Our Hero’s Journey Prison Writing Project Mission Statement
We are a volunteer organization based in Seattle, WA, working with incarcerated writers locally and in correctional institutions throughout the United States.
Our mission: To assist the incarcerated writer in accessing his hero archetype, to hold a sacred space for him to find his authentic literary voice, and to help 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 volunteers join with us in teaching and working with incarcerated writers. Their willingness to be trained in 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 and 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
For the writer, to be published is to be seen. Heard. Acknowledged. It’s to have a voice in the public forum. Those 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
For writers behind bars
Download a sample of
The Outlaw’s Journey
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The Hero’s Journey is not an invention, but an observation. It is a recognition of a beautiful design, a set of principles that govern the conduct of life and the world of storytelling the way physics and chemistry govern the physical world…
(Chris Vogler, author of
The Writer’s Journey)