Shonda Rhimes’ sister told her that she never said yes to anything, and after some reflection, she realized it was true. So she made a resolution to spend a year saying yes to anything – everything – that came her way, and change her life into something that would make her happier. It’s challenging when her very first “yes” is to give a commencement speech at Dartmouth, and her second is to appear on Jimmy Kimmel Live (if you’re not aware, Rhimes is the creator of several immensely popular TV shows, including Grey’s Anatomy and Scandal), but she carries it all off in a project that ends up becoming permanent instead of just a year long.
This book was fun! It’s light and funny, and written in a very conversational tone. Several passages could have been lifted verbatim from text exchanges I’ve had with my best friend, so it made for a pleasant read. She’s an unabashed nerd, who as a child hid books in her underwear so she could read instead of playing outside, and she’s encouraging and supportive in a way that makes me feel like she would be an amazing friend. Her journey is inspiring – the “yes” concept stretches a little thin, including “saying yes to saying no”, but the overall idea is to confront what scares you, figure out why, and then do something about it. Her stories are funny and interesting, and I enjoyed them a lot.
I feel like I got slightly less out of this book for never having seen an episode of Grey’s, as it really feels that show and its characters are Rhimes’ favourite creations. It did, however, convince me that Cristina Yang is a person I want to meet, so I guess I’m going to have to do something about that sooner or later.