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January 29, 2009

Revisiting… One WILD Ride!

As you all know, I was pretty busy the last 10 days globe trottin’ around the web all in the name of autism.

I had the pleasure of “visiting” several blogs, forums, and organizational sites to not only promote my new book, In My Mind, but also to discuss life with autism.

Hosts, from all over, took the virtual book tour as an opportunity to “interview” me and learn more about me.

Some days were more active, by way of reader participation, but all in all, the whole experience was one of great learning and fun.

I cannot thank each host enough for their hospitality and support.  Here’s a little something for you!

It Doesn’t Seem Enough

I want to tell you “Thank you,”
But it doesn’t seem enough.
Words don’t seem sufficient–
“Blah, blah” and all that stuff.

Please know I have deep feelings
About your generous act.
I really appreciate you;
You’re special, and that’s a fact!

By Joanna Fuchs

I can’t wait to do this again, but I promise one thing… it won’t be too soon! {wink}

For those of you who didn’t have the opportunity to participate in my lil tour, I’ve included the text, comments and all, for your reading pleasure!  There were a lot of graphics used in each post, but they have been omitted from this one.  You are welcome to visit each tour stop to check out everyone’s “display”!

Enjoy!


*********************************************************************************************

In My Mind Blog Tour… Revisited!

DAY 1: Autism Family Adventures

First Virtual Stop For In My Mind Tour

Welcome to the first stop of the Virtual Book Tour, ‘Globe Trottin’ for Autism In My Mind : The World Through the Eyes of Autism by Adonya Wong. Adonya’s tour runs from January 19 to January 29.

January 6, 2009 marked the world-wide release of her children’s book, In My Mind: The World Through the Eyes of Autism. This is available as an eBook and with the purchase of the book customers receive an audio version in Adonya’s own voice. Check out the podcast Adonya did with Autism Hangout.

Adonya’s son is named Nicholas, same as my older son. Besides both being on the autism spectrum, they share other similarities as both are not fond of dogs, schooled at home, have artistic talents in drawing, plus received their autism diagnoses from School Psychologists before their fourth birthdays.

In My Mind is how Adonya perceives Nicholas’s thoughts on the world around him and based on his actions how the world views him. In My Mind is also a tool for him someday to learn more about himself and autism. I agree about utilizing books to help kids gain insights into their own diagnosis. We had numerous books to guide my son Nicholas into autism awareness. Now he is at the point where he will offer opinions on whether a child at autism daycamp is low, medium or high functioning.

I recall many years ago reading that yellow is a common favorite color of kids on the autism spectrum. I noticed on the pages of In My Mind that yellow stood out on his shirt, scarf, duck and shower curtain. The illustrator really captured the likeness of her son Nicholas within the pages of In My Mind, as noted in this Tulsa article.

In My Mind : The World Through the Eyes of Autism is a book for kids of all ages to see what makes a child happy and how those thoughts are brought to life through a Mother’s vision. The dreams, fantasies and motions of one child on the autism spectrum will open the eyes and spark conversation among readers.

This is a great opportunity to start discussions on the autism spectrum within a classroom of students, at a support group with family members and parents. It is also appropriate for one on one with a therapist to initiate a dialogue on the illustrations within In My Mind where a child can share what their hopes and dreams are in the future.

My son Nicholas viewed the fifteen page ebook with me and shared his impression:

“It shows nice things that the boy is doing when really all he is doing is nothing but seemingly happy just the same.” His favorite pages were nine – having fun on a roller coaster with animals and a cowboy along with page twelve inside the bathtub with the snorkel and his hand up in the air waving.

One lucky reader will win a gift basket containing an autographed copy of In My Mind, a copy of Ten Things Every Child with Autism Wish You Knew, packages of Enjoy Life™ and Namaste Foods™ goodies, and an eco-friendly cleaning starter kit (Whole Foods® 365™ brand), and (1) $50 Amazon.com gift card!! This prize is valued at $200. The winner will be announced 4 days after the tour ends (Adonya will revisit each blog to retrieve names).

