Springs Writers provides a FREE conference-quality workshop the first Monday of each month (except December, July & August) from 6:00–7:45 pm, Woodmen/Academy Hobby Lobby Classroom Room [against back wall behind "Employee Only" double doors], 6950 North Academy, Colorado Springs, 80918

Sunday, May 17, 2009

How Do I Get Writing Credits?

"Live your life from your heart. Share from your heart. And your story will touch and heal people's souls."—Melody Beattie

How Do I Get Writing Credits When I Don't Have Any?

This question is one of the most asked questions that I've heard at Springs Writers over the last three years. Beginning writers often feel frustrated because they don't have any clips or writing credits to include in a query letter or book proposal.

Whether you're published or unpublished, it's a great goal to write and submit articles regularly to anthologies. According to Harris Polls, 88.7 percent of the public not only recognizes the Chicken Soup for the Soul® brand, but knows what it is. So why not target your writing towards anthologies?

Listed below you will find the call for submissions from A Cup of Comfort® and Chicken Soup for the Soul®. However, there are other fiction, nonfiction and poetry anthologies requesting submissions. To find your writing genre, log on to Google.com. Type in key words: anthologies, anthology, submission, and your writing genre.

Top 10 Benefits of Submitting to Book Anthologies

It's true that publication in an anthology does not pay the big bucks. Sometimes they request all rights. If your goal is publication and building writing credits, grab a cup of tea, a pen or computer, and start writing. Here are some benefits.

  1. It's easy. No query letter. Just submit your story online.
  2. Anthologies do not require prior writing credits.
  3. Writing for submission provides a writing goal and a firm deadline.
  4. Your story receives acceptance based upon quality of writing and the story's impact, not a famous media platform or prior publication credits.
  5. Their writing guidelines help you narrow the focus of your story by clearly spelling out what they want and do not want.
  6. Regularly submitting to anthologies encourages you to write and hone your writing skills.
  7. If published in an anthology, the instantly recognizable name looks great on your list of writing credits.
  8. If published, you have a book to offer on your website or at speaking engagements.
  9. If you're not published, you have an article or story to submit elsewhere.
  10. Provides numerous opportunities for you to share inspiring, personal experiences.

A Cup of Comfort® Anthology Book Series

A Cup of Comfort®,a bestselling anthology (book) series, features uplifting true stories about the experiences and relationships that inspire and enrich our lives. These slice-of-life stories are written by people from all walks of life and provide unique personal insights into powerful universal truths. Cup of Comfort® is currently accepting submissions for the following books.

Please note that all four of these anthologies are for the secular (non-religious) inspirational nonfiction book category. Before you submit a story, review A Cup of Comfort® writing guidelines.

A Cup of Comfort® for Mothers: Stories celebrating the women who gave us everything

While it's true that each of us has "only one mother the wide world over," there are many different ways to be a mother and many different forms and flavors of mother-child relationships. And in this Cup of Comfort® anthology we want to capture it all—with personal stories about a wide range of mothering and mother-child experiences, including those that test your mettle as well as those that enrich your life. The book will include stories written both by mothers and about mothers (by their adult children, spouse, own mother). Any topic and tone goes, as long as it's meaningful to mothers and suitable for Cup of Comfort®. Whether a story is endearing or entertaining, inspiring or insightful, humorous or heartwarming, poignant or empowering, or all of the above, it must be uplifting and authentic. And most should be about living mothers/children. Although a story may be about a deceased mother (or a deceased child, if written by the mother), it should focus on her life, not on her death. Narrative essays preferred. Story length: 1000–2000 words.

Submission Deadline: June 1, 2009

Finalist Notification:June 10, 2009

A Cup of Comfort® for a Better World: Stories that celebrate generosity, compassion, and volunteerism

To coin a phrase of President Barack Obama, Yes, we can! make a positive difference in the world. And this Cup of Comfort® anthology will feature living examples of good Samaritans whose good deeds inspire others to do their part to make the world a better place or to just make life a little bit easier—for loved ones, neighbors, strangers, future generations, or any of God's creatures, great and small. Potential themes include (but are not limited to) charitable work, random acts of kindness, paying it forward, or lending a helping hand, a port in a storm, or a shoulder to lean on. Stories must be uplifting and personal, preferably narrative essays; we are not interested in journalistic articles or thinly disguised PR pieces for charitable organizations. Story length: 1000–2000 words.

