Alyssa Ast's Contribution to Chicken Soup for the Soul: Inspiration for Writers

In May, Alyssa Ast's contribution in the new Chicken Soup for the Soul: Inspiration for Writers will be available for purchase. This marks Alyssa's second contribution to the Chicken Soup for the Soul book series. She has also authored The Fundamentals of SEO for the Average Joe, contributed to The WM Freelance Writers Connection Presents Marketing Yourself and Your Writing Online, The Practical Freelance Writer’s Guide to Author Websites and is scheduled to release another book, Random Thoughts of a Tangled Mind, in 2014. 

CONTACT: Shelby Sledge (512) 206-0229
Inspiring all writers
 Chicken Soup for the Soul motivates writers–budding or bestselling–from books to blogs

COS COB, Conn.–The very existence of Chicken Soup for the Soul is inspiration for writers, as Jack Canfield and Mark Victor Hansen endured years of rejection before publishing the first volume in the series, which became a #1 New York Times bestseller and a worldwide favorite. Now, just one month before the 20th anniversary of the original Chicken Soup for the Soul, the series has released a new anthology Chicken Soup for the Soul: Inspiration for Writers (Chicken Soup for the Soul Publishing, LLC, May 21, 2013, 978-1611599091) that contains 101 stories from people who have successfully chased their dream of writing, documenting their setbacks and successes, and sharing their tips for finding inspiration, overcoming writer’s block, making time to write, and finding ways to get published.

Even if you’ve already been published, writing can be challenging. Award-winning Young Adult novelist Sarah Darer Littman was struggling to write her second novel. She would bring ideas to her agent and editor, only to have them shot down. This combined with going through a divorce made the prospects of writing a second book seem hopeless.  She decided to take a risk and write the whole novel first. “And I tuned in again to the voice inside. The one that loved writing for the sake of it, not because she was worried about selling another book,” Sarah writes. “The one who had stories inside that were bursting to be told, if only I would listen.” 

Bestselling author Hank Phillippi Ryan knew the importance of mentoring. She had an important mentor teach her the ins and outs of TV reporting early in her career, and loved mentoring others. One intern, Sally, even came back to be her producer after spending some time in the writing and publishing world. “With an idea for a mystery novel blossoming in my head, I asked Sally if she could mentor me in the book world! And she did,” Hank writes. Hank’s first novel won the Agatha Award for Best First Mystery and her fifth book is a bestseller and in its third printing.

You never know how your writing will affect your life or others. Bestselling novelist J.A. Jance has been writing stories for her character, J.P. Beaumont, for 30 years. One day, her son suggested writing a prequel for Beaumont. J.A. went back to read the very first book she wrote for the series, causing a flood of memories. The first novel mentioned Beaumont serving in Vietnam, inspiring J.A. to create a character inspired by her childhood friend, Doug Davis, who had died in Vietnam. Not only was it a life-changing experience for J.A., but she also connected with the woman who had been engaged to Doug before he died. “In writing this book I believe I’ve finally found what I’ve been searching for all along– from 1966 until now – forgiveness for missing Doug Davis’s funeral,” J.A. writes. “He was an unsung hero, and it is my honor to tell his story to the world.”

Chicken Soup for the Soul: Inspiration for Writers (Jack Canfield, Mark Victor Hansen, Amy Newmark and Susan Heim) releases on May 21, 2013. Chicken Soup for the Soul Publishing, LLC, publishes the famous Chicken Soup for the Soul book series, which is distributed through Simon & Schuster, Inc. In 2007, USA Today named Chicken Soup for the Soul one of the five most memorable books in the last quarter century. Since 1993, more than 100 million books in the series have been sold in the United States and Canada alone. Chicken Soup for the Soul titles have been sold in more than 100 additional countries and translated into more than 40 languages. The company is currently implementing a plan to expand into all media, including TV shows and a major motion picture, and is also developing a digital presence for life improvement, emotional support, inspiration, and wellness. Chicken Soup for the Soul Foods, a joint venture with Daymon Worldwide Inc., will start rolling out its line of delicious, nutritious comfort foods in Spring 2013. Chicken Soup for the Soul Publishing also licenses the right to use its famous brand to high-quality licensees. For more information visit

To receive a review copy of Chicken Soup for the Soul: Inspiration for Writers or to request an interview, please contact Shelby Sledge at (512) 206-0229 or