Kamloops author of pandemic children's books sells 1,000 copies | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Kamloops author of pandemic children's books sells 1,000 copies

Kamloops children's book author Susan Mark reading her book Safe at Home.
Image Credit: SUBMITTED / Susan Mark
September 01, 2020 - 7:30 AM

A Kamloops children’s author has published two books about the pandemic this summer and donated the $3,000 in profits to local charities.

Thompson Rivers University professor Susan Mark wrote, illustrated and self-published her first COVID-19 conscious children's book Safe at Home in March.

Her second book, Safe at School, was published in June and has recently gained popularity amidst children preparing to return to classes this fall.

"Both books are about being safe in the different locations students are finding themselves in these days,” Mark said. “The new book was written more with teachers in mind, so it's in a larger format so it’s more compatible with photocopying. Teachers could make posters out of the pages.”

Both books were designed to include colouring pages, and Safe at School even features an illustration of Dr. Bonnie Henry giving a press conference.

"That’s whose teachings I’m following with the writing of the books, to make sure the message I’m putting out there is consistent with what the B.C. Ministry and the Health and Education System is putting out as well,” she said.

All of the profits from her two pandemic children’s books go to charities around Kamloops. So far, Mark has donated $3,000 to the Kamloops Food Bank, the B.C. SPCA and the Twin Heart Animal Sanctuary.

“The first book I sold about 700 copies, and the new book is at about 300 right now,” she said.

She has accumulated additional profits and will be looking for more charities in need of donations this fall.

Mark was inspired to write the first book around the time when wearing masks first became common and many were isolating with their families.

"It was something that you could see was going to become the new normal,” she said. "I think normalizing new social messages is most effective when it’s done through children’s literature."

She said for children to see the new protocols as normal helps alleviate their anxiety, and a children’s book is a great way to achieve that.

Anyone interested in purchasing Safe at Home or Safe at School can email Mark with their order.

Those in Kamloops can pick up a copy in person at Save on Foods.

Safe at Home is $5 and Safe at School is $8, plus shipping costs for those having the books delivered.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Brie Welton or call (250) 819-3723 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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