When I wrote Fionúir’s Mural, the first book in my sword and sorcery fantasy trilogy, in 2012, I didn’t realize what impact it was about to have on my autistic son, Trey. Trey is quite the prodigy when it comes to computer gaming. We do a lot of stuff like cooking and martial arts together, but at that time Trey didn’t read books. He could read, slowly, and had a small collection of Japanese style comic books and cook books, but he apparently hadn’t found anything to capture his interest in the world of fiction yet. He’d started a few books, like the first book in the Harry Potter series, but he’d put them all down after reading only a few pages. Since what I was writing certainly resembled some of the worlds that formed the background of the games he played, I dedicated it to him as follows:
This book is dedicated to Trey, who lives in worlds like this.
Since I had dedicated it to him, I presented him with a signed copy.
The next thing I knew, he was reading it. Every time I met him, he’d tell me where in the story he’d reached. He started giving up some of his gaming time each day to read. Last week he finished Fionúir’s Mural, and last night I gave him the second book in the series, Ailchu’s Prophecy. The first thing he did was sit down and start to read it.
Words cannot describe how this makes me feel. No matter what else I may accomplish with my fiction writing, I am most proud of this.
I’m now 54,000 words into writing the final book of the trilogy, Cathal’s Seer.