The 14th-18th November is anti-bullying week in the UK. Today, I want to talk a little about how bullying is relevant to Rise of the Darkwitch – and also to let you know that it’s available on Kindle this week for free!
Working in schools, I’ve dealt with a lot of bullying issues. Some are simple issues. Some are much more complicated. The important thing, though, is that to the individual, each issue is important.
One of the things I wanted to explore in Rise of the Darkwitch was bullying, prejudice, and how to rise above it.
The character Emmy suffers great discrimination in her life, even from Madame Krodge, her guardian. Emmy looks different, and is treated like a demon. Shunned by everyone, she exists in a life where her only value is her medical knowledge-or so it seems.
Emmy suffers verbal and physical abuse, but her story isn’t all negative. Rise of the Darkwitch is the story of Emmy overcoming the adversity she faces, and coming to terms with who she is-and not needing to change.
That’s a message I think is important to send to young people suffering bullying.
You don’t need to change. The problems are with the bullies. That’s not much comfort when the bullying is ongoing, granted, but it is true.
If you’re experiencing bullying, here’s my advice: tell someone, walk away from the bullies, and while you wait for the problem to be sorted by teachers and other adults whose job it is to sort them, find solace in books.
Read and enjoy, and remember: you don’t need to change. Just like Emmy, you’re perfect just the way you are.