I’ve never written fiction about living with Crohn’s, and to be honest, I’ve never wanted to. Perhaps because I still feel what I felt for years growing up: that nobody wants to hear about my annoying, humiliating misery. Yet I know, intellectually, that this is a shame, because there should be more characters in YA literature who live with chronic illnesses like IBD.
The two or three months I managed to get by on the reduced dose were enough to convince me: My psychiatrist is lying. I don’t need medication. I’m fine. I can beat this. Until, of course, I couldn’t.
With one word, one look, it hit me that my experience really was abnormal.
What kind of tips do our contributors have for authors seeking to respectfully write disabled characters?
While Rory’s portrayal isn’t flawless, it’s well researched, and a significant step in the right direction of treating autistic characters as regular teenagers and integral parts of the cast.