**Simply comment about your relationship with autism, what you are doing to raise awareness, and how In My Mind has touched your life. Be sure to visit all of her stops to qualify for this amazing prize!**

Excerpt:
In My Mind, I see many colors, bright like a rainbow, shooting about like comets in the night sky. [turn page] What you see is a child staring into nothing.

Monday, Jan 19 you are here – please comment
Tuesday, Jan 20 Doctorious.org
Wednesday, Jan 21
The Bon Bon Gazette
Thursday, Jan 22
The Queen’s Pen
Friday, Jan 23
Rawtism
Saturday, Jan 24
My Autism Insights
Sunday, Jan 25
Rainbow Project DFW
Monday, Jan 26
Tanner’s Dad’s Blog
Tuesday, Jan 27
Imperfect Clarity
Wednesday, Jan 28
Autism Learning Felt
Thursday, Jan 29
Healing Through The Eyes of Autism

To learn about her book, In My Mind, and living with autism, please visit her at Through the Eyes of Autism website and Blog!

A portion of the author’s proceeds benefit Autism Center of Tulsa (formerly Tulsa Autism Foundation).

Adonya’s book is available at Amazon and a bookstore near you!

In My Mind: The World through the Eyes of Autism (Tate Publishing 2009)
Published: January 6, 2009
Genre: Children’s Fiction
ISBN 10: 1-60696-601-4
ISBN 13: 978-1-60696-601-3
28 Pages (full-color paperback)
$9.99 (includes audio book version)

I asked author, Adonya Wong, the following two questions. Her responses are in bold:

1. How would you describe your Nicholas in a few words – what sums him up?

What an excellent question. Trains are currently Nicholas’s passion. He has an old timey electric train set, a train calendar (that he somehow managed to instantly locate in a store of hundreds of other themes), a train magazine… he’s borderline obssessed. 😉 So, summing him up is challenging, but I’ll do my best. If he continues down this path, his claim to fame may be as the designer of a zero emissions locomotive.

2. His hands are always outstretched or doing something within the pages of In My Mind, except for the coloring page – is this based on your son doing the same movements?

Yes. Nicholas can often be observed flailing his arms about. It’s almost as if he’s conducting some music or directing a scene because the flailing is usually coordinated with a song he may be listening to or something he’s watching. In my observations, I’ve learned that his flailing is like his own language because if you pay close attention, you can see when he’s “drawing” something in the air or coordinating his hands in such a way that they form letters. It isn’t ASL because we never took classes for that, but it sometimes looks like it is.

Please remember to ask your questions in the comments when sharing about your autism connection. Good luck in winning the prize. I look forward to following along the tour and seeing the comments.

Posted by autismfamily at 11:44 AM

Labels: adonya wong, autism childrens book, blog tour, in my mind

5 comments:

Michelle said…

Hi Bonnie!
I just wanted to thank you for visiting my blog.
I’ve been reading through your blog… there’s so much helpful information here! I have two good friends with Autistic children, I’m going to send them here!
Also, I was the team captain for our company team for the San Diego Walk for Autism, last year we raised a little over $1,000 – every little bit helps!!
Thanks for all you do,
Michelle
http://givingtree2009.blogspot.com/

January 20, 2009 7:38 PM

Tracy(bookroomreviews) said…

Adonya,
I love your comment about your son using his hands to draw in the air. Just lovely. My son is five and was diagnosed with High Functioning Autism at age four also. I just started reviewing books on Autism for my blog to raise awareness and participating in groups. I plan on doing more. Your book looks darling. Is it available as a hard copy? Please enter me in the fantastic giveaway. Great Review Bonnie!
Tracy
bookroomreviews@hotmail.com

January 21, 2009 9:03 AM

Tanya @ Teenautism said…

Wonderful review, Bonnie! This looks like an enjoyable, helpful book.

January 22, 2009 8:43 AM

My Three Sons said…

Hello, just wanted to stop in and say hello. My two year old has Sensory Processing Disorder and he will be tested in March for Autism. I have my doubts after doing a lot of research but we will see.

Thanks for stopping by my blog and feel free to say hello every once in a while.

