Just as Temple Grandin’s view of autism, in her book, The Autistic Brain: Thinking Across the Spectrum, doesn’t speak to every person on the spectrum, neither does this blog speak to everyone. I write from my own experience as an 80-year-old woman, self-identified as high-functioning Asperger’s in my late 60s, and from what I’ve learned over the years, both before and after. Much of the learning has been about intellectual development and creativity, and that is what will guide this blog.
There’s a quote from author Toni Morrison that can apply to blogging as well as to writing books: If there’s a book that you want to read, but it hasn’t been written yet, then you must write it. This is the blog I’ve wanted to read, but no one has written, so it’s time to write it myself.
Disorderly Minds isn’t a personal confession blog, nor is it a guide to living on the autistic spectrum. It will focus on the intellectual and analytical aspects of Asperger’s, with particular attention to imagination and creativity. For comic relief, it will also wander every so often into the stranger aspects of the neurotypical world, including the daily news.
What is it going to be about? Here are some of the ideas I’ve jotted down so far:
- Aspie views of the world around us, how it functions, why people behave as they do
- How the outsider view affects mental development, from early childhood through adulthood
- If you are a writer, or want to be one, how the outsider view and a differently wired mind affect creativity
- How undiagnosed Asperger’s affects intellectual development, creativity
- Growing in wrong directions under “helpful” hands — or no hands
- Is Asperger’s a basis for unusually original writing?
- The influence of temperament — introversion/extraversion
- Cognitive complexity
- Identifying and learning to use the hidden gifts
Disorderly Minds will reflect my exploration of these topics, so I may change my mind about some of them over time, or pick up topics I’ve already discussed and look at them from another angle. I’ll be looking at what the “experts” have to say about Asperger’s functioning, and what aspies themselves have to say. If there is a central theme here, it is to help intellectually talented aspies do an end run around the concept of disabilities and learn how to use their differences creatively.