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Tuesday, May 4, 2021

Chicken Soup for the Soul topics

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We have many Chicken Soup for the Soul books in development and we frequently add new titles. If you have a great story or poem you want to submit but it doesn’t fit with any of the topics below, please save it and check this page again in the future to see if we have added a topic that’s a better match.

If you have a story or poem that you think fits two of the topics below, you may submit it to both. Then let us know in the Comments section that you’ve done so. Also, you may submit more than one piece for each book.

We are always looking for new talent. So whether you are a regular contributor or new to our family, please share your story or poem with us. If this is your first time, please visit our Story Guidelines page, which will answer many of your questions about subject matter, length, and style.

Please scroll through the topics listed below to see what we're working on! Then click on the Submit Your Story link and you will be taken to our submission form.

***SELECT YOUR TOPIC*** 

Angels 

The deadline for submissions is JUNE 1, 2021.

Angels and miracles are all around us if we keep our eyes open. Have you experienced a divine intervention, answered prayer, or other miraculous occurrence courtesy of someone you think just might have been an angel. Do you have a guardian angel who seems to swoop in and help you when you need it?

We are looking for true personal stories about how an angel has touched your life – stories of true wonder and awe from people who have directly encountered or received help from angels. We’re looking for amazing stories that will make people say “wow” or give our readers chills. Have you experienced something otherworldly or celestial? Or had a personal experience with an angel or divine being? How did your angel manifest himself or herself to you? Were you the only person who saw your angel? How did your angel protect or guide you?

We are looking for stories, and poems that tell a story, from writers of all faiths. This includes writers who do not follow a particular religion. This book is by and for everyone.

Please note that we are not looking for stories about people who are “angels” because they do nice things, and also please do not submit eulogies about a loved one who has died and is now an “angel.”


Cats 

The deadline date for submissions is AUGUST 31, 2021.

Our cat books are so popular that we do a new one every other year. Our feline friends make us smile every day with their crazy antics, their loving companionship, and their amazing intuition. Here is another chance for you to share your story about the member of your family who just happens to walk on four feet… your cat!

We want your true funny stories, your heartwarming stories, and your mindboggling stories about all the simply amazing things that your cat does. What have you learned from your cat? How does your cat improve your life? What crazy things does your cat do? Has your cat ever done anything heroic? How does your cat warm your heart and make you smile? We want to hear all about the absurd antics, funny habits and insightful behavior of your cat. Please do not submit a story about your cat if we have already published that story. We will not republish it.

Christmas Stories 

The deadline date for submissions is MAY 15, 2021.

We are looking for stories about the entire holiday season, including Thanksgiving, Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, Boxing Day, and New Year’s. Please make sure that they are “Santa safe” so that we don’t spoil the magic for precocious readers!

We want great holiday stories that share your traditions and memories of normal holidays pre-pandemic. We’re hoping the pandemic is behind us by the time we’re all reading our 2021 holiday book. Here are some possible topics but we know you can think of many more.

• Thanksgiving – holiday fun, disasters, and family bonding 
• Hanukkah – all by itself or incorporated into your Christmas tradition 
• The weeks leading up to Christmas – anticipation, energy, the kids 
• Shopping and finding the perfect gift 
• Holiday humor – things that went wrong 
• Holidays through the eyes of the children 
• Around the table - holiday foods and traditions 
• Family reunions 
• Unique gifts, creativity, the best gifts you ever gave or received 
• Holiday miracles, amazing coincidences, answered prayers 
• Gratitude, counting your blessings 
• Forgiveness and how you used it during the holidays 
• Family dynamics – milestones, tender moments, epiphanies 
• What you learned during the holidays 

We know the holiday season was very different in 2020. Some traditions and celebrations went on as usual, but due to COVID-19, many things changed. Were your traditions and celebrations different? Were you able to gather with family, go to church, attend holiday parties and share the special spirit of the season, brightening those long winter days? Or were new traditions and celebrations started? Pleasant changes, from chaotic to quiet, that you will be continuing for years to come? We do also want to hear about how the pandemic changed your most recent holidays. Here are some suggested COVID-19 related topics but we know you can think of many more:

• New traditions started – and to be continued? 
• Using technology, Zoom or FaceTime gatherings 
• Staying home instead of traveling 
• Gift giving changes 
• Gift receiving changes 
• Decorating for your own enjoyment 
• Enjoying a simpler time 
• Seeing the silver linings 

If we published your story in a previous Christmas book please do not submit it. We will not publish it again.

