What I did on Monday and Tuesday...PAC RIM CONFERENCE ON DISABILITIES
My buddy from the UK...
People from all over the world came together in Honolulu to talk about independent living, self determination, ADA, disability and human rights among many other things.
Often reviewers or interviewers will assume that LOTTERY was exclusively inspired by my father's financial windfall. They are so wrong. My experience as the daughter of a Lottery winner contributed about as much as my sailing experience and love of the water. They both added authenticity and texture to the real story. The one about Perry L. Crandall.
The real inspiration came from my years as a teacher, my brother in law Jeri, my PhD work and my involvement with the Center on Disability Studies.
Authors sometimes feel misunderstood. They sometimes feel people jump to conclusions about why they create a particular work of literature. Although I have written other manuscripts -- LOTTERY is my first published novel and yet it is indicative of my goal in writing: To give voice to those who are marginalized by our society.
Being at the conference gave me hope and reaffirmed my belief that literature is important and necessary for our souls to grow.
I gave a talk about telling the truth through fiction -- not a new concept -- it is a powerful way to develop empathy and to change attitudes about what we consider "normal" and capable.
I am still processing everything that I learned from the people I met.
Consider peopling your story with those of all abilities.
When a novel touches you & takes you to that special place -- let the author know their words have done their job...