The Jewish Community Center of San Francisco hosts a number of events as part of their Arts and Ideas series. They have speakers and authors come and discuss their works, ideas, and more. I was very happy to have gotten a few tickets to the Jason Segel event before it sold out. I am a huge fan of Jason Segel’s work, from How I Met Your Mother to The Muppets movie and his earlier work.
This comedic actor is talented; there’s no doubt about it. So when I heard that he wrote a book, I immediately got excited and knew I had to get it. Laughter was in no short supply at this event. It opened up with an interview with Jason Segel. He talked about his film and television career, his childhood memories, and his book. It was a night of laughter, reflection, and great discussion.
Some of his inspiration for the book stems from a nightmare he had as a child where witches were eating his toes. It was quite creative and shows us how imaginative he is. He continued to discuss his childhood and how his family was a huge part of this book. He said his mother inspired him to be the comedian he is today. She has a great sense of humor and he really admired that about her. Also, his family enrolled him in an acting class to help bring him out of his shyness. Segel said that you do not have to make jokes at the expense of others. Thus, his comedic material is never geared toward demeaning other people.
Additionally, Segel emphasized how important collaboration is, and that’s why he chose to work with Kirsten Miller. A lot of his past work had an immense amount of collaboration, thus he found it fitting to continue that trend when writing this book. Before the evening broke out into a Q&A session, he read a part of the book! It was great listening to him read from his work; you could sense the passion and pride that he has for it.
During the Q&A session, a question was brought up as to whether the book will become a movie or not. We all know that Jason Segel has done a number of movies, so it seems fitting that it would go in that direction. But Jason brought up a good point. Even though television and movies are great mediums, kids need to read. Reading opens up the imagination, among other benefits. He said that, yes, reading is harder than watching a screen, but he would rather have his book stand alone right now.
The evening ended with a book signing. Even though we could not snap posed photos with him, getting to meet him in person was amazing and we did snap a few when we were at the front of the line. He was so kind and funny. I will never forget those few minutes of meeting him. Yes, it was legendary (pun intended).
After attending this event, I felt that I could face my fears just how Jason Segel does and continues to do so. It’s times when we are brought out of our comfort zones that we figure out who we truly are. I suggest that you pick up a copy of Nightmares!, especially because of how fitting the book is for the season. For all you fellow Jason Segel fans, this book is only the beginning of an awesome trilogy. So be on the lookout!
Here is an overview of the book:
“Jason Segel, multitalented actor, writer, and musician, teams up with New York Times bestselling author Kirsten Miller for the hilariously frightening middle-grade novel Nightmares!, the first book in a trilogy about a boy named Charlie and a group of kids who must face their fears to save their town. Sleeping has never been so scary. And now waking up is even worse!
Charlie Laird has several problems.
1. His dad married a woman he is sure moonlights as a witch.
2. He had to move into her purple mansion, which is NOT a place you want to find yourself after dark.
3. He can’t remember the last time sleeping wasn’t a nightmarish prospect. Like even a nap.
What Charlie doesn’t know is that his problems are about to get a whole lot more real. Nightmares can ruin a good night’s sleep, but when they start slipping out of your dreams and into the waking world—that’s a line that should never be crossed.
And when your worst nightmares start to come true…well, that’s something only Charlie can face. And he’s going to need all the help he can get, or it might just be lights-out for Charlie Laird. For good.” (Barnes & Noble)