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By Gary Goldstein.

Although I had been writing off and on since college, it wasn’t until I published my first book, Jew in Jail, in 2004 that I really felt like I had accomplished something.

The fact that I penned it while behind bars was increasingly instrumental in helping me regain my self-esteem and self-confidence, which had sunk to an all-time low when I was first arrested back in 1998.

These days, I go around delivering motivational and inspirational speeches on recovery from addiction at drug treatment programs, hospital detoxes, jails, schools, or anywhere people are either still sick and suffering or headed down a destructive path, since helping others also keeps me clean and sober as well.

Journal - Curt Fleenor

I have always found writing to be liberating, as it is one profession that is personal, has no set hours, affords one the opportunity to be creative, and garners feedback from potential fans.

In addition, a person does not even have to write for the purpose of making money, as it is a craft that lends itself to expressing one’s feelings while using the talents and abilities they were either born with, or acquired through education or life’s lessons.

If you have always wanted to write something yourself – a book, poem, song, short story, or even keep a journal or diary – I highly recommend it.

You don’t even have to publish it. It can be tucked away under your mattress and saved for a later day, if, for nothing else, than to chart and measure your progress.

The point is, you have the ability to compose anything your heart and mind desires, and by doing so, just may discover how great you are at it, and then go on to a brilliant and successful career.

I continue to write blog posts, articles, and contribute comments on many internet websites geared to book promotion, as well as recovery from alcohol, drug and gambling addiction.

It allows me to stay connected to people and topics I am very interested in, learn more about both industries, and broaden my horizons.

In a nutshell, it permits me to go from a “Jew in Jail,” to a man who refuses to fail!

But I want all of you to put pen to paper and see what you are passionate about these days.

In this fast-paced world we live in, private time is at a premium, but setting aside a few minutes every night to jot our thoughts down is well worth the effort.

And who knows – you just might have the next great novel or number one song in the country renting space in your brain, clamoring to come out and be seen!

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I came into the world on October 18, 1961. John F. Kennedy was President of the United States. The film West Side Story was released, and would go on to win Best Picture at the Academy Awards. I spent a majority of my time playing sports, but fell in love with newspapers, which was how I was initially introduced into
writing and storytelling.

While attending Kingsborough Community College from 1979-1981, I served as editor-in-chief of the school's paper, and then joined the staff at Long Island University's Seawanhaka for my junior and senior years. At L.I.U. where I earned my Bachelor of Arts Degree in Journalism in 1983, I was also a selected member of Sigma Delta Chi, as well as Who's Who Among Students in American Universities & Colleges.

My last year in college included an unpaid internship at WCBS-TV, Channel 2 in New York City, where I learned so much about the television business. Upon graduation, I landed a job at the network, starting as a news clerk for The CBS Morning News with Diane Sawyer, and also weekend shifts for The NFL Today with Brent Musburger.

After quickly rising in the ranks to producer, my life suddenly went on a downward spiral due to addictions to alcohol, drugs and gambling, which ultimately led to nearly six years behind bars for robbery.

My time incarcerated gave birth to my first published book, Jew in Jail, which tells my true story of how I finally decided to deal with my addictions and turn my life around.

Writing Jew in Jail - as I was doing my time - allowed me to become very introspective, and realize that I could help others in similar situations of being an addict and/or living with low self-esteem.

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This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. Gary, I’m happy to know that you have made the transition from addiction to recovery ~ bravo to you! I have been writing for over twenty years, mostly for my own creative pleasure, and I find that writing is a wonderful practice to self discovery and a form of spiritual awakening. I’ve been a long time follower of Julia Cameron and love her teachings, I’ve learned so much from her works and her message that we are all creative beings, and we simply must explore our creative muse and not let fear stop us from being all that we can be ~ writing is a so much a part of my life that if I ever miss a day of writing I feel a bit out of sorts. Keep up the good work, your inspirit with your gift and sharing it is your gift to others. May peace be with you. Robin Renee

  2. Robin, thank you so much for your kind words and incredible feedback. You are so correct that writing is an enormous method of self-discovery. I find it to be extremely therapeutic to put my words down on paper and express my thoughts and feelings. Sharing with others, such as yourself, is the icing on the cake, and I am so happy to learn that you and I are similar in that respect. Again, thank you so much for your comments, and keep striving to be your best! Gary Goldstein

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