dawson has been an open book when it comes to documenting his life. But behind the music video spoofs, TMI love-life details, and outrageous commentary on everything the celebrity and internet world has the nerve to dish out is a guy who grew up in a financially challenged but loving home in Long Beach, California, and who suffered all the teasing and social limitations that arise when you’re a morbidly obese kid with a pretty face, your mom is your best friend, and you can’t get a date to save your life. In I Hate Myselfie, Shane steps away from his larger-than-life internet persona and takes us deep into the experiences of an eccentric and introverted kid, who, by observing the strange world around him, developed a talent that would inspire millions of fans. Intelligent, hilarious, heartbreaking, and raw, I Hate Myselfie is a collection of eighteen personal essays about how messy life can get when you’re growing up and how rewarding it can feel when the cleanup is (pretty much) done.
Release Date: March 2015