Stories of Life

Posted in Faith

Who doesn’t love a story? Hope, conflict, wonder, desperation, loneliness, surprise, love, a hero. Story seems to be wired into our DNA. We all tell them, and we find many ways to do them.

One way is through the written word. Chicken Soup for the Soul was a long-running example of stories that, as the title suggests, fed readers’ souls with ‘inspirational true stories about ordinary people’s lives.’ Its popularity was so great that it remained on the New York Times best seller list from 1994-98, and today is a large entertainment business.

Did you know that we have our own version of Chicken Soup in Adelaide, collating and publishing stories from ‘ordinary people’ all over Australia and even overseas? It’s called Stories of Life.

About nine years ago, a group of people associated with Tabor College, Life FM Radio Station, Eternity Matters, and Lutheran Education SA decided to develop a competition to encourage Christians to tell their stories of life and faith and to equip people to do it well.

Stories of Life was born and continues in much the same form today, though sponsors have varied. The competition opens on 1st April and closes on 31st July, the stories are judged by Australian writers, and the winners are announced in November. The best stories are published in a print volume launched at the prize-winners’ announcement event, held at Tabor in Millswood.

Each June is Feedback Month, when people crafting a story they hope to submit can receive feedback for free, improving their skills and their chances of being published, and maybe even of winning. The website (storiesoflife.net) offers other resources to help would-be writers improve their faith-writing skills – it’s not as easy as you might think to write a story which is compelling without preaching, and accessible to those both in and outside the church.

Stories come from people of all denominations and none, writing about major events and daily interactions. They have in common a sense of connection with a good and gracious God. Some are serious, others humorous, some a paeon of gratitude, others asking challenging questions. All provide encouragement through the journey of life.

If you or your church (or other group) would be interested in reading these stories or contributing your stories to future issues, visit storiesoflife.net online, or email Turn on Javascript!. Books can be purchased from the website.

You may like to invite the Stories of Life editorial team to talk at your church or group. The above email address will put you in contact with them.

 


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