Cover image for Chicken soup for the writer's soul : stories to open the heart and rekindle the spirit of writers
Chicken soup for the writer's soul : stories to open the heart and rekindle the spirit of writers
Canfield, Jack, 1944-
Publication Information:
Deerfield Beach, Fla. : Health Communications, [2000]

Physical Description:
xix, 406 pages : illustrations ; 23 cm
Subject Term:

Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
PN137 .C49 2000 Adult Non-Fiction Open Shelf

On Order



Being a writer can be a lonely and frustrating experience. The stories in this book-by a wide range of professional writers, novelists, journalists, freelancers, poets and screenwriters-will give readers insight into the human trials, tribulations and triumphs of writers, and writers a source of inspiration and commiseration.

Whether readers are beginning writers, seasoned pros or wannabes, the stories of purpose, passion, endurance and success contained in Chicken Soup for the Writer's Soul will inform, entertain, uplift and inspire them. In its pages, they will learn important lessons on: the importance of perseverance, the value of being yourself, the process of discovering your own voice, the need for mentors and allies, and the power of following your heartfelt dreams. Contributors include: Sue Grafton, Steve Allen, Dave Barry, Agatha Christie, Art Linkletter, Terry McMillan, and more.

Author Notes

Jack Canfield earned his Bachelor's of Arts from Harvard and a Master's degree from the University of Massachusetts. he also has an honorary doctorate from the University of Santa Monica. Canfield has been a high school and university teacher, a workshop facilitator, a psychotherapist and a leading authority in the area of self esteem and personal development for approximately 30 years.

Canfield is the founder and co-creator of the Chicken Soup for the Soul book series, which has over 36 titles, 53 million copies in print and is translated into over 32 languages. He is the founder of Self Esteem Seminars in Santa Barbara, California, which trains entrepreneurs, educators, corporate leaders and employees in how to accelerate achievement. Canfield is also the founder of the Foundation for Self Esteem which provides self esteem resources and training for social workers, welfare recipients and Human Resource professionals. Some of his clients include Virgin Records, Sony Pictures, Merrill Lynch, Caldwell Banker, Federal Express, Bergen Brunswig Pharmaceuticals and the American Alzheimers Association.

In 1987, Canfield was appointed by the California Legislature to the California Task Force to Promote Self Esteem and Personal and Social Responsibility. He is the co-founder of the National Association for Self Esteem, and a member of the association for Holistic Education, as well as the National Association for for Self Esteem, where he was also a past member of the Board of Trustees and the recipient of the 1993 National Leadership Award. He is also a member of the National Staff Development Council and the National Speakers Association. In 1989, Canfield was awarded the Certified Speaking Professional designation, an honor that is held by less than 5% of NSA's membership. In 1997, he was nominated by three of NSA's past presidents for the coveted CPAE designation.

Canfield has appeared on such television shows as Oprah, The Today Show, 20/20, Eye to Eye, the NBC Nightly News and the BBC.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 1

Library Journal Review

The ever-popular "Chicken Soup" series here dishes up a nice meal that is intended to nourish and sustain those who write. These morsels are served in a manner that allows the listener to savor each piece. The meal alternates between short epigrams from famous authors and more substantial accounts of an aspect of the business of writing, including the story of how the gift of a book affected a young man's life; how a woman was able to pay her way through college by writing; and how an aspiring writer became a famous author's secretary by seeking that author's advice. The narrators of these tales do a splendid job; each reads clearly and with sincere enthusiasm. Public libraries will wish to consider this as well as any school or academic institution offering courses in creative writing.ÄMichael T. Fein, Central Virginia Community Coll., Lynchburg (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.



