Things you should never say to an autistic author

Or just an autistic, in general.

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As an autistic author, I’ve always prized inclusivity, diversity and unique own voices.

Talking openly about being an autistic author, my experiences, my journey is just one way to hopefully educate and prevent the many misconceptions that can be damaging and insulting. Sometimes, it’s necessary to put it bluntly and plainly in a list of does and don’ts.

Not an all-encompassing list, of course. And my experiences as an autistic may differ from another.

If you’ve met one autistic, you’ve met one autistic.

Don’t…

  1. Tell them they don’t seem autistic.
  2. Tell them it’s ‘person with autism.’
  3. Suggest a cure. Don’t. By suggesting a cure,  suggests to us that you wish we weren’t alive.
  4. Bring up Autism Speaks. (https://intheloopaboutneurodiversity.wordpress.com/2019/09/13/the-ableist-history-of-autism-speaks/)
  5. Treat them like they’re a child and can’t understand what you’re saying.
  6. Tell them their autistic characters aren’t realistic because they’re not like your child/relative/friend.
  7. Insist they’re ‘so brave.’ Seriously. Don’t.
  8. Email them with your expertise on autism despite the fact that you’re not actually autistic.
  9. Ask them if they’ve tried a gluten-free diet.
  10. Suggest yoga might make everything better.

For a point of reference, these are all things I’ve been personally told either by friends, family, authors, or readers. Some have been emailed directly to me. Others were said in person. Some have been directed to me on social media.

What can you do?

  1. A quick search on Google will find Autistic bloggers and Autistic-led organisations with loads of resources.  Here’s one of my favourites: https://autisticadvocacy.org/
  2. Be patient in conversation with us. Auditory processing disorder is something a lot of autistics deal with, we may need you to repeat yourself for us to catch up.
  3. Meet us halfway. We’re doing our best in a non-autistic world, educating yourself can help bridge the gap.
  4. Extend invitations to us. We might not always say yes but no one enjoys being excluded.

**Thanks to my beloved friend and publisher for giving me a hand with the wording of this post**

Musical Theatre Faves

My two main characters in Cosplay Killer are obsessed with musical theatre. Here are ten of their favourite shows.

1. Hamilton

2. Six: The Musical

3. In The Heights

4. Wicked

5. Only Fools and Horses

6. Matilda

7. Jesus Chris Superstar

8. Little Shop of Horrors

9. School of Rock

10. Rent

Hamilton.

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Since Hamilton came to Disney+, I’ve watched the entire play about ten times. I’ve watched the first half an additional ten or more. The second half tends to make me weepy and I’m not always in the mood to cry.

Each time I watch Hamilton, something new seems to stand out to me.

Here’s a few things I’ve noticed.

1. Christopher Jackson’s face during the final song while Eliza sings about his story and slavery.

2. The brilliantly subtle moments of foreshadowing woven throughout.

3. (or technically, 2a) Burr’s ‘like I said’ comment at the first scene in the bar where Hamilton meets Lafayette, Mulligan, and Laurens.

4. The Bullet. If you know, you know.

5. David Diggs. His pure joy in performance.

6. Brilliant word play and musicality.

7. Leslie Odom, Jr’s masterful performance.

8. The emotion evoked by Renee Elise Goldsberry in Satisfied.

9. Jonathan Goff’s laugh after One Last Time.

10. The interplay between Hamilton and Samuel Seabury during Farmer Refuted.

My Cozy Mystery Playlist

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For  Poisoned Primrose, I put together a TV show playlist along with a music playlist.

So, what was I watching while I wrote?

1. Rosemary & Thyme

2. Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries

3.  Father Brown

4. Hetty Wainthropp

5. Death in Paradise

6. Vera

7. The No 1 Ladies Detective Agency

8. New Tricks

9. Miss Marple

10. Poirot

What about you?

Which of the above is your favourite?

Review: Here Comes The Son

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This is an entirely different take on demons and Lucifer. It has an autistic MC, a lesbian character and a non-binary character. Absolutely loved reading this book!! No super smexy times, but a lot of love, affection and understanding. 5 Stars from B Hall

 

Excerpt: Here Comes The Son

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Excerpt:

Strapping on his bag, Iggy dragged a hand roughly through his short black hair. He winked at the librarian who grumbled at him when he leaped over a book cart in his path on the way toward the front entrance. She blushed, a response he was used to with his inherited looks and charm.

As one of his best friends from high school used to say, he had wickedly devilish good looks. He told her to stop reading Regency romances. From his jet-black hair to his deep brown eyes, he knew his face balanced the angelic with the roguish.

I’d do me.

