Huntingdon: Former Duran Duran man writes book on Aspergers

A FORMER sound engineer who toured the world with the band Duran Duran has written a book about his life living with Asperger s syndrome. Called The Logic of Attraction, Mark Ty-Wharton told The Hunts Post he has written the book to help other people

A FORMER sound engineer who toured the world with the band Duran Duran has written a book about his life living with Asperger's syndrome.

Called The Logic of Attraction, Mark Ty-Wharton told The Hunts Post he has written the book to help other people who have the syndrome.

The 46-year-old, who lives in The Hollow, Hartford, says he was an adult before he realised that he had Asperger's and it opened his eyes to problems that had beset him all his life.

"I believe knowing I have Asperger's has made my life easier. Everything suddenly makes sense," he said. "I wrote the book to help other people and share what I had discovered about myself and the syndrome. Working on my own beliefs has helped me improve my relationship with myself and consequently other people.

"As a man with Asperger's it can sometimes be hard to connect with people. I have always been very anxious and the exercises in the book helped me find a way to make my anxiety more manageable."

He added: "Although I have excellent perception, somewhere in my brain the decoding mechanisms are wired up differently. Where some people have social ability, I have excellent spatial awareness and an ability to spot hexagons hidden within triangles.

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"My friends perceive me as quite a miserable person, yet I am generally quite happy. However, when I go out in the world, until recently, I only seemed to engage with people who were unhappy.

"I finally worked out what was happening. When I spoke to people they were trying to mirror my mood to get me to like them. I just don't get certain social cues, so if someone is walking toward me to greet them, it doesn't occur to me to smile before meeting them. I'll meet them with a deadpan face, which usually sets the tone for the conversation."

Mark set himself up as a sound engineer, forming a company called Extra Sonic Perceptions, and was asked to work for Duran Duran at guitarist Warren Cucurullo's house.

"The job was to move a sound Nick Rhodes had used to make the song Ordinary World to a smaller keyboard so they could take it on tour. I ended up as Rhodes' keyboard technician on a worldwide tour."

He added: "One phone call led to about 15 years' work. I have seen the world and worked on several albums. I even played guitar on a Dandy Warhols track when Nick and I produced their record.

"While I didn't believe it was possible for me to have a hit record as a musician, I did believe it was possible for me to work as a programmer, producer and sound engineer. Because of that belief, that is exactly where I ended up."

INFORMATION: People with Asperger's Syndrome, which is an autism disorder, have difficulties with social interaction and can have restricted patterns of behavior and interests. However, unlike some autism disorders, people with the syndrome retain linguistic and cognitive development. For details about the book visit http://thelogicofattraction.com

Picture by TIM ROSIER

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