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Home > Author > Barry A Coughlin
Barry A Coughlin

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Member Since: Aug, 2008

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Surveyor turned author due to ALS (Lou Gehrig's disease)

Background Information






This is my first novel.  Diagnosed with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), aka Lou Gehrig's Disease in June of 2001, my career as a Land Surveyor began to enter the final chapter.  Living the Dream is the culmination of people, personalities and experiences that I have had the pleasure to meet and to live through in my 44 years.  Please enjoy my unique view on the world through my writing.


Although unintentional, my writing hobby has given me my “fifteen minutes of fame”. I say unintentional because I started writing only to occupy my mind and my time left open by the inability to enjoy normal physical activities. With the encouragement and accolades of those that read my inscription, I turned my sights toward something much larger, in every way imaginable, than a 200-500 word article.  It's kind of weird inspiring people without intention. I have been given a "gift" that no one would wish on their worst enemy. Viewing ALS that way opens the doors to possibilities previously unconsidered. We all have hidden talents, something you haven’t even thought of. Try new things. Things that might embarrass you or you avoid them out of fear, not physically dangerous or financially risky, but out of your comfort zone. Don’t make excuses like, “I’m too old to learn anything new”, or “I don’t have time”. If you don’t want to do something, don’t do it, just realize you may be saying no to the best thing that could ever happen to you. 

 Whatever your circumstance may be, look at it as a gift and watch the world around you open up and smile back at you.

 Life is good, enjoy it!

Birth Place
Saint Elmo, IL USA

I am a guest columnist for my hometown newspaper and the St. Louis, MO regional newsletter "Muscle Dispatch" published by the Muscular Dystrophy Association, (MDA).

Additional Information

I was diagnosed with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), June 11, 2001 at the age of 37 and given 2-5 years to live. I am now 90% paralyzed, but enjoying life more than ever. I wrote, edited and published "Living the Dream", a historical fiction novel, myself using an onscreen keyboard and a mouse. It's almost 54,000 words and 212 pages. I hope to inspire anyone with a desire, disabled or not.

Contact Information

RR 1 Box 19 
Saint Elmo IL 62458   USA
Contact Author: Barry A Coughlin
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Mr. Barry Coughlin
I'm featured on May 18th.

Barry A. Coughlin
My website and home of "Living the Dream", a historical fiction novel.

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