Holley writer is prolific contributor to Chicken Soup for the Soul

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 25 December 2018 at 10:34 am

David Hull, a retired preschool teacher, is featured in about 20 of the popular books

Photos by Tom Rivers: David Hull of Holley is shown with two of the Chicken Soup for the Soul books that he is featured in. Hull, a retired preschool teacher, has stories in about 20 of the books in the Chicken Soup series.

HOLLEY – David Hull of Holley has become a frequent contributor of one of the most popular book series.

Hull, a retired preschool teacher, has stories in about 20 of the Chicken Soup for the Soul books. The Chicken Soup for the Soul series started about 25 years ago and now includes more than 250 titles. It has sold more than 100 million copies.

Each of the books includes 101 stories that tend to be three to four pages for each article. Hull, 59, checked the Chicken Soup website about seven years ago, and sent in a story. Although he has now been included in about 20 of the books, Hull said some of his stories didn’t make the final cut.

Chicken Soup editors say they get several thousand submissions for each book. Hull said he tries to write from the heart and mix in humor.

“You got to be very persistent and brave to send your stuff off to publishers,” he said during an interview last week at Sam’s Diner in Holley. “Don’t be stopped by rejection.”

Hull said he wrote for some small magazines before being published in Chicken Soup for the Soul.

Chicken Soup published The Power of Yes! This year and includes two articles by Hull. In “Boldly Going” he shares how a friend urged him to help at a community clothing center at a local church. Hull was moved by the people, including a high schooler who wore size 9 shoes during school and his father then wore the same shoes later in the day for work. The shoes were wore out. There were children without winter coats and a family using mittens to keep warm at night.

The next day, Hull went to a department store and found shoes and clothes on clearance, including a new pair of size 9 shoes for the father and son.

“My friend may have had to persuade me to get involved, but because of that experience, I realized that many people were a lot worse off than me,” Hull wrote. “I also learned that I could help my community through the simple tasks of being aware and donating a little time and money.”

Also in The Power of Yes!, he writes about his reluctance to try a community exercise program in Kendall. But in “C.R.A.F.T.S.” – Calming, Relaxing Activity for Tired Souls – Hull finds acceptance and success. Six months into the program he loses 11 pounds and drops his cholesterol and blood pressure.

Hull is featured in these four recent Chicken Soup books.

Hull studied English in college and earned a degree in education. He worked 28 years as a teacher at the Brockport Child Development Center at Brockport State College. He retired four years ago.

He tries to write each day. Some days that might only be jotting down some notes.

“It’s very therapeutic,” he said. “It helps you to reflect on situations and think more deeply.”

The Best Advice I Ever Heard also was published in 2018, featuring 101 stories of “epiphanies and wise words.” Hull writes about “The Sensitive Plant.” It’s a fern-like herb his mother had in her house. When the plant was stressed it would tuck its leaves close together. Hull writes about a tough first semester of college, when his grades were low. He was tempted to give up. His mother told him to not act like the sensitive plant, putting his guard up and refusing to take risks. Hull returned to college and, with perseverance, would graduate.

Hull said he has submitted stories for future Chicken Soup books. He’s waiting to see if those will be published.

“It’s great to see your work in print,” he said.

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