Thursday, May 6, 2010

#174 Prison Works Now Available

Prison Works Now Available

Just got back from the post office this morning…well, almost noon now. This morning I checked my emails and had a few people that took me up on the free prison encouragement certificates, so I figured, why not go ahead and mail them out today?

What I am learning as I sent these things out is the changing costs of shipping, which I have to factor in my price of my works. Now, if it is free, then it is FREE, so don’t worry about the cost. But I also learn how much it would cost to mail things out, so when I sell a product, I can give an accurate amount on the shipping. So if I say a cost for an item is $20 plus $3 shipping, that means the total cost is $23.00. Sounds simplistic, but I try to separate the shipping costs to let you know that I don’t make anything off the shipping, sometimes I lose a few coins.

Today I shipped a few free certificates, and I sent it by using a long brown envelope. Before I left the house, I put one stamp on it, thinking I would probably need more, but didn’t want to put 2 stamps on it for fear of wasting postage. So I go to the post office, and had it weighted before sending. The lady working there told me on the spot that it would need more postage, since she saw only one stamp. I only had a handful of coins on me, enough to send the certificates out and enough to buy a soda on the way home.

She told me the total for the envelope was $1.05, but since I had a stamp on it, I needed about 64 cents. I paid it, and sent it on its way. I bought a drink on the way back and walked home.

This means that to send certificates, or like items, would likely cost about $1 shipping, which I will need to factor when I set prices. Now obviously, the heavier the mail, the more it will cost.

I say all that to you because it might alter slightly my prices, and if so I will give you a heads up if you order anything from me. But what I can do now is give you a list of some of the things I have available, and the price. I have received a lot of emails on this, so I think blogging it out will help.


I currently have 4 different books available, three are prison books, one is a blog book.

Grades of Honor 1: This is my first book, based on my time at Craven Correctional, the first prison I was in during my incarceration. The book is 77 pages long, and covers what a first time felon goes through.

Grades of Honor 2: This is the second book, the continuation of my incarceration where the first book left off. It is 97 pages long, and covers what I went through while at Pasquotank Correctional, in Elizabeth City, NC.

Grades of Honor 3: This is the third book, which picks up from the end of the second book. It is 107 pages long, and continues to talk about my experiences while at Pasquotank Correctional.

Prison Blogbook: This is my first blogbook, which shares with the reader my earliest prison blogs and posts, and discussions about them. I have shared many “retro” blogs but it is only a fraction of all the things I have written online. This book is 100 pages long.

All books are $25 plus $3.00 for shipping, for a total of $28.00. I try to ship the books using the book rate for postal service, but I have to monitor the costs to see if that has changed. If so, I would have to possibly bump the shipping to $4, but until that happens, I’ll keep it at $3.

With every order of my book, I send a few freebies, like a prison card, a certificate and/or other documents.

Prison Cards

There are almost an unlimited number of cards that one could make for someone with loved ones in prison. I have made well over 50 so far, not including many Christmas prison cards. There are so many themes from basic faith, encouragement, holidays, get well, and any constructive things that one can say in a card. Whether wisdom or scriptural, there are many ways to encourage a loved one with a prison card.

If you are interested, email me and tell me if you need a card for a husband, son, boyfriend or whatever. I will get back in touch, and give you some idea of some of the cards I have available. A card to a son might have a different mentality as one to a boyfriend, as we all know.

All my cards are $3 each, and I try to add on a little something extra with every order. The more cards ordered by a person, the more I try to add. If you order, the postage may depend on the amount. I suppose someone ordering 2 cards might only need to pay $1 to help cover the shipping (since I mail via larger envelopes) as opposed to someone order 10 (as weight will no doubt change the shipping rate). But for basic purposes, each card is $3.00 each. Remember, there is a shipping cost, but it depends on how many you are ordering. I will make sure to let you know via email once I know how many you are ordering.

Prison Encouragement Certificates

A prison encouragement certificate is an encouragement boost one can send to a loved one in prison, something that can help an inmate remember that they are loved, that they are special, and not to give up. There are countless themes to use, and just like cards, are unlimited in creativity. I currently have at least 50 different kinds of encouragement certificates, including themes like:

Angel Feather Award
Blessed Hope Award
Certificate of Love
Certificate of Loving Appreciation
Best Daughter Award
Best Friend Award
Best Husband Award
Best Son Award
Certificate of Hope
Certificate of Grand Love
Certificate of Peace
Certificate of Holiday Joy

And numerous others.

