Mission Statement

Welcome to the Hero’s Journey Prison Writing Project pagesprison logo

Our Mission:

To hold a sacred space for the incarcerated writer to find his authentic and heroic voice and to facilitate the process of making a place for him to express that voice in writing in the community.  It takes a village.

The writers on the inside

Psychologist Carl Jung taught us that in spite of its function as a reservoir for human darkness—or perhaps because
of this—the shadow is the seat of creativity.

The prison system is a container for America’s collective shadow, and for that reason, many see it as a creative wasteland. Exactly the opposite is true. The writers in our Hero’s Journey prison groups are central to everything we do.

The writers on the outside

We can only move forward as volunteer writers join with us in teaching and working with incarcerated writers. Their willingness to be trained in the programs resources; Joseph Campbell’s The Hero’s Journey and Christopher Vogler’s The Writer’s Journey makes it possible for us to bring this dynamic program to prisons across the country.

The Department of Corrections

Our interactions with the Department of Corrections is vital to when, how and IF we’re able to present The Hero’s Journey to incarcerated writers. Their cooperation with us and ours with them is determined by our mutual respect for one another which is what The Hero’s Journey is all about.

The publishing industry

Publishers enable us to bring the work to the people. For the writer, to be published is to be seen. Heard. Acknowledged. It’s to have a voice in the public forum. Editors who are excited to read and then publish prisoners’ stories, whether in magazines, books, or online enable us to present all of these new voices and Hero’s Journey stories to the people.

The Outlaw’s Journey Writing Course

The Outlaw’s Journey writing course builds on the works of Joseph Campbell and Christopher Vogler to help writers behind bars learm to communicate their stories both real and fictional.

“The Outlaw’s Journey is single-handedly the most beneficial course I’ve ever taken. … I’ve found by being truthful, we learn the lessons life is teaching us. We learn our reasons to be. And, most of the time, we learn that we already knew these things, but didn’t know how to explore our truth until we began to walk the trail of a hero.”

M.J., Inmate at the Washington State Reformatory