Counting Your Blessings 

The deadline for submissions is JUNE 15, 2021

Gratitude is one of the keys to happiness. Even during the toughest times, if we can find our gratitude and count our blessings we feel better. Back in 2009, when we were going through a deep recession, we received thousands of stories from people who were still counting their blessings and finding their joy. Those stories became the bestselling book Chicken Soup for the Soul: Count Your Blessings.

With today’s worries about contracting disease, joblessness, and rampant divisiveness we thought it was time to revisit this topic. We’re not sure of the title for our next book about counting your blessings, but we’re sure a new collection of stories is appropriate for 2021.

Please share your stories about handling challenges in your life, finding the silver linings, and counting your blessings, whether the challenges you are facing are COVID-19 related or other kinds.

Stories can be serious or funny, but definitely should be inspirational and heartwarming. Attitude adjustments, finding contentment and gratitude, a new way of handling your daily life, and other great ideas to inspire readers to find their own paths to happiness and to remember to count their blessings every day are what we are looking for.

Crazy Family 

The deadline for submissions is AUGUST 31, 2021.

We all have that certain someone in our own family who, while lovable, sweet, and caring, is also nutty or weird. We love that person but, at the same time, that family member makes us crazy! A parent or grandparent, an in-law, a brother or sister, an aunt, uncle or cousin. We all have them and you know who they are! We are looking for true stories and poems about those family members. We would like your stories to be silly, outrageous, hilarious, and make us laugh, but they should also show the kindness and caring of your family member too.

We are not looking for stories about the normal trials and tribulations of raising children and teenagers. We already know your kids do weird things, since ours did too! We want these stories to be outrageous and about out-of-the-ordinary situations.

You must submit your story or poem using your real name, but if your work is selected to be published in the book, we expect many of you to use pen names and change the names of family members to protect the innocent (or guilty!).

Dogs 

The deadline date for submissions is AUGUST 31, 2021.

Our dog books are so popular that we do a new one every other year. Our canine friends make us smile every day with their crazy antics, their loving companionship, and their amazing intuition. Here is another chance for you to share your story about the member of your family who just happens to walk on four feet… your dog!

We want your true funny stories, your heartwarming stories, and your mindboggling stories about all the simply amazing things that your dog does. What have you learned from your dog? How does your dog improve your life? What crazy things does your dog do? Has your dog ever done anything heroic? How does your dog warm your heart and make you smile? We want to hear all about the absurd antics, funny habits and insightful behavior of your dog. Stories can be serious or humorous.

Please do not submit a story about your dog if we have already published that story. We will not republish it.

Grieving, Loss and Recovery 

The deadline for submissions is AUGUST 31, 2021. 

Grieving is a personal process with different stages we go through on the way to recovery after we have suffered a loss. Each person grieves in his or her own way and in his or her own time. There is no right or wrong way to grieve and no set time or path to recovery. It is a very personal journey.

Sometimes the loss feels overwhelming and like the pain will never end. While the hurt and sadness never completely fade, they will ease with time and recovery will happen.

This collection of emotional and inspirational stories will provide comfort, support, and peace to those who have lost someone close to them. What helped you the most when you were grieving? Who were the people who helped you and what did they do? When did you know that you had finally “turned the corner” and were on the road to recovery? When and how did you realize there was light at the end of the tunnel? What are you doing to support others?

Your stories will give our readers inspiration and insight into how others are coping and let them know that there is hope, and recovery will happen.We hope that the true stories in this book will offer comfort and guidance to our readers and help ease the journey to healing. Please do not send us a biography about someone who has died.

Humorous Stories 

The deadline for submissions is AUGUST 30, 2021.

