Straw Poll

For the past few years, I’ve been working on an anthology of literary writing (short stories, essays, poetry) on parenting diabled children. I’ve finally got the book together and an editor at an esteemed publishing house is preparing to propose this book to her colleagues for publication. She has confided, however, that the publishing house director is concerned that parents of children with X disability don’t want to read about the experiences of children with Y disability. I’m sure that this is not true, and I’m going to prepare a report to that effect, but if there’s anyone out there who can back me up on this, I’d love to hear your voice.

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5 thoughts on “Straw Poll

  1. My kids don’t have a disability, and I find it interesting to read about the challenges of parenting kids with disabilities or non-typical lives. W

  2. My son has a common birth defect which is (mostly) correctible through surgery. On some level, I identify with parents of children who have disabilities, even when those disabilities are very different from my son’s. Actually, my experience with my son has made me much much interested overall in the lives of people with disabilities.

    Two great memoirs that I read about people with facial differences are Jeanne McDermott’s Babyface and Lucy Grealy’s Autobiography of a Face. Both of these books are about people whose disfigurement is much more severe and serious than my son’s, but I really found so much to think about in these books. I highly recommend both of them for anyone with an interest in learning more about living with disability.

    Oh, and I just remembered when I was a kid I read and re-read the book Karen, about a family who decided to raise their daughter with CP at home, during an era when kids with CP were usually institutionalized. I have never gone back and re-read it as an adult, so I don’t know how it stands up to the current thinking about disabilities and child-rearing, but I’d have to say the book had a profound effect on me. It’s one of the most memorable books of my childhood, and at that time I did not know any people with disabilities.

  3. I agree with Tami and Sandra. I think it’s sometimes hard for editors whose lives aren’t touched by this to understand the common threads of the experience.

  4. Hello!

    I’m mom to a three year old with Down syndrome and I have to concur with the others; my interest is in all children with different paths, not just DS.

    I’d like to be a part of the anthology, if you are still taking submissions. I write about my life at http://www.jennifergrafgroneberg.com, if you are interested.

    Thanks for the posts. I just found your blog and I am really enjoying it.

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