One of the most common requests I've gotten over the years has been to do an episode about why so many autistic people are drawn towards science fiction, and these suggestions have come from listeners who are autistic or have autistic children. Fiction writer Ada Hoffmann, writer and professor Dora Raymaker, YouTube presenter Quinn Dexter, and author and professor Nick Walker, who co-runs the publishing company Autonomous Press, have each given this subject a lot of thought. Their experiences and perspectives as autistic sci-fi fans and creators overlapped in many ways, from the joy of complex worldbuilding, to identifying with fictional characters like Data or Spock, to wanting to imagine a future where aliens, humans and A.I. can coexist without a hierarchy of neurotypical perspectives. Featuring actress Shannon Tyo reading passages from Ada and Dora’s novels.
Dora Raymaker’s new novel Resonance has just been published through Autonomous Press. Dora and Ada have also contributed short stories to Autonomous’ anthology series Spoon Knife. Quinn Dexter’s YouTube channel is Autistamtic.
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