Monday, June 20, 2016

Guest Post: Difficulties Writing Authentic Autistic People + Book Giveaway

A Bouquet for Adam: Difficulties Writing Authentic Autistic People

By K.T. Spence

In "A Bouquet for Adam," my co-author, A. J. Marcus and I dove into the deep end when it came to writing a person with autism. For me, this had both simple and complex attributes.

My nine-year old daughter, N, was diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder when she was 5. For two years prior to that, she spent time in occupational and speech therapy including hippotherapy (therapy on horseback) and a play-based therapy called Floortime. 

I felt well-versed in autism. At least, enough to write this character, Adam.

However, the longer A. J. and I wrote, the more I began to question the authenticity of the character. After all, I only have a nine-year old and I was trying to expand what I knew about autism from her behaviors into a thirty-year old male. 

TO BE CONTINUED ON...Let's Get Beyond Tolerance!!!

I wanted to share a little bit of this guest post here, but instead of cross-posting, please continue on to my LGBT+ blog to read the rest AND enter the giveaway. All comments over there are treated like comments here; which means I will do my best to visit your blog if you visit/comment on mine! 


Melliane said...

it's really interesting to write such a character

Erika Sorocco said...

I think it's amazing to see autistic characters becoming more prevalent in fiction - such a wonderful way to teach acceptance and understanding!


Keertana said...

It's so hard to write characters from different backgrounds or with different illnesses because authenticity and a true portrayal is so, so important. I'm glad that authors are not shying away from writing these characters, though, because they need their representation as well. Thanks for sharing this post! :)

Voracious Bookling said...

I have read only one book related to Autism, called Sapient and I loved it! I will deffo check this one out too! :)

Kindlemom said...

I've only read one book as well, Puddle Jumping and it was amazing! Thanks for sharing this one.

cleemckenzie said...

It's challenging to create a character with special needs.

A Canadian Girl said...

It's great that more authors are featuring characters with exceptionalities. Off the top of my head, The Rosie Project is a book that features an adult character with ASD that I thought was really well done.

DMS said...

This was such an interesting post. I can see how the more K.T. wrote the harder it was to know if she was writing the character correctly. I know some autistic children and a friend's sister-in-law is also on the spectrum. Each one is different, but certainly writing an adult would be the most difficult for me. I have read books written by adults on the spectrum, and that has helped me to see what life is like through their eyes. Thanks for sharing and best of luck to K.T. and A.J.

The Bibliophile Babe said...

Sounds like a really interesting character!

Karen Alderman said...

I know several adults with Autism Spectrum Disorder as well as friends with children who have it and every experience is different. I look forward to continuing this post on the othr blog.

Karen @For What It's Worth

Jennifer Humphries said...

I had no idea that therapy on a horse was called hippotherapy. Now I do. I have many friends with children on different levels in the autism spectrum and I know for them,of prime concern is how will this transition to adult hood. That would be tricky to write about for sure.

Nicole Hewitt said...

Really glad you pointed this book out to me - I really enjoy reading books with autistic or "non-typical" characters because I have two "non-typical" kids myself.

Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction