So Operation Key to the Mint is go.
Chapter One: In which Carlos the Awesome succumbs to his delusions of grandeur and enacts a foolhardy plan to end up on US currency someday in the future possibly maybe if the stars line up and fortune smiles upon him.
I’ve been listening to Hamilton a lot in the last week. I’ll be writing a spoiler heavy critique of it soon because I’m still digesting it. But it’s kind of inspired me a bit to commit to something whole heartedly again. The intent of this little experiment is to use Alexander Hamilton as a measuring post in an effort to spur some creativity. For those of you who have heard the soundtrack or seen the full performance, I’m referring to the song Non-Stop. Where the feat of writing fifty-one essays in defense of the U.S. Constitution in the span of six months is attributed to the the ten dollar founding father without a father.
My goal is to outdo the man. Fifty TWO short stories in the span of six months would establish that not only can I match Hamilton’s ridiculous writing pace, but surpass it. I honestly don’t like my chances, but I felt the same way about my 100 Days of Art experiment and that turned out okay.
I do want the challenge to be fair though, and herein lies a bit of a pickle. I’m actually unsure what measuring stick to use here. The musical states 51 essays in six months. But Wikipedia says otherwise. The first article of “The Federalist” was supposedly published on October 27 of 1787, and the last one on August 13th of 1788. That’s 291 days. Way more than six months. To boot, the entirety of the Federalist Papers clock in at 84,940 words. ALL of them. Including the thirty-four that he didn’t write. . . So do I find a word count of all the ones he wrote? If I do, do I attempt to beat the word count in 180 days or 291? Would a fairer test be to match the number of completed pieces as opposed to sheer word count? If I’m matching completed pieces, then do I adhere to a 180 or to 291 day time frame?
Either way, I have the advantage of technology. Word processors that can swap out words on a whim, correct my spelling automatically, a grammar app that can make suggestions. And a short story typically only has a 1k word minimum. The challenge then becomes 52k words in a six-month time frame. That seems a little easy given that there are people who regularly complete NaNoWriMo (50k words in 30 days).
Now, the fastest I’ve ever actually written a full piece from start to finish was 15k words overnight (from 8 to 8). So at my top speed I was at 1250 wph. Given I’ll only ever be able to really commit an hour a day to this, I believe that my target goal should be 1300 words a day. The difference in length should account for the fact that I’m not writing longhand.
So my response to 51 essays in six months will be 234,000 words in 180 days.
The challenge will be starting 12/1/17 and ending on 5/29/18. Stay tuned folks. You’ll be seeing some magic soon. . . hopefully