This is a guest post by Kristen Clark, a speaker and writer, and contributing editor for the online His Witness Ministries and New Beginnings Marriage Ministry. Her articles have appeared in numerous journals and magazines, while her inspirational stories have been published by Chicken Soup for the Soul. She lives in Texas with her husband, Lawrence.
I’m a writer who puts pen to paper in order to grow my speaking platform, but who wants to expand beyond Ezine articles yet struggles to write enough content for an entire book. Thankfully, I found that submitting inspirational short stories for compilation books is “write” up my alley!
Compilation books, sometimes called anthologies, are collections of short stories by numerous authors, the most successful of which is the Chicken Soup for the Soul book series. Chicken Soup for the Soul has published over 200 book titles, sold over 112 million copies, and had titles translated into more than 40 languages, proof that this market is big business.
The good news is there are a number of compilation publishers out there and finding them is fairly easy. Start by searching for “compilation book, call for submission” in Google, and see if there isn’t an opportunity that aligns with your area of interest. Also, you can search Amazon.com for “compilation books”; the results will yield thousands of books and publishers you may want to research further for future projects.
Better news is that the benefits of writing for compilation books are many. In addition to getting a writing credit for my story, many publishers will include my byline. Also, reputable publishers will pay for my story, send me free copies of the book, and allow me to purchase additional copies at discounted rates for selling at my speaking events for a profit. Finally, as a contributing author I can leverage the publisher’s brand in my marketing collateral.
For example, Chicken Soup for the Soul pays $200 for published stories up to 1,200 words and ten free copies of the book. They also allow story contributors to purchase additional copies at discounted rates, and provide an electronic newsletter filled with helpful tips for writing, book signings, and book sales. Additionally, they welcome multiple submissions and contributing authors can leverage the Chicken Soup for the Soul brand for marketing purposes. (I once got a speaking gig just because I am a Chicken Soup for the Soul story contributor.)
If you think writing for compilation books might be for you, take time to research the various publishers. When you find one that aligns most to your writing style, do your homework and follow their submission guidelines exactly. And, be patient; it can take 9 to 24 months for compilation books to develop. If your story has been chosen, you will be notified and your permission to print the story will be requested. Upon your approval, you’ll be well on your way to reaching those in desperate need of hearing your experience, strength, and hope.
Photo1/ChickenSoup book cover
Have you written for any compilation books? Leave your comment below.