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Another “Call for Personal Stories” Follows Success of Anthologies Bearing Up, Exploring

By Randell Jones

The Personal Story Publishing Project (PSPP) announces the theme for its new “Call for Personal Stories” for its 2020 anthology. North Carolina writers are especially sought and welcomed by December 15.

“That Southern Thing”
The theme for the PSPP-2020 is “that Southern thing,” personal stories about “living, loving, laughing, loathing, leaving the South,” incited by a writer’s personal musings on the good, the bad, and the peculiar of life in “the South.” Make us laugh, make us cry, make us wince, make us think. Leave the readers grateful, encouraged, vexed, or just plain gobsmacked, but in every case sensing, knowing, feeling something more about “the South” than they might have considered before. Newcomers and natives have equal value in their perspectives. “The South” is not what you might think . . . or is it?

Bearing Up and Exploring
Seventy-plus writers—most from North Carolina—participated in the Personal Story Publishing Project in 2018 and 2019. Their stories appear in the two anthologies, Bearing Up and Exploring, released by Daniel Boone Footsteps Publishing of Winston-Salem. Those writers—both new voices and experienced and published writers, including two poet laureates—crafted true stories about taking on life with grit, determination, and humor. The respective writing themes were “making do, bearing up, and overcoming adversity” and “discoveries, challenges, adventure.”

Writers submitted stories of 750-800 words. “These writers brought to the page their honest passions for sharing stories they so deeply wanted to tell,” said Randell Jones, award-winning author and storyteller and editor/publisher of the Personal Story Publishing Project. “You can feel it throughout the forty-five stories in each collection. Many new writers really surprised themselves with what they wrote. I was delighted to work them all in completing the two collections.”

Submitting Your Story
More information about the Personal Story Publishing Project is available online at A nominal reading fee applies to each submission. Copies of Bearing Up and Exploring are available online as well.

The current Call for Personal Stories is open through December 15, 2019. The anthology of forty-five selected stories will be released in April 2020.

Tell us your favorite personal story, the one you most want to share about “that Southern thing.”

“6-minute Stories” Podcast
Everybody loves a good story, and many of the stories from Bearing Up and Exploring can be heard on the new weekly podcast, “6-minute Stories” launched in June. Listeners can subscribe at Apple Podcast, Spotify, or Stitcher. Anyone can find them online as well under “6-minute Stories” in the main menu at Hear what other writers who submitted to the Personal Story Publishing Project shared with the world. Stories selected for PSPP-2020 will be considered for sharing as well in future episodes of “6-minute Stories.”

The Personal Story Publishing Project and “6-minute Stories” encourage more writers to share their writing with others and provide the platforms for doing so.

Keep writing. Keep sharing.