Author Melissa Campbell Rowe has seen the story of special needs from several angles. She has been a public school special education teacher, a private school educator, a cousin, and a parent. In her first book, Dance of Joy, readers get a glimpse into a family’s life and concerns as they deal with autism through the characters of Jeff and Meredith. She hopes this book brings understanding to families with a child with autism and enlightenment to the grandparents, aunts and uncles, and friends.
Originally from Indiana, Melissa moved to Arkansas and graduated from the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville. After spending 14 years in Texas attending graduate school and teaching, she moved to Fort Smith in 1997. Melissa has published articles in national magazines, was an editor and writer for a local magazine, and was an English teacher for 10 years.
She has two grown sons who were both home educated. She now divides her time between her sons and working at Grace Academy, an academy serving homeschooled students. She is a board member for a new nonprofit, The ARTS with Grace focused on bringing community and social opportunities to adults with disabilities.
Dance of Joy is Melissa’s first book. Like lots of people she has had the story in her head for several years. She wanted to write a fictional book about families learning to live with autism to shed light on the struggles families face. Her older son was identified as being autistic almost 25 years ago Over the years, she read lots of books about autism mostly informational and an occasional biography. But there was nothing about the day-to-day living with a child with autism. Dance of Joy provides the glimpse into a family’s life and concerns as they deal with autism through the characters of Jeff and Meredith. She hopes this book brings understanding to families with a child with autism and enlightenment to the grandparents, aunts and uncles, and friends.
You can connect with her on facebook