‘It’s really about bullying:’ 13-year-old author helps others overcome bullying

Published: Mar. 5, 2023 at 4:04 PM EST|Updated: Mar. 5, 2023 at 11:37 PM EST
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RICHMOND HILL, Ga. (WTOC) - A Richmond Hill teen is putting pen to paper, helping others overcome bullying.

At just 13-years-old, 7th grader Daryl Rejas is a published author using his writing skills to help others cope with a situation all too familiar for teens his age.

“It’s really about bullying. I had gone through a lot of bullying when I was younger, and I wanted to stand up for people that couldn’t speak for themselves,” Author Daryl Rejas Jr. said.

A play on the classic Three Little Pigs, Rejas wrote a book called Panda’s Twinkle-Twinkle Toes.

It tells the story of a misunderstood snow leopard trying to make friends with a group of pandas.

“You know how they say not by the hair on my chiny chin chin? So to stand up for themselves, they say not be the hair on my twinkle twinkle twos.”

A lighthearted twist on a classic fairy tale that Rejas hopes helps kids stand up for themselves and others.

It’s a skill he’s had to perfect during frequent moves with his military family.

“When you change, you have to move on a lot. But, in doing so, it makes you go out of your comfort zone in making new friends and meeting new people.”

The inspiration for the book came during a writing assignment from his 6th grade creative teacher Marie Talios.

Rejas says the lessons she taught him about life inside and outside the classroom motivated him to publish his story.

“I was always bullied in middle school. Middle school is awful. It’s awful because you’re trying to find yourself. So the fact that he took what I said and made it a big part of his personal journey is very humbling,” Daryl’s former Teacher Marie Talios said.

And now halfway to his sales goal, Rejas is using those lessons to help others use their “twinkle toes” to overcome bullying.

“All the energy it takes to be angry, could be easily avoided by focusing on something good.”