On Writing and Autism
DISCLAIMER: This is not a blog about writing or autism. It's a blog about me, someone who writes and happens to be autistic.
I can't teach anyone how to write if I'm still no good myself (shh, don't tell anyone I said that. I'm supposed to be the authority here). And I don't know about you, but I'm no psychologist, so I'm not exactly qualified to teach people about the disorder.
What I can and will do, however, is to tell you my own experiences with both of these subjects. I also love video games, books, TV shows, movies and anime, so if you decide to stay, I'm sorry.
So, what do I do when I begin writing a story? Characters? A setting? Perhaps a feeling? Nope. I go directly to the themes. More specifically, I choose two opposed topics. Life and death; revenge and mercy; dogs and cats, you get the gist.
The theme of the work arises from the conflict between these two forces. Yet, sometimes there's no winner nor loser. Sometimes, the answer is in the balance between them.
Now, if you're still with me, you might be wondering why am I boring you with my process, all while failing to sound like an old Jedi master. It's true: writing is hard. Expressing yourself effectively through any kind of artwork, harder still. And for people on the spectrum, there's a whole new set of challenges.
"How am I supposed to give life to these wonderful characters when I struggle to understand what makes people tick?". I've found myself thinking about this over and over. While it's true these forces, writing and autism, seem to be in opposition, they don't have to be. They can live in harmony, complementing each other in a yin yang sort of way.
As I try to make sense of the world around me, I turn to writing. As I turn to writing, it propels me to understand more of the world around me. Having been isolated all my life, I only watched the outside world through the skewed lens of fiction. Basically, I sacrificed all survival skills for something much more interesting: imagination.
Can you feed yourself with imagination? Of course not. Do I care? Of course I do. And then, a writer was born.
I wrote a story, more specifically, a game. As I was learning the ropes, it took me three years to write a 40.000 word script. It was hard. And this humbling process changed my perspective. It was not only about making money. It was about connection, to both the audience and myself.
Good fiction speaks the truth, and I'm not talking about being realistic here. A good novel, movie or game, connects with its audience in a meaningful way. It's like the author has given you permission to access his own world. And, whoever you are, I'd like to give you permission to access mine.
In this blog, I'll share my opinions on writing, autism and fiction in general, as well as showcase my projects. My world may be confusing to some, and my sense of humor can be weird sometimes, but I do hope I can reach you. After all, if you replace the letter "U" on the word autistic for an "R", it becomes artistic, instead (okay, that was cheesy).