A heartwarming story can go a long way toward inspiring readers. That’s what the publishers of Chicken Soup for the Soul believe, and that’s why the brand has sold more than 250 million books since launching in 1993.
Chicken Soup accepts story submissions from anyone and pays anyone whose story ends up published in a Chicken Soup book. If you’re a writer or have a story to tell, here’s what you should know about telling your story through Chicken Soup for the Soul.
Chicken Soup for the Soul
The first Chicken Soup for the Soul book was published in 1993 by two motivational speakers, Jack Canfield and Mark Victor Hanson. The two men compiled stories from their lives and the lives of people they met speaking and wrote the first of what would become more than 250 Chicken Soup books.
Since then, the company has expanded to include pet food, TV, movies, and apps. Still, roughly a dozen new Chicken Soup books are published every year, providing plenty of opportunities for people to have their stories told.
Submitting Your Story
Chicken Soup for the Soul has some guidelines on what stories the company puts in its books.
- Evoke emotion, particularly happiness, excitement, or warmth
- Be true stories that happened to the submitter or someone they know
- Be 1,200 words or less
Perhaps more importantly, the publisher is also clear about what not to include in a submission:
- Controversial issues, politics
- Sermons or eulogies
Chicken Soup for the Soul accepts poetry submissions in addition to prose, but all poems must tell a story. Poems that are too abstract or too simple aren’t likely to be accepted into the book.
The company has a submission form on its website, and you can send in your work there. You’ll also need to include your first and last name, but you can choose a pen name for the story to be published under.
Writers who get published will get $200 and 10 free copies of the book with their story. Those writers will also be able to buy Chicken Soup books for half price in the future and receive the brand’s mailing letter with exclusive merchandise contests.
Currently, Chicken Soup for the Soul is only accepting stories on the following topics, but topics update regularly:
- Counting your blessings
- Taking care of yourself
- Miracles and the unexplainable
- Tough times
If your story fits the submission requirements, it could be published in the next Chicken Soup for the Soul book!