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In which John is feeling a bit like all his nerve endings are on the outside of his body. But I do sincerely hope you like the turtles all the way down movie, which comes out Thursday on Max.
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Good morning, Hank.

It's Tuesday. I got home from the LA premiere of  Turtles All the Way Down last night, and it was amazing.

It was so special  to be able to celebrate the movie with the people who made it and  also with Kirsten Dunst and some of my YouTube friends and Rosianna  and the cast was there, and my kids got to dress up and see one of my  movies for the first time, and they loved it. It was incredible.  It was so joyous. I didn't even have to fake my red carpet smiles.  And yet.

So, right, I got back from LA last night. Later this morning, I fly to  New York for press stuff for the movie, which comes out on Thursday,  by the way. And I'm quite tired.

Not just physically, but also existentially  and a bit unwell. Overall, Hank, this is a pretty strange situation to be in,  because, one - I feel weird being anything other than overjoyed with  my ridiculously, absurdly fortunate life. Like, to quote Taylor Swift,  “am I allowed to cry?” To be able to publish the book at all, to have the book  become a film, to love the movie?

I have won a bunch of lotteries.  Also, two - all my dreams are coming true, and I genuinely love  the movie and the people who made it so much. And also, I think  it's a movie that's gonna help people, and it's extremely funny. All of that is true.  And yet it is also true that, three - it is really hard for me to talk so much  about my mental health and living with OCD and depression.

I think it's  important for me to talk about it. I wanna be clear that people living  with serious mental illness can also have full, wonderful lives. And I think  one way we destigmatize mental illness is by talking in public about it.  But to be honest, I also feel, like, quite exposed and a little bit like all  of my nerve endings are on the outside of my body.

Like, you know,  that insult, “thin skinned”, where someone will be like,  “Oh, they're just really thin skinned”? I am extremely thin of skin at the  moment. Again, I am aware, or at least I hope that I'm aware, of  the wild levels of entitlement involved in this.

And I've avoided talking  about it a lot in the past. But since The Fault in Our Stars movie  came out ten years ago, I have learned again and again that I'm just  not very good at being properly famous. There are a lot of things about it  that I like.

I love people seeing and reading and listening to my work.  I love getting to make awesome stuff with awesome people. But what I  love most is Nerdfighteria, where I get to have an audience and be part  of a community without feeling wildly overexposed and having magazines  be like, “There's a secret to John and Sarah's 18 year marriage.” Spoiler alert -  The secret is, like, mutual respect. Anyway, even though our entire  social order is oriented around the worship of fame, there is a reason  why so many people don't, like, survive celebrity.

Fortunately for me,  I will be home in Indianapolis in 72 hours and back to being, like,  a middle-aged dad and Nerdfighter. But for now, I need to be doing this  because I really want people, and not just Nerdfighters, to see this movie.  Although I will say it is a better movie if you are a Nerdfighter, because  there are so many little love songs to our community. A couple days ago,  I was talking to a reporter about my OCD and how lately I've been  living with the spiraling swirl of intrusive thoughts while also trying to,  like, talk about the spiraling swirl of intrusive thoughts.

And the reporter  said, “You know, I imagine this must be quite difficult for you, and I'm  really sorry.” And I, while trying to say thank you, kind of burst into tears.  It was a weird moment, obviously, not least because in that moment,  I realized, like, this person isn't a villain because they're asking this  question, and I'm not a villain because I kind of resent the question  and feel overexposed by it. We're both just trying to do our jobs.  If there is a villain, it's some larger system that kind of seeks to  dehumanize both of us in order to commodify art, but also, I willingly  participate in and greatly benefit from that system. So it's complicated.  So, yeah, the last couple months have been a weird mix of being  overjoyed and at the same time, not doing that great.  Life is pretty weird and I hope we captured some of that  complexity in the Turtles All the Way Down movie that comes out  on Thursday.

I really hope you like it and that you like it enough to, like,  tell your friends and stuff, because ultimately, that's the only marketing  campaign that matters. Hank, I'll see you on Friday.