Months ago while I was at work, I suffered from a concussion, resulting in a mild traumatic brain injury. My post-concussion syndrome symptoms have lasted for a long time. I have had trouble reading, suffer from neck pain, headaches, memory loss, and have sensitivity to light and sound. I have been to a lot of doctor appointments and am getting treated for my continued symptoms.
In the beginning, it was really rough. I wasn’t supposed to watch television (not a huge problem for me), but I also wasn’t supposed to READ! I had to rest my eyes, not use the computer or phone (because of the light), nap, and “rest.” (A quick aside: I don’t even know what rest means. When I watch Netflix, it is for research purposes to analyze a story structure. Even when I want to watch an old episode of Star Trek, I am constantly analyzing it. My career as an author is work, but it is pleasant work. Almost everything I do has a dual purpose, so my rest is my work and my work is rest.) I didn’t know what to do with myself.
While I was recovering, I had no idea what to do. I had to write. I’m a writer and am passionate about stories. My veins are fueled by words (and probably chocolate). I hired a personal assistant to help me do social media and newsletter tasks. He also helped type my handwritten notes and printed out everything size 15 font so I could edit my writing more easily. It is really interesting to see some of the things I wrote—and tried to write. So much didn’t make sense. I was constantly forgetting what I had just written and wrote the same scene multiple times.
My condition sometimes makes me confused, but I don’t usually realize I’m confused until I find my mistakes later: like uploading the wrong novel to the Amazon platform, forgetting to include 1 ingredient in a recipe with three ingredients, or listening to my own audiobook and thinking, “Wow, this character lives in Eugene! I live in the Eugene area. Wow, this character went to Oregon City! That’s weird. I used to live in Oregon City,” before I realized, “Oh, yeah. I wrote this book.” That isn’t my usual level of life bloopers.
For those reasons, and more, I have needed a personal assistant and have continued to have a helper so I don’t have to do everything anymore.
Reading continues to give me headaches and eyestrain. While recovering, I got to the point that I could listen, and I “read” audiobooks. Mind you, sometimes I forgot who the characters were or why the character had just done something, but it was an enjoyable activity that let me read. I’ve always loved audiobooks. I can multitask by listening to them as I exercise or do something else. But not being able to read (and having too much time on my hands) rekindled my love affair with audiobooks. (Okay, who am I kidding? We never broke up.)
Audiobooks have made reading possible for me. They also make stories accessible for people with visual disabilities.
Some of you know about my campaign on Indiegogo to raise funds to turn Hex-Ed into an audiobook. Because of the generous contributions of fans, I was able to turn my first book into an audiobook that will soon be released on Audible and Amazon.
I am now running a second campaign for two reasons. To:
1. Raise funds to produce Hex-Ed as an audiobook.
2. Raise awareness and funds for the Talking Books and Braille Library.
For every patron who participates in this fundraiser, I will donate $1 to the Talking Books and Braille Library. Additionally, you can choose that perk from the sidebar or donate to them directly using the link at the bottom of the page.
I will be running this fundraiser, starting on March 12. Until then, you can watch the video and read the information as it comes out, but the campaign on Indiegogo will not be live.
New Indiegogo link, live March 12-26th.