Eight years ago, I met Shannon Clark in an Arizona prison, a non-violent offender, serving almost a dozen years for robbing $800-worth of goods that were later returned to their owner by the police. In 2005, I introduced him to Jon’s Jail Journal as “Shane” and started posting stories about him to the Internet. Fascinated by the concept of blogging, Shannon spent hours in my cell, pouring over print-outs of my old blog entries. Endlessly, we debated blogging and discussed my blog readers’ comments. By the end of 2005, and with outside help, Shannon managed to launch his own blog, Persevering Prison Pages, which has championed human rights and attracted media attention.
For speaking out, the prison came down hard on Shannon. His good time was pulled, effectively extending his sentence by a year, and in the past year he was moved from prison to prison five times. Getting moved is extremely stressful and disruptive. Despite this, and in defiance of senior prison staff, Shannon kept blogging. He’s a brave soul indeed.
Shannon was recently released, so I interviewed him about the perils of prison blogging. Part 1 of the audio is in the YouTube video.
Shannon is now living happily in a house with his new girlfriend from the UK, who originally found out about him through Jon’s jail Journal.