If at Birth You Don't Succeed
My Adventures with Disaster and Destiny
“Zach Anner is way more than an inspirational figure for anyone who has ever felt impossibly different: he’s also a great f**king writer. Wise and funny, with unfailing insight into the booby trap known as the human mind, you will hang on every word as you watch him turn his considerable intellectual gifts into a life worth envying. I like that this book has no genre, and neither does this special man.”—Lena Dunham
Comedian Zach Anner opens his frank and devilishly funny book, If at Birth You Don't Succeed, with an admission: he botched his own birth. Two months early, underweight and under-prepared for life, he entered the world with cerebral palsy and an uncertain future. So how did this hairless mole-rat of a boy blossom into a viral internet sensation who's hosted two travel shows, impressed Oprah, driven the Mars Rover, and inspired a John Mayer song? (It wasn't "Your Body is a Wonderland.")
Zach lives by the mantra: when life gives you wheelchair, make lemonade. Whether recounting a valiant childhood attempt to woo Cindy Crawford, encounters with zealous faith healers, or the time he crapped his pants mere feet from Dr. Phil, Zach shares his fumbles with unflinching honesty and characteristic charm. By his thirtieth birthday, Zach had grown into an adult with a career in entertainment, millions of fans, a loving family, and friends who would literally carry him up mountains.
If at Birth You Don't Succeed is a hilariously irreverent and heartfelt memoir about finding your passion and your path even when it's paved with epic misadventure. This is the unlikely but not unlucky story of a man who couldn't safely open a bag of Skittles, but still became a fitness guru with fans around the world. You'll laugh, you'll cry, you'll fall in love with the Olive Garden all over again, and learn why cerebral palsy is, definitively, "the sexiest of the palsies."
Praise for Zach Anner
“Zach makes you want to be a better person, with his humor and his heart and everything he's had to deal with from the time he was born. I've never met anyone like him, and I've met a lot of people.” —Oprah Winfrey
“Zach Anner is a truly inspiring and hysterical human being with a warped sense of humor (and body). He’s also an exceptional writer and his memoir is an absolute joy.”—Rainn Wilson
“Zach Anner is the living definition of ‘giving better than he’s gotten.’ Life dealt him a difficult hand but he managed to beat the house with humor, heart, and a fearless punk attitude. Required reading.”—Patton Oswalt
“I love Zach Anner and I love his memoir. If everyone were a little more like Zach, the world may not be abetter place, but it would be funnier place, which is a great step forward.”—Alexis Ohanian
“He’s a unique, creative kid with a smart, edgy sense of humor.”—Arsenio Hall
“I think I speak for everybody when I say...I want to see more of Zach.” —John Mayer
“Wonderful. . . Anner’s comedy is the peppy, uplifting sort you’d expect from someone who Oprah says ‘makes [her] want to be a better person,’ such as his elaborate Olive Garden metaphors for the nature of life. . . . Anner remarks wryly that being expected to act as an ambassador for the disabled ‘is a tightrope walk, which is hard on four wheels.’ Maybe so, but with this book, he makes it look easy.”—Publishers Weekly (starred review)
“Funny, empowering…An inspirational memoir with a seasoned, infectious sense of humor…[Anner’s book chronicles] his three decades of life (so far) with cerebral palsy, a permanent condition that hasn’t prevented him from living his dream as a comic, a media sensation, and a motivational speaker.”—Kirkus Reviews
Praise For If at Birth You Don't Succeed: My Adventures with Disaster and Destiny…
"Ambitious and hard-working media personality Zach Anner narrates his memoir with the verve and compassion that make his story so compelling...Anner's sincerity shines throughout the production, and listeners will find themselves laughing out loud, nodding with recognition, and hoping for more of Anner's stories." -AudioFile.com
“Like your best friend, Anner tells you his funniest, most outrageous stories, but he also allows himself to be vulnerable, admitting his regrets and fears with quiet honesty. Recommend this recording to anyone who feels out of place or wants to connect to another human being.”-Booklist
Macmillan Audio, 9781427268037
Publication Date: March 8, 2016
About the Author
Zach Anner is an award-winning comedian, show host, and public speaker. In 2011, he won his own travel show on the Oprah Winfrey Network, Rollin' With Zach. He also hosted the shows Have A Little Faith for Rainn Wilson's media company SoulPancake, and Riding Shotgun and Workout Wednesdays on his own YouTube channel, which has over eleven million hits. Zach lives in Buffalo, NY and Austin, TX, and spends most of his spare time in his underwear, thinking about how he can change the world.