Ways In Which We Relate to Our Characters

My last post likely ruffled a lot of feathers and I have to admit that was the point.

I’ve spent my entire life stuck in the middle between the ableds and the disableds; never abled enough for the ableds and never disabled enough for the disableds.

When I started working on my book, the divide became more apparent. The questions started. How would I manage my disabilities in my promotion? How honest would I be? Would I risk alienating people with my “extreme” views on disability? Would I keep my mouth shut one more time? How would I be an author without becoming the disabled author?

I made the decision a long time ago to not hide my truth anymore. Blog posts like my previous one make people uncomfortable and I know that when I write them. Often times that’s why I write them. It’s not to be a bitch or anything like that but it is to point out the injustice that a lot of disabled people are afraid to speak out about. If that’s at the expense of selling fewer books then so be it. I refuse to sit down and shut up in the platform I’m creating.

When I wrote Aria and Tyler, I was very aware I was creating two characters who were caught between two worlds, the same way I am. It helped me relate to them in ways I couldn’t have related to characters who weren’t stuck that way. It’s brought a depth to them I couldn’t have otherwise empathized with.

I decided to write abled characters in this book instead of disabled characters not only because I knew they would be more relatable to the general public, but also because I had to be honest to the characters that were calling to me. I didn’t want to create disabled characters for the sake of creating disabled characters. To me, that would be no different than having the ‘token’ disabled character on a TV show or movie. Make no mistake, the disabled characters are coming and they will be true to themselves and relatable to me (and hopefully you) just as much as Aria and Tyler are.

The Beginning is out in the world on kindle and in regular and large print and I’m working on Book 2 now. It’s coming together a lot slower than The Beginning did because I’m also working on promoting The Beginning while I write. My audiobook is about halfway done now and I am so excited for that to be released so you can hear the amazing things my narrator is doing with the world I’ve created.