Author Amy Lane talks about her new book, Silent Heart!
One of the perils of writing neuro-atypical characters is that, just like in real life, people don’t understand them.
I know that sounds sort of harsh, but when writing bipolar, ADHD, or autistic characters, even the most finely drawn character—perhaps especially the most finely drawn character—is often labeled “unlikable” or “irritating” because of the very characteristics that identify them as neuro-atypical.
It’s a writer’s conundrum, for sure.
Yeah—we definitely get more sales writing automatically identifiable, sympathetic characters, but that sort of feels like a lie. Not every person thinks the same way—writing only the people whose thought processes mirror everyone else’s means not everybody gets their happy ever after.
I am very very pro people having a Happy Ever After.
So I persevere. I write the occasional Patrick or Ian with ADHD, and sisters with schizophrenia and Dane with bipolar disorder, or Kane, with a learning disability. These characters are my normal—these are people I’ve been blessed to have in my life.
I’ve spent my life working to understand them—to put understanding them ahead of my need for them to understand me. It’s a very different way of thinking—and as someone who’s ADHD myself, not the easiest transition to make.
But people I love needed me to get it, and I did.
So when I write lovers who aren’t like everybody else, I work hard at showing them as they are—and then showing that their lovers love them exactly as they are. After watching my Mate deal with my oddities for thirty-plus years, I can give my characters (and the people in my life!) no less hope.
I hope you enjoy Preston and Damien in Silent Heart. I didn’t label Preston (although I wrote him specifically with Asperger’s presentation in mind) because Preston isn’t a label. He’s Glen’s brother and Damien’s friend and lover and a dog wrangler and a generally good guy. He also doesn’t think like everybody else—and, like Damien I hope you fall in love with who he is, not with who we wish he was, just because who he is happens to be is just a little more difficult to understand.
Search and Rescue: Book Two
Dog wrangler Preston Echo has been in love with his brother’s best friend, copilot, and business partner since high school—and Damien Ward knew it. As Preston grew into a stunning, hard-willed man, Damien began to dream of Preston too.
Then Damien almost died in a helicopter crash. While his physical wounds are slowly healing, the blows to his self-confidence and goodwill are almost worse. His body is broken and he’s afraid to fly—how can Preston love him now?
When Preston’s brother goes on a search-and-rescue mission and disappears in an earthquake zone in Mexico, Preston and Damien are thrown together in an effort to find him and bring him back. Preston’s merciless honesty—and relentless passion—may leverage Damien into his bed, but can Damien overcome his fears to allow himself to stay there?
Amy Lane lives in a crumbling crapmansion with a couple of growing children, a passel of furbabies, and a bemused spouse. She’s been a finalist in the RITAs™ twice, has won honorable mention for an Indiefab, and has a couple of Rainbow Awards to her name. She also has too damned much yarn, a penchant for action-adventure movies, and a need to know that somewhere in all the pain is a story of Wuv, Twu Wuv, which she continues to believe in to this day! She writes fantasy, urban fantasy, and gay romance—and if you accidentally make eye contact, she’ll bore you to tears with why those three genres go together. She’ll also tell you that sacrifices, large and small, are worth the urge to write.