Blinded by the bright sunshine, Iggy took a moment to adjust after stepping outside. Denver’s Central Library had always been a favorite of his for research, with its massive collection. Plus, he always thought the building seemed almost like a grouping of castle turrets.

He paused on the corner of Broadway and Thirteenth Avenue. Spring was supposed to have sprung in the Mile High City. Not that the weather had noticed; they’d only just thawed out from winter.

And judging by the crisp air and gathering clouds on the mountains, they’d be inundated with another blizzard before the end of the day.

Jogging down Thirteenth, Iggy skidded to a halt on Lincoln. He tilted his head, trusting his finely honed instincts. Half a block down, he spotted an alley between a parking lot and the Art Institute that was shadowed more than it should’ve been in the bright early afternoon sun.

One step into the gap between the buildings, and he’d plunged into nighttime. The smell of sulfur swirled around him. He slipped his bag around his body, reaching inside for a spray can.

“Ah, Son of the Morning Star. Half-breed. I hoped you’d sense my presence.” Rastran stood at the end of the unnaturally dark alley. He leaned casually against the industrial air conditioner with one foot resting on a body, completely disregarding the dirt now staining his designer suit. Demons always enjoyed life’s luxuries. “Ignatius Faber, we’ve saved you for last. Your father’s brightest light. A beautiful irony. All of his hopes pinned on the one offspring who matched him most in appearance and strength. Pity he can’t see the monster he created.”

With a hard kick, Rastran sent the body rolling along the filthy ground to land barely a foot away from Iggy. Titus. One of his many half-siblings. Iggy hadn’t seen his brother in weeks. They’d all assumed Titus was on a hunt.

They generally kept in close contact, particularly since hundreds of other half-siblings had been culled over the past eight years. Titus and Iggy were the only ones left. Rage erupted deep inside him.

“I’m the monster?” Iggy calmly stepped over Titus, shoving grief and anger viciously down to remain focused. He had a demon to deal with. His fingers wrapped tightly around the canister of compressed holy water in his pocket. It resembled pepper spray but worked to stun creatures of Hell long enough for him to send them home. “You should’ve stayed away from my city.”

 


Buy Links:

Amazon US: https://amzn.to/2lcaCwN

Amazon UK: https://amzn.to/2JWcKXw

Amazon CA: https://amzn.to/2JWcUhA

Amazon AU: https://amzn.to/2litkmF

Kobo: http://bit.ly/2sYpraG

iTunes: https://apple.co/2le829J

Nook: http://bit.ly/2LUULhw

 

An Excerpt from The Misguided Confession

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An exhausted Alim had been bouncing from country to country, sorting out issues with several of their family businesses. He’d returned to London feeling utterly spent and decided to head out of the city to the estate he owned in Kent.
He’d missed Elaine. They’d been together steadily since their Christmas tea. Each date had further cemented his desire to have her in his life.
It had started out with meals after work or the occasional weekend excursion. Elaine disliked crowds, a fact that made dating complicated. He’d gone so far as to book out an entire convention as a surprise for Valentine’s Day.
The little quirks of Elaine’s tended to make others uncomfortable around her. Alim found them charming. It dragged him deeper into love than he’d ever imagined possible.
 Travelling for an extended period had only reinforced it for him. He hadn’t been satisfied with phone conversations, particularly when Elaine hated them. Their attachment to each other had grown until they were far too intertwined to be apart for long. His niece, Alicia, had escaped to his home, but she wouldn’t mind him returning there. The house itself was large enough to allow her whatever privacy she wanted. Alim had no doubts Josh Withers would be with her. The man never seemed to leave his niece alone these days.
Striding through the front doors the butler opened for him, Alim paused at what sounded like an immensely large animal racing through one of the nearby rooms. He frowned at his butler, then froze at the loud roar that echoed through the mansion. His heart started to race while he grabbed one of the hunting rifles from a nearby cupboard and ran in the direction of the roar.
“No!”
Alim stopped short when his niece darted in front of what had to be the largest panther he could ever recall seeing. “Alicia?”
“You can’t shoot him, Uncle.” Alicia rested a hand lightly on top of the animal’s head.
“Him?” Alim frowned at her with the weapon held tightly in his hand. “Did Minxie suddenly grow while I was away?”
Alicia laughed behind her hand for several minutes while the panther made what sounded like a grumbling sort of snarl. “Play nicely, Joshua.”
“Joshua?” Alim stumbled backwards as the dots started to connect in his mind. His arm fell to his side letting the weapon point harmlessly towards the floor. “How is this even possible? Is this a joke? I am not amused, Alicia.”

books2read.com/misguided