There are endless ways to express support and love for someone in prison, and I hope to continue to make more of these and make them available. I am actually making these available at 2 for $3.00, and I will try to slip in something extra with every order. After sending off a few today, it seems that postage will be about $1.05, but I will keep it to $1 for shipping. Now, if someone orders a large number, it will no doubt change the shipping, so I’d have to check that out. But lets assume for now that if you wanted anywhere from 2-6, the shipping would remain at $1.

Again, that’s 2 for $3.00, plus postage.

A note with the prison certificates…the idea here is to generate a spark of hope, and encouragement, and for that reason, I might suggest not sending your loved one these certificates too often. You don’t want to “water down” the encouragement by sending him one every week, it has to be something special. I’d like to suggest you send him one maybe once a month at the least, maybe once every few weeks. If you sent him one every other day, the effects of the encouragement can easily be diluted, which then would serve the purpose. Heck, I’d love for you to order 100 from me, but if you sent them to him too often, we’d be missing the point, right?

These are the cornerstones of the things I have available, but there are many other projects I have, or working on. From personal calendars to send to a loved one in prison, separate documents like “Scriptures for Inmates” “Online Talk”, “Inmate Chronicles” and many other projects, there is a lot of things I am working on to help you with a loved one in prison. Some are simple flyers for a word of encouragement, some are a series of discussions to help you and your loved one.

One such example is a series I am working on called “12 Months of Flowers”. It’s a single page document which highlights one flower a month, with a nice picture of it, and a discussion of the importance of that flower, and how it can be related to a person you care about in prison. Flowers are symbolic of many things, and I wanted to use one each month to help encourage a person in prison.

Another is a series I call “Incarcerated Thoughts” where I create a nice flyer with some thoughts about what I went through in prison. The idea is to try to crack some of the walls about prison, to help you understand what some guys might go through. It may also be used to send to a loved one in prison, to help them understand that they can get through this difficult time as well.

These are just a few of many things that I want to work on, but my main focus is the books, cards and certificates. Many of you who order will actually receive a few examples of this, so you can know what I am talking about.

I was also thinking of starting a newsletter, but I have to wait and see how that goes. It would allow me to be more direct and commercial at the same time, and although I already have templates of it, I don’t want to push it yet. In the past I have offered a few different packages, of which I will share with you here:

$5.00 Package:
Items: Cover letter and Brochure.
Rose Encouragement Certificate
1 Personally made card
1 Encouraging Thoughts document
1 Grades of Honor Flyer
Plus one extra item free

(please include $1 for shipping)

$10.00 Package:
Items: Cover letter and Brochure
Rose Encouragement Certificate
2 Personally made cards
Document, “When they take him away from you”
2 Grades of Honor Flyers
Encouraging Thoughts document
Plus 2 extra items free

(please include $2 for shipping)

$30.00 Package:
Items: Cover letter and Brochure
2 Personally made cards
Rose Encouragement Certificate
Document “When they take him away”
Document “Canteen”
3 Grades of Honor Flyers
“Grades of Honor” First project (77pages)

(please include $3 for shipping)

$50.00 Package:
Items: Cover letter and Brochure
4 personally made cards
3 different encouragement certificates
Document “ Broken Wings”
Document “Canteen”
“Grades of Honor” First project
“Grades of Honor” Second project

(please include $5 for shipping)

Please note folks that the $50.00 package is going to have about 200 pages, since the first Grades of Honor project is 77 pages, and the second project has 100. Add on the two documents and you are darn near 200 pages.

Before you decide what you want, please email me and give me a heads up, that way I can start setting things aside in case you do want them. I figure that I can send things out a few times a week, so I am not going back and forth to the post office every day, and I can likely print out things beforehand for faster preparation. So to help me out, give me a heads up first by email, and when I respond, that will let you know that I do have it ready or available. Remember folks, its just me and this computer, not an office full of people, so you’ll have to be patient with me.

So there it is, the info you need. I gladly look forward to any email questions about the products, and will do my best to answer them. Because this was an issue that a lot of people asked about, I will post this on all three of my blogsites, and let it stand on top for a few days. That means I won’t blog on top of this, so that it won’t get buried under other blogs.

So I am going to TRY not to blog until Sunday earliest…note I said TRY. I will be answering my emails though, so by all means feel free to contact me that way. I still have a few free prison encouragement certificates I can send, but you’d have to get in touch pretty fast. Oh well, enough for now, get in touch when you can. Until then…

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