07 Feb '11, 10am

How did Douglas Adams come up with the number 42 in The Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy?

ON A Sunday in the spring of 1981, Douglas Adams was typing a letter. "Dear Ken," he began, "Your book was really very useful to me ..." The thank-you letter from Adams to Australian writer Ken Welsh, author of Hitchhiker's Guide To Europe, continues, "[One evening in 1971] I got frantically depressed in Innsbruck ... When the stars came out I thought that someone ought to write a Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy because it looked a lot more attractive out there than it did around me." Keeping the idea safe, Adams hitched to Istanbul before returning to England for three years as a Cambridge student, where he became an underachieving comedy writer and performer. Eventually, though, his eureka moment in an alpine meadow would spark a remarkable phenomenon. And one original idea in The Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy, first broadcast as a radio comedy in 1978, has developed...

Full article: http://www.todayonline.com/Entertainment/EDC110207-000009...

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