Introduction

From Chicken Soup for the Soul: Tough Times, Tough People

Introduction

We received an astounding quantity and quality of submissions for this book on tough times and the tough people living through them—thousands of heartwarming, inspiring stories and poems filled with hope, faith, comfort, and humanity. This topic really struck a chord with our contributors and this book is a beautiful expression of their journeys through their personal tough times.

Half the stories in this book are about tough times related to the economy, and the other half cover a wide gamut of challenges, from illness and disability, to family issues and loss, to natural disasters and crime. You will find a common theme—people working together to help each other overcome the challenges described in their stories. Everyone will find some lessons, support, tears, and smiles in these pages.

Many of our writers stressed how happy they are now, despite lower incomes, smaller homes, and simpler lives. Many wrote about the new lives they have come to accept and enjoy after chronic illness, accidents, losing loved ones, or other non-economic challenges. Some were victims of a crime, some watched their houses burn down, and some are living with incurable illnesses or disabilities. Many wrote about finding inner strength, support from family and friends, marriages strengthening in the face of adversity, and rediscovering the joys of their families. They wrote about the silver linings they found in their troubles and the many blessings in their lives. In fact, we had so many fabulous submissions on this theme that we created a companion volume, Chicken Soup for the Soul: Count Your Blessings, which will be published in time for Christmas 2009.

We hope you enjoy reading these stories as much as we enjoyed choosing and editing them for you, and we are sure they will provide you with a little extra help and inspiration during these tough times. We’ve included a bonus chapter with ten extra stories about tough times and faith—a little extra value for you—to say thanks for being part of the Chicken Soup for the Soul community.

~Amy Newmark
Publisher, Chicken Soup for the Soul

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