Amy Newmark - Publisher, editor-in-chief and coauthor of Chicken Soup for the Soul
Amy Newmark was a writer, speaker, Wall Street analyst and business executive in the worlds of finance and telecommunications for more than 30 years. Today she is publisher, editor-in-chief and coauthor of the Chicken Soup for the Soul book series. Since 2008, when Amy, her husband, and an investor group bought the company from its founders, Jack Canfield and Mark Victor Hansen, she has published more than 100 new books, doubling the number of Chicken Soup for the Soul titles in print today.
As publisher, Amy is credited with revitalizing the Chicken Soup for the Soul brand. She redesigned the look of the book covers and interiors, and changed the format of the title so that the books can cover topics of interest to todays readers. This has led to national bestsellers such as Chicken Soup for the Soul: Think Positive, Chicken Soup for the Soul: Messages from Heaven, and Chicken Soup for the Soul: Angels Among Us. The number of stories submitted for Chicken Soup for the Soul books has soared as a result, with most books attracting four or five thousand submissions for only 101 slots.
By compiling inspirational and aspirational true stories curated from ordinary people who have had extraordinary experiences, Amy has kept the 21-year-old Chicken Soup for the Soul brand fresh and relevant, and still part of the social zeitgeist. Reading stories from each book has also made a difference in her own life. "I've learned how to have better personal relationships, how to focus on what's important, how to stay thin and fit, how to look for the positive in every situation, and how to put in perspective the daily ups and downs of life," Amy says.
Amy graduated magna cum laude from Harvard University where she majored in Portuguese and minored in French. During her junior and senior years, she researched and wrote a thesis about popular, spoken-word poetry in Brazil, which involved living in Brazil for several months, traveling throughout its impoverished northeast region, and meeting with poets and writers to collect their stories. She is delighted to have come full circle in her writing careerfrom collecting poetry "from the people" in Brazil as a 20-year-old to, three decades later, collecting stories and poems "from the people" for Chicken Soup for the Soul.
Amy has a national syndicated newspaper column and is a frequent radio guest, passing along the real-life lessons and useful tips she has picked up from reading and editing thousands of Chicken Soup for the Soul stories.
Amy works alongside her husband, Bill Rouhana, CEO and fellow co-owner of Chicken Soup for the Soul. She and Bill are the proud parents of four grown children and in her limited spare time, Amy enjoys visiting them, hiking, and reading books that she did not have to edit.