During the first recording of February’s ReadbyElle summary I made a pretty crucial error.
The book I summarized for you was written by a pioneer of dyslexic advocacy, Thomas West. Tom started talking about the extraordinary gifts of dyslexics in the late 80s, soon after his sons were diagnosed. He saw that his own combination of talents and challenges could be understood with that label.
Hindsight was 20/20 vision — a very apt metaphor in Tom’s case.
When he looked back at his story he saw struggling in school with ‘easy’ work and then excelling after school with more difficult work. He set out to hunt for other stories which echoed this pattern and hasn’t stopped finding them since. Tom’s early work was exclusively about dyslexia but later he would find a broader scope of visual thinkers, all ‘Wonderfully Wired’.
The book, Seeing What Others Cannot See: The Hidden Advantages of Visual Thinkers and Differently Wired Brains is the one on the menu for this month at wonderfullywired.online. The critical error I made was calling it ‘Seeing what others do not see’.
At first my mistake seemed small; it’s not incorrect that dyslexic and autistic thinkers that are especially visual in their thinking ‘see what others do not’. But, as you’ll soon see in the summary, the podcast and the blogs this month; there is more to it than that.
The extraordinary individuals Tom studies in the history of science, maths and design don’t just see what others do not see simply because they think differently; they actually see in their mind's eye what others CANNOT see.
It’s not a silver lining thing — it’s a core design advantage thing.
When I realised that the gift extends beyond the impressive characters that Tom describes, from Einstein, Tesla, Yeats, and Mandelbrot to the Wonderfully Wired kids at your and my dinner table, I booked another session in the studio and joyfully fixed my mistake.
You’ll love the content if you are interested in the stories of people and in the story of mankind – Tom suggests that we are entering a time in history where the visual thinker can thrive and where the impressive computer tech at our disposal can change the way we think about intelligence and talent.
And speaking of computer tech…a side note for me personally, is that all the original computer graphic designs you’ll come across on the site and on my socials this month were designed by my eldest daughter, Sophia! I’m bringing my daughter’s work to my day and watching with delight as her own Wonderfully Wired story unfolds.
I hope you enjoy the content half as much as we enjoyed creating it for you.
With much love,
Elle and Sophia
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