Answering the Real Questions About Federal Prison

Answering the Real Questions About Federal Prison

What happens on the first day of prison? Are showers really that scary?

Thousands of people are sent to federal prison each year in the United States. Add to that the many families and loved ones affected when someone they know is going to prison, and you have a larger percentage of the population who have burning questions about life in prison.

Finally, there is a comprehensive, realistic guide to surviving in federal prison – the Federal Prison Handbook.

“I wanted to provide a definitive guide for individuals facing incarceration, prisoners who are already inside, and their friends and family,” says author Christopher Zoukis, a college-educated former inmate and prison advocate.

The newly-released Federal Prison Handbook compiles information not only to help prisoners and their loved ones protect themselves and their rights but to help keep prisoners safe by explaining how to avoid the near-constant conflicts found inside prisons.

Some of the topics inside include:

  • What to expect on the day you’re admitted to prison, and how to greet cellmates for the first time
  • What to do about sexual harassment or assault
  • The best ways to avoid fights and the options that provide the greatest protection if a fight cannot be avoided
  • Medical, psychological, and religious services
  • How to communicate with the outside world through telephones, computers, and mail.
  • What you can buy in the official commissary and the underground economy
  • How to avoid scams, schemes, theft, and other problems
  • Comprehensive analysis of Federal Bureau of Prisons policy and regulatory guidelines


About Christopher Zoukis

Christopher Zoukis is an outspoken prisoners’ rights and correctional education advocate who was incarcerated at FCI Petersburg Medium in Virginia. He is an award-winning writer whose work has been published widely in major publications such as The Huffington Post, Prison Legal News, New York Daily News, and various other print and online publications. Read more about the Federal Prison Handbook or Christopher Zoukis.

Media Inquiries

Christopher Zoukis is pleased to speak with the media about topics related to prison education and justice reform. For more information or to book an interview, please contact us.


“A true resource for anyone involved with the prison system.” — Alan Ellis, America’s leading federal criminal defense attorney

“Provides a wealth of useful information and solid advice. . . [A] treasure trove of penal acumen and knowledge.” — Alex Friedmann, Managing Editor, Prison Legal News

“The Federal Prison Handbook is one of my go-to guides for matters related to the federal prison system. An invaluable resource for attorneys . . . , prisoners, and their families.” — Jeremy Gordon, federal criminal defense and appellate attorney, General Counsel of Prisology

“This is the most informative . . . prison handbook that we’ve ever seen, and we’ve seen them all.” — Mark Varca, expert attorney and Chairman of FedCURE