Special Needs in Strange Worlds | Tim Marquitz

About the Author

Raised on a diet of Heavy Metal and bad intentions, Tim Marquitz has always been interested in writing, but it wasn’t until about 1995 the urge became a compulsion. However, it would be many years later before the ability matched the interest. Fortunately, the two have reconciled…mostly.

Writing a mix of the dark perverse, the horrific, and the tragic, tinged with sarcasm and biting humor, he looks to leave a gaping wound in the minds of his readers like his inspirations: Clive Barker, Jim Butcher, and Stephen King.

A former grave digger, bouncer, and dedicated metalhead, Tim is a huge fan of Mixed Martial Arts, and fighting in general.

He lives in Texas with his beautiful wife and daughter.

You can learn more about Tim, and various ways to contact and follow him, on his website.

The Uncomfortable Reality of Fiction


I’ve very little experience with special needs in fiction or in real life. While my dominant hand was injured years back and is technically crippled to a small degree, and has sufficiently altered my approach to daily function, it’s not what anyone would consider a true disability. It’s frustrating and occasionally painful and often inconvenient, but it does little to limit the quality of my life.

However, as minor as my injury is in the grand scheme of things, it has allowed me the slightest sampling of what so many people face day in and day out and to far greater extremes. I can only imagine what it’s like to be forced to survive every day, a person’s own body or mind conspiring against the basic functions most of us take for granted. In fact, I’m not even sure I can imagine it, which I suspect is why I’ve excluded it from my fiction, however unconsciously that decision has been.

Looking at it now, it’s a glaring exemption of a part of society I had even realized I’d exempted from my work while diligently including others. Sadly, I believe that’s the true burden of the special needs, to be hidden in plain sight, little thought given to their plight outside of the dedicated and compassionate few who work with them on a daily basis, made to experience true disability as close as anyone can and yet still be outside the affected group.

Given the novels I’ve read over the years, it’s clear I’m not the only writer to have dropped the ball on this part of our society. And while I don’t believe this is intentional on any of their parts, the story needs often far outweighing the reality aspect of life, it’s telling to note how rare such instances are in my own reading experience.

Ultimately, while I don’t feel it’s necessary for an author to include a special needs person in their fiction simply to do so, I do believe it’s an underappreciated minority whose story is just as compelling, if not more so, than many of the hale and whole protagonists that populate the world of fiction. And since conflict and challenges are such an integral part of storytelling, who better to exemplify the battle against adversity than those who have to deal with it every moment of their lives?


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