EMAIL NUMBER 44
The Antinet Zettelkasten Book is Coming!
Scott P. Scheper
Downtown San Diego, CA
Saturday 7:55 a.m.
I am writing this to you on a Saturday morning at 7:55 a.m. from my home office.
It is the same home office that is filled with a thousand books (most of which I have not read).
I am writing this to you early in the morning on Saturday because, well, I ran out of time to write this to you during the week!
Here's why: I've been hard at work coordinating the final logistical details with the Antinet Zettelkasten book launch!
If you've been following my progress for a while, you know that this book has been a longgggg time coming.
Well, not really.
I mean, it's a 594-page beast, after all. The time taken to actually write it hasn't been "that long" (in the grand scheme of things).
The book is something that I started researching in January 2021. The book is a culmination of my findings after going deep down the rabbit hole investigating how Niklas Luhmann's notebox system worked.
From January of 2021 until March 2021, I spent my time going deep on PKM systems out there ("Personal Knowledge Management" systems).
The PKM systems I invested in included tools like Roam Research, Foam (the open-source version), and Obsidian.
After investing a ton of time and energy into Obsidian, I was left with 1,272 notes and a cute-looking bubble graph. The problem was that the system seemed to create a bunch of information, but not actual knowledge. If your goal is to create deep, influential pieces of writing, Obsidian and bubble graphs aren't going to get you there. Hell, I'm not sure where it'll get you.
Then in the spring of 2021, I spent a lot of time with Sönke Ahrens's How to Take Smart Notes. This naturally leads me to the grandaddy of all PKM systems: Niklas Luhmann's Zettelkasten. The Zettelkasten is what inspired many of the linked-thinking tools you find today. Luhmann's Zettelkasten helped him produce 70 books and 550 peer-reviewed articles in a record-setting timespan.
From June 2021 until August of 2021 I spent most of my time digging into the digital archive of Niklas Luhmann's notebox. It was then that I uncovered how his knowledge system really worked.
I learned how Luhmann's Zettelkasten was wildly different than the material taught in How to Take Smart Notes. It was also wildly different than what is taught when you search the term Zettelkasten online.
Everywhere I went, everyone seemed to have a drastically different understanding of how Luhmann's Zettelkasten worked.
It was so bad, and the Zettelkasten term seemed so obfuscated, that I decided to drop the term altogether. I began using the term Antinet.
This brings us up to about the end of August 2021. By this point, I had translated many of Luhmann's notecards into English and, in order to fully understand how it worked, I wrote them out… by hand!
At this point I decided that it would be a good exercise to prove out the effectiveness of his system. How? By writing a book on it.
On September 2021, I laid out a dozen books that would prove helpful in my research. These books were rather tertiary, but provided some interesting context for why the Antinet works so sell. These books include * Foundations of Human Memory*, The Book of Trees, Cataloging The World, The Radical Luhmann, Forgetting Machines, How The Mind Works, and many others.
From September 2021 to February 2022, I ingested these books and developed knowledge using the same workflow Luhmann used (which I detail in my book). By the end, I was left with a richly packed cabinet of notecards with nested ideas that went deep into many areas that I couldn't have otherwise planned.
At this point, I had to cut myself off! It was time to write the book.
So, from February 2022 to May 2022, I wrote. Five days a week I wrote. And at the end of it all, I was left with roughly 190,000 words (about 800 pages).
The system certainly proved itself. It worked. It turned me into an absolute writing machine.
And the writing I'm talking about wasn't surface-level trite bullshit (the type of writing that you're taught in digital writing cohort courses). Nay, this writing style does not come by way of sitting on your butt for thirty days and writing clickbaity titles for LinkedIn.
The type of writing the Antinet spits out is deeply evolved and deeply footnoted (like Luhmann's).
I have since taken that 800-page manuscript and cut out a few chapters (which will be made into a separate eBook). I've also had the manuscript copyedited, "type-setted" and designed into the beautiful beast it is today: a 594-page book about everything you'll ever want to know about the Zettelkasten—the purest form of Luhmann's Zettelkasten: the analog version, the original version… the Antinet Zettelkasten.
STOP: 8:16 a.m. - My (tolerant) fiancé is at the gym working out. My two-year-old daughter just woke up. She's upstairs crying. I'll be back in a bit after I make her eggs and drench that shit in ketchup. I will then turn on YouTube Kids for her to zone out on so that I can finish whatever the hell I'm droning on about.
START: 8:45 a.m.
OK, I'm back. My daughter left me a lovely treat. In her diaper: a semi-whet turd that she apparently sat down on. Some of it spread onto her back. I cleaned that up using warm baby wipes. I then cooked her a substance resembling the treat she left me: some nice Quaker Instant Oatmeal (of the Maple & Brown Sugar varietal). She is currently guzzling down the oatmeal in the other room while watching a show called Peppa Pig. I should have 5-10 more minutes to continue writing to you.
Anyway, where was I? Oh yes, I was sensationalizing how much time and effort has been poured into my forthcoming book, Antinet Zettelkasten: A Knowledge System That Will Turn You Into a Prolific Reader, Researcher and Writer. I think you get it by now. I have invested a lot of work into this product.
So here's where I'm at: the cover for my book is officially designed and done. It's beautiful.
This past week I spent most of my time interviewing book printers and fulfillment houses and… I think I found the perfect vendor to both print and fulfill the orders. I'm in the midst of getting the files and everything setup with this vendor.
I intend to release the book on my website and have it printed in bulk. That way, I can release the book for the cheapest price available. I intend to sell the book at the cost of it being printed, plus the shipping and fulfillment fees. It will be way cheaper than what it will cost on Amazon.
Of course, I'll be releasing it on Amazon as well eventually, but the price will be more and the quality will be less (just saying).
So, the bottom line is… the book is almost here!
It is slated to launch in the very beginning of December. I have a precise date in my head, but I'm not going to reveal that to you just yet. I need to wait for confirmation from the vendor to make sure they can hit that date target. Stay tuned!
STOP: 8:57 a.m. - My cat Brodus Maximus Scheper The Third is on my desk, basking in the warmth under my green desk lamp. My daughter has ventured into my home office and she is hanging on my left arm, trying to reach up onto the desk in order to pet Brodus Maximus. I shall take yet another break and entertain my daughter. She just poked me and said "Dadda, Fart!" I've taught her great things.
START: 9:09 a.m.
OK, I'm back again.
Long story short: the Antinet Zettelkasten book is coming soon. Look for it in early December. I'll be keeping you posted on the release and launch. I have many exciting things in the works. Stay tuned.
And have a great weekend.
Scott P. Scheper
"The Best Distracted Writer on The Planet
P.S. Stay crispy, my friend.
P.S. #2 For everyone who hand-wrote to me a year ago requesting a free copy of the book: I will soon fulfill on this promise! When the book is launched in early December, you will be the very first to receive it. I'll be paying for the book plus the shipping and handling fees. Why? Because you are the best and you believed in this project before anyone else.
P.S. #3 One thing that I didn't get to today (but is something that I'm absolutely blown away by) is the progress of my Neo-Intellectuals. These individuals are my small cohort of people I've taken through three months of coaching and teaching. I've taught them how to develop knowledge, write, produce and build a tribe in their niche so that they can create the Neo-Intelletual Life. It's phenomenal to see their progress.
That's all. Have a great weekend. Peace.
Saturday 9:15 a.m.