author's note

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A/N: So, hi!

If you have found your way all across the great wide depths of the internet to this story, and you have read it up to this very page, wow! Thank you!

As you may have noticed, this is the first story I have posted on here. It's not, however, my first ever story on Wattpad; I have been actively writing and publishing Fanfiction (mostly Harry Potter) on my account @cj642_ but due to the many drafts I had on there, I kind of wanted a clean slate for my original work, which is why I decided to create this account!

I have never posted any original work on here (or anywhere for that matter) so I'm really nervous about this! If you could leave some honest feedback for me, that would be amazing.

Also, if you are looking for more chapters because no way can that story be this short, Charlotte - I must disappoint you: yes, it is really this short! The reason for this is that I have written it for a contest, held by the lgbtq  profile on here! So this is my official entry for the "Sun-Kissed Anthology". You should check out this amazing contest for LGBTQ stories between 1,000 and 4,000 words, open until July 1, here:

https://www.wattpad.com/story/42048699-contests

I am looking forward to the results of the anthology and am wishing the best of luck to all participants!

Furthermore, I would like to state that everything in this story, aside from Elizabeth Bishop's poem, is my own original work and merely a figment of my fantasy - any resemblance to historical people or events is purely coincidental.

I claim full copyright for this story, so do not republish it on this website, any other website, or in any other way without my permission. Recommendations and citations for reviews are, of course, welcomed.

The poem that Jason recites is not mine; it is written by Elizabeth Bishop and called "I: Conversation" from her collection "Four Poems". I have found it on page 76 in a collection of her complete works. (If you are interested in this collection, shoot me a PM!)

Last but not least, I would like to address the way that Oscar, in this story, goes about his life and handles other people's reactions to his being blind - I, myself, am not blind, nor do I have any other physical disability. I do not wish to talk over people with a disability, nor to disrespect them; should I have offended anyone, please let me know.

I have written this story with the purpose of representing a group of amazing people that receive little to no media representation everywhere in the world; it is important to me to normalize disabled characters and to have them be heroes as much as able-bodied characters. Representation is so important in today's world, and people with a physical disability receive hardly any, let alone positive representation.

The way that Oscar reacts to other people, the way that he talks about himself and the way he jokes about himself, too are ways that I have experienced from other blind people - we did a class trip to Hamburg, Germany last school year, visiting an interactive exhibition called "Dialog im Dunkeln" (pretty much translates to "Dialogue in the Dark"). This is a centre meant to educate the seeing people about what life as a blind person is like, about the challenges they face and how they deal with it. In it, you are walked by a blind guide through multiple rooms with different set-ups, e.g. a market, a park, or a boat ride - completely blind. You receive a cane and a braille alphabet which you can take home (the alphabet, not the cane).

All the people who work as guides are blind. The ones that I talked to were all very friendly and also very funny - our guide had some really cool jokes. He also said something that I found very impressive: "Please ask me any questions you have, and be honest, and ask away, because I'm just a person and you don't have to approach me any differently."

Should you be interested in finding out more about DiD and the tours they do, check out the link below:

https://www.dialog-im-dunkeln.de/de

(I could only find a link to the German website right now, however I'm sure they do English tours, too. If you have any questions/want a translation, PM me!)

A lot of the stories and anecdotes that he told were touching, some were aggravating, some funny - but all of them left me deeply impressed. In this story, I tried to convey my gratitude and my admiration for people with a seeing disability, and I tried to capture that positive, accepting approach to life and one's own disability that I have been shown myself.

I sincerely hope you enjoyed this story. If you have any questions, critiques or stories of your own, feel free to comment away! I love a good chat.

Much love,

Charlotte

* * * * *

ACHIEVEMENTS

WINNER OF A PLACE IN THE LGTBQ+ "SUN-KISSED" ANTHOLOGY

FIRST PLACE WINNER OF THE PURPLE APPLE AWARDS, JULY 2017

HONORABLE MENTION FOR BEST DIVERSE CHARACTER OVERALL AT wokeawards

THIRD PLACE FOR MOST DIVERSE STORY OVERALL AT THE WOKE AWARDS

SECOND PLACE FOR MOST DIVERSE H-DOUBLE-F-DOUBLE-S AT THE WOKE AWARDS

FIRST PLACE FOR BEST LGBT CHARACTER: OSCAR DILAURENTIS AT THE WOKE AWARDS

FIRST PLACE FOR BEST CHARACTER WITH A DISABILITY: OSCAR DILAURENTIS AT THE WOKE AWARDS

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