Recommend books by autistic authors
May 7, 2004 5:11 AM   Subscribe

Having just finished The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, which has a fictional autistic narrator, I'm keen to know if anyone can recommend me some novels (not necessarily about autism) whose authors are autistic.
posted by creeky to Writing & Language (8 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
Don't know about fiction, but you might be interested in Nobody Nowhere, autobiography of an autistic woman, and Thinking in Pictures, another autobiographical work by another autistic woman.
posted by adamrice at 8:44 AM on May 7, 2004

I haven't read any, though I have read a lot of non-fiction by autistic authors, generally about autism though sometimes [esp. with people with the Aspberger's variety] about an area of interest. This bibliography might be helpful. Jane Meyerding looks particularly likely, as does Robert Sanders.
posted by jessamyn at 8:44 AM on May 7, 2004

Look into Temple Grandin, an autistic engineer and author. While most of her writing concerns the cattle processing systems she designs, her book "Thinking In Pictures" might be of interest.
posted by me3dia at 9:05 AM on May 7, 2004

No recommendation, except to comment that it's not clear that Asperger's Syndrome (the ailment of the character in the above book) is a form of autism. They had a full hour about it on Fresh Air earlier this week which you should check out at NPR's website. Having loved this book, I was facinated to hear more about it the syndrome.

The reason I point out that this may not be a kind of autism is that I found the difference to be what made the character amazing. Unlike autism, the majority of people suffering from Asperger's Syndrome are not mentally retarded at all. They are quite bright and even as very small children usually stand out as having unusually strong verbal and thinking skills. This makes for some excellent storytelling since the strange and complex inner world of the syndrome can be communicated.

This was the best book I read last year. Everyone should check it out!
posted by Voivod at 9:07 AM on May 7, 2004

Curious Incident was an excellent book. Not about autism, but if you enjoyed this book, you may also enjoy Motherless Brooklyn, by Jonathan Lethem, narrated by a fictional character with Tourette's Syndrome. (off topic, just chiming in)
posted by rainbaby at 10:17 AM on May 7, 2004

You might also enjoy The Pleasure of My Company, a novella by Steve Martin.
posted by Alylex at 11:18 AM on May 7, 2004

Again, not quite what you're looking for, but I found this as well as several other of Oliver Sacks' books to be a very interesting trip into the world of various neurological disorders.
posted by marsha56 at 11:27 AM on May 7, 2004

More fiction with aspy characters:

This is a weensy spoiler, but the narrator in Greg Egan's Distress seems a bit aspy. It actually becomes a little bit important if you think about the ending.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 11:42 AM on May 7, 2004

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