Sci-Fi Writer Katie Bridges Writes About Growing Up With Aspergers
I grew up thinking of myself as simple-minded. Other people thought of me as simple-minded too. I never had much to say and what I did have to say seemed simplistic.
“Did you know that Disney World employs over 55,000 people and covers 47 square miles?” I would say, interrupting whatever conversation was going on.
As a girl with Asperger’s syndrome, facts were highly significant to me, especially if they involved Disney World. I always thought that others would be thrilled to hear them too. Sometimes people were interested in hearing the facts, but not when I went on and on about them, as I was prone to do.
“Simple-minded,” people would say. “The girl is simple-minded.”
Imagine their surprise when I came out with a 111,000 word science fiction novel that was so detailed and complex it received the Rising Star award. I called it Warriors of the Edge: The Search for Stone (Amazon | Barnes and Noble).
“I had no idea you had all that inside you,” people told me. “Where did you get all these ideas?”
How did I go from being simple-minded to highly complex? It happened because I loved Disney World so much. It wasn’t enough for me to visit it every few years. I wanted to experience it every day. And so I talked about it, dreamed about it, and wrote about it nearly every day for twenty years. After that much time, you’re bound to develop some complex thoughts on the subject, even if you started out rather simple-minded. Those thoughts evolved until I had created my own futuristic theme park, which became the premise for my novel.
There’s nothing wrong with being simple-minded. You can develop a wonder for life that way. But complexity has its benefits too. It helped me write an entire novel. — Katie Bridges