Share Your Story

Writing Guidelines

Write directly to the topic you have chosen. You may write on any topic important to you, or you may write about a specific topic that will be covered in an upcoming issue. See below for 2018 Lifeline topics and writing prompts. (MORE)

Focus on the experience, strength, and hope you have found in OA. References to other Twelve Step programs and outside support are considered outside issues. Briefly describe your physical, emotional, and spiritual condition when you entered OA. Be specific, including your weight at that time.

Relate in detail how the Steps, Step Principles, Traditions, Tools, and/or Twelve Concepts of OA Service helped in your recovery.

Describe your OA experience. Tell the length of your abstinence and, if applicable, the weight loss or weight gain you have maintained.

Lifeline publishes poems and humorous pieces that carry an OA message of experience, strength, and hope or that speak directly to the OA program. Submissions must be the original work of the sender and may be edited. Lifeline loves photographs taken by members! No faces please. Photographs cannot be returned.

Limit your story to 500 words if possible. When submitting handwritten stories, please write legibly. Manuscripts and letters sent to Lifeline are assumed intended for publication, are subject to editing, and become the property of OA, Inc. Submissions are not returned. All submissions must contain the author’s full name and address. You may request anonymity with publication. Your state, province, or country may remain anonymous if you so indicate.

Submission does not guarantee publication. We do not publish stories that contain outside issues or that do not demonstrate recovery through the OA program. Lifeline does not send contributors an acknowledgement when their stories are received. If your story is chosen for publication, we will notify you of its publication date and offer a complimentary copy of that Lifeline issue.

Mail, email or fax your story to:

Lifeline • PO Box 44020 Rio Rancho, New Mexico • 87174-4020 USA

Fax: 505-891-4320 • Email: info@oa.org

Click here to submit your story online

Lifeline Topics and Writing Prompts

Deadlines for monthly featured topics are three and a half months prior to the first day of the month of publication. Please indicate the topic and month for which you are submitting the article based on the deadlines in parentheses. Typed letters by email, mail, or fax are preferred. Letters must contain the author’s name and address, even if the author wishes to remain anonymous in print. Lifeline promotes “unity with diversity” regarding the race, nationality, gender, age, physical challenges, and sexuality of its writers.

How OA Changed My Life Describe your life before and after being in OA, including your physical state. How is life better in recovery?

February (Deadline: 10/15/18) Click for More Info

  • Unity Day
  • Why I belong in OA
  • Finding and Keeping Abstinence
Unity Day Unity Day is Sunday, February 24, 2019, at 11:30 a.m. How has unity in OA or Tradition One boosted your recovery? How does placing principles before personalities support OA unity?
 
Why I Belong in OA “No matter what form our disease takes, anyone having a problem with food can find help in Overeaters Anonymous” (Twelve and Twelve, Second Edition, p. 1). How did you know OA was for you? What have you found here that you couldn’t find anywhere else?
 
Finding and Keeping Abstinence OA’s definition of abstinence unites us, but finding abstinence is a personal journey. What has been your journey? What Step, Tradition, or Tool had the biggest impact? How has your plan of eating or action plan evolved over time?

March (Deadline: 11/15/18) Click for More Info

  • Making Meetings Strong
  • Recovery in the Workplace
  • The Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions of Overeaters Anonymous Second Edition
Making Meetings Strong What makes your meeting strong? The Traditions? The meeting format? The readings? The recovery? What changes made your meeting better? Did your group reach out for help or use a resource from oa.org? Has allowing the mention of specific foods in meetings helped or hurt? Share your meeting’s successes.
 
Recovery in the WorkplaceThreefold recovery in OA also brings benefits to the workplace. Share what has changed for you—from struggle to success (and/or serenity)—as a result of your OA recovery. What did you learn about handling gossip, stress, keeping your side of the street clean, or other aspect of work? How has recovery helped make your working life manageable?
 
The Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions of Overeaters Anonymous Second Edition How has the new Second Edition of our keystone book refreshed and refocused your program? What gems are you finding again or for the first time? Send your comments to mark the one-year anniversary of its publication!

April (Deadline: 12/15/18) Click for More Info

  • The Twelve Steps of OA
  • Overcoming Isolation; Reaching Out for Help and Hope
The Twelve Steps of OA Share the experience, strength, and hope you’ve found in OA’s Twelve Steps. You can write in-depth about working one or more Steps or about taking them all. Was one particular Step a challenge? Was there a key to taking one of the Steps? Did you rely on Step Principles? Did you find insight in OA literature? How did having a sponsor make a difference? What Step work did you find most helpful?
 
