Social Gap Experiment News

Our collective work in the Social Gap Experiment has been featured and promoted in several outlets! Check out these links:

Mind the Social Gap ๐Ÿ˜ท๐ŸŒŽ๐Ÿ’ž

Welcome to the Social Gap Experiment!

We wanted to stir things up, so we launched a social distancing experiment โ€” and a creative project! During the global pandemic, we’ve shared comedy, confessions, and conversation on live video broadcasts. Now, we are sharing our creativity in a publication!

We’re using social media and live video to share updates about the project! Join the Facebook Group:

Two Ways to Share Creativity

The goals of the Social Gap Experiment are two-fold, to bring creative people together on social media and to share creative work with a new publication. Read on to learn more about each component of the project.

Steps will guide you through the process, if you scroll down.

1. PUBLISH AN ANTHOLOGY: Melissa is volunteering her time to compile and publish a book of creative work. To learn more about her credentials, visit the About or Publications sections of the website. Please find details on how to submit below.

2. LIVE BROADCASTS: If there is enough demand, Melissa also plans to host a casual performance every week using Facebook Live video at 7pm Eastern on Thursdays during the summer. This Social Gap Experiment will take place in the format of a virtual reading or exhibit. The weekly video broadcasts on Facebook Live concluded in August.

Read on! You’ll find more details about the project.

Publishing a Chapbook

Great news! We’d like to publish a chapbook featuring your work! The first component of this project will result in a chapbook showcasing work from the creative community.

After we receive submissions, we will design a chapbook and publish it online. It will be available for sale both online and in print, using print-on-demand options. There is no cost to you!

We welcome your submissions of poetry, flash fiction, short nonfiction, photography and art. Our goal is to publish one piece from each writer who submits quality work to the project. Submission guidelines are as follows:

  • Poetry (submit 1-3 poems, no word limit per poem)
  • Flash fiction (fiction up to 800 words)
  • Short stories or nonfiction (up to 2,000 words)
  • Novel excerpts, please include a title as if it were a short story (up to 2,000 words)
  • Photography, preferably with no watermark as we will provide attribution (high resolution, 300 dpi)*
  • Art (high resolution, 300 dpi)*

Click the link below to submit your work. Please upload your piece by the new deadline, Friday, August 14.

Submit Your Work!

Three Steps to Submit

Follow these three steps on the submission form (above) to submit your work:

  1. Submit the form provided.
  2. Upload your work to the private Dropbox link, by following the prompts.
  3. Vote on the poll to show us what causes interest you most!

More details on how to submit are included at the link above.

*If you submit photos or artwork, please send the images in the highest resolution possible. What you submit is what we will print, and print quality may vary with online and print-on-demand publication options.

Work Sample

The task of publishing creative work calls for an editor you can trust. While Melissa plans to design this entire project, she holds editing experience and she published a chapbook of her own in 2016.

Check out a sample of Melissa’s work.

Live Broadcasts

The second component of this project includes weekly opportunities to bring creative people together in a safe, virtual format. The Social Gap Experiment aims to bridge social distancing, while testing the limits of social media, so we will be using Facebook Live video for the broadcast.

If you would like to perform as a guest speaker on Facebook Live, let Melissa know on social media or RSVP “Going” on the Live Broadcast Event for the Social Gap Experiment.

The 10 Social Gap Commandments

Use these tips to join the live portion of the #SocialGapExperiment!

1. Make a comment, post or message if you want to perform!
2. Look for the Facebook Live video on the host’s personal timeline.
3. Watch the broadcast live on your mobile device.
4. Turn off extra sound, then comment when you’re ready to join the broadcast screen.
5. Tap the video screen or push notifications to accept the invite to be featured on the broadcast!
6. Say hey, tell us what’s on your mind, and banter.
7. Introduce yourself and your creative work.
8. Perform live on a video that will likely reach 100+ viewers!
9. Throw in a great closing line or a few last words to sign off.
10. Link to your website and/or page in the comments for more promotion!

Join us in the summer of 2020 on Melissa F. Kaelin’s personal timeline! To perform, you can either RSVP, contact us in advance, or comment in real time to say you have something to share!!!

