Note For Anyone Writing About Me

Guide to Writing About Me

I am an Autistic person,not a person with autism. I am also not Aspergers. The diagnosis isn't even in the DSM anymore, and yes, I agree with the consolidation of all autistic spectrum stuff under one umbrella. I have other issues with the DSM.

I don't like Autism Speaks. I'm Disabled, not differently abled, and I am an Autistic activist. Self-advocate is true, but incomplete.

Citing My Posts

MLA: Zisk, Alyssa Hillary. "Post Title." Yes, That Too. Day Month Year of post. Web. Day Month Year of retrieval.

APA: Zisk, A. H. (Year Month Day of post.) Post Title. [Web log post]. Retrieved from

Thursday, June 30, 2016

Why don't you just make your own? WE'RE TRYING!

All too often, when people talk or write about representation in fiction, the responses we get are somewhere in the area of, "So write your own stories." We do! Getting them published and disseminated is the hard part, because mainstream publishers (and film companies, etc) in the USA and probably a good chunk of Europe too are of the opinion that the default person we can all relate to is the cisgender straight white vaguely Christian abled man. Any deviations from this supposed everyman occupy the difference slot. (You mean you have/are that too? Yes, that too.)

So we wind up crowdfunding our anthologies, or self-publishing, or making our own publishing companies, or one of any number of things, if we get our stories out at all. Autonomous Press exists. I have stories on Amazon. Kickstarter and Indiegogo often have crowdfunding going on for anthologies by and for marginalized folks. I'm actually thinking of, and supporting, one in particular as I write this post: Hidden Youth: Speculative Stories of Marginalized Youth has a Kickstarter active at the moment, with about a week left. I would love to see more people supporting it because I want to read the book. (I pledged for copies of both books, since this is the second in a series.)

I would also love to reach the point where stories about disabled people, people of color, queer people, women, and especially people who are more than one of the above are not shunted to the side with "write your own!" followed by "those stories don't sell," where we get these anthologies without needing to make Kickstarters and Indiegogos and found our own companies just to see ourselves in fiction. (I love the idea and reality of us having our own media companies and collectives. I do not love the idea that us having our own media companies and collectives is the only way we can get representation.)

But right now, crowdfunding is where we seem to be at. (Also Star Wars, since the leads for The Force Awakens are a white woman and a black man, and it grossed great. There isn't actually evidence for the idea that stories about anyone besides the supposed everyman don't sell. It's just a convenient lie for folks who are used to being represented and don't get why we're all up in arms about not getting stories where we're the heroes.) So if you want to get to read and watch these stories, please, do support them when you come across them and can do so. Hidden Youth: Speculative Stories of Marginalized Youth has about a week left on its Kickstarter and I want those books


  1. I actually do write and produce my own content here and My content is short films. My films are titled "Drama Sighted" "Only Those Who Limp Allowed" and "Crips Not Creeps". Yes the situation of having to crowd fund is not ideal but we can still change hearts and minds until other opportunities arrive.

    1. Hi Margot:

      I've enjoyed and shared your work for some time at Crip Video Productions.

      Here is another good theatre story about disabled actors and characters:

      Ready willing and able to take on more roles: NEW YORK TIMES

    2. Thank you so much Adelaide Dupont! I'm so glad you enjoyed my films! I noticed you shared one of my google+ posts too, so thank you for that as well! I actually know the actor Gregg Mozgala in that NY Times article personally, he has been my wonderful mentor since 2008! He is an amazing actor and wonderful person!

  2. Hi again, This is Margot. In November of 2016 I met Dylan Rothbein at a disability related event on a campus. I was happy to discover he was a professional filmmaker and knew how to audio describe film. He also informed me that he had autism and dyslexia and was interested in disability rights and neurodiversity. We agreed that Dylan would audio describe our 3 previous Crip Video Productions films. I met with Dylan regularly in the winter of 2016 and spring of 2017 learning about audio description from him as he recorded the audio. He taught me a lot about autism and dyslexia. I have had some experience with children who have autism but it was nice to hear about autism from another adult like yourself with the condition. Dylan and I finished recording the audio description on April 6th 2017 for our blind and low vision fans who requested we ad audio description to the films to increase accessibility. We expect to release the audio described versions of all 3 of our previous films sometime in 2018 and plan to ad audio description to all future films including our newest project “A Stroke Of Endurance”. Then Dylan shared his film plans for getting his work mass produced and marketed to mainstream media and receiving traditional funding with me and I quickly discovered we had somewhat similar life experiences and creative ideas. His work has a style somewhat similar to that of Crip Video Productions.
    Please,please check out Dylan’s latest short film titled “Mirror Indifference” online for free at this link
    Dylan Rothbein also has a brand new website here!
    As soon as Dylan showed me his short film I thought of this post!! I just had to show it to you immediately. Dylan Rothbein is making a full length feature about his life story and that should be completed in one year with mainstream distribution.


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