Overcoming Isolation; Reaching Out for Help and HopeTalk about a time when you had to overcome isolation or program burnout—how did you find your way into the rooms? Did you call an OA member or answer a call? Did you meditate or pray? Did you join a virtual meeting? How did it feel to come back? What happened after your return?
 

May/June (Deadline: 1/15/19) Click for More Info

  • Our Primary Purpose
  • The Seventh Tradition Cycle
Our Primary Purpose How have you carried your message of recovery to newcomers and those still suffering? What is your approach to explain OA to non-OA members? What has been your local OA’s experience with public information? How have you taken responsibility to extend the heart and hand of OA? Share your success with Step Twelve and Tradition Five
 
The Seventh Tradition CycleWhat does self-support through our own contributions mean to you and your recovery? What does it mean when you contribute to and benefit from your group, intergroup, and world services? How are you doing your part, including for virtual groups? For ideas, see the Seventh Tradition Cycle and the Seventh Tradition of OA pamphlet at oa.org/documents under “Group Treasurer Materials.”
 
Generally Speaking Write on any topic you find meaningful.

August (Deadline: 4/15/19) Click for More Info

  • Sponsorship Day
  • It's All in the Footwork
Sponsorship DaySponsorship Day will be celebrated August 17–18, 2019. How has being or having a sponsor made a difference in your recovery? How did you find the right sponsor? How has sponsorship helped with honesty in your program? What are your sponsor’s words of wisdom?
 
It's All in the FootworkHow have you worked a strong program? Did you make any practical discoveries that took your recovery to a new level? To what lengths did you go to reach a recovery goal? Break it down—what does doing the footwork mean for you
 

September (Deadline: 5/15/19) Click for More Info

  • Maintaining Abstinence Through Illness
  • Saving Grace: Help from a Higher Power
Maintaining Abstinence Through IllnessYour OA fellows have asked for stories about maintaining abstinence when illness, whether long- or short-term, is a threat. Give service and hope by sharing your story about staying abstinent during illness, HALT, or a similar challenge.
 
Saving Grace: Help from a Higher PowerHow has your Higher Power made its presence known in your life? Was a prayer answered in an unexpected or amusing way? What miracles have happened that lead you to believe a Power greater than yourself is available to bring you to your personal recovery?
 

October (Deadline: 6/15/19) Click for More Info

  • Tools of Recovery
  • The Joys of Retreats and Workshops
Tools of RecoveryHow have you used the Tools to work the Twelve Steps? What rewards have you found in using the Tools?
 
The Joys of Retreats and WorkshopsTell us about attending your favorite OA retreat or workshop! What made you go? What was it like—were there tears, laughter, discoveries? What did it provide that was different from a meeting? Describe how the Twelve Step Workshop and Study Guide or another workshop, skit, or activity worked for you.
 

November/December (Deadline: 7/15/19) Click for More Info

  • International Day Experiencing Abstinence and Twelfth Step Within Day
  • Breaking Out of Relapse
  • Surrender and Serenity
International Day Experiencing Abstinence and Twelfth Step Within DayHelp us celebrate IDEA this November 16–17 and Twelfth Step Within Day on December 12 by sharing your story about one of these important OA events or how abstinence or Twelfth Step Within service has made a difference for you.
 
Breaking Out of RelapseGive hope and Twelfth Step Within service to OA members in relapse by writing about your relapse and recovery. How did your relapse happen? How did you find your way back to recovery? How did literature or resources on oa.org help?
 
Surrender and SerenitySurrender is the key to OA recovery, and serenity is the benefit. How did you surrender to a Power greater than yourself? Have you surrendered more than once? How has willingness played a role? How has surrender and willingness helped you choose recovery and self-care? How did you find serenity, and how has it appeared in your life?
 

DEPARTMENTS (No Deadline)

  •    Bits and Bites: Add to our collection of short inspirational quotes and recovery wisdom.
  •    Step Study, Living Traditions, Service and Recovery, and The Spiritual Path: Share about the month’s Step    or Tradition or send a story about service or connecting with your HP
  •    Newcomers Corner: Newcomers, share your OA experiences and concerns.
  •    Share It (Letters to the Editor): Was a Lifeline issue or story special for you? Tell us!

OTHER MATERIALS (No Deadline)

Lifeline accepts artwork and photos (no faces, please) for publication. Credit lines and rights to submitted work apply equally to articles, artwork, and photos. The WSO does not return submitted materials. Lifeline may edit articles and crop photos.

For a PDF of Lifeline monthly topics click here. For a PDF of the Lifeline Writers Guidelines click here.