Can I get your help?

For many years, this blog told stories of our adventures with autism, something that was completely new for me when my children were diagnosed, all three of them. We did the therapies, we made the concessions, we shared the stories and learned from all of yours.

During that time, I wrote a manuscript that starred a teenager with autism. She becomes part of a young adult fantasy tale, a quest to save the universes from dying. I based her on vignettes from my own children, the odd way her language comes sometimes, the black and white thinking that makes things like idioms a challenge–or unintentionally humorous.

After some attempts to get it published, I shelved it, thinking maybe the world wasn’t ready for this. But with the success of THE GOOD DOCTOR, and some other indications that autism awareness is becoming more mainstream, I tried again.

I am proud to announce that THE LOST CHORD is being published by Dragonfly Publishing this spring. Not only is there a great story told, but the other teens in the story learn about autism, and the value of Bee’s thinking outside the box. Here’s an excerpt:

Miss Fry appeared puzzled. “Yes, Bee just came to get that. She said she couldn’t take the whole project, but she needed that rock.” She shrugged. “It’s hard to tell with her sometimes. But she’s come a long way.”

            “I—I don’t know a lot about autism, Miss Fry. Is she gonna be okay sometime? I mean, will she get better? You know, be like everyone else?”

            “Will she ever be like you, or me? Probably not. There’s an ongoing debate among the Powers that Be and parents about ‘curing’ those with autism by various means, but it seems to me that would be doing those individuals a disservice.”

            “You mean they want to be—broken?”

            “They aren’t broken, Cory. They have many unique characteristics and gifts that might be changed forever if they were made to be ‘like everyone else.’ But certainly we can help them communicate better, succeed in their own way. Like this.”

            She tapped the poster board with a smile. “As an independent student, Bee can accomplish a small focused project with excellence, whereas in a class of thirty students, she gets lost and can’t be heard.”

I’m very excited at the chance to teach people about the wonders of our kids. One thing that would help would be reviews by people with knowledge of the subject. I can get you review e-copies in advance of our May launch, if you’re willing to read and share your opinion of the book. If you like it, I’d be glad to guest post on your blog as well, to spread the word.

You can also like our Facebook page and register at our blog to get more information as we get closer. Endorsements would be great to add to our page as well! Fans of the book will be invited to join a special club called the Chordians, where they will get special prizes and more content.

If you can help me out, and are interested in any of these options, please contact me at lyndialexander at gmail dot com, or leave a message in the comments on this post. I hope you’ll join me in the next step of this grand adventure!

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The role of fantasy in real life

I composed several blog posts for the Interwebz this week, but the one that really caught my imagination was this one–WHO DEFINES REALITY ANYWAY, over at A Splash of Scarlet (click through to the blog). The topic is about how we have used the same techniques I use to create my fantasy and sci fi novels to push Little Miss into critical thinking about the world.

Like Newton Crosby, determining whether Number Five was in fact alive, we push and prod her imagination every day, expanding it just a little so she can interface with our real world just a little better. Come check it out.

Fairies and wizards and elves, oh my!

A few weeks ago, one of my long-time readers and good fans of the Clan Elves series stopped in  while on vacation, bringing me inspiration for more fantasy work:

I’ll add this to the brown wood elf cookie jar and the other pieces slowly trickling in. Pretty soon my office will be a whole fantasy forest! Thanks Lynn and Jon!!

They’re he-ee-e-r-e!

The Clan Elves of the Bitterroot, that is. Available for the enjoyment of the reading public, in ebook, paperback and hardback.

Come by their new home on the Web at http://www.clanelvesofthebitterroot.com and find out where all the latest book signings, etc. are going to take place. Suggest a place for a book signing, if you’d like to meet Lyndi Alexander–um, me– in person. 🙂

Book two is well into existence, and the political intrigue and schemes in the Montana mountains just don’t stop. Clearly elves have associated with humans for much too long, if they’ve picked up all our bad habits. Or is it the other way around?

Monday might be my new favorite day!

This morning I sit down to my computer and open my email to find this:

BARBARA:  We have read your manuscript, TAKE ME ALIVE, and would very much like to contract it.