Consider This The marvelous richness of human excperience would lose something of rewarding joy if there were not limitations to overcome. The hilltop hour would not be half so wonderful if there were no dark valleys to traverse.Helen KellerRichard Hooker worked for seven years on his humorous war novel, M*A*S*H* only to have it rejected by twenty-one publishers before Morrow decided to publish it. It became a runaway bestseller, spawning a blockbuster movie and a highly successful television series.Richard Bach completed only one year of college, then trained to become an Air Force jet-fighter pilot. Twenty months after earning his wings, he resigned. Then he became an editor of an aviation magazine that went bankrupt. Life became one failure after another. Even when he wrote Jonathan Livingston Seagull, he couldn't think of an ending. The 10,000-word manuscript lay dormant for eight years before he decided how to finish it--only to have eighteen publishers reject it before it was finally published by Macmillan. However once it was published, the book went on to sell more than 7 million copies in numerous languages and make Richard Bach an internationally known and respected author.Louis L'Amour, successful author of more than 100 western novels with more than 200 million copies in print, received 350 rejections before he made his first sale. He later became the first American novelist to receive a special congressional gold medal in recognition of his distinguished career as an author and contributor to the nation through his historically based books.British Writer John Creasy received 774 rejections before selling his first story. He went on to write 564 books, using fourteen different names.In 1953, Julia Child and her two collaborators signed a publishing contract to produce a book tentatively titled French Cooking for the American Kitchen. Julia and her colleagues worked on the book for five years. The publisher rejected the 850-page manuscript. Child and her partners worked for another year totally revising the manuscript. Again the publisher rejected it. But Julia Child did not give up. She and her collaborators went back to work again, found a new publisher, and in 1961--eight years after beginning--they published Mastering the Art of French Cooking, which has sold more than one million copies. In 1966, Time magazine featured Julia Child on its cover. Julia Child is still at the top of her field thirty years later.Dr. Seuss' first children's book, And to Think That I Saw it on Mulberry Street, was rejected by twenty-seven publishers. The twenty-eighth publisher, Vanguard press, sold six million copies of the book. All of his children's books went on to sell a total of more than 100 million copies.The author William Kennedy had written several manuscripts, all of them rejected by numerous publishers before his "sudden success" with his novel Ironweed, which was rejected by thirteen publishers before it was finally accept Excerpted from Chicken Soup for the Writer's Soul: Stories to Open the Heart and Rekindle the Spirit of Writers by Jack L. Canfield, Mark Victor Hansen, Bud Gardner, Jack Canfield All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.

