autisticalice: (blushing; n)
Here's a teaser i wrote for my story. By teaser, I mean it's what I have so far. It's not the best but I've been trying really hard to make it interesting. So tell me what you think~

I thought things couldn’t get worse but they did. Everyday was a daily struggle to be myself, yet I didn’t want to be like everyone else either. I wanted to be the only person I knew how to be and that was myself. The problem was that I wanted to make a difference, but I wasn’t sure how to do that.

I entered the school building, in an attempt to ignore the students that made my life hell. All I wanted to do was find my best friend Jasmine, who had a mild developmental disability. My only hope was her always there to keep me laughing. I don’t know what my life would be without that girl.

“Hey there, freak show! Where do you think your going?” One of the boys taunted as I hid my face and continued walking to my locker. “I asked you a question.” He continued to tease me as I turned to him.

The next thing I knew, I was shoved up against a locker. I couldn’t escape, no matter how hard I tried. I was trapped, stranded and stuck in a situation I couldn’t get out of. This caused the tears to fill my eyes as he held my arms behind my back.

“What…what do you…want from…me…” I replied softly with fear in my voice.

“Aw, she’s showing fear!” The other boy snickered as he grabbed me and pushed me to the floor. “Fear is what I live for, especially from such a crazy freak like you!” He looked down at me in a fit of taunting laughter as I looked up with tear-stained cheeks.

“Quick! The teacher’s coming!” One of the other boys called as the boys took off running, leaving me in my despair.

The teacher saw me on the ground and frowned at me as she offered to help me. I shook it off and stood back up, knowing that she wasn’t going to care what had happened. None of the teachers ever did seem to care about me, and it always made things much harder for me.

“You better hurry before your late for class.” She told me as I grabbed my back and took of running.

I couldn’t afford being late to another one of my classes, especially when I was failing them. I didn’t understand a single thing we were learning because the teachers were too fast. Neither one of them took the time to slow down and help me get a better understanding.

My mother thought I deserved the best out of regular education, yet it only seemed to make my education worse. I could never get her to understand my struggles in school because she didn’t seem to care that much. My sister Melanie always did her best to help in the best way possible, especially since she was over eighteen.

“Jade! You’re late for class again!” my teacher glared at me as I entered my class and took my seat. “That’s the third time you’ve been tardy this week…” she gave a sigh while writing me a detention slip then proceeded to hand it to me.

“You’re giving me detention?” I frowned at her as tears streamed down my cheeks.

This wasn’t good for my routine and need for sameness. I had never had detention before so this was my first time actually getting into trouble. There were so many times when i wondered what being in special education was actually like, and my sister even agreed that’s where I belonged.

What do you think? I apologize for the way the text is. If it helps, you might want to highlight it to see. I had copy and past from my email and... it did that for some reason. O_o


Date: 2012-09-24 07:07 am (UTC)From: [personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
There are a lot of minor technical errors. That's probably something that your preference for routine will help with -- if you study a writing guidebook, you should be able to pick up the rules and stick with them. Hmm, now that I think about it, your nonfiction is smoother than the fiction, so it may work itself out without as much attention.

There's more telling than showing. That's usually a flaw, but I'm not sure here whether it's a stylistic feature. Up to you.

As I expected, the most intriguing part of the story is the autistic-eye view; for instance, pointing out that detention screws up someone's routine. I doubt most teachers are aware of that, but once it's pointed out, it's obvious. (This is tremendously useful to me because I have some background in education. You really need to know if something's going to have twice the impact it usually does.) So that's just fascinating. The more of that you can do, the better. The rest of the story was typical enough that it didn't particularly grab me. But one thing that's utterly new and I can use? I'll probably keep reading to see if I can find more like that.

Another thing that intrigued me was the subjective observation that other people don't seem to care about the narrator. Now that catches my interest because a common criticism of autistic people by other people is that they're cold or distant. So if that makes people standoffish in return, it's likely to cause an ongoing problem, since autistic people who want to make friends usually have to work harder to build those connections -- and a bridge doesn't work if it's only built from one side. That's something worth exploring further.

I really think you're onto something here. It'll take practice to develop, but the more you write, the better you'll get.

Also, writing identity characters is more challenging than average, because of the need to find ways to express their worldview without making it distracting within the story. This Alien Shore and Resenting the Hero both do a good job of portraying neurovariant protagonists, if you want examples. There's a knack to carrying the subtle cues through the story, and then having the main trait pop into the spotlight when it becomes relevant to the plot.

Thanks for posting the teaser! It's really interesting to see your fiction.

Re: Feedback

Date: 2012-09-25 03:45 am (UTC)From: [personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
>>I need to work on imagery, for the most part. x_x I've been working more on sentence structure but working on sentence structure, destroys the imagery and such for my writing. <<

Seesaw problems are really frustrating, where pushing one end up pushes the other down. Maybe try alternating? Do some parts in straight narration focused on sentence structure, and others in stream-of-consciousness focused on imagery. Another option would be to write aiming for imagery, and just have someone else copyedit for sentence structure. Most of what I saw were little typos, easy to fix.

>>The other issue with me, is I'm an auditory learner. Reading books and stuff... that doesn't help. I've tried that. What I do, is look up writing sites on my iPad and have the speech recognition read it if I can highlight.<<

Yeah, that does make things harder; most stuff is aimed at visual learners. I recommend the Purdue Online Writing Lab; most of its entries have examples.

>>I also feel it's easier if she's telling the story. Like for example, when she's saying how she feels about something or how something bothers her, stuff like that, she's telling the reader why those things happen and whatever... almost like the character is narrating the story to the readers that are reading.<<

Okay, that makes sense. I once wrote a story in which the narrator had been raised by aliens, and later picked up a habit of naming emotions as an exercise to try and identify them, because it just didn't come naturally. So that whole story had a very atypical worldview, and periodically it would be highlighted that way, like somebody fidgeting with a worry stone. That's an example of how to bend rules in writing, to use telling more than usually recommended because it fits a given character. The trick is to find a way of framing it that reads well.


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