January 23, 2009 4:56 PM

Dadof6Autistickids said…

Hi Bonnie and Adonya,

Our Ammon (5) is our ‘conductor’. He generally does this when watching Teletubbies or watching a door close. And he enjoys it SO much. I hope your book tour goes well and that you are able to touch the world inside and outside of Autism.

January 24, 2009 8:02 AM

DAY 2: Doctorious

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Virtual Book Tour: Experience Life as a Child on the Autism Spectrum with Adonya Wong’s New Book “In My Mind”

January 20, 2009

As a parent to a child with autism, Adonya Wong understands the unique challenges and rewards that responsibility entails.  As an author, Adonya hopes to share that experience with others affected by autism and those wanting to learn more about it.

Her first book, In My Mind: The World Through The Eyes of Autism, creatively explores the inner world of an autistic child  through the form of a children’s picture book.

From exciting adventures to silly games and conversations with a range of imaginary friends, the main character of the story — who is inspired by Adonya’s son, Nicholas — brings readers into his world to demonstrate how a child with autism sees the world, and, in turn, how the world often sees a child with autism.

A video trailer of the book follows:

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hxji0E0i-qs]

Adonya’s motivation for writing her book stemmed from the realization that there was a scarcity of literature directed to and written for autistic children and their families.

In My Mind was written to help raise awareness about autism, and she hopes that the reader will gain a deeper sense of compassion and tolerance for those “different” than themselves.

To help promote her book, Adonya has  launched a ”Globe Trottin’ for Autism” vrtual book tour starting on January 19 and concluding on January 29, 2009.

During the tour, 11 different blogs will promote In My Mind and feature her answers to questions about life with autism, writing, the publishing process, and discussing future projects.  Along with insightful interviews, you can read reviews of In My Mind and listen to an audio interview by Autism Hangout.

I came to know Adonya during the December 16, 2008 Autism Twitter Day. As a result, I was invited to participate in this unique marketing initiative. This blog entry represents day 2 of the 11 scheduled stops.

As part of my participation in this unique event, I had an opportunity to ask Adonya some questions. I asked her about issues relevant to the themes of this blog: social media, education and autism (an issue of great personal significance to me).

Below are my questions and her answers — please feel free to post any questions you might have for Adonya in the comments section of this blog:

1. Tell me more about your son, Nicholas: what does he like to do, what are his strengths, what are his dreams? In what ways is Nicholas an inspiration and teacher to you?

Nicholas is an avid reader and quite the talented artist.  We go through about 6 Doodle Pros a year, so, hopefully, Fisher Price will see this post and send me vouchers once a month or quarter.  He also enjoys the computer to the point where, some nights, he gets a little teary eyed when told to shut it down.

Early last year, I stumbled upon a nifty little application, Zac Browser, and it has really opened up the Internet for him in ways I couldn’t have imagined.  The creator, Jon LeSieur, has a grandson on the spectrum, and he developed this application to simplify his web experience, thereby, making it more enjoyable for him.  I’m grateful he decided to share it with the world.  I highly recommend it!

I wish I knew what Nicholas’s dreams were.  He doesn’t always speak conversationally and his cognition of such a complex question is a bit low.  Whatever his dreams may be, I’m sure they’re grand.

I credit Nicholas for being my grounding source.  I feel that his presence in my life has made me more patient, tolerant and empathetic of others.  With every new day, I learn to just “be” and go with the flow.

He often tells me, “It’s okay, Mom” as he wraps his arms around me, and it is in these moments that I truly know that everything is going to be okay.

2. In what ways do you think you book can be used to educate and inform people not affected or touched by autism about what it is like to live with a diagnosis?

I initially didn’t write the book to educate folks since being a writer wasn’t even anything I was contemplating at that time in my life.  I didn’t even realize I had a story in me until I finished typing out the words to In My Mind.  The book, literally, came to me in a flash.  Some would say it was Divine Intervention!

As for me?  Couldn’t really say, but apparently, I am supposed to share my life’s experiences which is why I’m here today, talking about my first published work.

The book has been read by several people not “living” with autism and based on their responses, I can say that my book is shedding a different kind of light on the mind’s of those looking into our world.  In My Mind is a perception-based book.  People are often too quick to judge what they see without looking for the deeper/hidden meaning behind someone’s actions.