Submission Deadline: June 15, 2009

Finalist Notification: July 1, 2009

A Cup of Comfort® for Couples: Stories that celebrate what it means to be in love

It is said that love works in mysterious ways. And this anthology will reveal the many mysteries as well as the inner workings of true love. Of course, being a "happy couple" involves more than being in love, and making a romantic relationship work takes more than romance. So this book will feature uplifting true stories with a balanced mix of tones—romantic, poignant, humorous—and on a wide range of topics: From falling in love to the secrets of lasting love. From celebrating special moments between you to overcoming bumps in your relationship. From experiences that brought you closer together to experiences that threatened to tear you apart. From endearing rituals to challenging changes. From sparkling new love to glorious golden love. Or any other topic that speaks to the joys, the challenges, and/or the nature of a romantic partnership that works for you. Narrative essays preferred. Story Length: 1000–2000 words.

Submission Deadline: October 1, 2009

Finalist Notification:October 15, 2009

A Cup of Comfort® for Golfers: Stories that celebrate the follies, the triumphs, and the joy of the game

This anthology will feature upbeat, insightful, inspiring, and humorous true stories about learning, playing, and enjoying the uniquely challenging and satisfying game of golf. The book will include stories about golfers of every age and of every persuasion—amateur, pro, casual, recreational, hard-core, newbie. Most of the stories will be written by golfers, but the book will likely include stories written by golf "widows" (or widowers) or other loved ones of "golf nuts." Stories must be about personal experiences. We are not interested in articles on how to play the game, profiles/bios of professional golfers, etc. Narrative essays preferred. Story Length: 1000–2000 words.

Submission Deadline: December 15, 2009

Finalist Notification:December 31, 2009

Chicken Soup for the Soul®

Chicken Soup for the Soul® adds new titles all the time. They provide a publishing outlet to help real people share real stories reflecting hope, courage, inspiration, and love. Before submitting, read Chicken Soup for the Soul®'s writing guidelines to discover the winning recipe for their stories.

A Book of Miracles

Everyone has experienced extraordinary events in their lives that cause wonder and astonishment. Perhaps the only explanation is divine intervention. The true stories in this multi-faith book will awe you with examples of amazing coincidences and prove to you that miracles do happen every day.

Submission Deadline: May 30, 2009

All in the Family

These serious or hilarious, oh so true stories will touch your heart and make you see that even in the most difficult situations, other families are not all that different from your own. Share your stories with others who may realize we all have the same in-laws, siblings, parents, etc. Submit under your real name, but rest assured we expect most of you to use pen names for publication and change the names of family members to protect the innocent (or guilty!).

Submission Deadline: June 30, 2009

Christmas and Holidays

We love holidays! We know you do too. We are collecting stories for our next holiday book.

Submission Deadline: There is no deadline date.

Dieting and Fitness

Eat less - exercise more! We have all heard these simple words but, in reality, dieting and staying fit require a lot of work. Tell us about your commitment to health and fitness. What changes did you make in your eating habits? What kind of an exercise program did you follow that made the difference? Were you still able to treat yourself to that occasional delicious piece of chocolate cake and stay in shape? The true stories in this book will inspire you, make you laugh, touch your heart, and let you know that you can do it!

Submission Deadline: June 30, 2009

Endurance Sports (Running, Cycling, Swimming)

Whether you are a triathlete, a duathlete, or you just love to swim, run, or cycle, we want to hear about your sports, your races, and how endurance sports fit into your life, whether you are an amateur, a student athlete, or a pro.

Submission Deadline: June 30, 2009


Everyone loves great stories about families working and playing together, grit and perseverance, and fast cars! We are collecting stories for the ultimate NASCAR book, coming out in February 2010, in time for the new season. We are excited to have well-known NASCAR columnist Cathy Elliott editing the book.

Submission Deadline: June 15, 2009

Not Really Retired

This book will share humorous and fun stories from those who are actively enjoying their "senior years!" Tell us about your new careers, your volunteer work, your sports, your travels, and those things you always wanted to do that you are finally doing.

Submission Deadline: June 30, 2009

Teacher Tales

We have all had that one teacher who has made a difference in our lives. And teachers, remember that one student who made you know why you decided to be a teacher and who you will never forget? We are looking for stories from both teachers and students that will tell that unforgettable story.

Submission Deadline: June 30, 2009

Thanks Dad

We are looking for stories of thanks from "children" of all ages about their dads. These stories of innumerable joys and challenges will touch your heart, make you laugh, inspire you and remind you that it doesn't matter how old you are, the job of a parent never ends.

Submission Deadline: June 30, 2009

Thanks Mom

We are looking for stories of thanks from "children" of all ages about their moms. These stories of innumerable joys and challenges will touch your heart, make you laugh, inspire you and remind you that it doesn't matter how old you are, the job of a parent never ends.

Submission Deadline: June 30, 2009

True Love

We all love stories about how love started and blossomed; stories about dating, romance, love, and marriage. We are looking for true stories and poems about your soulmate, your true love, the one that got away, and all the ups and downs of your love life. Stories can be serious or hilarious, or both. Please do not submit teen stories for this book—teen relationships will be covered in a future book.

Submission Deadline: May 31, 2009

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