Newsday columnist Mike Mc Grady was convinced that standards of literary and artistic taste were plummeting rapidly in the United States, driven down by a relentless flood of media sensationalism that catered to the lowest common denominator.So he decided to design an experiment to test the depths of the American cultural morass.In 1966 Mc Grady recruited twenty-four fellow Newsday staff members to help him with this project.He provided them each with a four-page story outline, warning them, "True excellence in writing will be blue-penciled into oblivion.Time spent in that world can help them their actual world, while not giving up on having exciting, even emotional experiences.Living within the two worlds is not easy, however, and may become increasingly risky when people do not realize the limitations of each.These people believe that if they do not even know the real name of their cybermate—and never actually see them—their affair cannot be regarded as from a moral point of view; it's no different from reading a novel or other form of entertainment.In other words, a way to play out fantasies in a safe environment.
The fact that most of these affairs are concealed from offline spouses is indicative of the possible harm.
In fact, it would have a minimum of two sex scenes per chapter.
If the book was a success, Mc Grady reasoned, it would prove that the American public completely lacked all standards of taste.
The resulting publicity made the book an even bigger seller, and the book spent a week on the New York Times bestseller list. Naked Came the Stranger subsequently inspired a slew of other collaborative novels, many of which adopted versions of the 'Naked Came The...' title in homage to the original.
The authors of Naked Came the Stranger pose outside the offices of Newsday Billie Young, who posed as "Penelope Ashe," the "demure Long Island housewife" who supposedly authored the book. Examples include Naked Came the Manatee, Naked Came the Phoenix, and Naked Came the Sasquatch.