Within the autism community, we continually seek more awareness about autism. We hope that with enough awareness, we can forge meaningful relationships based on acceptance. A third prong on the autism advocacy trident is often associated with both or either point: complaining. Understandably, we have no representation within democratic government, we have watered-down educational standards in public education, and our general public remains afraid and ignorant of autism. At a comic book convention, one fan bravely asked if he could contract autism by shaking my hand. Surely, we have lots of work to do to promote autism awareness and acceptance.
What if you could contribute to raising MORE autism awareness? Would you? What if the financial price for the support cost you no additional money (unless you felt philanthropic)? What if the associated time cost you less than an hour?
What if you could contribute to raising MORE autism acceptance? Would you? What if you could raise BOTH autism awareness AND acceptance by doing ONE action? “Wait, Dave-” you cry out; “I’m stuck at home after a blizzard!” If you can read this blog post online, you can also contribute to positive autism advocacy from the safety and warmth of your own home. Will you?
Here’s how you can help: “buy” a comic book. Specifically, buy the world’s first featured comic book hero with autism, written by an autistic adult. Profits from the comic book help pay for future printings of the comic book. However, I personally believe that our comic book can bring a lot of value. Therefore, I do not want an MSRP to be a barrier for some families in financial need. So, last year, I set the digital copy of Issue #1 as a “Pay What You Want” price. Most people donate $2.00 USD for 36 pages of content without advertising (comparable to a mass-produced, 24-page comic book, with 25%+ advertisements, at a similar price evaluation), but you can choose whatever amount you like. You can ever donate AFTER your digital download of Issue #1, here:
For over two years, we stand atop the Top Ten “Hottest Comics” without a staff review. Trust me- I’ve asked for a professional review from the world’s oldest digital comic book store. Will YOU review the comic book? Will you have anything positive to say about the comic book?
It’s a far cry to proclaim how being a top-selling comic book promotes autism advocacy.
To that accusation, I’ll ask you if any other comic book and its creator were featured on the nation’s largest news network. Yes, Disney/Marvel Comics debuted an African-American as Captain America, and a female lead-character named Thor. How is their diversity campaign going? Do you think we will see Steve Rogers don his iconic shield for the next Avengers movie, or will it be Sam Wilson? What about Thor- will SHE be on the big screen anytime soon? These stories made headlines, but were driven by one of the largest businesses in the world. By comparison, I am just a guy.
Maybe you missed out on our inclusion in an accredited medical journal? Spiderman and Superman have NEVER been referenced in a medical journal of any academic merit. Ours is the first comic book to be reviewed by professionals for a medical journal. Last year, we were also inducted into the National Museum of Disability History for our comic books. Some people may do well to take seriously something as simple as a comic book.
Maybe you don’t understand the science behind the comic book, with all fantasy situations aside. Instead, I refer to facial feature recognition. “Wait a minute, that idea of emotional self-regulation seems familiar.” It should- Golden Globe Award Winning “Inside Out” showcased emotional recognition based on the E-X-A-C-T same science we use. My role model- Dr. Paul Ekman- developed facial feature recognition as a non-verbal, multicultural taxonomy to learn more about how others may feel. He consulted on “Inside Out.” Disney/Marvel could not easily market a comic book about facial feature recognition so soon after our lauded attention, so they made a movie. Our main character’s last name is “Eckman.” Some of the top comic book business people follow our blog and social media. Also, several prominent self-advocates follow us. While I’m a fan of the X-Files’ conspiracy theories, I suggest how none of these ideas are a mere coincidence. We’ve tapped into a different, non-traditional way to reach children with autism and those who care for them…and important people take notice. Do you?
Question: Do you remember all of the people who changed their Facebook profiles in support of __________ (fill in the blank)? Do they still support __________ (fill in the blank)? Let’s face it- support can be a long and tiring struggle. I’m not asking you to wade through the trenches with me; I’m asking you to be a part of social capitalism. With more sales – even at $0.00 – we send a message to the marketplace that something GOOD about autism is worth our money and time. Medical doctors already understand the educational and therapeutic value our comic books can provide. Educators meet with us this spring to formalize special resources for better emotional (self) regulation, without raising taxes. Kids and their loved ones helped propel us to one of the most successful, independently published comic book in history.
…or will it be easier for you to sip coffee from your mug emblazoned with a puzzle piece? Support autism advocacy by downloading Issue #1, here: