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About the Author
Since I have been working on this book, many people have asked me about myself. Some people wanted to know more about me so they could understand where the advice in my book was coming from. Other people just wanted to know what type of life I live so they could have an idea of what to expect with their own child. Still others were just curious. But whatever the source of the question, I figured that it can’t hurt to answer. There is a lot of questions, and I don’t think I should (or want to) answer them all. But I will try to answer the most common questions that I have received, and hopefully this will satisfy your curiosity.
Can you tell me a bit about yourself?
This is the most common question I got, and it is annoyingly vague and difficult to answer. But I figured that providing the basics is a good place to start. I am currently 23 years old (turning 24 in September). I am obviously male, and I live in Michigan. I am currently attending college at Lawrence Technological University where I am getting my MSME (Masters of Science in Mechanical Engineering). I was hoping to be gainfully employed at this point in my life, but due to lack of available work I lost my previous job. Since then, getting a new job has proved difficult, and so I am going back to school while I wait for the job market to recover.
How long did it take you to write the book?
I have been working on this book for about 7 months. I worked on the book somewhat sporadically, so it is hard to give an exact number of hours. Some days I would sit down and work on the book for 8 hours strait. Sometimes I wouldn’t work on it for a week. But overall, I think I worked about 500 hours total on this book. When I first started, I assumed that I would be able to write up a short 50 page booklet over the course of 2 weeks. But as I soon discovered, that wasn’t to be. Overall, this entire experience has taught me that writing is hard. People who make their living by writing every day have definitely earned my respect, because I didn’t really know how hard writing was until I tried it for myself.
When can we expect more works?
I don’t know when I will be posting my next book, or article. This fall, I am taking 12 credit hours of master’s courses, so most of my energy will be going there. Experience from my book has also shown that I write about 1 page per day. Even if my next article is only 30 pages in length, it is still probably going to take a month to complete. So, you probably shouldn’t check on this website for daily updates. Once per month will do fine. If you do have a question and would like a quick response to it, I would recommend visiting an online forum. You will likely get a much faster response. The useful links page has my recommended forum of choice.
Do you do anything activities dealing with autism?
I tend to visit the WrongPlanet forums on a regular basis and post there, but aside from that, not really. I don’t go out and volunteer, attend seminars, or do anything like that. I mostly spend my free time alone, and that is what works out best for me. I am not opposed to the autism ‘get togethers’ that some people attend, but I don’t think it’s my style. I do try to help out the ‘autism community’ where I can, but making forum posts and writing books is all that I have done thus far.
What do you do for fun?
I have a bunch of different things that I do for fun. Most of the time, I play computer games. I like many different games from a variety of genres. I used to mostly play real time strategy games like StarCraft, Homeworld, and Age of Empires. After that, I transitioned into person shooters like Half Life, Team Fortress, and Unreal Tournament. The past few years, I have been playing mostly MMORPGs. Primarily, I play Final Fantasy XI, and I have a character with 7000+ hours in it. I have also tried out Eve Online, and Star Trek online, but those lost my interest after a few months. I am currently playing a lot of StarCraft II, but I think I will be transitioning to Final Fantasy XIV when it comes out.
Beyond video games, I also like to play Dungeons and Dragons, but it has been difficult lately to find a group to play with. I also like to design and build things. It started with K’nex and legos when I was young, but more recently it has transitioned into more complex robotics. If you want to see an example of my last project, you can check it out here:
Unfortunately, that project has stalled due to a lack of programming expertise, and I have given the project to my brother (he is the programming mastermind). In the future, when I get out of my college debt, I am hoping to buy a Makerbot, or some other 3D printer, and have more fun with this sort of thing.
What are your plans for the future?
In the short term, my plans are just getting through another year of school, and graduating with my MSME in the spring of 2011. At that point, I hope to get a job working as a design engineer at a company which does something interesting. Call it youthful idealism, but I would like to make a difference with my career, and hopefully I can get a job where that is possible. If you know any companies that are looking to hire design engineers at that time then let me know. Hopefully I can have a job waiting for me by the time I graduate. Beyond that, I really don’t have much in the way of long term goals. I currently have no plans for a family, but experience has told me that I can’t predict anything that far out in the future. I will just have to see what life brings my way.
Can I contact you?
If you want to ask a question regarding autism, or a particular situation that you are going through, then I would recommend trying a forum or online message board instead. You will get a much faster response, and you will get a variety of viewpoints. While I am not opposed to answering questions, I do have other things which take my time, and I may not be able to respond to every email that every person sends. However, if you would like to contact me for a personal reason, make a comment, or ask a question about something in my book then you can contact me at the following E-mail address:
It is an email address I made just for this website, and I will try to check it at least once a day (no guarantees though).