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Own Your Weird*

Own Your Weird… and Capitalize on It

This is a somewhat peculiar book, which I suppose is not expected given its title and its subject. The author purports that the book will help you own your own weirdness. This isn’t just on a personal level as one might think. In fact, the thrust of the book seems to be about how to take your own unique weirdness and turn it into a profit. The author himself has done quite a number of outrageous and unique things that are only possible in this age of the internet: he auctioned the rights to his own last name for a pretty penny, he got sponsorship for one of his books by selling tweet-sized ads in his book to online businesses, and he would wear others’ branded t-shirts and go about on social media for a price.

The book is split into three sections, owning your weird mindset, how he owns his weird, and creating your own weird blueprint for business and life. The book is surprisingly thought provoking. The pace at first is a bit frenetic and odd, but once he gets into the meatier chapters, he simmers down a little bit and actually does provide some nuggets of wisdom. Each chapter ends with a brief exercise to help you find your own weirdness or express it, based on the chapter topic.

The problem with the book, though, is that the author is essentially everywhere in it. It was like he couldn’t keep from discussing how someone could cultivate their own unique weirdness without injecting his story into it, even in the third section. I did find this a bit annoying and perhaps a little pretentious. Also, parts of the book just seemed like some random ideas thrown together. My sense is that he did much of this book on the fly. He does seem to have enough experience and insight that he could have created a pretty amazing book, but it falls short due to the apparently spontaneous nature of the writing and a singular obsession with inserting himself into every bit of the book.

Despite the fact that the subtitle says that this book is about work, life, and love, it mostly talks about how to use your uniqueness to start a business or profit in some other way. There are only very small sections on the other topics. Still, however, I will admit that I found this to be a rather intriguing read, and it did get me into thinking more about my own uniqueness and how I may want to let that shine going forward.