A Kamloops woman has penned a children’s book to raise money to help those impacted by the ongoing novel coronavirus pandemic.
Susan Mark, who teaches creative writing and literacy to education students at Thompson Rivers University, said the project began in the classroom.
“It was almost an immersive lesson for my students,” Mark told KTW.
“It came together very quickly because it was something I wanted to show them and it was something that had to be done sooner than later — to give the children peace of mind and something to do.”
It started as an idea in class and progressed to an illustrated slide show for Mark’s students. She then decided to self-publish through TRU’s print shop.
All of the work was done from Mark’s Aberdeen home.
The book, Safe At Home, tells a children’s story in rhyming couplet. It is also a colouring book and includes some activities and games.
“It’s a kids’ story perspective about what to do and how we’re self-isolating,” Mark said.
The first run of 100 copies, which were printed last week, sold out in 24 hours. Mark said buyers came from across Canada and as far away as Thailand and Saudi Arabia.
Word about the book spread by way of social media — a post on Mark’s personal Facebook page.
The book costs $5, with money raised going to support those impacted by COVID-19. Mark said she has not yet decided where to donate proceeds to make the most of the money, but she gave $400 from the book’s first run to the Kamloops Food Bank this past week.
“Honestly, the food bank was just a place to start,” Mark said. “I want 100 per cent to go to COVID relief.”
Mark is taking orders for the book by email at email@example.com. She has also been providing contact-less delivery for local orders.
“My goal is to get the books and the activities into the hands of the kids, the message into the minds of the kids and the money into the pockets of those who need it,” she said.