Chicken Soup for the Soul Review – Legit or Scam

Chicken Soup for the Soul is a bit different than other writing sites. This site publishes books and uses your short stories to create these books. Here you can submit your short story for consideration in their upcoming publications. The site accepts a variety of stories and poetry to publish in their books.

What is Chicken Soup for the Soul About?

  1. The company publishes stories written in the first person that is filled with drama and emotion. They look for stories that use the five senses that fill the reader with vivid images.
  2. A good story will make the reader feel like they are right there with you. If a story opens the heart, fill your eyes with tears, and gives you hope, this is what the site wants.
  3. If you’ve ever performed an act of love, something courageous, or even a service that helped another person, tell them your story.

Story Guidelines:

  1. Write a story about something funny, heartwarming, or an event in your life. Write the story in the first person, and keep the story about yourself.
  2. Inspire the readers, make them laugh, cry, give them goosebumps or make them say “Wow” after reading it.
  3. Don’t write an introduction or even a conclusion to your story. Start off with action and draw the reader in as you move forward.
  4. You can use a pen name on your story if you don’t want your real name published.
  5. When writing your story don’t be afraid to speak from the heart. Many writers on the site tell their stories for the first time.
  6. Your story must be 1200 words or less. So tighten the story and keep it flowing.
  7. Don’t write a story in the present tense if it happened in the past.
  8. The story you write has to be true, no creative writing or fiction is allowed.

What Not to Write:

  1. Don’t write a eulogy, sermon or even an essay for the site.
  2. If you help a person write their story, the story will be a credit to the person who told you this story. In the author bio, they can give you credit for helping them write their story.
  3. Stay away from letters, thesis, journal entries, and term papers.
  4. Don’t submit papers on controversial issues or politics. Furthermore, they don’t want a testimonial or even a biography.
  5. These are first-person stories that are not written like a journalistic article that would be read in a newspaper.

Poetry Guidelines:

  1. Write a poem that tells a story. The poem must tell your story so the reader can follow. A poem is the same as prose and can be published in the book.
  2. Don’t write your poem to sound like a greeting card. Poems that are focused on rhyming are not accepted on the site.

How to Submit your Short Story:

  1. You can only submit the story on the website. Use the form that is supplied on the site. Fill in the information, copy and paste your story, and hit the submit button.
  2. Don’t submit a story or poem that has previously been published. There is only one exception to this if the story was published in a small local newspaper with limited circulation or on your own blog.
  3. Don’t forward book manuscripts to the site. They will be discarded and not read. Furthermore, don’t submit title suggestions to the site because they won’t be shown to the editors.

What to Expect After You Submit Your Story:

  1. If the information has been successfully submitted to the company, you’ll receive a message “Thank you! Your information has been received”. This is the only confirmation that the site sends out.
  2. The site doesn’t send out rejection notifications. Furthermore, they can save your submission for consideration and publish it in another upcoming book.
  3. You can always check the on-sale date of the next book or go to the Coming Soon page on the site.
  4. The company can only publish 101 pieces in each book so be patient it could take time for them to accept and publish your story.
  5. Do not contact the site asking about your submission. It takes time to go through all the stories and decide on which one to publish.
  6. If your story is selected for a different edition the company will notify you. They will ask your permission to edit the story or add an inspirational quote at the top of the story.
  7. If your email address changed, contact the site. Let the webmaster know what publication you submitted and which book you submitted it to. They will update your account.


  1. If your story is published in the book, one month after publication, you’ll be paid $200.
  2. You’ll receive 10 free copies of the book for yourself.
  3. After publication, you become a member of the Chicken Soup for the Soul family and can buy cases of your book for half price.
  4. Published writer receive a monthly newsletter, advanced notification of new books, a contest they can enter, company merchandise and writing tips.


This is a legitimate company to write for. Not all stories are accepted, but if yours is, you have a great opportunity to write for them again. The company publishes books on personal stories that people tell about their lives. This can be a tragic event, inspirational, mother’s love, or even how you were courageous and helped another person. If you think you can inspire another person with your story, submit it to the company. Who knows, you could be published in their next book.





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