It is my wish that my book will get folks to stop the judgments and be more accepting of those perceived as being “different” than themselves.

3. What role did social media play in the production and/or promotion of your book: did you use any specific websites/services to develop ideas for your book and which websites/services are you using to market your book?

Social Media has played a huge part in promoting my book — it seems to be the current trend in getting people to notice you or your accomplishments.  Shortly after I received word that my book would be published, I put up a presence on MySpace and Facebook.

I have since added several Ning networks (most of them dealing with either writing/published authors and autism) to that list as well as Twitter (which is how I met you, my friend).

I also have a website that I put up shortly before the book’s pre-release.

4. For the aspiring published authors out there (myself included), describe the process by which you found and were signed by your publisher. Also explain what the writing and production process was like — in what ways was the Internet part of that process?

Finding a publisher was easy.  Although, I didn’t choose the self-publishing route, I did get signed on by a Print-On-Demand publisher.  Getting published the traditional way meaning going with a well-established and widely recognized (by way of their name) publisher requires money (finding a literary agent) and, oftentimes, years of walking the grounds.

My publisher has lowered the percentage of manuscripts they choose for publication from 4 to 3.5%.  My experience with them, so far, has been positive.

My suggestion to an aspiring author is to get your story on paper.  Then join groups like Critique Circle and get others to mull over your work.  Now, this is not something for the faint at heart.  If you’re someone who doesn’t like criticism in any form, I suggest you choose another path.

Anyhoo, some of the members of Critique Circle are editors, and I’ve read of a few people getting signed because of their relationship with these folks via this platform.

I didn’t use the internet to help me with my book as I am living with someone on the spectrum.  I had my everday experiences to fuel my writing.  Children’s fiction is my genre of choice, and I don’t anticipate having to do any “outside” research for any of my work.

I recently purchased a book by successful self-published author John Kremer titled 1001 Ways to Market Your Books.  I am also a member of his Ning network, Book Marketing.

5. Will the book have any kind of online companion presence, perhaps a resource site for parents and other interested individuals?

My website is a work in progress.  However, I do offer links to sites that have been helpful to me over the years.  I will be updating it soon with writing/publishing information.  But I anticipate that happening after my site goes through a redesign. I will, however, be adding worksheets for children that I hope will stimulate their imagination and encourage them to follow their dreams.

Special thanks to Adonya for writing her beautiful book and including this blog in her Virtual Book Tour!  If you have questions of your own about In My Mind, please leave them in the comments section of this blog, below.

Also be sure to visit the next stop on the Virtual Book Tour, The Bon Bon Gazette, where Adonya will answer additional questions.  While you’re there be sure to place your daily entry for her giveaway.  To enter, simply comment about your relationship with autism, what you are doing to raise awareness, and how In My Mind has touched your life. Be sure to visit all of her stops to qualify for this amazing prize!

One lucky reader will win a gift basket containing an autographed copy of In My Mind, a copy of Ten Things Every Child with Autism Wish You Knew, packages of Enjoy Life™ and Namaste Foods™ goodies, an eco-friendly cleaning starter kit (Whole Foods® 365™ brand), and (1) $50 Amazon.com gift card!!  This prize is valued at $200!!!

To learn more about In My Mind and what it’s like to live with autism, visit Adonya’s website or her blogIn My Mind is available online at Amazon.com, Books-A-Million.com, Borders.comTarget.comTate Publishing and coming soon to a bookstore near you! Note that a portion of the author’s proceeds benefit Tulsa Autism Foundation.

You might also want to visit the other stops on the Virtual Book Tour:

So, what’s in your mind about autism now?

DAY 3: The Bon Bon Gazette

In My Mind Virtual Book Tour: Journey Into the Mind of a Child with Autism

In My Mind Virtual Book Tour

Join Adonya Wong as she trots around the globe for autism, visiting various websites and blogs during her first-ever virtual book tour! She will be sharing thoughts about life with autism, writing, the publishing process, and discussing future projects. Along with insightful interviews, you can read reviews of In My Mind and listen to an audio interview by Autism Hangout.

