We don’t see much disability in fantasy, only a handful come to mind. And not all of them are good. 

When writing disability I used to go by a rule, do not cure it past what the real world can. 

So, if someone is missing an arm or leg, yes you can use some kind of prosthetics, but those prosthetics should still have some of the real world issues actual amputees have to deal with. Otherwise, what’s the point? Other than it being a part of the character’s design? Not much.  

And although there’s nothing wrong with doing some things only for aesthetic, it isn’t quite the representation I think we should striving for. 

However, a lot of people break this rule and still make very good disabled characters. 

The most obvious example is Toph from Avatar. (Minor spoilers ahead) She’s blind, yet she can see. Not with her eyes, but with her feet, through her bending. It’s a cool and creative idea but, does it not miss the mark? Most would say no. Most see Toph as an inspiration. So, why doesn’t it miss the mark? 

Well, it took me a while to understand but I think the key is it isn’t a 100% cure. Yeah, she can see with her feet when on the ground but she still faces a lot of problems. 

She can’t see when off the ground (on Appa). 

She can’t read. 

Swimming is also a blind spot. 

She doesn’t lack disability, she faces it with a new and creative way. 

The other thing is Toph’s disability isn’t there to represent the struggled of the disabled in a phhysical sense. Instead it’s there to represent how society treats the disabled. Toph’s family treats her like a helpless child when in reality she is capable of a lot. This is an experience  a lot of disables people face in there day to day life. 

Sometimes, it’s okay to interact with disability (in a fantasy world) in the way that suit your narrative. But please make sure to do your research, I never get tired of saying it. 

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What are some good disables representation in fiction you can think of?