Chicken Soup for the Soul Today — New York Times Tomorrow

Nothing is too small to boost your writing confidence and take your writing career to the next level

Toya Qualls-Barnette
4 min readApr 29, 2024
Photo by Anastasia Kazak (freepik)

Chicken Soup for the Soul books have been around forever, since 1993 and may seem like small potatoes, but getting your story published in one of their books is no easy feat.

I’ve submitted several stories over the years to deaf ears — crickets as if full on Bon Bons, sprawled on their backs in a drunken slumber taking up space inside my inbox.

They receive thousands of submissions, only have space for 101 stories in each book, and can take six months to two years to develop future publications. Once you submit your masterpiece, fuhgeddaboudit.

Go study abroad, get your MBA, join the circus, start a weed club or whatever blows your hair back — you’ll drive yourself nuts waiting on a response. They tell you flat out on their website not to contact them afterward — their crickets are cyber soldiers.

If you’re an “A” type personality, this won’t end well.

When I received the email a few days ago telling me my story “When Guardian Angels Sit Watchful on Your Shoulder,” made the final round, I was as excited as I was the first two times. This is my third rodeo…



Toya Qualls-Barnette

*Top writer in This Happened To Me| Writing about the impact of relationships|Contributor to Chicken Soup for the Soul| Dreamer|Mother|HSP in drag