Check out the hashtag: #SocialGapExperiment ๐Ÿ˜ท๐ŸŒŽ๐Ÿ’ž

Questions to Inspire Connection

This project is bigger than it looks, with the hope of making a meaningful impact through art. Here are a few questions to consider, especially if you want to get involved.

  1. What’s the best way for creative minds to connect during the global pandemic?
  2. When it comes to technology, what software do you prefer for video conferencing?
  3. If you had unlimited time and creative energy, what would you want to achieve by the end of the global pandemic?
  4. If these event(s) quickly became a fundraiser with the help of outside sources, what specific cause or organization would benefit most from donations?
  5. Is your best material ready for publication?
  6. Are you interested in publishing your work, whether photography, art or writing, in a compilation that could be listed on Amazon?

๐Ÿ”ฅ Get your short submission ready to submit! Please check back for more context and details, as the project evolves! ๐Ÿ”ฅ

The Experiment Launch

In June, when we wanted to stir things up, some of you joined me for a social distancing experiment โ€” and a big announcement!

It all began with a social media event on Facebook Live on Thursday, June 25, 2020, at 7pm EST. We went in expecting a bit of comedy, confessions, commiserating, conversation and creativity. We came out understanding a lot more about the limits of social media. But the project continues! ๐Ÿ˜ท๐ŸŒŽ๐Ÿ’ž

The launch event included:

  • A surprise announcement!
  • Featured guests
  • A live social media video experiment
  • Poll questions and inspirational prompts
  • Banter and laughs on quarantine & social distancing
  • At least one news item about publication
  • A chance to decompress with other humans
  • Readings of fiction and poetry
  • Opportunities to share your story and/or your work

Join the Experiment!


Updated July 13, 2021

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What types of work can we submit?

A: Submit your best writing, photography, art, drawings or song lyrics! If you can find a way to convey your talents on paper, scanned for a digital format, we want to consider it! For details like how many poems to submit or word limit, please visit the website.

Q: How competitive will it be to get published in this chapbook?

A: My goal is to try to publish at least one submission from nearly everyone who submits, making this one of the most accessible publications ever!

Q: Where will the chapbook be published?

A: I confess, it’s been some time since I logged in to Amazon CreateSpace, but I’m hoping to use this tool again. Tentatively, the chapbook will be created in design software by yours truly and “self-published” on Amazon, so it can be shared worldwide.

Q: Will print copies be available or will this only be available online?

A: The goal is to publish the chapbook online with digital copies available, as well as print-on-demand paperbacks. That means anyone who wants to spend the money can get a print edition!

Q: Does it cost anything to submit to this project?

A: Not a penny! As a kindness during the pandemic, I’m offering my time for free, and there is no charge to submit to the project. Sales will be involved for anyone purchasing a print edition, but I would like to donate these proceeds to a worthy cause!

๐Ÿ’ž Please see the poll on the submission page, to vote for the cause that most needs our support right now. ๐Ÿ’ž

Q: Who can submit a piece for the chapbook? Do you have to be from Lansing, Michigan?

A: Anyone! Anywhere in the world! You do not have to live in Lansing or Michigan โ€” where the project initiated โ€” to participate.

The Social Gap Experiment is geared toward adults, but I’ll add a question about age to the submission form, so we can consider youth submissions too!

Q: When is the deadline to submit work for consideration?

A: Friday, July 31 at midnight! Get ready, and start submitting now!!

Q: Where is the submission form?

A: You’ll find details on how to submit on the Social Gap Experiment website. Please visit

For a direct link to submissions, click here:…/social…/social-gap-submission/

Q: Is this a paid opportunity?

A: Payment will include one copy of the anthology, in print if available or electronically if not. The proceeds raised from this project will support a worthy cause.

๐ŸŒŽ The website includes a poll for Supporting Community in a Time of Need. You can vote on the cause that would most benefit from our support. ๐ŸŒ


Q: Is there a specific theme?

A: The theme is completely open! I aim to publish the work you are most proud of, or maybe the work you haven’t been able to publish elsewhere.

If themes emerge, I’ll organize the publication into sections. The topic is up to you!

Questions? Please contact Melissa F. Kaelin at: