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In which John answers many questions, including how he thinks the world will end, why he gets out of bed (most days), and whether failure is inevitable. TOUR INFO AND TICKETS:

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Preorder John's new book, Turtles All the Way Down, out October 10th 2017! You can find links to both the signed and unsigned editions here: and information on how to (probably) get a signed copy here:
Gooood morning, Hank, it's Tuesday, it's Question Tuesday, the day that I answer real questions from real nerdfighters. Let's get right to it. How is the world going to end?

Im glad we're starting on a light note. So for the last couple years I've been thinking a lot about this reptile species called Tuatara-I've actually got a tuatara on my wall back there. One of the things that gets me about tuatara is that they've been on earth for over 150 million years.

Humans, meanwhile, emerged like maybe 300,000 years ago, so we've been around for at most 0.2% of tuatara history. What I'm getting at is that I kinda suspect that our world may end a long time before The World. As for how, I'm with T.S. Eliot with that one-not with a bang, but with a whimper.

So what's even the point of getting out of bed?

Okay, I think the point of getting out of bed is to seek a reason to get out of bed. And I know that's a kind of a recursive answer to your question, but I don't think we can expect like fullfillment and meaning to like descend upon us miraculously. I think meaning is something we make together, and that's what gets me out of bed in the morning. Or at the latest, in the early afternoon.

Where did you write Turtles All The Way Down?

Mostly in bed, now that I think of it. I'm not great at following my own advice.

The internet makes me feel worse but I can't stop using it question mark? 

Yeeaaah. Yeah. I do think there are some pockets of the internet that make us feel better, but due to some issues with the wiring of the human brain, and also the arcitecture of the social internet, it is difficult, at least for me, to spend a lot of time in those places.
I actually have the same problem with food. Like, I could eat the stuff that makes me feel good, but some considerable portion of me seems to want to not feel good. That's not really an answer to your question, it's just an expression of commiseration. 

Are you still mad that pennies exist?

I wouldnt say mad so much as disappointed.

Are you dreading or looking forward to the book tour?

I am so looking forward to it! I can't even tell you how much joy it brings me to be on tour with Hank. Don't tell him i said that.

Hey, what cities on the turtles tour are sold out or close to being sold out?

The shows in Bellingham, Chicago, and Atlanta are sold out. I'm sorry that happened so quickly. A number of other places are close. So now is a good time to get tickets-here are all the cites we will be visiting, more info at, link in the doobly-doo.

Is it rude if i come to your book tour mostly to see Hank?

No, why do you think I'm going?

Vulcans or Klingons?

For me, that's more of an AND than an OR. Vulcans AND Klingons.

Coffee or tea?

Again, I'm gonna go with and.

How do you feel about animals with no necks?

Oh no. No no no. profoundly disturbing. Undo, undo!

If you could live in any time besides this one, when would it be?

Probably just the time like right before I found out about the corner of the internet devoted to animals with no necks.

Best hot dog you ever consumed?

One time in Reykjavik, Iceland I went to this hot dog stand and the hot dogs were like a dollar, and it wasn't just the best hot dog I've ever eaten, it was one of the two or three best MEALS I had ever eaten. I know this wouldn't surprise Freud, but I sometimes literally DREAM about that hotdog.

Who's your least favorite American founding father?

James Wilkinson was like an actual secret agent working against the United States, but even so I think you could make a case for Aaron Burr.

Is Turtles All The Way Down going to be translated into Spanish and/or other languages?

Yes. In fact, here is the Spanish cover. 

Do you ever feel like something you finished isn't good enough?

Yes! I feel that way every Tuesday evening and then once every 3-6 years when I publish a new book. 

Like if you're writing a book, the goal is to use language to create an experience in someone else's mind, right? And I think there will always be failures in that. Partly because of your own insufficiencies-you're always gonna run up against the limit of your talent-but also partly because of the insuficiencies of language itself. 

I thinks it's the same with building something in the physical world. Like both the wood and the carpenter will always have their imperfections. So inevitably all buildings will fall short of the way they're initially imagined, but even so they can provide us shelter.

Hank, congratualtions on a great VidCon Australia, I hope you're getting some rest because we go on tour in just 27 days! But before then, I will see you on Friday.