John Green – Nerdfighters

John Green - Nerdfighters

There are some slightly older people who reach out to slightly younger people and are genuinely really, really good at it. Take John Green and his vlogbrother Hank, the people behind Just… yes.

John Green is a young and exciting American author and Youtube vlogger. He shares his Youtube account with his musical brother Hank Green. Together they form an unstoppable comic force: The Vlogbrothers. How to they avoid crossing the streams, Ghostbusters-style? Well, whereas talented musician Hank Green composes a range of hilarious music from Harry Potter tunes to chants about general awesomeness, John creates videos to: promote his books and discuss random hilarious stuff which results in most sensible people doing a little pee in their pants.

John Green is also involved with the Nerdfighters (what a renaissance man). The Nerdfighters (NF) are to all intents and purposes a massive group of nerds who fight to increase awesome and decrease ‘world suck’. Good? Yes. Good. Let’s face it… nobody likes world suck. Nerdfighters encourages younger people to voice opinions, make friends and get involved in groups and projects over the internet.

What the Nerdfighters say

Nerdfighters are not about you and me. Nerdfighters are about a made of awesome book, made by a woman in Australia, going to a made of awesome baby in the united states. Nerdfighters are about raising money and awareness for important causes. Nerdfighters are about building a supportive community of friends… in my pants. Nerdfighters are about stupid beautiful projects and making each other laugh and think with t-shirts and pocket protectors and rants about the situation in Pakistan which sucks right now. In the contemporary world where things fall apart and the center can not hold you have to imagine a community where there is no center… A lot of life is about doing things that don’t suck with people who don’t suck.

In a nutshell, they’re the coolest group of nerds on this gosh darned planet. They even have a catchphrase: DFTBA (Don’t Forget To Be Awesome).

(Note from the eds: Good lord. What a marvellous idea. Why don’t WE have a catchphrase? Turtles unite! Mingle and prosper! Revolution never, evolution now! On second thoughts, let’s not have a catchphrase and say we did. Neat idea, though…)

As well as being involved in all of these sumptuous sites and communities, John writes a genuinely fantastic range of short stories and award winning novels. I even saw his books in Waterstones in my birthplace of Hereford, which is quite the achievement when you consider Hereford is an insignificant dirt splatter on the map. A pretty splatter, though.

John Green says of his published work to BWI:

“I live long enough, I will surely be rendered irrelevant. But that is true of any job, you know?

My books have certainly been informed by personal experiences, but they have never been about them. My life as it has actually occurred isn’t very interesting. And for better or worse, I’ve never known anything about teen pop culture – not even when I was a teen. (I also don’t think this is particularly helpful; like, no one knows more about contemporary teenagers than contemporary teenagers, and yet teens almost never write good novels.)

I think the challenge is not to namedrop the right bands; the challenge is, as Emily Dickinson put it, to ‘tell all the truth / but tell it slant.’ There’s a reason teenagers still like Catcher in the Rye half a century after its publication (and still like Dickinson, too): What it means to be a human may change, but not very quickly.”

John Green’s novels pair realistic life experiences with witty humour to capture hearts and minds. They include:

We like what nerdfighter AllysonKate did here. Very much indeed. One can do similarly entrancingly odd things with album covers…