Welcome to the 3rd stop of the In My Mind Virtual Book Tour. If you are a reader of The Bon Bon Gazette you probably already know that I am a huge fan of Adonya Wong and her book, In My Mind: The World Through the Eyes of Autism. Take A look at “In My Mind” to see what happened when I received my autographed copy from Adonya or check out My Epinions.com Review.

My Thoughts:

“Appropriate for children and adults a like. In My Mind… is not ‘just another children’s book’ nor is it ‘yet another book about autism’. I believe this book absolutely holds a place both in the autism and special-ed classrooms and on the shelves of every school library.” – MT, The Bon Bon Gazette

There’s only so many ways for me to say it, I love this book!

As a mother of a child with autism, I immediately felt a bond with the author Adonya Wong when we “met” through reading each other’s blogs and then getting to know each other more on twitter. When I learned about the book, I was curious to how she would portrayAutism as envisioned through her son’s eyes. The author, Adonya Wong has a son Nicholas who is a happy, healthy, 7 year old boy – close in age to my son Alex (who just turned 8 last month). The child in her book In My Mind (modeled after her son) is shown happy – much like my own son who always seems to have a great smile on his face. This smile that is such a source of joy and strength – that helps get through the bumps in the road of our Autism journey. In a recent news article, she describes her son: affectionate, funny, and artistic. Indeed! This could easily be describing my own Alex. Yes, the boys both have Autism – but there is so much more to them than that. I’m reminded of an old button/bumper sticker saying “See the person, not the disorder”. Adonya’s book, In My Mind, sheds a much appreciated positive light on Autism.

As part of the Virtual Book Tour, I got to ask Adonya Wong a few questions about In My Mind:

Question 1: How long did it take you to write In My Mind?

Adonya Wong: 5 minutes! I’m serious, it only took 5 minutes. One minute, I wasn’t even thinking about writing children’s stories; the next minute, I’ve typed one out. I couldn’t believe it. Some would call it Divine Intervention. I don’t know what to call it myself, all I know is I was minding my own business when the story “came to me”.

Question 2: Did your son give you any input on the text or illustrations?

Adonya Wong: No. Nicholas doesn’t communicate with me like that. If I were to ask for his input, he would have difficulty processing what it is I am asking. As for the illustrations? Well, my publisher provided all that for me. I only requested that the character be modeled after my son, that was it. I was just very fortunate to have an illustrator who saw what was going on in my mind without a lot of input from me.

Because I am a rule breaker, I asked her a few other questions about how her book has been received by family and friends. Adonya’s response was not surprising

My friends, whom I consider my family, have given me very positive
feedback.

I also wanted to know if any more books were in the works and learned that Adonya has already written several others, including 12 of which that were written the same week as In My Mind.

“However, I don’t spend my days stressing about what to write. I actually wait for the words to come to me in their own time”.

Lastly, I inquired if she had thought about marketing the book for use in schools curriculum and/or to libraries.

I have been seriously, seriously considering just that. My husband is
a professor, so I’d have a lot of assistance in compiling the information into a
teaching format. Additionally, I will be marketing IMM as a companion for
the Libraries and Autism program I want implemented in Oklahoma.”

Thanks, Adonya, for stopping by.

Adonya’s next stop on the Virtual Book Tour will be Rawtism.com on Friday January 23rd. Be sure to stop by to learn more about her and to place your daily entry for her awesome giveaway…

“One lucky reader will win a beautiful gift basket containing an autographed copy of her book, a copy of Ten Things Every Child with Autism Wishes You Knew, packages of Enjoy Life™ and Namaste Foods™ goodies, an eco-friendly cleaning starter kit (Whole Foods® 365™ brand), and (1) $50 Amazon.com gift card!! This prize is valued at $200!!!”

