• A.K. Spurway

Life Advice From A Quack

Some people ask, if they were alive today, what would Jesus, Buddha, Confucious, or Martin Luther King, Jr. do or say in a certain situation. Now, children could be asking: What would Ack say or do?

Who is Ack, you wonder? Did a new religious or social activist movement take place that you don’t know about?

Not exactly. Ack is a duck. An illustrated one.

Ack was born a year ago, debuting in a children’s book, Ack! The Nantucket Duckling, that has become an Amazon best-selling, award-winning, critically-acclaimed book. Children have embraced the lovable and relatable Ack, a character who embodies some amazing characteristics.

Ack was born with an unusual beak, both in its shape and the sound it gives off. Because of his beak, others treat Ack differently. But when his beak comes to save the day, he is embraced for who he is. His difference is seen as an asset. He goes from outcast to hero.

Ack would probably tell us:

What makes you different is neither bad nor good. It is simply who you are — and people should accept you.

  • Being different is normal. We each have something that makes us look, act, think, sou

nd, or feel different — otherwise we would just be clones of one another.

  • Embrace diversity. Appreciate what makes people different and celebrate those differences. Expose yourself to other cultures. Learn about the challenges and rewards of living different lifestyles. *Loving others begins with loving yourself.

  • You will always have friends when you accept others for who they are.

  • Stand up to bullies. Speak up for victims of bullies. Treat others with fairness, respect, and kindness.

  • See what is good in others, not just what is different.

  • It is okay to play with kids who don’t look like us.

  • To be like others doesn’t necessarily make one happier.

  • We all have a purpose and everyone can be useful. *When you see someone in danger, speak up and step up.

  • Be curious and always ask questions.

Ack would also likely say, through his trumpet-shaped beak, “Ack! Ack! Ack!”

A.K. Spurway, certified in Positive Parenting, is a mom of three young children. She is the founder and CEO of, an empowering family lifestyle company, and the best-selling author of Ack! The Nantucket Duckling. Her mission is to help inspire kids to celebrate their differences, so they grow up in a kinder world that’s more inclusive, diverse, and rejects bullying.

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