Katherine Call-Morin, pictured here with Charlie, a Canadian sport horse, wrote “Heart of a Horse” to inspire others to be compassionate toward animals.
PLATTSBURGH — Katherine Call-Morin has always been a writer.
But it wasn’t until last year that she published her first book, a children’s story called “Heart of a Horse.”
“I’m one of those closet writers,” Call-Morin said. “I’ve written many, many children’s stories, and I’ve written adult short stories too.”
Last spring, she self-published 250 copies of her book through Living Water publishers in Vermont.
Call-Morin, who lives in Plattsburgh, said “Heart of a Horse” has sold well, so she recently had 150 more copies printed.
She isn’t solely responsible for the finished product, though—it was illustrated by Canadian artist Pat Bliss.
“I did a Google search for horse artists, and his name came up,” call-Morin said. “I believe in serendipity, so I knew I had to go with him.”
The serendipitous moment came with the connection that one of the real-life horses that inspired the first part of the book, Bliss, shared a name with the artist.
Call-Morin contacted Bliss—the illustrator, not the horse—and asked if he’d do the drawings for her book.
She then sent him a rough layout of the book, complete with sketches and notes describing ideas she had for the images, and he responded by sending her 24 drawings.
“The drawings he sent were just wonderful—they really complimented the story,” Call-Morin said.
The tale of two horses includes both the good and the bad aspects of life, and it was inspired by Bliss—the horse, not the illustrator—and her brother, Spirit.
In the story the two foals are born a day apart and go through different owners before finally finding happiness.
And for those readers who don’t know that a “foal” is a young horse, Call-Morin interspersed the text with info-boxes to explain the various equine-related terms used throughout the tale.
“I wrote the story because I’m concerned with animal welfare and abuse,” Katherine Call-Morin said. “I wanted people to understand that owning a horse is not just about putting an animal in the backyard.”
Call-Morin has owned horses for about 13 years, and said that people can learn a lot from the hooved creatures.
“Part of their essence is that horses have an integrity to them, a predictability; they don’t have a hidden agenda,” she said. “The heart of a horse, if you would relate it to a human being, would be somebody who is like a horse—loyal, strong in character has integrity and is true to their word.”
She added that she hopes her story will be a resounding voice in inspiring people to treat animals with respect and compassion.
“They (horses) are really emotional, considerate and kind, and they sometimes fall into the hands of people who don’t have the heart of a horse,” Call-Morin said.
“Heart of a Horse” is about 50 pages long and is suitable for children 9 years of age and older. It can be purchased at Corner-Stone Bookshop in Plattsburgh, Conroy’s Organics in West Chazy and in Vermont at Phoenix Books in Burlington and Essex and Underhill Automotive in Underhill, or by calling Call-Morin at (518) 726-6060.