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Writing, Illustrating & Publishing => Research => Topic started by: sclark on March 10, 2010, 09:42 AM

Title: Being blind
Post by: sclark on March 10, 2010, 09:42 AM
Hey,

My next book is about a girl who's blind from birth and I'd love to be able to talk to someone about being blind, get to know all the tricks they use. I know some, but I'm sure there are more.

Does anyone have any ideas of how to find someone to talk to?

Thanks,
Sam
Title: Re: Being blind
Post by: jo_no_anne on March 10, 2010, 10:57 AM
I'd start with the Braille Institute and your local school for the blind (I'm sure your city has at least one).
Title: Re: Being blind
Post by: Amy S on March 10, 2010, 12:42 PM
National Institute of the Blind in Baltimore is set up to help blind people navigate the world more easily. Nice people. I've worked on books that they've helped pay for.
amy
Title: Re: Being blind
Post by: sclark on March 10, 2010, 12:50 PM
Great ideas, Jo_no_Anne and Amy S.

Thanks
Title: Re: Being blind
Post by: TimeTravel on March 22, 2010, 05:31 AM
David Stahler's YA Dystopian Truesight (http://Truesight) is about an entire community of blind people.  It might give you some ideas.

http://www.amazon.com/Truesight-David-Stahler-Jr/dp/0060522879/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1269260679&sr=8-1
Title: Re: Being blind
Post by: sclark on August 25, 2010, 05:12 PM
Hey TimeTravel, I missed coming on the boards for a while and didn't see this reply you gave me until now. Thanks so much for the link. I definitely will look up the book.
Title: Re: Being blind
Post by: JulieM on August 25, 2010, 08:41 PM
I am in Australia, but I think you could also look into finding a local guide dog/seeing eye dog center. They could put you on the right track too.

Best of luck.  Julie.
Title: Re: Being blind
Post by: Jaclyn Dolamore on August 26, 2010, 06:14 PM
I'm no help with finding a blind person to talk to, but I do recommend Ved Mehta's autobiographies for research. He's a writer from India who went blind at age 3 and wrote a very extensive multi-volume autobiography. The adult ones get kind of weird, but the one I particularly recommend is "The Ledge Between the Streams". Not only was it helpful to me in researching a blind character I was writing, but it's a fascinating look at an Indian family and the Partition of India and Pakistan. Also worth reading are "Vedi" (about his experience in an Indian school for the blind, this one is a harder read as conditions for the blind in India were very bad and Ved was very young), "Sound-Shadows of the New World" (when he comes to America to attend the Arkansas School for the Blind, the only school in America that would have him), and "The Stolen Light" about his college experience. After that they start getting weirder, often with too much detail about academics and jobs and his neuroses. I will say he is probably more capable, mobility-wise, than many blind people, using echolocation rather than a cane or guide dog.

Other interesting memoirs by blind people are "Cockeyed" by Ryan Knighton, "Touching the Rock" by John M. Hull, and "And There Was Light" by Jacques Lusseyran. Only the latter is by someone who was blind from a young age, and it is quite French. But an interesting story. I think you would find some very useful information in all four books.
Title: Re: Being blind
Post by: JessicaLee on August 26, 2010, 07:01 PM
April Henry's GIRL, STOLEN (September 2010) is a really amazing book about a blind teen who gets kidnapped.  The character isn't blind from birth, but she definitely uses the skills she's learned to adapt.
Title: Re: Being blind
Post by: annemleone on August 27, 2010, 01:07 AM
One of the best memoirs I've ever read is Planet of the Blind by Stephen Kuusisto:

http://www.stephenkuusisto.com/

He has a way of describing things, yet without using any sight ques, that blew my mind. 
Title: Re: Being blind
Post by: sclark on August 27, 2010, 11:59 AM
Wow! Great recommendations!

Thanks everyone. I'm filling up my Amazon buy list. :)
Title: Re: Being blind
Post by: annemleone on August 27, 2010, 12:26 PM
Sight cues.  Sorry, just correcting my embarrassing typo!