Iceberg Slim, aka Robert Beck, was born in Chicago in 1918 and was initiated into the life of the pimp at age eighteen. He briefly attended the Tuskegee Institute but dropped out to return to the streets of the South Side, where he remained, pimping until he was forty-two. After several stints in jail, culminating in a ten-month stay in Cook County, he decided to give up the life and turned to writing.
With a family to feed, Slim folded his life into the pages of seven books based on his life; Trick Baby was his second novel following Pimp. Catapulted into the public eye, Slim became a new American hero, known for speaking the truth whether that truth was ugly, sexy, rude or blunt. Slim died at age 73 in 1992; one day before the Los Angeles riots.