Laughter is the best medicine. And we love to publish your funny stories—in all our books. Our first ever book filled with nothing but funny stories was a bestseller, so we’re doing it again, for publication in 2022. We’re looking for those funny stories you tell again and again. The ones that make everyone laugh.

Share your funny stories about something that happened to you in your life – in your relationship with a partner or spouse, a parent or child, a family member or friend, at work or at home – that made you and the people around you laugh out loud. Did you mean for it to be funny? Did the other person mean to make you laugh? Did a situation just get out of control? Did a misunderstanding turn into a comedy of errors?

We can’t wait to hear your true stories. We want them to be silly, outrageous and hilarious, and they absolutely must brighten our day and make us laugh! Good clean fun—and sometimes a tiny bit risqué too.

Here are some suggested topics but we know you can think of many more:

• Slips of the tongue 
• Misunderstandings that led to funny moments 
• Weird habits 
• Pranks 
• Pet behavior 
• Embarrassing moments 
• COVID comedy/isolation incidents 
• Wedding mishaps 
• Funeral foul-ups 
• Holiday meltdowns 
• DIY projects 
• Kitchen/dinner party disasters 
• Sports catastrophes 
• Family foibles 
• Zany vacations 
• Moving-day mayhem 
• Travel turmoil 
• Marriage 
• Workplace mishaps 
• And any other hilarious, funny stories that happened in your life 

If we have already published this story in a Chicken Soup for the Soul title, please do not submit it again. Please submit your story using your real name; we will let you use a pen name if necessary to protect the innocent (or guilty!).

Kindness 

The deadline for submissions is AUGUST 31, 2021.

Small gestures can make a big difference in someone’s day, even in someone’s life. In our fast-paced world many people tend to only pay attention to what is important to them.

It is so wonderful and heartwarming to hear stories about people who have gone out of their way to do something kind for someone without being asked. Just because it was the kind thing to do. Just because it was the right thing to do.

Many times the person who receives an act of kindness doesn't even know the person who is being kind to them. The kindness is from total stranger, someone who will not be able to be paid back. Or perhaps you are that person who does a kind thing for a stranger knowing you will not be acknowledged or paid back. You did it just because.

Has someone performed an act of kindness for you? How did it feel? Did you pay it forward and do something kind for someone else? Did that person know it was you doing that kind thing? Did you do something kind for a stranger knowing you would not be paid back? How did that feel? 

We are looking for true stories about acts of kindness that have happened to you or stories about a kindness that you performed for someone else. Stories can be serious or funny but they should definitely inspire our readers to look for ways in which they can perform kind acts.

Messages from Heaven 

The deadline for submissions is AUGUST 31, 2021.

When our loved ones leave this world, our connection with them does not end. Death takes away their physical presence, but not their spirits, and we often sense them after they have gone. Sometimes we see or hear from them after they've passed, and they give us signs and a spiritual link from beyond.

We want to hear from you if you have experienced communication from the other side or received a sign or signal from a loved one who has passed. Has someone who has died come to you in a dream? Given you counsel or comfort? Have you gone beyond, but returned to life with new knowledge, insight, or awareness? Have you intuitively known the moment someone died?

This book is for everyone who has a story, whether religious or secular. Share your true, touching, and astounding stories about messages from heaven or your own experiences with dying and coming back.

Miracles 

The deadline for submissions is AUGUST 31, 2021.

Everyone has experienced events in their lives that cause wonder and astonishment. These miraculous happenings are completely and totally unexplainable. Why did these amazing things happen? How did these surprising and bewildering things occur?

We want your true stories, both religious and non-religious, that will awe us with examples of amazing events. Inspirational stories to remind us that each day stunning miracles do happen and that a miracle can happen at any time.

Give us your personal stories about feelings of expectation and hope and the extraordinary events that have happened to you without logic. Did an unexplainable strange premonition make you take a different route home causing you to miss an accident? Did you have an eerie feeling that you should call home… right now, saving someone’s life? Did you find something you had lost long after you had given up hope of ever finding it and after having looked many times in the place it was eventually found? Did something good happen when only bad was predicted?

Thank you!