This is a story the like of which you'll never see again. I have Asperger Syndrome and about three years ago suffered terrible neurological trauma at work. In recovery, I casually began reading Dru/Xander fan-fiction (usually at work...) and decided to write a story about Drusilla and her redemption. To put it mildly, I had a real good day writing it, the story was called "Drusilla's Roses," and as well as suddenly and unexpectedly gaining tremendous empathy for Dru, the creative process repaired the damage I'd suffered. You could even say I had my soul restored to me...
As this was fan-fiction, I could not legally publish so, very fond of Drusilla and not wanting to shove her out in the cold, I did the only logical thing I could, namely to put Dru in the care of her creator and try and get back to "normal."
So I sent the story from Glasgow to Juliet Landau's PO box in LA and did my best to forget about the shy vampire girl I called my dear old Dru. I didn't expect anything else to happen.
Fate, however, had other ideas...
At the same time, I suggested to the National Autistic Society Scotland (NAS) that I take a trip across America to see some of the locations I'd used for "Roses" and to publicise autism. And maybe perhaps get Juliet Landau's autograph or something...
I got the OK to do this from the NAS, went back to the gym to restore myself (I was then 45) and began to regain my old vitality and passion. Despite my autism, I'd been around the world before, but that was 20 years earlier and in a different era (pre 9/11).
I was more than a bit surprised, though, to hear from Juliet, and very pleased to learn that she'd been "blown away" by "Roses." We corresponded a little by email and, not sure what the etiquette was for talking to a film star, I kept it polite and friendly. I always called her Dear Miss Landau, never Juliet.
So what happened? Well, in a word I went out again. I went all the way across America on Greyhound buses (writing articles all the way) and met my dear Miss Landau one Sunday morning on Sunset Boulevard not so long ago. And if you asked me to tell you what it was like, what would I say? That it was like stealing the Enterprise for my own Helen of Troy; and that I'd do it again, given the chance, any day.
Perhaps that should have been the end of the tale, but Jim Doherty of the NAS (my consultant) suggested I write the book of the journey in order to inspire other people with autism, so I did.
Not too surprisingly, it's entitled "Dear Miss Landau" and will be published by Chaplin Books (www.chaplinbooks.co.uk) in March 2012. In addition, "Drusilla's Roses" spawned two sequels: "Drusilla's Redemption" and "Drusilla Revenant." "Roses" and "Redemption" can be found in Dru's section of the BtVS writers' guild website (Charm School version: lessons in etiquette) but "Revenant" has been held back because it completes a story arc possibly left unfinished and could change fan perceptions of the Buffyverse - and I do not say that lightly!
If you'd like to know more, please read the written interview with me on Chaplin Books' web site and/or contact me via Chaplin or Facebook. It's a hell of a story, and it's not over yet.