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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.




What Happens at Camp Arroyo Stays at Camp Arroyo, Year 4

Last week, my daughter Katie attended Camp Arroyo, which is where the Exceptional Needs Network (ENN) holds its summer camp for special needs children in conjunction with the Taylor Family Foundation. This was her fourth year. The camp may be … Continue reading

Katie’s at Camp Arroyo (Again)

This afternoon I drop Katie off at Camp Arroyo. This will be her fourth time at the Exceptional Needs Network’s summer camp for children with special needs. To say she is excited would be an understatement. I’m pretty excited too. … Continue reading

A String of Firsts

Last weekend, I coordinated Poetry Day at the Alameda County Fair. (I know, who knew?) in the morning, I hosted an open mic for all the poets whose work was accepted and displayed at the Fair, plus in the afternoon, … Continue reading

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

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