There are a few minor point-of-view (POV) issues, but those will be easy to
address.  In fact, I have already marked and edited most of them, as I read
the manuscript myself over the last few days.  The original reader was
delighted by the book, as was I.  In fact, I just stayed up all night finishing the last few chapters. <smile>

Before we go any further, though, I need to know if you would be amenable to re-naming the book THE ELF QUEEN?  Or do you have another idea for the
title? I believe THE ELF QUEEN puts a stronger fantasy spin on the book and is (possible spoilers eliminated here) What do you think?  <fingers crossed>

The manuscript is in such good shape, that it will not take the editor long
to get it ready for production.  That means it is “possible” that we might
be able to release it by this fall, if you would like that.  The only reason
I hesitate to say for sure is that I have to get cover art commissioned, and
I never know what the artists will say about their schedules (especially
over the summer) until I ask.

Therefore, if you are willing to change the title, I can draw up a contract
and have it in the mail to you in just a couple of days…

So….everyone who thinks I’m just a little bit thrilled, raise their hands.  Yeah, I thought so.

Details to follow. Stay tuned, my friends.

No place like home

I’m being evicted. By my husband.

The Cabana Boy has decreed that I shall take my laptop and some things and take myself hence from these premises–for the weekend.

The laptop is because I’m heavy into editing my urban fantasy. The things are because my sister is a good conservationist and keeps her thermostat low so I need layers. Lots of layers. The going away is because my house will be in a state of demolition this weekend and the man seems to think I might micromanage the whole deal. ME. Can you believe it?!?!?!

(Apparently all my children can. They’ve snickered about it a good deal. “No!  Momma…how can you SAY such a thing?’ delivered with sarcasm gravy…)

The house is 100 years old or more, and it’s had a number of add-ons over the years, some more well done than others. A couple of the walls are actually starting to crumble inside and the Cabana Boy decided as long as he was sending me away he’d tear those down and put in insulation (a novelty in this house) and new drywall. But the real mess will be the new set of kitchen windows the contractor’s putting in. The old ones actually started raining inside the frames this summer, and we finally decided it was time. I can’t wait to see what he’s going to find when he pops that window out….oh wait. I won’t get to see it. I won’t be here. 🙂

The children will stay, not particularly affected by either of these procedures other than their dad lets them help.  Little Miss remembered with glee when her father did the same thing on the stairwell wall this summer– “Papa gave me a hammer and I made a hole in the wall and it fell down! Then he and Will made a new one!” So they can all process their frustration and hopefully get at least some of it cleaned up before I get back. I’ll cross my fingers anyway.

So I will get a few days of adult company over in Ohio and rumour has it we might even hit the new Waffle House!  (It’s the sticks here, my friends…it doesn’t take much to get us excited.)

Then we’ll get the painting done and finish the preparations for moving the office over.  I’m to that stage where I’m over the panic about the move happening and on to JUST WANTING IT DONE. (Especially the longer I watch the economic forecasts.) Better to spend time in my fantasy in the backwoods of Montana being chased by bloodthirsty elves. These ain’t your sweet Keebler bakers, my friends.*

*note to self: Quit watching McCain talk at debates!

Mad About Memes

Am I mad? Or mad to go along with the madness? I’m not sure.

At any rate, I’ve been tagged by lastcrazyhorn, so I’ll play along and perhaps use this post as a metaphor for all the things my children have to do to fit in with the NT school population, even if they don’t see the point. 🙂

Five Things Found in My Bag:
I’ll tell you. Monty Hall would die of disappointment here:
1) Checkbook
2) Keys
3) Stack of coupons I always forget to use at the store
4) Business card holder to carry all medical, bank and activity cards
5) Pad of paper and pen for those crazy ideas I get sometimes and want not to forget

Five Favorite Things in Your Room
I have lots of rooms; let me see:
1) Navy blue quilt made by some Amish women as a thank-you for work done
2) Pitcher of fresh cut lilacs
3) Best be including the computers; heaven knows I spend enough time on them
4) As of next week, our new tempurpedic mattress (yay!)
5) Many, many plants

Five Things You Have Always Wanted to Do
1) Travel all over the world
2) Become a novelist–fame not necessarily included
3) Have bright, interesting children
4) Be able to let someone else handle all the crap–bills, calendars, everything.
5) Have enough time to work at a marriage, not just keep sticking duct tape over rifts

Five Things You are Currently Into
1) Writing a new novel, an urban fantasy
2) Writing interesting tech stories for Firefox News
3) Getting ready for a writers’ conference next week (hmm, I’m detecting a theme)
4) Trying to get my last novel published
5) Oh yeah and once in awhile going to work and taking care of the family

Five people I’d like to tag:
Wantabetravelin, A Different Nest, Sparks and Butterflies, Ecky at Pure Thought, and Zaki at The Fruit Projects, who starred in my music story last week.

So there we go. Now I fit in. Even if I’m not sure just exactly why.