Charlie McDonnell has just announced that his upcoming book will be a published adaptation of his popular video series Fun Science.
Since his very subtle announcement at the beginning of February, we’ve spent the past month speculating what the project might be all about. A biography on the ups and downs of his 10-year YouTube career as “Charlieissocoollike”? A physical release of his short film scripts? A “Challenge Charlie” activity book? Thankfully, it’s Charlie’s most unique and educational series of videos that will be getting the book treatment, as revealed in a new video today.
Through Fun Science, Charlie has taught his audience of over 2million subscribers the basics of scientific concepts such as light and sound, space and gravitational waves, and even reproduction – all in just a few minutes of condensed, light-hearted vlogging. While maintaining that he is an avid science fan and not a scientist himself, Charlie is writing the book himself with a scheduled October release.
We caught up with Charlie to ask a couple of questions about his motivation and process in adapting Fun Science into a book format, and how he thinks it will sit amongst the other YouTuber books out there…
WTU: What inspired you to adapt Fun Science into a book?
Charlie: One of the biggest downsides that I’ve always ran into with making my Fun Science videos is that there’s always so much cool stuff that I’m not able to pack into a four minute vlog. Either I simply have too many facts, or I don’t feel like I have the time to explain a scientific concept in enough detail to help people understand just how interesting a particular fact might be. Originally I’d thought about turning Fun Science into a longer form series, but ultimately a book seemed like the best possible medium to fill in the gaps that the videos can’t!
WTU: Where are you getting your scientific resources from?
Charlie: I’ve kind of inadvertently been collecting information for this book for years, simply from being an active science fan. I listen to lots of podcasts, read articles, watch science TV shows, and I generally just try to stay as informed as possible. I’m fortunate enough to have a researcher who’s helping me find a loads more information that I didn’t know about already, but my favourite facts in the book are the ones that have gotten lodged in my brain for whatever reason, and which I’ll usually tell anyone if I get a chance.
WTU: If you were to guess, who will be more likely to pick this book up – Charlie fans, or science fans?
Charlie: While I don’t have any issues with books that are designed for a specific video blogger’s audience… I’m really trying to not let this be just another YouTuber book. Knowing who charlieissocoollike is shouldn’t be a prerequisite for being able to enjoy it. So, while it is definitely for the people who have followed me and my Fun Science videos over the years (this book wouldn’t even exist without those people!) I also really want it to be for anyone who has even just a passing interest in science, and who’s interested in finding out more about how the world works.