CHICAGO (CBS) — ”Smile With Simon” is a children’s book written by a suburban nurse to inspire young cleft lip and palate patients.
Trouble is, the publisher mixed up Patricia Simon’s story with other books.
So she turned to CBS 2 for help.
Patricia Simon reads from her book about a girl named Patty who has a cleft lip, and a bird named Simon born with a gap in his beak.
The author’s own experiences led to the story.
“I was born with a cleft lip and palate. This is a labor of love,” said Simon.
She invested countless hours and more than $20,000. Simon added that she got good feedback, until someone in the Philippines received the book.
“I was appalled. That is not my story. How did that get in my book,” asked Simon who said that she reached out to the publisher, Lulu, which acknowledged that printing errors are rare but do occur.
“I don’t think they fully understand the impact of when it happens. Why don’t they address the issue? You open it and it says “The Curious Little Snail” by someone else, not me,” said Simon who knows of a handful of printing mix-ups but fears there could be more.
“I have no idea if there’s going to be insertions from books that are R-rated.”
CBS 2 contacted Lulu and the company issued a response which said in part: “while this is an unfortunate scenario, it does happen on occasion…a few slip though from time to time, we have a defect rate of 0.05%.”
“My name is on the book. When it goes out, I want it to be 100% correct,” she said.
Remember that mixed up book that arrived in the Philippines?
The story takes another turn, this time going to Australia. That’s where CBS 2 found the author of the book combined with Simon’s.
“I was so embarrassed. I feel like an idiot,” said Australian author Rachel Beswetherick. “And never felt reassured that it wouldn’t happen again.”
“It keeps happening, so why won’t they address the issue,” asked Simon.
Simon admitted she doesn’t know what to do next: not trusting lulu to print more books and not able to afford the expense of switching publishers.