Title: Nightmare Success
Author: Brent Cassity
Why I Read This Book:
The main reason I read this book is because…I screwed up! Recently, I had given my family the name of the next book I wanted to read and when it arrived, I realized that the title was based on the topic I was looking for but the author was incorrect and the title I gave my family was not EXACTLY right…But I read the book anyway and it was not that many pages so I was done rather quickly…It just so happens my next door neighbor (the person in the top bunk right next to me) said “You should read this one while you wait for your next book to arrive.” The book he gave me was Nightmare Success by Brent Cassity.
The Prison Brother who recommended the book said Brent Cassity was featured on Justin Papperny’s Web-Cast as a guest and that is where he heard of the book Nightmare Success. Yes this is the same Justin Papperny that I spoke with just days before I self-surrendered so i figured it was meant to be!
I LOVE reading books from authors who have been to Prison, especially Federal Prison (I have also done book reports on Malcolm X, Nelson Mandela, Weldon Long, and Harim Flowers). The amazing thing about reading books from those who have also been to Prison is reading about all the similarities that they experienced and you are experiencing as well. It does not matter what color you are, where in the Country or where in the World they served time, nor does it mater when they served. You will read something and will think to yourself “I understand EXACTLY what he is saying!!” It immediately deepens the strength in the Brotherhood we share as current and former inmates.
Nightmare Success is a GREAT read and I highly recommend it. Brent Cassity tells his story in detail and is very honest with regards to his relationship with his family, his co-workers, his attorney’s, and the “Feds”. He also gives some great “Life Lessons” we can all use no matter if you are possibly going to Federal Prison, in Federal Prison, or lessons to use after you are free and working again. I liked this book a lot because it is not only part Biography but also part Business Book.
What I Learned From This Book:
A few important things I learned from reading Nightmare Success were more confirmations of what I always THOUGHT about the Federal Prison system. Brent Cassity mentioned the statistic that 2/3 of all inmates return to Prison after 3 years and 3/4 return after 5 years. Now, the “lazy”, and if I am being honest, the “uneducated” answer to these stats is “That just shows criminals will always be criminals.” However, if you actually were AROUND people that are in Prison, they do NOT want to return to Prison..EVER! The REAL problem is the Bureau of Prisons does nothing to HELP inmates change so they never should come back to Prison.
If I were to say that 2/3 of school kids who went to detention returned to detention within 2 weeks, would you say “That just shows bad kids will always be bad kids.”? Or would you try and find out WHY they were going to detention and trying to FIX the problem? What if the person who is in charge of detention only has a job BECAUSE kids go to detention? What incentive does that person have to stop kids from returning? Their whole livelihood revolves around kids coming to detention. Instead of helping, they will practically do nothing or actually antagonize the kids to make sure they come back. Welcome to the current philosophy of the B.O.P..
Another lesson I took from Nightmare Success was Brent Cassity’s reference to Seattle Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll and an interview following the Super Bowl loss to the New England Patriots. The Seahawks Coach is forever tied to the WORST play-call in Super Bowl History and Coach Carroll said “I will not be defined by those 11 seconds.”
I will forever be identified as a convicted felon. However, I will not allow myself to be DEFINED by that title. I will be an outstanding husband, son, brother, father, future employee, and overall outstanding member of society when I exit Federal Prison at the end of the year. My future actions will define me, not my past mistakes. Thank you for bringing that up Brent!
Why I Will Succeed After Reading This Book:
One reason I believe I will succeed after reading Nightmare Success is Brent Cassity had 2 things going for him when he entered Federal Prison that he can use immediately when he came out:
1) Habit of Goal Setting
2) Having a solid Network of good people
These are 2 things I have going for me as well.
In my opinion, goal setting is just as important when you are in Federal Prison as it is when you are out. How are you going to better yourself while you are in Prison? What steps will you use to track your results? When you exit Prison, what are your Goals your first 1-2 months following your release? How can you build off of those over the NEXT 1-2 months? If you refuse to sit down and set goals for yourself, in or out of Prison, you will continue to be the same person day in and day out and having a stagnant life is not destined to be a successful life.
I have mentioned previously that I have met quite a few OUTSTANDING people while in Federal Prison. Yes, just like me, they are good people that made bad choices but those choices do not define them nor does it take away the wisdom they currently carry with them. I have learned so much about business, operations, and finance from people that I consider mentors while IN Federal Prison and I plan on continuing to rely on their wisdom and THEIR network of contacts when I re-enter society. This can help me get a running start to achieve my goals, as opposed to waiting for things to just “happen” for me.
My name is Jeff Piecka and I was sentenced to 34 months in a Federal Prison Camp originally in Oxford, WI and now in Thomson, IL after committing a white collar crime several years prior to being arrested and immediately pleading guilty. Before self-surrendering on June 6, 2022, I promised my wife and family that I WILL exit Prison a better husband, father, son, brother, Christian, future employee and overall better member of society because I am going to better myself daily in three ways:
1) Physically — Not just for vanity purposes but a better operating body equals a better operating mind.
2) Mentally — Reading only non-fiction books, newspapers and magazines that educate and elevate my mind and expand my vocabulary.
3) Spiritually — For ME, this means learning more from the Bible but it can mean whatever “Greater Good” you believe in.
Shortly after self-surrendering and reading Michael Santos’s book “Earning Freedom–Conquering a 45 Year Prison Term”, it inspired me to want to help just 1 person who is possibly heading to Federal Prison so I started emailing my family Posts that my sister uses to post as a Blog on Reddit dot com called “Letters From Federal Prison”. I believe to date it has over 10,000 views and shares plus there are several comments from people advising that the Blog has helped them. This has motivated me to keep writing (which I have NEVER done anything like this before) and I REALLY want to help more people when I return to society at the end of this year.