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My grandfathers both used typewriters. It was a big part of who they were. Maybe that’s why I’ve always loved old typewriters. Or maybe it’s just one of those preferences you can’t really explain, like why I prefer chocolate over strawberry ice cream (which my dad and daughter both love!).

Whatever the case, this is the place to learn about Cynthia J. Patton, award-winning author, speaker, attorney, and autism advocate. I’m also the mother of a smart, stubborn, beautiful, somewhat verbal autistic daughter. It probably goes without saying that I’m juggling a ton of stuff—like every working mother—and doing my best to write in the midst of life’s chaos. This website will celebrate that struggle for balance and the crazy twists and turns life can take. So check back often. We’re going to have fun.




Summer Vacation

It’s June, and my daughter Katie has a one-week break before summer school starts. (Actually Open Mind School operates year-round, so unlike most public school programs, it will be regular school that happens in the summer months.) It might be … Continue reading

Katie Graduates

Tomorrow my daughter Katie graduates from 8th grade. I honestly have no idea where the time went. It’s such a cliche, and yet, utterly on point. My brain keeps shouting: How did this happen?  It’s simply not possible. You have … Continue reading

Summer of Love

As if the month of May had not been crazy enough, I had one last poem to write. Yes, one more. Number Six. Every year the seniors at Granada High School compete to design and paint a bus shelter mural. … Continue reading

Heroes Among Us

Earlier this month, I described the process of writing four poems for four sculptures being installed simultaneously downtown and then moving on to a volunteer poem for the City’s annual Civic Appreciation Dinner. Five poems in under three weeks. Here’s … Continue reading

Four Sculptures in Four Seasons

In my last two posts, I described the process of writing four poems for four sculptures being installed simultaneously downtown. I was under a tight deadline and wasn’t sure I could pull it off. Here’s what I came up with. … Continue reading

Poetry on Demand, Part 2

I needed four poems about four diverse sculptures, and I needed them fast. But I now had a structure and a thread to tie them together. I sat myself down and started writing. Since I wanted to end with Peace, … Continue reading

Poetry on Demand, Part 1

Back when I was debating whether or not to apply for the Poet Laureate position, the thing that gave me pause—okay, most worried me—was the task of writing poems “on demand” for the City. My three predecessors had been required … Continue reading

Pot or Not?

After I conducted my research on the various medications used to treat (or not treat) autism, I asked our Regional Center case manager for her opinion. We were sitting at my kitchen table, having our annual meeting to discuss my … Continue reading

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