Part and parcel of social media is everyone having an opinion about everyone's choices, and a large chunk of that dissent is consistently directed to celebrities. But while some more than others are targets, reality TV star Mina Starsiak Hawk has proven to have some of the greatest fans around. In an exclusive with PopCulture.com for her debut children's book release this February, the 35-year-old Good Bones star reveals her more than half-a-million fans always come to her defense anytime an internet troll or "keyboard warrior" tries to crawl into the comments section.
"Say something mean — I don't need to fight back, they will all get you," Starsiak Hawk laughed about in our series PopCulture @ Home. Humbled by the fans and mindful of her position, the 35-year-old reveals how she always blurs names out when she shares some of the messages from trolls received via DM to her Instagram Stories. "Honestly, it's more of an entertaining thing at this point. These people are wild. This is what they'll say behind their keyboard. They have one friend and their profile picture's a turtle."
The home renovation expert and now children's book author of the forthcoming Built Together, out Feb. 2, stresses the trolling can be "very challenging" for some users. "I'm pretty thick-skinned. So, like what you're saying, really — probably you had a bad day; you and your husband or wife got in a fight, that's fine. So, I like to repost because they're funny."
Starsiak Hawk reiterates how "God forbid [a troll] actually comments on a post" and not send her a private message, she knows the comments section will be filled with fans coming for the critics. "[Comment] on the post, everyone knows who you are, and they will get you," she stressed.
Last summer, ahead of her Two Chicks District Co. store opening in Indianapolis, the mom of two admitted that for the most part, "people mean well" even if it comes across as "ignorant" in their message. "I generally just try to give people the benefit of the doubt," Starsiak Hawk told PopCulture at the time, remarking how a lot of the comments are pointed toward her parenting skills. "A lot of them are trying to help, and some of them just say stuff in dumb ways. The thing is, when we did the show, we made the choice — my life is available for public commentary now. You have to take the good with the bad, and thankfully it's overwhelmingly positive."
Another positive in Starsiak Hawk's life has been her latest project, a children's book releasing this February that celebrates the diversity and acceptance of what family means. Creating a story based on her own experiences working with mom Karen Laine, her stepfamily, fostering her niece and adopting rescue dogs, the mom-of-two reveals the story was in large part inspired by her own children.0comments
"I read so many kids' books... so, I thought it'd be fun to write one. It's the things that I know, which is non-traditional family and construction, and put them together in this cute way," she said, adding how the book was written before her youngest, Charlie, was born. "But, it's that growing up, taking how our family is built and comparing it to how you build a house, like the tools you use."
Built Together is now available for pre-order on Walmart and Amazon. For more digital and in-store retailers, head to Starsiak Hawk's official Instagram page for a complete list. To get the latest scoop on the HGTV star, her show and everything reality TV, stay tuned to PopCulture.com for up-to-the-minute news!