In the back ofBILL, Bill Berkson writes, "The words and title forBILLpopped out of a juvenile detective novel Tom Veitch gave me around 1980. Instantly, just flipping through this little illustrated book occasioned an emergency. The editorial imagination went to work. Soon, having typed a series of short sentences, paragraphs and stray phrases towards the bottom edge of unusually thin 8 1/2" by 11" sheets... I set aside the twenty-or-so pages and forgot about them."
The story was then shelved in a manila folder for 25 years. Berkson revisited the story in 2006 and decided the blank pages needed artwork. With the help of Mac McGinnes, it was decided that artist Colter Jacobsen would be a perfect fit. Jacobsen found inspiration for the project in a collection of postcards dating from early the 1900s through the 1980s. With a slow and deliberate attentiveness he began a series of drawings. He says, "I felt I was responding to another time, nearer to when I was born, a time thirty years before I was born, and recontextualizing these times into images for today." Within a year, the newBILLemerged, a fresh creation, in its present splendor.