Table of Contents

Judith A. ChanceErnest J. GainesRuben Navarrette Jr.Gordon BurgettCheewa JamesJosie WillisBud GardnerLarry WildeTerry McMillanLawrence BlockBarnaby ConradChristine CliffordKate M. BrausenGene PerretGregory PoirierFrank HarveyNoel Phillip RodriguezNaida WestCookie PotterNora ProfitDierdre W. HonnoldBud GardnerMichele Bazan ReedCatharine BramkampElizabeth EngstromSue GraftonHoward FastDan MillmanIrving WallaceMarilyn PribusJohn TulliusEd RobertsonBud GardnerSteve AllenConnie SheltonPat GallantArt LinkletterDottie WaltersJennifer MartinReg GreenRichard Paul EvansClaire Braz-ValentineBarnaby ConradEdmund HansenBarbara Jeanne FisherCatherine LaniganChet CunninghamFrances HalpernHal Zina BennettLois DuncanErik OlesenKris MackayGarry K. MarshallGeorge PlimptonMarvin J. WolfMarcia PrestonPenny PorterSuzanne PeppersEthel BangertValerie HutchinsKerry ArquetteJudith A. ChanceAmy B. HarrisClive CusslerBryce CourtenayDianna BooherTerri FieldsDan PoynterGail RosenblumJack Canfield and Mark Victor Hansen and Bud GardnerMeg HillDame Barbara CartlandPhyllis Taylor PiankaHugh PratherPhilip Barry OsbornePatricia LorenzGarri GarripoliGregg LevoyJeff ArchRay Bradbury
Acknowledgmentsp. xiii
Introductionp. xvii
Share with Usp. xix
1. How I Became A Writer
Ronny's Bookp. 2
A Writer's Journeyp. 6
Vindicationp. 12
1,600 Articles Agop. 17
At Aunt Jennie's Kneep. 22
The Writer's Songp. 27
Write--To Conquer Your Fearp. 31
From an Abyss to the Mountain Topp. 36
Why I Writep. 41
We Were All Beginners Oncep. 46
2. Living Your Dream
Alex Haley--A Writer of Destinyp. 54
Dreams Do Come Truep. 61
Dreams Lost and Foundp. 64
Dreams Have a Pricep. 68
For Love or Moneyp. 71
Take That Chance!p. 75
3. Defining Moments
A Serendipitous Visit to Revelation Islandp. 84
Writing Can Be Magicp. 91
Papa's Giftp. 97
You Can't Afford to Doubt Yourselfp. 100
A Perfect Night to Diep. 104
A Chat with Alex Haleyp. 108
Cash Rewardsp. 115
Why I Keep Writingp. 119
4. Finding Your Voice
It Doesn't Matter What You Writep. 124
Legacyp. 128
A Writer's Real Worth Is Insidep. 134
Writer, Teacher, Peaceful Warriorp. 138
Counsel from a Veteran of the Writing Warsp. 144
Coded Messages and Kindred Spiritsp. 146
5. Mentors
A Gift to Myselfp. 152
My Dad Storyp. 159
Writing from the Heartp. 163
Accused of Plagiarism--My Highest Complimentp. 171
Sometimes the Biggest Are the Nicestp. 174
So Long Lives Thisp. 179
From Noah's Ark Writer to Bestsellerp. 182
Angels over My Keyboardp. 186
6. Making a Difference
Painting Portraits on Our Soulsp. 194
The Boy Who Saved Thousands of Livesp. 201
The Christmas Boxp. 204
Writers in Prisonp. 212
A Season with the Great Sinclair Lewisp. 217
Dean Has AIDS--A Father's Storyp. 221
7. Overcoming Obstacles
In Spite of It Allp. 226
The Professor and Mep. 230
You're a Loser, Cunninghamp. 235
The Obsessionp. 240
Sometimes Secret Writersp. 243
How to Write Your Way Through Collegep. 246
A New Yardstickp. 251
Writing Is My Destinyp. 256
Writing for My Healthp. 260
8. A Writer's Life
Still Standingp. 266
A Man Called Charlie Blackp. 273
Mixed Blessingsp. 277
Be Ready When Your Editor Callsp. 280
Helen Help Us!p. 283
A Bucket Full of Researchp. 288
Making a 'Pottmentp. 290
Summertime, and the Writin's NOT Easyp. 293
Marriage and Metaphors: A Writer's Life On and Off the Pagesp. 298
9. The Power of Perseverance
A Strange Thing Happened on the Way to OKp. 304
Nothing Comes Easyp. 307
The Courage of the Long-Distance Writerp. 310
So He Must Be Right, Huh?p. 315
Mommy, Please Write a Book for Mep. 319
No One Faces Rejection More Often than an Authorp. 322
Learning from Rejectionp. 328
Consider Thisp. 332
Some People Just Can't Take a Hintp. 337
How I Want to Be Rememberedp. 341
10. Insights and Lessons
The House on Phoenix Circlep. 346
Nothing Unconnected Lastsp. 352
Lesson of a Lifetimep. 356
The Flop Artist Writerp. 362
The Miraculous Linkp. 367
Power Loungingp. 370
The Giftp. 376
How to Be Madder than Captain Ahabp. 382
Supporting Writers of the Worldp. 387
More Chicken Soup?p. 388
Who Is Jack Canfield?p. 389
Who Is Mark Victor Hansen?p. 390
Who Is Bud Gardner?p. 391
Contributorsp. 392
Permissionsp. 403