2002 THROUGH 2006
Getting Married in Prison
Experiences of losing money in the stock market caused me to shift my attention. Rather than continuing to speculate in the market, I turned my attention back to writing. I’d moved into my second decade of imprisonment and I made a more concerted effort to develop skills that I believed would open more earning prospects.
I invested in the effort, creating a personal narrative that detailed accomplishments that I made in prison. Those accomplishments included my academic degrees, courses I created and taught in prison, published writings, and testimonial letters from several distinguished mentors who had come into my life. I began to distribute that portfolio, hoping to expand my support network and create new opportunities. By using resources that I earned from my earlier trading, I bound the portfolio of documents with a plastic binder and I began distributing it to others.
I began publishing writings on a website that others created on my behalf. Through all of those efforts, I opened more publishing opportunities. Leading academic publishing houses issued contracts for me to publish my first books. Through those published writings, my support network grew exponentially. Efforts I made to build a support network led to my connecting with Carole.
Carole and I developed a friendship through correspondence. That correspondence turned into a romance. In 2003, she moved from Oregon to New Jersey so we could begin building our life together. Carole married me inside of a prison visiting room on June 24, 2003.
Carole and I put a plan together. We began making a commitment to use all of my earnings from the work I did in prison to support her. She could rely upon those earnings to support herself while she returned to school with a long-term plan to become a nurse. After completing prerequisite courses, she began nursing school while she simultaneously became the center of my life and my liaison to the world.