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Since Season 1 of Start Up, we have received thousands of emails from entrepreneurs requesting to be featured on the show, and as much as we'd like to tell every story, we are only able to feature 26 small businesses each season, so we've decided to publish a book series called "Start Up Stories" featuring the stories of some of the worlds most inspiring entrepreneurs.

We've read countless personal stories from people who have beat the odds in an effort to follow their dreams, and we believe that these stories should be shared with the world. Maybe YOUR story is the next source of inspiration that will change someone's life.

From the engineer that quit his job to start a food truck, to the factory worker who was laid off and finally opened the retail store he always dreamed of. From the woman who quit practicing law to create delicious frozen deserts, to the family who started an in-home pet spa, each story teaches us valuable lessons of sacrifice, loss, hope, joy, happiness and most of all, personal fulfillment.

We want to hear your real, heartfelt human story that can inspire other people to follow their dreams. It just might give that person the courage to finally get up and do that one thing that they've always wanted to do.

Please, read the guidelines below, and tell us your story.

Guidelines for a Start Up Story
  1. Tell a genuine, heartwarming story about your entrepreneurial journey. The story should be written in the first person and as personal and detailed as possible.
  2. We do not accept fiction, so please be honest about your story.
  3. Tell your story in a way that will truly engage and evoke emotion in the reader. A genuine and compelling story has the ability to bring out laughter, tears, excitement and sadness. The goal for each story is for the reader to be inspired and entertained.
  4. Our form allows for stories between 500 -1000 words. Make sure your story is compelling, but stick to the point.
  5. Speak openly and honestly about what was happening in your personal life while starting your business. Please be as graphic as possible and express the emotions that you were feeling at the time.
  6. When telling a story about what you went through starting your business, it's part of your past, so always write in past tense.
  7. Your story should NOT sound like a magazine article, term paper or journal entry.
  8. Do not start your story with an introduction about what you are going to say, or end with a concluding paragraph about what you just said. Start each story in the moment, with something personal.


"I was in the shower when the phone rang. I didn’t rush to answer it—I knew my husband would get it, after all. When I left the bathroom and started towards the living room, I caught a glimpse of his face—he was pale, he looked stunned. The phone call was one of those that make you drop to the floor. He lost his job. How were going to make a living?"

How will I know if my story is being used?

If we decide to use your story in our book, we may have to edit the content and grammar to better fit the format of the book. We will contact you via e-mail and ask you to review the final edited story before it goes to print. We will not publish your story without your written permission through a signed release form.

First Name
Last Name
Your Phone Number
Your Email
Street Address
Zip/Postal Code
Brief Business Description (minimum of 500 words and a max of 1200)
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