Take a simple idea based on personal experience; write a book asserting that this personal experience is actually the universal one; illustrate this assertion from the lives of a few famous people, and with plentiful quotations from ‘ recent research’. Before publication, see that numberless interviews and articles appear about yourself and your idea, with long extracts from the book: such is the extraordinary guzzling and vomiting character of the media when dealing with ideas, your small, unremarkable thought will, for a while, be everywhere.
Liz and Neville Hodgkinson, both journalists, have been married for twenty-one years and have two teen-aged sons. Five years ago, led by Mrs Hodgkinson, they decided to recognise that they were terminally bored with each other in bed; to sleep apart, and to abstain temporarily from even the casual hugs and touchings of everyday life while they were getting physically clear of each other. The experiment became a settled way of life; both now report themselves happier, healthier, calmer, more mentally independent, and without either having taken a lover, each more open to richer and deeper friendships, while their own relationship flourishes in a new way. (‘More like brother and sister’, according to Mr Hodgkinson in a rather unwise newspaper interview of his own).
Well, fine. However, the paragraph above contains nearly all that Liz Hodgkinson has to say on the subject that is reasonable and true, if not especially interesting to the rest of us; so far it is wholly personal, and wouldn’t bring home much bacon.
Sex Is Not Compulsory, with the attendant