This Autistic Adult’s “Special” interest (update 2)

Afternoon twitter minions, followers, and random people wandering in!

It’s a week of updates.

Yesterday I talked about the awesomeness of literacy.

Today lets talk about autistic “special” interests, also sometimes called obsessions and described in the DSM 5 as being “Highly restricted, fixated interests that are abnormal in intensity or focus.”

Personally, I don’t think we should be too  quick to pathologize a person’s interests, nevermind  their diagnosis.  It seems to me that whether or not society finds them acceptable determines whether or not they are considered restricted or abnormal. As society changes and as some fairly intensive obsessions become more mainstream, it makes the designation even more subjective.


 (screen cap of news  of two people on an escalator dressed in full-body my little pony costumes, text reads “Bronycon in Baltimore this Weekend, Largest convention for my little pony fans”)

Never the less, I do have some fairly intense interests.

One of my interests, designated restrictive and intensive by my evaluator, is Sherlock Holmes.

(original stories, film and television adaptations, pastiche, and fan fiction… all of it and yes I’ve read the Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night time))

adjusting deerstalker

(Basil of Baker Street Adjusts His Deer Stalker)

Sherlock has been keeping me busy.

I am close to being welcomed as a member of the scion society in Annapolis, which meets on one Sunday every other month.

On May 13th I had the opportunity to present at an annual symposium of Baker Street Irregular Scion societies held here in Maryland.

My talk was called “Diagnosing Sherlock: Media, Culture, and Mental Health” and touched on the current desire to label Sherlock Holmes with a mental disorder, ableism, stereotype/trope in recent adaptations, and also whether anything was ever intended. The talk was based on a 13 page paper I wrote, and still have yet to clean up a bit before I submit it for publication.

I think it went well, even though I was terrified.

This tweet made me feel pretty good.


tweet reads ‘Fantastic, funny, and astute talk by Amanda Mills on “Diagnosing Sherlock”

Eventually I’ll get around of making an online version of the talk for those interested.

I am possibly also going to be talking on a panel at a upcoming convention, its a bit unclear at this point.

Preparing, stressing, and obsessing over all of that has taken up time.  Going to the symposium left me happy but pretty drained.

One thing that happened there was that people kept asking for contact info and I had nothing to give, nor any website that would give one a clear idea on what it is I do exactly.  I love this little blog here, but it can get rather random, and finding my better stuff isn’t easy.

My plan to fix that, will be the subject of my update tomorrow.






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