While many kids spend their summer goofing off, that’s not the case for Nathan McTaggart.
The 13-year-old was touring the province last week, promoting his third, yes third, children’s book.
Not only does Nathan write children’s books, he donates the proceeds to charity.
“I was three-and-a-half, we went to Food Bank Friday and I saw a fire truck show up,” Nathan says. “I looked at it in awe. That night I started making up scenarios. When I was eight I asked if we could make it into a book.”
That first book was called Santa and the Super Hero, which was illustrated by his Grade 3/4 class and the net proceeds going to the B.C. Burn Fund. The plan was to do one book, but their publisher suggested making it into a a series.
The second book is called Zippy and the Super Hero.
The third book, and the one he’s currently promoting, is called Brandy and Her Super Hero. It is about a dog that gets separated from her family during a forest fire in the Williams Lake area and her adventures getting reunited with her family. In the book she finds two firefighters who are trying to rescue two other firefighters who are trapped on the other side of a river. She uses her agility training to help save the stranded fire fighters.
During her adventures she also finds another dog that is lost in the forest and meets her firefighters from Australia and Mexico.
The message of the book is to bring awareness of how first responders from around the world come together to assist during natural disasters and how dogs have “super hearing” and natural instincts to assist those in need.
The net proceeds of this book are donated to Fire Fighters Without Borders Canada and Pacific Assistance Dogs Society.
One of Nathan’s favourite parts of the book is at the back where there are five pages where the children can take the book to local fire halls and have their Super Heroes sign them.
The short term goal is to sell 500 books by the end of July. That would be approximately a $1,500 donation to each charity during the launch.
Since he launched his first book, Santa and His Super Hero, two years ago, they have donated $2,500 to the BC Professional Fire Fighters Burn Fund and over $2,000 to other deserving charities.
Another book is in the works about a girl who gets scalded by water. The story will deal with how people made fun of her because of her burns and her experiences at burn camp where the message is how she should just be herself.
“She ripped the sleeves off her shirt to be proud of being herself and proud to show off her burns because it doesn’t mean she’s different than anyone else,” she said.
The B.C. Burn Camp attendees will do the artwork for the book.
Last year Nathan attended the burn camp and did an author talk.
“Every single burn is a story,” he said. “They don’t want anyone to feel bad for them, they want to be accepted.”
Writing the books are family affair with Nathan developing the story and his father Keven helping out with the typing.
Check out his Facebook page.