How to Enter: **Simply comment about your relationship with autism, what you are doing to raise awareness, and how In My Mind has touched your life. Be sure to visit all of her stops for more chances to qualify for this amazing prize!**


To learn more about Adonya Wong’s book In My Mind and living with autism, please visit her
website and blog

Adonya’s book is available at Amazon.com

http://www.assoc-amazon.com/e/ir?t=thboboga-20&l=as2&o=1&a=1606966014
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, Tate Publishing, as well as a bookstore near you!
Pick up your own copy here:

In My Mind: The World through the Eyes of Autism (Tate Publishing 2009)
Published: January 6, 2009
Genre: Children’s Fiction
ISBN 10: 1-60696-601-4
ISBN 13: 978-1-60696-601-3
28 Pages (full-color paperback)
$9.99 (includes audio book version)

A portion of the author’s proceeds benefit Autism Center of Tulsa (formerly Tulsa Autism Foundation)


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Posted by hellokittiemama at 1/21/2009 12:01:00 AM

Labels: Adonya Wong, In My Mind, Virtual Book Tour

8 comments:

Tammy said…

I love this book. I have had people ask me how to explain Autism to a classroom of young children. For young children, I think the focus should be explaining the child, not the disorder. This book does that. Thanks.

January 21, 2009 10:53 AM

throughtheeyesofautism said…

Hi Tammy!

Thank you for the kind words.

I have to agree with you when it comes to “explaining autism” to our young. I believe when you make things complicated, they become even more confused.

IMO… keeping things light and even adventurous helps them better understand something as mysterious as autism.

To be honest with you, I don’t think I could “explain the disorder”… even now. 😉

Thanks for stopping by! Looking forward to your tour stop next Wednesday! 😀

Adonya

Adonya Wong
Author | Autism Blogger | Twitterer

January 21, 2009 11:03 AM

Nate, Carrie & Malachi Chance said…

Although I havne’t experienced the book yet… it absolutely sounds wonderful. I work for Head Start preschool programs and we are seeing more and more children with the AI diagnosis and they are all just as different as can be. Something like this wouild be helpful for our classrooms as a resource for both the staff who may not understand as well as the chidren.

On a personal note my nephew, although no diagnosis has come, I personally believe is on the spectrum. Both his sister and his father have no real clue in how to deal with some of the various behaviors he displays (honestly I don’t think his mom really knows either… but that’s another story.)

It’s great to have more adult/child friendly resources like this book. It’s going on my list of must haves.

January 21, 2009 11:37 AM

Lisa D. said…

As a mom of a son on the spectrum, simply sharing that fact with others is educating a lot of people. You see, my little guy is a talker, and it isn’t always readily apparent to others that there’s something diffent in the way he experiences, senses or reacts to the world. The amount of dingbat responses — not meant to be ignorant-sounding, just uninformed always astounds me. I borrow the phrase “if you’ve a child with autism, you’ve only seen one aspect of a many-sided diagnosis. I’ve not yet read this book, but it would be very helpful in conveying how my son is alike, and different, from his peers.

January 21, 2009 12:42 PM

throughtheeyesofautism said…

Hi Carrie.

Thanks for stopping by.

I am currently working on a teaching program where the book can be used for just that.

The early days of autism are confusing, at best. Perhaps, my book will be able to shed some light on things for your brother/sister. Perhaps when he/she reads it, he/she just might see his/her son within the pages.

Or perhaps not.

I hope you enjoy your copy, and thanks again for stopping by.

Adonya

Adonya Wong
Author | Autism Blogger | Twitterer

January 21, 2009 1:16 PM

throughtheeyesofautism said…

Hey there, Lisa.

Sorry my comment to Carrie came before I saw yours show up! Talk about dingbat! 😉

I have met other parents who assume that my life is exactly like theirs for the simple fact that we have children with autism.

Autism is a multi-faceted “dis-order”, and like snowflakes, every person is uniquely different.

Sure, there are similarities, but physiologically, everyone functions at different levels.

I often get a kick whenever I mention that my son has autism, and I receive this response… “Really! I couldn’t tell. He doesn’t look like he has it.”

I know they mean well, but who says that to someone?

Anyhoo, I relish at any opportunity to “school someone” {can also be read as put someone in their place) especially if they’ve made an inappropriate comment or looked at us sideways.

Or educating those whose hearts are in the right place, but their choice of words are misplaced.

I welcome your thoughts on the book when you get it. 🙂

Thanks for stopping by!

Adonya

Adonya Wong
Author | Autism Blogger | Twitterer

January 21, 2009 2:25 PM