June 20, 2011

Post #2720 – 20110620

Hi, your writing made a huge impact on me as a kid, and I also enjoy reading your books as an adult. I recently set up a website with anti-bullying skills for teens explained in a non-boring way: Bully Quit, and if you want to check it out or blurb it in some way, awesome. If not, cool, I understand.

I also want to express my hopes that you continue to do audiobooks, because you’re good at it. I will buy audiobooks of dead tree books I already own, simply because it’s entertaining to hear you read.


Daniel replies:

You got me thinking about bullying. I tried to remember if I had ever been bullied. I had! The last time it happened was in third grade, and I was all upset. I remember a teacher telling me, ""But those kids who bullied you are smaller than you. You are bigger than them. You are bigger than anyone. You could wipe the floor with them. So, next time they bully you, just bash them in the face."" Even at the time, I remember thinking this may not be the best advice. Still, the next time it happened, I bashed the kid in the face. He cried. There was blood. I didn't like the way that felt. I didn't feel any better about it than when I had been bullied and did not bash anyone. So I didn't try bashing again. Still, I didn't want to be bullied. So, I experimented with developing a non-bullyable style. It's hard to explain what that was. I had to convince myself that it was impossible to bully me. Once I got that working, may have been my expression, or the way I carried myself, or maybe some sort of brainwave that science hasn't discovered...something just caused bullies to back away. It was like they were mosquitoes, and I was covered with mosquito repellent. I was not scared, and I did not try to be scary. I was not mad. I did not have negative thoughts about kids who were apt to bully me. I was relaxed. I was calm. It was as though I said to the kids, ""You are not invited to bully me,"" and they said, ""Oh. OK."" I don't know if this will work for anyone else, but it never failed for me.