Hyle, you know how when anything needs to be done, you leave me to do it?
But of course, Hand! You’re so much better than me at doing the boring stuff. You know what they say: boring is as boring does. So, I’m happy to leave it all in your tedious hands. Can I go now?
Well, I’m afraid I need your ability to think outside the box.
Yeah, it’s true. I ain’t no box thinker, that’s for sure. Fortunately, since you and I inherited those billions of dollars a couple of years ago, I haven’t had to think much at all! In or out of the box! Don’t tell me you’re now proposing to rain on my parade.
You remember how we hired author George Albert Brown to find out and write up the story behind our inheritance, a story which had been kept from us since 1977 by our now-deceased relatives?
Right. And we promised him that once it was written, we would fund someone to publish it and then someone else to promote it. I remember. So, how’s that going? Has George started writing it yet?
Started? He’s finished and the book has just been published by Galbraith Literary Publishers, under the title, Who Killed Jerusalem? A budding cult classic combining the literary, the philosophical, the poetic, and the raucously humorous with an intricate mystery story.
Really? Do you have a copy? I better read it to see what it says about me.
Oh, please, Hyle. You and I were only eight years old at the time the book takes place. Quit trying to make everything all about you.
All about me? When have I ever made everything all about me?
What about that TV series pilot you made, “The Emperor of the Universe”? About a toga-wearing ne’er-do-well obsessed with wine, women, song, and dope, sitting around waiting to be called into service by the world? You’re saying that wasn’t based on you?
Certainly not. What could possibly give you that idea?
Well, after the launch of the book, I set up a prize draw with monthly $1,000 prizes, but the prize draw has ended, so we need something to replace it.
Hmmm. How about this for an idea? Though you and I don’t agree on much, both of us do like solving puzzles.
With entirely different approaches, though. Mine, Apollonian, logical, and linear; yours, Dionysian, thematic, and intuitive.
Yeah, mine, creative and thrilling; yours, rulebound and boring. So, when the prize draw ends, I suggest we replace it with an online treasure hunt in which entrants have to solve a series of puzzles on a map…
…with the puzzles written in our different styles! Great idea!
To give more people a chance to win, we’ll have a ton of prizes! $25,000 for whomever finds the treasure first, and then after that, $5,000, $4,000, $3,000, $2,000, and six $1,000 prizes as the respective entrants find the treasure. Plus we’ll set up a series of free warmup Mini Puzzles before the hunt starts, which could result in a $5,000 bonus if a solver then enters the Treasure Hunt.
And to promote the book, we’ll call the contest the Who Killed Ickey? Treasure Hunt.
Better than that, each puzzle will reference a specific point in the book. So, we’re not only advertising the book, we’re effectively requiring people to buy it to play. Given that they'll be buying the book from booksellers at the same price everybody else pays (say, $9.99 for the eBook), it's really like the net cost of the Hunt is nil! And, of course, we hope players will read the book when they’re done and tell their friends about it!
Definitely outside the box.