Ponoka woman publishes children’s book

Simon the Cat is a kitty that went from being abandoned to starring in his own book.

Simon the Cat is a kitty that went from being abandoned to starring in his own book.

Owner Margaret Erickson penned a children’s book for kids aged four to 10 — although she jokes it’s perfect for kids aged four to 80 and up — and had it self-published recently.

Called Simon the Cat: The Adventures of a Very Special Kitty, the true story of Simon the Cat is told and how he was adopted by Erickson and her husband in Arizona in 2005. They bonded with Simon immediately.

Erickson spends her time between Arizona and Ponoka and Simon the Cat goes with them on their trips. He’s quite travelled, clocking more than 70,000 miles with the family.

“He has a chip in each shoulder, so he’s a true dual citizen,” she joked.

Her hope is children will learn about kindness and empathy of animals and the story helps speak to that with special guests, like her veterinarian, who help take care of Simon.

“I’m teaching them kindness…and how really important it is to be adopted,” explained Erickson of her passion to see pets cared for.

The book features special illustrations by a professional artist and went through a few edits before this final copy was printed. For Erickson, writing this book was a labour of love and another thing she can check off her bucket list.

“My earliest recollection is getting a book at Christmastime,” said Erickson.

“My whole life was reading, and my dad was a storyteller,” she added.

It is a labour of love that has grown into a second book. Erickson is in the process of finishing her second book of none other than Simon. Dubbed Simon the Cat: The Adventures Continue.

A portion of the sales from the books go to two different charities: The Humane Society and the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.

That focus has helped those organizations in the United States, specifically the SPCA. Erickson says she received a phone call from the president of the SPCA in the United States saying they received generous donations because of the book. “That was so gratifying.”

Her hope is to continue to raise the awareness of animal care and to raise funds for those organizations in Canada.

A special reading along with crafts is set for June 17 at 1:30 p.m. For more information check out Simon’s website at www.simonthecat.ca or email Erickson at mrose99@telus.net.