I have not written in this blog for nearly a year. On purpose. I am trying to learn to market the ebook way (insanely complicated), and I run into so many blogs that i wonder why write yet another. Still . . . . . I have decided to reprint my book’s introduction in order to explain what is truly a very different book.
I have always been a writer in a rather “straight” journalistic mode (books, magazines, brochures, manuals, articles, reporting, editing). I have a couple of journalism degrees, and for me, writing is craft plus talent. And it’s a job.
How then did a “normal” writer come up with this bizarrely different book? Definitely not a job. More like a mission. How did this happen?
Magic. I would have to say magic.
We’ve been told for centuries “to ask and you shall receive,” and so I followed that advice. I’ve written everything from a documentary to a birthday card, but, I wondered, is there a reason I have this propensity to write? And so I asked. Out loud, twice a day, morning and evening, for three days. It wasn’t a prayer, it wasn’t a demand, it was a simple request: “Tell me what you want and I will do it.” On the third day the process of knowing began. Or rather, the process of surprising myself.
I walked into Maui’s Haleakalā Volcano to clear my mind and let the message come through. Haleakalā is quiet and expansive, a massive place for inspiration. By the time I hiked to the crater floor, a 3,000-foot descent, I had it. But boy, was I surprised by it: a diapered, blue baby who exhibits no gender, no nationality, no normal skin color, no particular culture. And Baby Blue is on a journey across the globe to meet mythological, legendary, cultural, clever and fun characters who all impart wisdom as Baby passes through. You’ll notice I’m avoiding the “him” or “her” pronouns because Baby Blue needs to be an “Everyman” character, someone who can represent all of us questioning, wondering, wandering souls.
The stories came to me in starts ‘n stops, spurts ‘n dribbles over 20-some years. I don’t even remember exactly when I began. ITOO (It Takes Only One) was in no hurry to be written. When they did visit me, my muses expressed best in nature, particularly redwood forests and Haleakalā Crater. I was often startled by the very sentences I wrote down. I’d sit on a tree stump or a volcanic boulder and suddenly write in Lewis Carroll’s voice for my “Alice” chapter, or the Arthurian character Fisher King would speak in my head in the crazy cadence of American comic Robin Williams, or, drifting in on his raft, Huckleberry Finn had me write in a similar manner to Mark Twain. It was a fun journey. A year or so would go by with no writing done on ITOO, and then suddenly Gilgamesh had to have his say. The Oracle at Delphi was in a manic rage to make her points, and that certainly shocked me, while Archangel Michael, as you can imagine, had patient and kind advice. Persia’s Simorgh, Britain’s Merlin, Quetzalcoatl and the Mayan Ceiba, Hawaii’s Pele and a Japanese mountain . . . just read the Table of Contents to see what an adventurous odyssey this has been. The characters, their stories and their advice, came through me in willful and peculiar ways, and, no doubt, that’s because they seemed to write their own stories.