To tell you the truth

I began the Intercolumn Reference on this machine.

I began the Intercolumn Reference on this machine.

The year was 1978. Before I even knew there was such a thing as the Internet. I was writing. Which meant I was typing. And I had this idea, about what people knew or thought they knew, and I was going to cross-link it with other things people thought they knew. Got the Bible idea. The beginning of the ICR idea.

Typing. Typing. On an old Underwood. You’re not going to believe this, but I wrote the first three books of The Boomer Bible on this Underwood. And I included the ICR from the beginning, which meant that I was writing two columns with a thing in the middle. Meaning I had to know ahead of time what EXACTLY would be in each column and how to make the central ICR column. On an Underwood Standard.

Think about it. You write halfway across the page, stop for the ICR, and then proceed to a pre-programmed second column.

While I had no idea what the ICR would ultimately consist of.

A friend of mine accused me of the sin of experimental writing. But there was never anything experimental about what I did. I knew what I was doing, but it took me ten years to do it. There came a day when I realized, finish it or never do anything worthwhile.

So I wrote The Boomer Bible. I was thriving as a management consultant. I just quit it. Had a nice office. Moved across the hall. And wrote and wrote and wrote. My business died. Because I was writing not leading the partners. Couldn’t stop.

Here’s how it worked. As I went to sleep each night, I made plans about what I would write the next day. As soon as I sat at my new computerized keyboard, I started writing something else. For months. Then I sold the book to a publisher. Which is when I got focused on doing this much on this part every single day. And I finished it on time.

Then came the ICR. Weirdest part of my life. I told the publisher the book didn’t exist without the ICR. So I spent six weeks doing it. Had the whole book in my head all at once. Dreamed about it all night, every night. Then, I spent all day every day, every single day, pinning it all down.

Here’s one example of what happened with the ICR.

There Isn’t Any God.

Thing was, the book was something you had to light up when you read it. The whole thing. Funny, eh?


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